49th Annual Animal Transportation Association Conference

From March 13, 2023 until March 15, 2023


Mark your calendars and plan to be in Mérida, Mexico March 13-15, 2023


 Innovative Solutions for Today and Tomorrow

Join us as we come together to discuss the latest cutting-edge academic research, trending innovation and digitization and other pressing live animal transportation topics.

Live animal handling and transport is an ever-changing and integral part of economic, social and cultural livelihood. ATA is striving to encourage connections, facilitate dialogue and ensure that standards and best practices are in place around the world to protect animal welfare at every phase of every journey. We look forward to seeing you at this informative and inspiring conference. 

If you have any questions, trending topics or presenters to suggest, or if you are interested in exploring sponsorship opportunities please connect with the ATA office.





  • LC Preclinical Research, Inc.


  • Amanda Adams, University of Kentucky

    Amanda Adams, University of Kentucky

    Dr. Amanda Adams is an Associate Professor at the Gluck Equine Research Center, University of Kentucky.  She is also Adjunct faculty at Lincoln Memorial University, College of Veterinary Medicine, and has been recently honored as a Mars EquestrianTM Fellow, specializing in the care of senior horses.  As a lifelong horse woman, she was diverted from vet school by interest in equine research after internships with Boehringer Ingelheim during her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology obtained at Stephens College.  She then went on to complete her PhD in Veterinary Science with an emphasis in Equine Immunology from the University of Kentucky and then completed a Paul Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in areas of Immunology and Endocrinology at the Gluck Center. She then succeeded through the ranks at UK as Research Assistant Professor, Assistant Professor and now Associate Professor. Currently, her research program encompasses the study of equine immunology and endocrinology in the areas of aging, obesity/endocrine diseases/laminitis, and stress. Her research program is world renown in that she has established and supports a unique herd of aged, PPID, obese/metabolic syndrome, insulin dysregulated horses that are maintained at the Gluck Center, for both basic and applied research to further our knowledge in these areas in order to improve the health and well-being of the aging horse population. Her research program has been supported by Foundations (AQHA, MAF, Waltham-Buckeye Equine Grant), USDA-ARS, as well as the Pharmaceutical industry (Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Zoetis, Neogen) and Nutritional industry (Purina, Alltech, Mars).  She has given invited talks both Nationally and Internationally.  She has published 40+ peer-reviewed publications, is the author of 2 book chapters and has trained a number of undergraduate students, graduate students, vet students, post-docs and visiting scientists.

    Dr. Amanda Adams is an Associate Professor at the Gluck Equine Research Center, University of Kentucky.  She is also Adjunct faculty at Lincoln Memorial University, College of Veterinary Medicine, and has been recently honored as a Mars EquestrianTM Fellow, specializing in the care of senior horses.  Currently, her research program encompasses the study of equine immunology and endocrinology in the areas of aging, obesity/endocrine diseases/laminitis, and stress. Her research program is world renown in that she has established and supports a unique herd of aged, PPID, obese/metabolic syndrome, insulin dysregulated horses that are maintained at the Gluck Center, for both basic and applied research. 

  • Barbara Padalino, University of Bologna, Italy

    Barbara Padalino, University of Bologna, Italy

    Dr. Barbara Padalino graduated in Veterinary Medicine at the University of Bari (Italy) in 2002 and in 2017 completed her PhD entitled “Transportation of horses and the implications for health and welfare” at the University of Sydney, Australia. 

    She is currently Associate Professor of Animal Science at the University of Bologna, Italy, and a member of the Animal health and welfare panel of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). 

    Horses have characterised all her life; she has been a rider, a driver, a Standardbred horse breeder, an equine veterinarian, and an equine scientist! This is the reason why she has carried out a number of research projects aiming at safeguarding horse welfare. However, her research interests span a number of topics from animal behaviour and welfare to equine internal and sports medicine. 

    She has written more than 100 publications in peer reviewed international journals and conference proceedings on those topics.

    She is an active member of the Animal Transport Association (ATA) and the International Society of Equitation Science (ISES). She is currently leading a project on the effects of air transportation on horse health and welfare, and she is very excited to be a speaker at the ATA Conference! 

  • Bernardo Predicala, Prairie Swine Centre

    Bernardo Predicala, Prairie Swine Centre

    Bernardo Z. Predicala, Ph.D.

    Dr. Predicala is the Research Scientist in charge of the Engineering Research Program at the Prairie Swine Centre (PSC) in Saskatoon, and concurrently appointed as an Adjunct Professor at the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, Canada.

