Purdue News

2005 Honorary Degree

W. Ron Dehaven
Doctor Of Science

W. Ron Dehaven

W. Ron DeHaven has distinguished himself in the fields of veterinary medicine and public health.

In his illustrious 25-year career in the U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, he has made considerable contributions to agriculture, animal health and human health, both domestically and globally. He also has expertly managed animal health emergencies of critical agricultural importance and intense international interest, providing the department with renewed credibility and helping to eliminate the possibility of a national crisis in consumer confidence.

In 1979, DeHaven joined APHIS, where he now serves as administrator. This highest post in a key federal regulatory agency administers the Animal Welfare Act and conducts wildlife damage management activities that are vital to maintaining a safe and affordable food supply. During his tenure at APHIS, he has made tremendous strides in controlling and eradicating diseases dangerous to human health and the agricultural economy.

In 1975, prior to his service in the federal government, DeHaven was commissioned into the U.S. Army Veterinary Corps, where he performed exemplary service for four years. In 1979, he joined the U.S. Army Reserves and National Guard, adding another 18 years of distinguished military service to his record.

Born in Salt Lake City, Utah, and raised in Mount Prospect, Ill., DeHaven received his doctor of veterinary medicine degree in 1975 from Purdue University and his master's degree in business administration in 1989 from Millsaps College in Jackson, Miss.

DeHaven's awards and honors include twice being recognized by the secretary of agriculture with the Secretary's Honor Award for his leadership on chronic wasting disease in 2003 and on the U.S. response to bovine spongiform encephalopathy in 2004. In 2004, he also received the American Veterinary Medical Association's Meritorious Service Award for his contributions to the veterinary profession over a sustained period.

DeHaven also has been involved on a voluntary basis with numerous committees, foundations, councils and organizations on the local, national and international levels regarding preventative medicine, animal health and environmental concerns.