Title: Provost & Vice President of Academic Affairs
Company: Angelo State University
Location: San Angelo, Texas, United States
Don R. Topliff, PhD, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Angelo State University, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educators for dedication, achievements, and leadership in animal science.
Trained as an animal nutritionist, Dr. Topliff initially dedicated his career to helping animals perform to their full potential. He initially obtained an Associate of Applied Science in agriculture from Colby Community College in 1973 and a Bachelor of Science in agriculture from Kansas State University in 1978. Thereafter, he earned a Master of Science in animal science and a Doctor of Philosophy in animal nutrition from Texas A&M University in 1981 and 1984 respectively. Over the course of his academic career, he is proud to have worked on a thesis project, titled “Thiamin Supplementation for Exercising Horses,” as well as his dissertation, titled “Diet Manipulation, Muscle Glycogen Metabolism and Anaerobic Work Performance in the Equine.”
As Dr. Topliff was presented with the opportunity to make a difference in students’ lives, he was inspired to apply his expertise in the field and become an educator. He began his career as an assistant professor of animal science at Oklahoma State University in 1983, holding the position until being promoted as an associate professor in 1987 and full professor in 1993. Thereafter, he found notable success at West Texas A&M University as a professor, the head of the Department of Agricultural Sciences and the director of agricultural research from 1998 to 2007, the associate dean of the College of Agriculture, Science and Engineering from 2007 to 2010, the interim head of the Department of Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics from 2008 to 2010 and the dean, a professor within the College of Agriculture, Science and Engineering and a chief academic officer from 2010 to 2014.
Supplementing his professional career, Dr. Topliff has co-authored works such as “Nutrient Requirements of Horses,” a popular book in the field of equine nutrition, and has written six book chapters, 18 referred publications, 81 abstracts and proceeding articles and numerous popular press articles. Further dedicated to his local community, he actively participates on the board of directors of the Amarillo Chamber of Commerce and is involved in the research efforts of the Texas Cattle Feeders Association. Over the course of his career, he has served as the president of organizations such as the Texas Council of Chief Academic Officers, the National Horse Judging Team Coaches Association, the Equine Science Society and the Agricultural Consortium of Texas. Furthermore, he has maintained a professional affiliation with the American Society of Animal Science, is regarded as a lifetime member and approved judge of the American Quarter Horse Association and has been appointed to a second term on the Committee on Animal Nutrition of the National Research Council. For his contributions in the field, he is honored to have been presented with accolades such as the Texas 4-H Alumni Award, the University Excellence Award from the West Texas A&M University Alumni Association, the Lifetime Distinguished Award from the Equine Science Society and an Honorary Lone Star Farmer Degree from the Texas FFA.
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