    He obtained his Ph.D. in Biological and Agricultural Engineering at Kansas State University. His research at PSC focuses on addressing environmental sustainability issues and optimizing the physical environment in swine production.

  • Jay Eaves, Biotrans

    Jay Eaves, Biotrans

    As the Director of Quality and Compliance with BioTrans Logistics, one of the fastest-growing animal transport and logistics providers in the world, located outside Boston, Massachusetts, Jay Eaves is uniquely aware of the burdens and benefits associated with remote temperature monitoring and GPS systems.  

    Good temperature monitoring, GPS systems, and other technology can improve outcomes by helping an organization actively and effectively monitor cargo conditions.   

    Jay is intimately involved with developing and implementing processes that minimize risk and improve outcomes for BioTrans’ clients and their live animal cargo.  

    This background experience will serve to inform Jay’s discussion on Leveraging Technology to Improve Quality and Overcome Supply Chain Obstacles.

  • Jennifer Woods, CFIA

    Jennifer Woods, CFIA

    Jennifer Woods is a livestock handling specialist based out of Alberta, Canada. Jennifer obtained her undergrad degree in Animal Science at Colorado State University and her masters degree in Veterinary Preventative Medicine from Iowa State University. Jennifer has over 25 years experience in the livestock industry and has collaborated with the livestock industry since 1998 in the areas of animal welfare and care. Her areas of expertise include euthanasia, animal handling and behavior, animal welfare auditing and assessing (slaughter, farm, exhibitions/events, feedlot and transportation), livestock emergency response, transportation, and facility design. Jennifer’s work has taken her all over North America, across Europe, South America, and down to Australia.

  • John Stoesser, IDEAL Agriculture & Marine

    John Stoesser, IDEAL Agriculture & Marine

    In a career now spanning a half a century, John started it underwriting insurance on international cargo movements for a large insurer in Chicago. Part of that experience included insuring live animals in international trade, his first being in the late 70’s when he insured pigs by air from Iowa being to South Korea, laying the cornerstone for his interest in animal transportation.

    In 2006 he founded IDEAL Agriculture & Marine which he currently manages out of southern Wisconsin. Its operational and corporate offices are in northeast Ohio and as of early 2022, has operations in Western Canada based in Alberta. It is today a division of the Wichert Insurance Group, conducting the underwriting of specialty coverages for brokers throughout North America, with a strong emphasis on agriculture and agri-business exposures, especially animal agriculture.

    John is active in many industry and trade groups, and has served as a past President and current Director of the International Trade Association of Greater Chicago, and as a member of the executive committee of the Livestock Exporters Association of the US serving as both Secretary and Treasurer, a position he currently performs.

  • Lidwien Verdegaal, University of Adelaide

    Lidwien Verdegaal, University of Adelaide

    With over 25 years of experience to draw on, Dr. Elisabeth- Lidwien Verdegaal is dedicated to performing high quality research and improving the welfare of all sport horses. She recently completed a joint-PhD between the Ghent and Adelaide University, titled: “Thermoregulation in exercising horses: aspects of temperature monitoring during field exercise”. Her research is focused on thermoregulation, heat illness and metabolic disorders and is having a worldwide impact on how heat stress is managed in real-life equine sport, racing conditions and during transportation in hot weather.

    Lidwien Verdegaal is the author of 13 peer reviewed publications 10 of which as first author, and one book chapter to date. She has also been an invited speaker at 19 international and national conferences during the academic years of her long career caring for horses. Her focus on equine medicine led to 8 years of valuable experience as an Equine Medicine Specialist in private high-profile clinics in Jordan and Kuwait. While there, she was a member of Jordanian and Kuwaiti endurance and jumping FEI committees where she developed her deep ongoing interest in thermoregulation and heat stress.

    Since relocating to Adelaide in 2011, Lidwien has held tenure as a Senior Lecturer in Equine Medicine with the University of Adelaide’s School of Animal and Veterinary Science in South Australia. She has contributed significantly to the development of the University’s new veterinary science school and its curriculum. She was part of multiple endurance veterinary committees and also an official FEI endurance and eventing competition veterinarian in Australia. In her free time, she enjoys family, friends, her dogs and a gallop.

    E.J.M.M. Verdegaal, MVM, DVM, PhD, Dip ECEIM, Spec RNVA Eq Int Med, is a registered Equine Internal Medicine Specialist in The Netherlands, Europe and Australia.

