Gordon W. Davis inducted to the Meat Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2022
By: Haleigh Erramouspe
Because of his unique and extensive contributions to the meat industry, Gordon W. Davis has been inducted to the Meat Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2022. The Meat Industry Hall of Fame was created in 2009 to honor leaders and legends in the meat industry whose visions, skills and dedication shaped and sustained the industry.
“In its 14-year history, the Hall of Fame has recognized only the most elite industry and academic professionals who have made the most impactful, lasting impressions on the meat and food industry,” said Dale Woerner, Cargill Endowed Professor in the Department of Animal & Food Sciences. “It serves as the pinnacle of recognition for those who have dedicated their careers and lives to it. Dr. Davis will be eternally recognized for his astounding contributions to the industry through his generosity and legacy as an unmatched leader in education.”
Davis has undoubtedly left a mark on the meat industry, particularly at Texas Tech University, that has inspired and created generations of students and professionals alike. Davis began his journey in the meat science industry at Washington State University where he earned his bachelor's degrees in agriculture science and education. He went on to get his doctorate in meat science from Texas A&M University where he alongside long-time mentor, professor Gary C. Smith, became the first person to coach a meat judging team to a perfect 6-0 season.
Davis arrived at Texas Tech University in 1980 as an assistant professor in the Department of Animal & Food Sciences and coach of the meat judging team. In the three years following his arrival, Texas Tech added 48 plaques to a nearly empty trophy case, and in 1989, he led the team to win its first meat judging national championship. It became the first of the team's 16 national titles.
His success in this arena embodied his dedication to the “pursuit of excellence,” the motto he adopted for his judging teams. “Dr. Davis is a legend not just in meat judging, but in the meat judging industry as a whole,” said Mark Miller, San Antonio Livestock Exposition Endowed Chair in Meat Science. “All he did at Texas Tech was focused on helping the students.”
While in academia, Davis authored or co-authored 36 referred scientific journal articles, 93 meat science publications and 124 video productions. He served as an advisor to countless students, encouraging them to become interested in the meat industry. This dedication to improving academic resources went beyond his work in collegiate academia.
In 1984, Davis created CEV Multimedia, bringing experts into high schools, originally through VHS tapes, then DVDs and now online. In 1990, he left Texas Tech to focus full-time on his growing business. Since its creation, CEV has produced 87 meat science and food safety videos and 219 meat judging classes with a combined 10-year total of more than 11 million views across all 50 states and 19 countries.
Over 25,000 agricultural science teachers, post-secondary faculty and extension agents have used CEV to teach topics related to meat science, with students earning 23,866 meat industry-specific certifications.
“Since 1969 as a member of the Washington State University meat animal judging team, then 1972 to 1977 as a meat science graduate student at Texas A&M University, and especially my time at Texas Tech University and CEV Multimedia from 1980 to present, I have absolutely loved and admire the people I have interacted with – faculty, meat science students and meat industry professionals – who, for the past 54 years, have brought to the industry a superior work ethic, positive attitude and integrity end-to-end,” Davis said.
Davis' success with CEV afforded him the opportunity to give back to the meat industry in inspirational ways. He and his wife, Joyce, have founded 15 endowments across six universities all geared toward the advancement of meat science. At Texas Tech, Davis has made transformational gifts that include the naming of the Gordon W. Davis Meat Science Laboratory and a $44 million gift, the largest in university history, naming the Davis College of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources.
“Dr. Davis is an amazing thought-leader, motivator and entrepreneur who never stops pursing excellence and encourages others to do the same,” said Clint Krehbiel. dean of the Davis College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. “As we begin the next 100 years for TTU, the philanthropic gifts from Gordon and Joyce put Davis College in a position to grow our teaching, learning, research and outreach and engagement programs to a new level of excellence. Dr. Davis' induction into the Meat Industry Hall of Fame is an honor that is well deserved, and his legacy as a meat scientist at TTU through his impact on students, research and the meat industry will continue for generations to come.”
Through his contributions to meat science, dedication to helping students and commitment to giving back, Davis has without question shown his commitment to and passion for the meat industry and education earning the honor of induction into the Meat Industry Hall of Fame.
“I am truly humbled by this distinct recognition,” Davis said, “and it is my hope that eventually other meat scientists at Texas Tech will be honored and join me in the Meat Industry Hall of Fame."
CONTACT: Clint Krehbiel, Dean, Davis College of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources, Texas Tech University at (806) 742-2808 or Clint.Krehbiel@ttu.edu
0222NM23 / Editor's Note: A Meat Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2022 inductee roundtable will take place online on Feb. 22 at 2 p.m. EST. Registration for this roundtable can be found here
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Editor: Norman Martin
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