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After over a year of restricted travel due to COVID-19, I am looking forward to gathering with other animal scientists in Louisville, KY, for the 2021 ASAS-CSAS-SSASAS Annual Meeting in July. I hope you are also making plans to attend the annual meeting. Your National Board, the various annual meeting committees, and the ASAS Headquarters Staff have been working hard over the past year to put together an excellent, safe, in-person meeting for you. Our annual meeting is a great place to reconnect with old friends, make new friends, and learn about some of the exciting work being done by colleagues around the world. The exchange of ideas that occur during scientific sessions, symposia, and around tables drinking coffee (or adult beverages) or eating is a hallmark of the annual meeting and is vital to the furtherance of our field of science. The annual meeting also provides a great venue for graduate students to hone their presentation and critical thinking skills, interact with other students, and network with prospective employers and develop relationships that can lead to productive careers in industry, government, and academia.

As a resident of the great state of Kentucky I also want to encourage you to take advantage of your visit to Louisville and experience some of the sights and attractions Kentucky has to offer for you and your family. Just a short drive east from Louisville will put you in the heart of the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky where you will see many of the beautiful horse farms that help make Kentucky the horse capital of the world. The limestone geography that contributes to calcium rich bluegrass that was key in the development of Kentucky’s equine industry also results in some unique water properties that spurred the birth of Kentucky’s historic bourbon industry. Several distilleries that make up the Kentucky Bourbon Trail (such as Angel’s Envy, Four Roses, Heaven Hill, Jim Beam, Maker’s Mark, Wild Turkey, and Woodford Reserve) can be found in and around Louisville. Other attractions in Louisville and the surrounding area include the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby Museum, Muhammad Ali Center, and the Louisville Zoo. The more adventurous can also visit some of Kentucky’s State Parks and enjoy Mammoth Cave, Natural Bridge, Cumberland Falls, My Old Kentucky Home, and Fort Boonesborough, just to name a few.

If you have not done so already, go ahead and get registered for the annual meeting and make your travel and lodging plans. You don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to join with your colleagues in Louisville. See you in a few weeks!

Dr. Richard Coffey, Chair
Department of Animal Food Sciences
University of Kentucky
ASAS Board of Directors (Director-at-Large)