CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – The American Meat Science Association (AMSA) announced the appointment of Collette Schultz Kaster as its new CEO.

Kaster brings more than 25 years of experience in food safety, quality assurance and animal welfare and executive roles managing teams across livestock industry companies and organizations. Most recently, she has served as the executive director of the Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO).

“Collette is the right leader at the right time for AMSA and its future. She has extensive industry knowledge combined with her formidable experience managing successful teams and businesses. She understands our organization and has a vision to meet member needs in this growing association and provide content and context for the science and information demands of an expanding world,” said Dr. Eric Berg, AMSA president.  

“I am ready and eager to take immediate strides toward the successful and secure future of AMSA. Thanks to the dedication and work of the staff and its members, AMSA is well-positioned for an even more effective leadership role in the meat industry with its volumes of cutting-edge research from the world’s leading scientists as well as a treasure trove of talent in all areas of meat science and technology,” Kaster said.

In addition to her new role with AMSA, Kaster will continue to lead PAACO as its executive director. To enable this dual role, PAACO has added several training specialists to meet the needs for animal auditor training, certification and audit certification in the livestock industry.

“Working on programs that improve animal welfare in an achievable, practical way is a passion of mine,” Kaster said. “The shared/joint leadership role with PAACO and AMSA allows me to lead both organizations in areas to which I am strongly dedicated and drive positive results in two closely aligned/concentric industries.”

Kaster is trained as a meat scientist and has degrees from South Dakota State Univ. and the Univ. of Nebraska. She is a 28-year member of AMSA, past president and holds the rank of AMSA Fellow.

Kaster will her new role with AMSA on July 1.