Dee Griffin, DVM, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, was recently honored as the 2012 Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) Educator of the Year by a committee of representatives from universities, state beef councils and cattle industry groups. Griffin was the inaugural recipient of the checkoff-funded award, which recognizes individuals or companies that provide high-quality, innovative training to individuals who handle and care for cattle throughout the beef industry production chain.
In the early 1980s, Griffin, a feedyard veterinarian in Oklahoma, was one of the pioneers of the BQA program, working to help develop residue avoidance protocols and other BQA standards and programs along with other industry leaders.
“Dee Griffin has been pivotal in the development and maintenance of the Beef Quality Assurance program,” says Bob Bohlender, DVM, North Platte, Neb. “He has a passion for beef safety and beef quality that very few people could muster.”
In Nebraska, Griffin has been a BQA-certified trainer and served on Nebraska’s BQA Advisory Board since the program’s inception in 1987. He started the state’s first “Train the Trainer” sessions and has traveled from one end of Nebraska to the other educating BQA trainers. Griffin has single-handedly trained 250 BQA trainers and has personally certified more than 1,000 producers in the state. And he continues to help educate, advise and promote Beef Quality Assurance.
“We represent a heritage of stewardship of livestock and land like no other industry in the world. I feel undeserving in that respect because there are just so, so many people who have made BQA work,” says Griffin. “‘If it ain’t right, make it right’ â that’s literally the adage of the cattleman. And for the last 30 years, I’ve been trying to help ’em make it right.”