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Richard Saacke Named 2006 Dairy Science Distinguished Alumnus

Posted: March 19, 2008

Richard G. (Dick) Saacke, Professor Emeritus of Reproductive Physiology at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, has been named 2006 Dairy Science Distinguished Alumnus.

Saacke received his B.S. degree from Rutgers University, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Dairy Physiology from the Pennsylvania State University.

Saacke’s work has centered on the structure and function of spermatozoa, ova and the mammary gland. Particular areas of research emphasis have been optimization of semen preservation methods and the identification of semen traits important to sperm transport in the female, to fertilization and, in more recent years, to embryonic development. The general focus of his work has been toward the improvement of reproductive efficiency using artificial insemination.

Saacke has published approximately 90 research papers and has been recognized for his work, having received the National Association of Animal Breeders Research Award in 1985 and the Physiology Award from Upjohn in 1988.

He has also been recognized by the American Veterinary College of Theriogenology as an Honorary Diplomat (1997), the College of Agriculture at Penn State as a Distinguished Alumnus (1997), and Virginia Tech for excellence in teaching.

Throughout his career he has enjoyed the help and support of his wife and partner, Ann. They are the parents of 5 children and grandparents of 13.