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Chandler to be Honored as Penn State's Dairy Science 2014 Distinguished Alumnus

Posted: October 22, 2014

Chandler will be honored at a Department of Animal Science ceremony on November 7 for his significant contributions and innovative leadership.

Paul T. Chandler, Ph.D., Chandler Associates, Inc., Dresden, TN, has been named the 2014 Dairy Science Distinguished Alumnus by Penn State's Department of Animal Science and will be recognized at a departmental ceremony on Friday, November 7.

Dr. Chandler earned his Ph.D. from Penn State, after receiving his B.S. and M.S. from the University of Tennessee. He was a graduate assistant at Penn State and an instructor of Dairy Science. Before founding his own consulting firm in 1978, he was a professor in the Dairy Science Department at Virginia Tech.

The principal dairy nutrition consultant in his own company, Chandler Associates, Dr. Chandler has clients that include dairy producers and feed companies throughout the United States. He continues to work with H.J. Baker & Bro. for whom he developed two products: Pro-Lak, a combination of protein sources, designed to supply a complement of amino acids to the lactating cow, and MetaboLys(r), rumen protected lysine.

Dr. Chandler was honored in 1997 with the ADSA Applied Dairy Nutrition award. In his nomination papers, he was called an innovative leader in applied dairy cattle field, with the unique ability to be research-based yet at the same time very practical.

Dr. Terry Etherton, Head of the Department of Animal Science, said, "We look forward to welcoming Dr. Chandler to campus and celebrating the outstanding contributions he has made to the dairy industry. He has had an enormous impact on both the industry and individual dairy producers through his ability to communicate effectively. His creative approach and forward thinking have been invaluable."

In learning of the award, Dr. Chandler expressed surprise, but added, "I have a very high degree of respect for my graduate colleagues. And I am grateful to my Ph.D. committee, Dr. Earl Kesler, Dr. John W. Bratzler and Dr. Robert D. McCarthy, for their support and encouragement." He expressly thanked Dr. Kesler who "never said no, and did everything in his power to get something done."

He also noted, "Everything that I know is due to a cow - either directly from or because of a cow."

Dr. Chandler is well-known as a mentor, supporting and nurturing students, many of whom continue to make significant contributions to the industry.

His research on Methionine as one of the two limiting amino acids in high producing cows was ground-breaking. He was one of the earliest to use what is now called Meta-Analysis to prove or disprove various theories, assembling data from various experiments and developing a model to incorporate each set of data, making it possible to prove or disprove a hypothesis.

One of Chandler's significant accomplishments was developing a ration balancing program that was easily understood by cooperative extension agents. Data was transmitted over a phone line in the mid-70's, and the use of the program throughout Virginia moved those dairymen ahead of others in production.

For years Dr. Chandler wrote an article for Feedstuffs on a bi-weekly basis. Feedstuffs is widely read by feed manufacturers throughout the country and the world, and Dr. Chandler's ability to explain difficult nutrition concepts and their use in practical situations was invaluable. He also provided 3.5 minute radio nutrition updates as part of DAIRYLINE. He has been lauded for being able to talk in laymen's terms and use his innate "cow sense" combined with technical expertise to educate and train.

Dr. Chandler credits a stint at the Oak Ridge, TN, Agricultural Research Laboratory with "making a scientist out of me. I had contact with scientists from all over the world and it opened my eyes."

Dr. Chandler worked in Hungary as a consultant for the US Feed Grain Council, and prepared written material on nutrition based on courses he taught at Penn State and Virginia Tech, highlighting the need to feed cows for profit. On subsequent visits to Hungary, he learned that the government had obtained a copy and labeled it "U.S. Propaganda." Nevertheless, the Hungarian underground continued to read and use the material, something Chandler considers "one of the highlights of my career."

He has been a member of the American Dairy Science Association, the American Society of Animal Science, the American Institute of Nutrition, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Animal Nutrition Research Council, Sigma XI, Gamma Sigma Delta and the American Registry of Certified Animal Scientists.

Dr. Chandler lives on his family's farm in Dresden, where his educational endeavors began with strong support of his parents, Russell and Nannie Thomas Chandler. He expressed gratitude for the strong support of two "life mates." He is married to Jane Butts Chandler, a neighbor with whom he reconnected after the death of his first wife, Patsy Miller Chandler, whom he met when she was a librarian at the Oak Ridge facility. He has two adult daughters, Pamela Sue and Paula Yvonne.