This position is under the administrative direction of the Commissioner of Agriculture and his designee. The State Veterinarian’s scope of responsibility includes the prevention, suppression, control, and eradication of communicable diseases of animals and poultry, as stipulated in West Virginia Code Chapter 19 and State Code of Rules and Regulations Series 61. This will include the collection and dissemination of information related to animal and poultry diseases both domestic and foreign, enabling the State Veterinarian to implement the necessary actions to protect animals and poultry from diseases. Other areas of responsibility include planning operations and developing procedures for the Division; directing the work of employees; developing employees through training; evaluating Division operations; developing budget needs; researching new procedures, technologies and facilities to stay abreast of current developments; and raising public awareness of the Department of Agriculture’s role in assuring a safe food supply.
• Serves as the primary contact for Department with the United States Department of Agriculture as well as other state and federal organizations on issues related to animal and poultry diseases and safe, sanitary meat processing operations.
• Provides direction and support to Division staff and programs.
• Oversees, develops, and implements the Division’s policies and procedures.
• Oversees preparation, development, and provides approval for the Division’s budget including personnel services, supplies and equipment
• Answers questions from the public regarding a myriad of circumstances involving animal health and the state’s livestock population.
• Provides documentation of animals as required by the Dangerous Wild Animal law.
• Provides for tagging at weekly livestock markets.
• Oversees the Animal Disease Traceability program and supervises the State’s Animal Disease Traceability Coordinator.
• Oversees the Meat Inspection Program and supervises inspectors’ activities.
• Provides assistance in writing grant agreements/applications related to division’s programs.
• Administers programs in accordance with the agreements.
• Collects tissues for laboratory culture work, histopathology and other relevant laboratory procedures and analyses.
• Performs epidemiological analyses regarding livestock and animal disease.
• Performs farm animal necropsies onsite.
• Performs final dispositions on suspect animals at slaughter.
• Issues and enforces quarantines related to animal or poultry disease outbreaks.
• Issues and enforces suspensions or shutdowns of meat processing facilities.
• Works with Homeland Security personnel to resolve incidents involving livestock.
• Participates in the Southern Agriculture and Animal Disaster Response Alliance working
• Participate on committees as required by WV State Code (i.e. Livestock Care Standards Board, Dangerous, Wild Animal Board, Aquaculture Advisory Committee, etc.)
• Examines livestock and horses at in-state fairs, festivals and equine events for signs of infectious and communicable disease to determine admission to the event.
• Assures that slaughtered animal carcasses are properly inspected to determine if the meat is safe for human consumption.
• Writes Certificates of Veterinary Inspection at statewide purebred consignment sales.
• Performs humane handling audits of animals at licensed slaughter facilities.
• Assures sanitary handling of meat products at licensed processing facilities.
• Trains meat inspectors in the normal anatomy and pathological conditions of livestock.
• Maintains a positive image of the Commissioner, the West Virginia Department of Agriculture, and the State.