    Lidwien obtained her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) at Utrecht University, The Netherlands, in 1996. She qualified as an Equine Medicine Specialist with the Royal Dutch Association of Veterinary Specialists and is a Diplomate of the European College of Equine Internal Medicine (ECEIM) accredited by passing the ECEIM Board exam in 2009. She obtained her dual PhD in 2022.

  • Luc Ledoux, CID Lines

    Luc Ledoux, CID Lines

    CID LINES n.v. an ecolab company (disinfectants and detergents), BELGIUM

    >Jan 1st  2021  Business Development Manager Europe, Poultry specialist 

    – 2020 Business Unit Manager Americas, Africa, Scandinavia and Italy, as an independent agent

    Major achievements: growing from €350,000  in the Americas, Scandinavia, UK  and Africa to > €12 million in 21  years; creating distribution partnerships with BOTH SME AND multinationals (Merial, Boehringer Ingelheim) ; reshaping CID LINES’ catalogues and web site; organising seminars for all Latin American distributors, inaugurated by the Federal Minister of Foreign Trade, organizing maghreb seminars, speaking at conferences on 5 continents, working in team with R&D, regulatory affairs, MARKETING, finance, logistics and  customer service

    Local sales trainings of sales reps from CID LINES’ distributors from India, Germany, Italy, Algeria (2019) Belgium, Colombia, Russia, Belarus and France (2018), Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Pakistan, South Africa (2017) on the Flagship disinfectant Virocid® and Hatchery Hygiene

    Various remote sales trainings via Teams (Sri Lanka, China, Spain, Thailand, Latam, … )


    « Licence Spéciale en Commerce Extérieur », (Master after Master in International Trade), Institut Cooremans (now: Haute École Francisco Ferrer) , Brussels, 1988  

    Master in Applied Economics, Specialization “International Economic and Diplomatic Relations”, EHSAL, Brussels, 1986

    Volunteer Experience or Leadership

    Expert at  NETPOULSAFE (Networking European poultry actors for enhancing the compliance of biosecurity) via University of Ghent (2021)

    President of “Leie Omgeving Beschermen” vzw (Protecting the Environment of the river Leie) 2018- now Advisor for the Belgian Foreign Trade (2000 – 2009)

    Visiting professor at EHSAL Management School “Export management” , Brussels (Master in Export Management) 1988 – 1992

  • Montserrat Arroyo, World Organisation for Animal Health

    Montserrat Arroyo, World Organisation for Animal Health

    Montserrat Arroyo K graduated from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) in Mexico City (Mexico) in 2004, as Doctor in Veterinary Medicine and Animal Husbandry. She later did her Master´s Degree in Preventive Veterinary Medicine (MPVM) at the University of California, Davis in the United States, in 2009.

    She began began her career in the public service in the National Service of Health, Safety and Agri-Food Quality (SENASICA) in Mexico, focusing mainly in the areas of prevention and control of foreign animal diseases for the Mexico-United States Commission for the Prevention of FMD. She later on worked in programs dedicated to the prevention and control of animal diseases at national level.

    Subsequently, she was in charge of the Directorate of Imports and Exports, of the General Directorate of Animal Health, in charge of the management of international negotiations for the establishment of trade in animal products, as well as sanitary measures and cooperation agreements on animal health with third countries. She was head of the National Producer for Veterinary Biologics in Mexico. 

    She has participated as a speaker in numerous scientific and technical conferences and has various publications in scientific and technical journals.

    She has also served as Subregional Representative of the World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH) for the Central American and Caribbean Region, supporting the WOAH Member Countries regionally in the strengthening, surveillance and control of animal diseases in the Central American and Caribbean region. Head of the World Animal Health Information Department, Head of the Regional Activities Department and is currently the Deputy Director General for International Standards and Science of the WOAH.

  • Nelva Bryant, Delta Air Lines

    Nelva Bryant, Delta Air Lines

    Dr. Nelva J. Bryant DVM, MPH

    Airline Industry Veterinarian

    • Serves as Delta Air Lines' industry -first on-staff veterinarian since July 2018
    • Made presentations/webinars at major veterinary conferences (AVMA, VMX, WVC, fetch DVM360, and AZA) since 2019


    • DVM: Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine
    • MPH: University of Iowa - MPH for Practicing Veterinarians Program
    • Obtained 15+ years of veterinary clinical practice experience as a small animal practitioner and relief veterinarian
    • Retired LCDR, US Public Health Service
    • Completed the final 12 years of active duty career at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), serving as Chief Veterinary Pathologist, Veterinary Public Health Consultant, and Quarantine Veterinary Medical Officer (Dog Importation Regulations Subject Matter Expert)
  • Oriol Talló Parra, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

    Oriol Talló Parra, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

    Dr. Oriol Talló Parra (DVM, MSc, PhD) is as a researcher in the Zoo Animal Welfare Education Centre (ZAWEC) from the School of Veterinary Sciences (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona). He works as a researcher, teacher, and consultant in the field of wild animal welfare (both free-ranging and under human care) and also studies its connection with species conservation.

