sealPurdue News

August 9, 2002

Two assume department head roles in the School of Agriculture

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Two new department heads have assumed their positions in the Purdue University School of Agriculture.

Alan Grant was appointed head of the Department of Animal Sciences and Sally Thompson is head of the Department of Agricultural Economics.

Alan Grant

Grant, a Purdue faculty member since 1990, served as interim department head for the past year. Thompson had previously been a professor of agriculture and consumer economics at the University of Illinois.

"I always had a favorable impression of this department, this school and this university," said Thompson, who took over for Wallace Tyner on July 1. Tyner, department head for 13 years, remains with the department as a professor.

"My number one objective is to build on the success of the department's programs and make sure that more people throughout Indiana and the world know about, and take advantage of, what we have to offer."

Grant says developing a strategic plan for the animal sciences department is his top priority, addressing key biomedical research issues utilizing not only the resources of his department, but the resources of Purdue's Department of Veterinary Medicine and the Indiana University School of Medicine as well.

"It's a project we're very excited about," says Grant, who also hopes to utilize the team approach in dealing with animal welfare issues.

Sally Thompson

"Purdue has the potential to be a national leader in this area. We have a good foundation, but we need to form a good multistate team to have a real impact."

Grant, who served as interim department head, succeeded Jeff Armstrong, now dean of agriculture at Michigan State University.

"We are pleased to have Sally and Alan on board as new department heads," said Victor Lechtenberg Purdue dean of agriculture. "Sally brings a wealth of experience, particularly in the value-added and new enterprise arenas. Alan, as a faculty member, already knows and understands Indiana's animal industry, which is a real plus."

A reception for Grant and Thompson and new School of Agriculture associate dean Dale Whittaker, will be from 2-4 p.m. Aug. 14 at the Indiana State Fairgrounds on the third floor of the Home and Family Arts Building.

CONTACTS: Vic Lechtenberg, (765) 494-8392; Alan Grant, (765) 494-4808; Sally Thompson, (765) 494-4205.

Writer: Beth Forbes, (765) 494-2722,

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722; Beth Forbes,;

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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