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APHIS Veterinarian Plays an Active Role in Safeguarding Animal Health

Hello, I’m Dr. Bill Huls, Facilities Manager with USDA APHIS’s Center for Veterinary Biologics (CVB).  I have been with APHIS since 2002.  The CVB regulates the industry that manufacturers veterinary biological products including animal vaccines and diagnostic test kits.  I communicate with firms on a daily basis to help ensure they are maintaining compliance with federal regulations.   This includes managing documents and items that relate to those firms – things like policies and procedures used by the manufacturer to prepare their products, procedures for who enters and exits the facility, the organization and arrangement of the facilities they make their product in, etc.  I also conduct inspections of facilities that manufacture biological products.   The work performed by the CVB helps ensure both animal and human health is safeguarded.

I decided to become a veterinarian when I was 18 after spending time with a veterinary practitioner in my hometown.  Following completion of veterinary school I joined a small animal practice.  Eventually, I bought my own practice.  My practice years allowed me to have some pretty cool and challenging experiences. Read more »

Rare Puerto Rican Parrot Fights for Survival with Support from the US Forest Service

Puerto Rican Parrot, one of the 10 most endangered birds in the world.

Puerto Rican Parrot, one of the 10 most endangered birds in the world.

Deep amid the dense greenery of a rain forest, U.S. Forest Service scientists are nursing a special patient back to health.

The patient is on pain medication, but lucid enough to ruffle his emerald green feathers and fill the room with angry squawks when a biologist removes him from an incubator. It is a Puerto Rican parrot with a broken leg, a serious injury for one of the world’s most endangered bird species. Read more »

Investing in Rural America

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack (center white shirt) listens to President Barack Obama speaking at the Northeast Iowa Community College for a White House Rural Economic Forum on August 16, 2011. Agriculture Secretary and chair of the White House Rural Council, Tom Vilsack, notes that the President’s visit will focus on agriculture’s contribution to the national economy, and how to create more jobs in rural America. USDA Photo by Lance Cheung.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack (center white shirt) listens to President Barack Obama speaking at the Northeast Iowa Community College for a White House Rural Economic Forum on August 16, 2011. Agriculture Secretary and chair of the White House Rural Council, Tom Vilsack, notes that the President’s visit will focus on agriculture’s contribution to the national economy, and how to create more jobs in rural America. USDA Photo by Lance Cheung.

Earlier this week, President Obama along with Secretary Vilsack and members of the White House Rural Council hosted the White House Rural Economic Forum in Peosta, Iowa where the President announced new jobs initiatives focused on increasing access to capital, job training and health care services. The forum, part of President Obama’s three-day economic bus tour, brought together farmers, small business owners, private sector leaders, rural stakeholders and government officials to discuss ways to improve economic growth and create jobs in rural communities nationwide. The White House Rural Council, of which Secretary Vilsack is the chair, was created on June 9, 2011 by an executive order and is focused on finding ways to increase economic growth and infrastructure in rural communities. Read more »

Investing in Advanced Biofuels to Create Jobs

Cross posted from the White House blog:

Yesterday, President Obama announced that our Departments will jointly invest $510 million over the next three years to develop the domestic capacity for advanced biofuels.  The funds will be leveraged with at least a one-to-one private industry match to construct or retrofit advanced biofuel plants to produce drop-in aviation and marine biofuels that will power our military’s ships and aircraft and our commercial transportation fleet.  For the first time, our Departments’ efforts have been put behind a single project to help create the new energy future and new energy economy set out in the President’s Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future (pdf) issued this March. Read more »

Mississippi Woman Changes Career from CEO to Rancher

Cindy Ayers Elliott is new to the goat business, but with help from the NRCS and several other friends, she said she is on her way to success.

Cindy Ayers Elliott is new to the goat business, but with help from the NRCS and several other friends, she said she is on her way to success.

Cindy Ayers Elliott once worked on Wall Street—but has since traded in her high heels for a pair of work boots. The former CEO and investment banker has made a life-changing move to her Jackson home-turned-farm, where she rears goats for meat and grows organic vegetables. Read more »

Farmers’ Markets by the White House Hosts National Farmers Week and World Breastfeeding Week Festivities

District of Columbia WIC Director Gloria Clark talks about DC’s new mobile WIC clinic which will travel to underserved parts of the city to provide needed services.

District of Columbia WIC Director Gloria Clark talks about DC’s new mobile WIC clinic which will travel to underserved parts of the city to provide needed services.

Cross posted from the Let’s Move! blog:

On August 4, the Farmers Market by the White House was bustling with individuals celebrating World Breastfeeding Week and National Farmers Market Week. The festival’s purpose was to recognize the value of farmers markets and the role that nutritious fruits and vegetables play in promoting wellness. Read more »