Dr. Denise Heard has officially started her position as director of research programs at the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY). She succeeds Dr. John Glisson, who is retiring soon.

Heard will administer the Association’s and the Foundation’s comprehensive research program and Board Research Initiative program that encompasses all components of poultry and egg production and processing. She will work with the Foundation’s Research Advisory Committee, receiving and evaluating research proposals and making recommendations to the board of directors for both organizations for funding approval. USPOULTRY’s Manager of Food Safety & Production Programs, Rafael Rivera, will also report to Heard.

Heard joins USPOULTRY from the United States Department of Agriculture National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP), where she has served as the senior coordinator for the past eight years. Her responsibilities included leading and overseeing the administration of the NPIP program in all 50 states and Puerto Rico; authorizing more than 100 NPIP laboratories across the country; coordinating rulemaking to incorporate into the federal regulations for the poultry industry; and managing the state administration of the NPIP through periodic reviews of the administrative procedures of the NPIP Official State Agencies.

“USPOULTRY welcomes Dr. Heard as our director of research programs, and we look forward to her contribution to our efforts,” remarked John Starkey, USPOULTRY president.