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Job ID: 204288

Department Head – Animal Science
University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Date Posted Jan. 25, 2023
Title Department Head – Animal Science
University University of Nebraska - Lincoln
Lincoln, NE, United States
Department Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources
Application Deadline Feb. 26, 2023
Position Start Date TBD
  • Department Head/Head/Chair
  • Zoology/Genetics
    Veterinary Science/Medicine
    Poultry Science
    Meat Science
    Dairy Science
    Animal Science
    Animal Genomics

The Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources (IANR) at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln invites nominations and applications for the position of Head of the Department of Animal Science. IANR is seeking an innovative, dynamic, and collaborative person who will provide intellectual and strategic leadership for 46 faculty and 43 staff members, and 80 graduate and 320 undergraduate students in the department. We are looking for a strong leader who will help us meet our commitment to discovery, training, instruction, and outreach in key areas of animal biology that impact food, equine, and companion animals and reflects a contemporary view of agri-food systems. The successful department head will be one who puts the success of the team and department above their individual accomplishments in the role. They must be one who appreciates interdisciplinary, experiential, and systems-based learning. The incumbent will be committed to meeting the grand challenges related to the sustainability of beef, dairy, swine, and poultry systems for high-quality animal-sourced foods to meet the increasing demand of a growing population of consumers. The successful candidate will be committed to excellence throughout the discovery-to-practice continuum for genetics, reproduction, physiology, nutrition, meats, animal well-being, and precision management. The incumbent will be a collaborative and inspiring department head who will hold fast to the university’s core values of accountability, diversity, integrity, respect, and social responsibility.

Recognizing that diversity enhances creativity, innovation, impact, and belongingness, IANR and the Department of Animal Science are committed to creating research, learning, Extension programming, and work environments that are inclusive of all forms of diversity. Consistent with the University’s N2025 Strategic Plan, every person and every interaction are treated as important to our collective well-being and our ability to deliver on our mission.

The department head will be appointed to a five-year renewable term, subject to satisfactory annual reviews and a formal reappointment review.

For additional information about the position, go to

To be considered for the position, candidates must have:

  • PH. D. in a field relevant to the department.
  • Accomplishments commensurate with a tenured faculty appointment in Animal Science at the rank of full professor.
  • Demonstrated ability to provide visionary leadership. 
  • Demonstrated ability to lead a multidisciplinary team.
  • Demonstrated ability to create a shared vision and align resources to achieve strategic outcomes.
  • A record of leadership and outcomes that demonstrate an abiding commitment to practices that enhance access, inclusion, and belongingness.
  • Exceptional skills in communication and interpersonal relations.


Preference will be given to candidates who demonstrate:

  • A record of excellence in foundational and/or translational research evidenced by a portfolio of publications, extramural funding, and collaboration.
  • A record of excellence in teaching and educating students.
  • A record of excellence in Extension and/or engagement. 
  • An ability to collaborate effectively with a broad range of constituencies.
  • Evidence of using data and/or fact-based information to navigate complex situations and make strategic decisions.
  • Demonstrated understanding of systems and networks that encourage and support entrepreneurial activities.
  • Sensitivity to the perspectives and values of students, staff, faculty, and stakeholders.


The Search Advisory Committee will continue to receive applications until the Head is selected. To ensure full consideration, nominations and applications should be submitted before February 27, 2023.

Questions and nominations can be directed in confidence to the co-chairs of the search committee:

Curtis Weller, Ph.D.

Head of Food Science and Technology


Jim MacDonald, Ph.D.

Professor, Animal Science


Applicants should go to, requisition F_230012. Click “Apply to this Job,” complete the information form and attach the following documents:

  1. A letter of interest that describes your qualifications for the position, anticipated contributions, and vision.
  2. A statement describing your experience working in diverse teams or groups and your anticipated contributions to creating inclusive environments in which every person and every interaction matters (2 page maximum). See for guidance in writing this statement.
  3. A detailed curriculum vitae.
  4. The names of 3-5 professional references. References will be requested only of candidates who make the short list.

All candidate information will be held in strict confidence until the final stage of the search at which time the express permission of finalists will be obtained before making their candidacy public.

Candidates are urged to review all information and documents posted on the search website.

For questions and assistance with submitting the application contact Rachel Szelag, Senior HR Specialist at or by phone at (402) 472-5730. 

UNL offers an attractive compensation and benefits package, commensurate with the successful candidate’s background and experience.

The University of Nebraska is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive work and learning environment free from discrimination and harassment. UNL is dedicated to creating an environment where everyone feels valued, respected, and included. 


  • As an EO/AA employer, the University of Nebraska considers qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, ethnicity, national origin, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and/or political affiliation. See

Please reference in your cover letter when
applying for or inquiring about this job announcement.

Contact Information

  • Alesia Zaruba
    University of Nebraska - Lincoln
    300 Agriculture Hall
    Lincoln, NE 68583-0708
  • 402-416-6974


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