    Oriol is also the Animal Welfare Officer at Oceanogràfic de València aquarium, and an animal welfare consultant for other zoological institutions. He coordinates the UAB MSc degree in Animal welfare, and teaches in various education courses, including several master degrees and in the UAB veterinary grade.

    He has supervised several PhD theses, MSc theses, and undergraduate students.

  • Peter Fernandez, PJF AgroStrategies Consulting

    Peter Fernandez, PJF AgroStrategies Consulting

    Dr. Peter Fernández was a senior executive with USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Service (APHIS), International Services (IS) for over 15 years of his 30-year government career. He reached the personal rank of Career Minister in the US Foreign Service. In his USDA, senior leadership role, Dr. Fernández coordinated various technical and administrative aspects of the APHIS mission overseas, including: management of plant and animal health trade issues, safeguarding U.S. agriculture, oversight of cooperative animal disease eradication and control programs, and promoting safe trade in agricultural commodities through capacity building and technology transfer as well as addressing the regulatory aspects of biotechnology, animal welfare, and wildlife management.  

    Dr. Fernández began his career with APHIS as a Field Veterinary Medical Officer in Texas. In 1991, he became International Services’ Senior Staff Officer for Epidemiology and was assigned to Mexico as the Co-Director of the Mexico-U.S. Exotic Animal Disease Commission in 1993. Dr. Fernández has served as APHIS Regional Director in Mexico City, Mexico (1993 – 1998); Santiago, Chile (1998 – 2000); Brussels, Belgium (2005 – 2011); Bogota, Colombia (2011 – 2016); and Beijing, China (2015).  Dr. Fernández served as US Delegate to the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE) from 2001 to 2006 and was elected President of the OIE Regional Commission for the Americas for a three-year term.  

    In April 2002, Dr. Fernandez was named Associate Administrator of APHIS and served in this capacity until 2005. He retired from USDA, APHIS in October 2016.  Dr. Fernandez co-authored the OIE Atlas of Transboundary Animal Disease and has assisted in the organization and instruction of the USDA, APHIS International Transboundary Animal Disease training and Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostician courses at the Plum Island Animal Disease Center.  He has acted as a Consultant for the Pan-American Health Organization’s Foot-and-Mouth Disease Center (PANAFTOSA) in Brazil and as an OIE Expert in administering the OIE Performance of Veterinary Services (PVS) tool to assess Veterinary Services competencies having led the mission to Botswana in May 2019.  

    Dr. Fernandez also provides his expertise to various US agricultural industries and private entities. He currently is under contract as an animal health Subject Matter Expert with the APHIS Wildlife Services National Feral Swine Program. He is the recipient of the 2021 K.F. Meyer-James H. Steel Gold-Headed Cane Award of the American Veterinary Epidemiology Society.

    In October 2021, at the request of the APHIS Administrator, Dr. Fernandez returned to the agency as an Advisor in support of the US efforts to control and eradicate African swine fever in Hispañola.

  • Ronald Schaefer, International Air Transport Association

    Ronald Schaefer, International Air Transport Association

    Ronald Schaefer is Senior Principal, Consulting. He is also the Consulting Head of the Certifications Programs (CEIV Pharma, CEIV Live Animals, CEIV Fresh, CEIV Lithium Battery, CBTA, etc.) at IATA.

    He was born in Hamburg, Germany, raised in Mexico and educated in the US. After long-term professional assignments in Germany, Spain, Malaysia, Kuwait, Venezuela and Canada, he has been based in Miami for the last 10 years working for IATA. Before joining IATA, Mr. Schaefer accumulated vast experience in the air transport field working as a consultant for Lufthansa Consulting GmbH, Roland Berger Strategy Consultants GmbH and Ferrostaal México. He has worked on corporate restructuring, strategy, post-merger integration, market and competitive analysis, safety, risk management initiatives among others, in the transportation industry on all continents. Throughout his career Ronald has held positions in Mexico, Stuttgart, Kuala Lumpur, Frankfurt, Cologne, New York, Montreal and Miami.

