The 2016 David Black Award has been won by Dr Susanna Williamson, a leading UK vet whose role in helping the industry address the threat posed by PEDv (Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea) drew special praise from the judges.
President of the Pig Veterinary Society and veterinary leader for the Pig Expert Group at the Animal Health and Plant Agency, Dr Williamson (pictured above) received her award at an industry breakfast in the House of Lords, attended by politicians, senior civil servants and members of the industry.
“It is important to recognise that successful disease surveillance is about working in partnership,” she said in accepting the award, adding that this requires access to a wide range of veterinary, scientific and technical expertise.
“This is especially important as the industry strives to address disease issues and minimise antimicrobial use. There is also no one-size-fits-all approach, so producers need to consult their veterinary and other advisers to choose interventions customised to their pigs and their farm.
“I have been hearing from colleagues in practice of some excellent progress and would encourage examples of cost-effective working, but there is still some way to go.”
The award judges’ citation stated: “Sussanna has devoted her time, energy and considerable talent in service to pig producers and she contributes greatly to keeping this country safe from the threats of existing and emerging disease. In fact she has made a significant and lasting contribution to the British pig industry.”