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John Lucey, professor of Food Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison, has been named Director of the Wisconsin Center for Dairy Research (CDR) effective March 1. In this position, Lucey will provide leadership and vision for this world-recognized dairy research center that focuses on research, applications, outreach and education geared towards partnering with the Wisconsin and US dairy industries.

“We are pleased that John has accepted this position,” says Mark Johnson, CDR Interim Director. “He is an outstanding dairy researcher and professor with global experience and recognition. His expertise will help lead CDR to the next level.”

Lucey joined the UW-Madison Food Science department in 1999. Over the past 20 years he has worked in food science departments or research centers in four different countries, (Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the US) each with a strong dairy foods emphasis. Lucey’s research interests cover a wide range of dairy technology and products including cheese texture/chemistry, gelation of milk, cultured products like yogurt, and the production/functionality of milk protein ingredients. In 2001 he received the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) Foundation Scholar award, and in 2005 the DSM award for Cheese and Cultured Products Research from ADSA.

Food Science department Chair Scott Rankin shares, “We look forward to working with John in his new role as the Director of the CDR. His organizational expertise and research background will provide a strong means of further strengthening cooperative opportunities between CDR and the Food Science department.”

No stranger to CDR and the industry it supports, Lucey has been a member of the CDR Industry Team since he joined the Food Science department in 1999; has been a contributor to numerous short courses conducted by the Center; and collaborates on research projects with many of the scientists and staff at CDR. In addition, he has run a large research group; has been awarded more than $3 million in competitive grants; and has published nearly 100 peer-reviewed articles and 20 book chapters.

“I am really pleased about the selection of John Lucey for this vital position. The Center for Dairy Research is a very important resource for maintaining and extending the competitive edge our industry has in terms of quality and innovation. John has the knowledge and experience needed for CDR to continue as the top dairy research center in the U.S., possibly the world, “states James Robson, CEO, Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, a major funder of the CDR.

Looking forward to this new position in CDR, Lucey shares, “The staff at CDR has played a critical role in the development of a vibrant dairy industry in Wisconsin as well as in the US. I will strive to ensure that the CDR continues to have a major impact on our dairy industry, especially in an increasingly complex and challenging environment.”