Mississippi State University alumna Dr. Bridget Willeford has been named university veterinarian and director of MSU’s Office of Laboratory Animal Resources.
Willeford has served in this role on an interim basis since December 2019, following the retirement last year of former university veterinarian Dr. Lucy H. Senter. The Office of Laboratory Animal Resources provides veterinary care and animal husbandry resources for all animals required in biomedical research, teaching and testing programs at MSU. The office is under the guidance of the university’s vice president for research and economic development.
“The Office of Laboratory Animal Resources plays a vital role in our research enterprise, as well as our teaching and service missions,” said MSU Interim Vice President for Research and Economic Development Julie Jordan. “Dr. Willeford brings extensive experience to this position, and I am confident that she and her staff will continue their excellent work providing care for our animals and meeting the needs of faculty and staff across campus.”
Willeford has served as a clinical veterinarian in this office since 2004. She is board certified by the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine. In MSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine, she has taught classes in lab animal health management and lab animal technical skills, in addition to teaching a small animal clinical experience class. A 2001 graduate of MSU’s Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program, Willeford also earned an MSU bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and molecular biology.
A Starkville native, Willeford said she looks forward to serving the MSU community in her capacity as university veterinarian.
“My primary goal is to facilitate research in a manner that fine tunes the balance between animal welfare and scientific advancement,” Willeford said. “I would like to see our research program grow by building on the foundation started by my predecessors. Our office currently provides excellent husbandry and veterinary care for all animals in the program, but I also would like to seek out and implement advances in animal health as they become available.”
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