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Elkin Honored by Poultry Science Association

Posted: June 24, 2019

Dr. Robert G. Elkin, Professor of Avian Nutritional Biochemistry, has been named a PSA Fellow, the highest recognition bestowed by PSA.

Dr. Robert G. Elkin, Professor of Avian Nutritional Biochemistry in Penn State's Department of Animal Science, has been selected as a Fellow of the Poultry Science Association (PSA), the highest recognition PSA bestows upon a member. He will be formally honored at PSA's Awards celebration during its 2019 Annual Meeting in Montréal, Québec, July 15-18, 2019.

This honor is awarded to those members who have achieved significant professional distinction and who have provided significant contributions to the field of poultry science. Two others will be recognized at the meeting:  Richard K. Gast, USDA/ARS and E. David Peebles III, Mississippi State University.

Dr. Terry Etherton, Head of the Department of Animal Science, said, "I am delighted that Bob has been honored with this prestigious recognition. Being named a Fellow demonstrates his stature in the poultry industry, both nationally and internationally and his many outstanding contributions to the industry and to our department."

Elkin said, "I am deeply appreciative of the Poultry Science Association for this great recognition.  It is humbling to now be included among this special group of individuals, many of whom I have known and greatly admired during my career."

A native of New Jersey, Elkin received a B.S. in Animal Science from Penn State in 1975, an M.S. in Nonruminant Nutrition in 1977 and a Ph.D. in Nutritional Biochemistry in 1981from Purdue University. He joined the faculty of the Department of Animal Sciences at Purdue in 1981 as an Assistant Professor, and rose through the ranks to Associate Professor and Professor.  In 1999, he was appointed Head of the Department of Poultry Science at Penn State, and served in that capacity until 2012, when the department was merged into the Department of Animal Science.

In addition to his research and teaching responsibilities, Elkin serves as Director of the Graduate Program in Animal Science and Coordinator of the Poultry and Avian Science Undergraduate Minor.

Elkin's research program has spanned several areas, including avian amino acid nutrition, metabolism, and analysis; utilization of high-tannin grain sorghum by poultry; nutritional/pharmacological reduction of egg cholesterol content; and, most recently, novel dietary approaches to enrich eggs and poultry meat with heart-healthy very long-chain omega-3 fatty acids. 

He is the author or co-author of 68 articles that have been published in 23 different refereed journals, 55 published abstracts, 4 book chapters, and 13 conference proceedings papers, and holds one U.S. patent. 

A member of PSA since 1976, Elkin's most extensive service to the Association has been in the area of journal editing and reviewing, serving as an Associate Editor of Poultry Science for 17 years, as a Metabolism & Nutrition Co-Section Editor of Poultry Science for 11 years, and as a Nutrition Co-Subject Editor of the Journal of Applied Poultry Research for three years. He currently is an Associate Editor of Lipids and on the Editorial Advisory Board of Animal Feed Science and Technology. In addition, Elkin has been an ad hoc reviewer of 190 manuscripts for 56 other journals besides Poultry Science.

Elkin has been the recipient of the PSA American Egg Board Research Award (1991) and the American Feed Industry Association Nutrition Research Award (1997), a Fulbright Scholar Research Award (Austria, 1992-93), and an OECD Research Fellowship (Austria, 1995). 

In 2017, he was appointed as a member of The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Committee that is currently preparing the 10th revised edition of the Nutrient Requirements of Poultry report, a publication that is deemed the global "gold standard" of poultry nutrition information for academia, government and industry.

PSA is a professional organization consisting of approximately 1,800 educators, scientists, extension specialists, industry researchers, administrators, producers, and college students who are committed to advancing the poultry industry. Since 1908, PSA's members have contributed through their research to the growth of the poultry industry and the development of safer and more nutritious food products for the consumer. PSA has served and continues to serve as the premier clearinghouse and publisher of basic and applied poultry research in the world.