    At IATA he developed in conjunction with the IATA Pharma subject matter expert the CEIV Pharma pre-assessment tools and materials to facilitate successful independent validation of organizations. He also led the initial independent assessment Proof-of-Concept for Singapore Air Terminal Services (SATS) and is now managing the program worldwide. Since its start he has managed ~380 certifications, +600 assessments and +550 validations. 

    He is also jointly responsible for the development and implementation of new CEIV initiatives such as CEIV Live Animal, officially launched in April 2018 and CEIV Fresh launched in 2019. In conjunction with the IATA Live Animal and Perishable expert, he is also developing the pre-/assessment tools for validations of organizations and jointly managing the on-going pilots.

    He holds a Bachelor of Science (B. Sc.) in Business Administration from California State University at Sonoma and Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Georgetown University.

  • Ross Hayes, Heathrow Animal Reception Centre

    Ross Hayes, Heathrow Animal Reception Centre

    Ross Hayes is the Manager of the City of London Corporations Heathrow Animal Reception Centre (HARC). He began working there in 2003 following on from graduating university with a Bachelor of Science degree in animal welfare.

    The HARC is the Live Animal Border Inspection Post (BCP) at Heathrow airport and the only BCP in the United Kingdom approved for all commodities of live animal.

    Ross manages the operation at the HARC, ensuring the facilities and processes are in place and compliant to care for the 22,000 cats and dogs, 76,000 reptiles, 10,000- day old chicks and 77 million fish that passed through the HARC in 2021. Ross is committed to promoting compliance through forging new professional networks and working closely with airlines and other key stakeholders to find solutions and maximise welfare.

    Ross and the whole HARC team worked tirelessly during Covid to ensure the HARC stayed open throughout, assisting their airline partners in moving as many livestock shipments as possible despite the constantly changing landscape.

  • Tomás A. Sciolla, Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires

    Tomás A. Sciolla, Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires

    Tom Sciolla graduated in environmental sciences with a postgraduate degree in biodiversity conservation and has a decade-long government career. He worked advising the Argentinean Senate in environmental and biological matters. He is a key part of the directive team in charge of the titanic task of reshaping the oldest Latin American Zoo, which was more than a century old, located in central Buenos Aires amid busy traffic and urban buildings with limited space, with conditions that were considered unacceptable by animal rights groups and many experts. 

    The park has sent more than 1,000 animals held in the antiquated zoo to better living spaces, including its most famous former resident, Sandra the orangutan, transferred last year to the Center for Great Apes in the U.S. state of Florida and Mara the Asian Elephant, transferred amidst the worst stages of the covid pandemic to a Santuario de Elefantes Brazil.

    Nowadays after a full transformation, the Ecopark leads ex-situ biodiversity conservation in Argentina, with more than 14 conservation programs and actions that covers the whole country by rescuing, rehabilitating, and breeding many endangered native species with the sole purpose of releasing them back into the wild and restoring the local ecosystems that were degraded by human action.

    Tom currently leads the Conservation Strategy for Buenos Aires City Government and works with Fondation Franz Weber in Zoo Transformations across the globe with the aim of spreading the experience carried out and hopefully igniting many other zoos to follow the example to shift their strategy and focus on rescue and protecting their native wildlife.
  • Wouter Lassauw, Aviagen

    Wouter Lassauw, Aviagen

    Wouter Lassauw is a Marketing & Commercial Support manager with fours years of experience working alongside various teams of Global Aviagen experts, helping them share their knowledge and promote their messages through visual media and digital technology.

    Wouter specializes in continuous improvement in technology, and is responsible for marketing and collaborating with the sales teams to provide excellent customer service by leveraging progressive systems and applications, new technology, and innovative ideas.

  • Xavier Manteca Vilanova, Autonomous University of Barcelona

    Xavier Manteca Vilanova, Autonomous University of Barcelona

    Xavier Manteca Vilanova received his BVSc and PhD from the Autonomous University of Barcelona and an MSc in Applied Animal Behaviour and Animal Welfare from the University of Edinburgh.

    Currently, he is professor of animal behaviour and animal welfare at the School of Veterinary Science in Barcelona. He has published extensively and is diplomate of the European College of Animal Welfare and Behavioural Medicine.

    One of Xavier’s main areas of expertise is companion animal welfare and, particularly, welfare assessment.