Award for Distinction in Outreach & Engagement - Spring 2012
Phil Thacker’s expertise on swine nutrition and management has raised the profile of the University of Saskatchewan provincially, nationally and internationally. He is highly regarded within the swine and feed industries and very deserving of the Award for Distinction in Outreach and Engagement.
Dr. Thacker has been a professor in the College of Agriculture and Bioresources for the past 28 years. During this time, he has provided volumes of resource material related to the swine and feed industries. He has published books, CDs, journal and magazine articles, as well as several conference talks and presentations, many of which reach around the globe. More specifically, he is the author or co-author of four books on swine production in nutrition, two of which have been translated into Chinese. He has also written 22 book chapters related to swine production and nutrition along with 65 popular press magazine articles. He has given more than 70 international presentations, talking to audiences in China, Korea, the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Poland, Mexico, Spain, Canada and the United States. During his travels, he has received two “Friendship Awards”, one from the Federal Government of China and one from the City of Dalian People’s Government. The first is the highest award presented by the Chinese government to foreign experts, and is awarded as a “thank you” for their contribution to China. The latter is given to extend gratitude and recognition to foreign experts who have made great contributions. Throughout his career he has also been the recipient of the Co-op Feeds Young Scientist Award (1989) and the Animal Industries Award in Extension and Public Service (2009) from the Canadian Society of Animal Science.
Although Dr. Thacker is internationally recognized, he still is heavily involved in projects close to home. In 2008, the Department of Animal and Poultry Science was approached to develop a swine nutrition and management course for the Hutterite Brethren of Saskatchewan. Dr. Thacker worked to develop the course material and presented 24 hours of lecture material to the colony’s swine managers. The course reached a significant proportion of the Hutterite population while having the potential to significantly impact the economy in Saskatchewan.
Dr. Thacker’s work is highly regarded by his colleagues. One nominator wrote that “the publications of the Swine Nutrition Guide and the Non-Traditional Feed Sources for Use in Swine Production that Dr. Thacker co-authored have left a legacy for the Canadian feed and swine industry.” Another nominator expressed admiration for “his unending commitment to knowledge transfer, and to his lifetime of dedication to his work in swine research.” This dedication, along with his many other attributes described above, make Philip Thacker a very worthy recipient of this award.