Dr. Kate Hayes has been named Aviagen’s vice president of veterinary services for North America.

Based in Elkmont, Alabama, Hayes will report to President of North America Dr. Marc de Beer. In this new role, she leads a team of veterinary, laboratory, biosecurity and animal welfare specialists who all work collaboratively and innovatively to ensure the safety and security of the world’s poultry supply. In doing so, she and her team work together with Aviagen’s internal experts around the globe to help customers continually improve the health and welfare of their flocks.  

Proven commitment to animal health and welfare 

Before accepting her current position, Hayes served Aviagen as associate veterinarian and then production Program Veterinarian, where she effectively led the grandparent (GP) and great grandparent (GGP) operations of the veterinary services division, as well as the Elkmont, Alabama, Veterinary Laboratory. During this tenure, she was instrumental in helping the company become the first primary breeder in the country to achieve the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP) “Avian Influenza Clean Compartment” certification (2017).  

Alongside her Aviagen duties, Dr. Hayes further contributes to the industry as chair of the American College of Poultry Veterinarians (ACPV) examination committee and co-chair of the mentorship subcommittee for the American Association of Avian Pathologists (AAAP) Membership Committee, as well as a Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO)-certified welfare auditor.  


Hayes earned a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) from the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine and a Master’s in Avian Health and Medicine from the University of Melbourne (in Australia). She is also a diplomate of the American College of Poultry Veterinarians.  

“Kate brings to this position a breadth of education and expertise, combined with proven leadership abilities and a passion for our birds and for people,” commented Dr. de Beer. “I have full confidence in her ability to successfully lead this role that is of vital importance to Aviagen and our customers.”  

“I am honored to serve our company in this new capacity, and am proud of the part we play in feeding current and future generations with a healthy and sustainable protein,” remarked Dr. Hayes. “It is an inspiration to work each day alongside a tremendously talented and dedicated group of professionals with whom I share a passion for upholding our company’s robust health, biosecurity and welfare standards as they serve to strengthen the safety, and well-being of our birds.”