Pet Food Conference

January 24, 2023 | 7 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. ET
Georgia World Congress Center B302-303 | Atlanta, Ga.
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Elise Bokshowan


Elise Bokshowan is pursuing a master’s degree in companion animal nutrition under supervision by Lynn Weber, D.V.M., at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in Saskatchewan, Canada. Bokshowan graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in nutrition and biology in 2013 and practiced as a registered dietitian in human clinical nutrition for nearly 8 years before choosing to redirect her career toward companion animal health. Her research examines whether there is an impact on canine health when fed foods higher in oligosaccharides, a type of dietary fiber in legumes. She will present a portion of her project’s findings, showing how 5-week feeding periods of diets high or low in oligosaccharides affect cardiovascular health in beagles. 

Temis Coral


Temis Coral serves as JBE’s sustainability practice leader. Coral has over 12 years of experience on operations consulting, manufacturing processes, product design and environmental management in several sectors including consumer goods, food products, mining, construction and environmental nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). She has worked in Colombia, Chile, and the United States. 

Coral’s sustainability experience includes setting roadmaps to achieve scope 3 Science-Based Targets, life cycle assessments for health products, defining growing strategies for environmental NGOs, project management of sustainable development projects, and benchmarking sustainable development goal implementation initiatives. Coral has been trained in sustainability reporting, sustainable business strategy and environmental conflict management. 

Coral has a master’s degree in environmental management from Duke University and bachelor’s degrees in both chemical engineering and industrial engineering from Universidad de los Andes, Colombia. She also complemented her education with certificates in community based environmental management and international development policy, both from Duke University. 


Vanessa De La Guardia-Hidrogo


Vanessa De La Guardia-Hidrogo graduated from Zamorano University with a B.S. in Science and agricultural production. In 2019, she moved to the U.S. to pursue a M.Sc. in animal sciences at Mississippi State University. After graduation, she started her doctoral studies under Dr. Kelly Swanson at the University of Illinois Urbana – Champaign. Currently, her research focuses on the effects of dried brewer’s yeast products on gastrointestinal health and immunity of adult dogs.  


Scott Hawks


Scott Hawks is a protein chemist and food microbiologist by training with more than 30 years of food safety and regulatory affairs experience in the food and pet food industries. He has extensive experience in hazard analysis and good manufacturing practices, creating and implementing environmental monitoring programs, implementing robust vendor approval programs, food and pet food import/export regulations and thermal processing of acid and low acid canned foods.

Hawks is a lead instructor for the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance’s Preventive Controls Qualified Individual and Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP) courses. Hawks has expertise in developing risk-based ingredient, manufacturing and finished product specifications and has created many FSVP plans. Hawks also has a solid understanding of applying Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point management for the U.S. Food Code for Retailers.

Lara Moody


Lara Moody is the Institute for Feed Education and Research’s executive director. She provides visionary leadership to the public charity’s activities including program development, strategic partnerships and collaborative resourcing. Working closely with IFEEDER’s Board of Trustees and committee members, she develops and supports resources and efforts to advance the public charity’s research and education mission. Collaborating with the American Feed Industry Association to pursue and communicate the institute’s work, she creates opportunities to engage donors and further the dialogue on important issues impacting the feed industry.  

Prior to joining IFEEDER in April 2021, Moody served as the vice president of stewardship and sustainability at The Fertilizer Institute. She also worked in research and extension programs at Iowa State University and the University of Tennessee. 

Moody holds a bachelor’s degree in agricultural engineering and master’s degree in biosystems engineering from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

Jenny Murphy


Jenny Murphy is the deputy director for foods in the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Veterinary Medicine - Office of Surveillance and Compliance.  She received her bachelors and master's of science degrees in animal science from North Carolina State University and joined the FDA in 2002.  Murphy started as a reviewer of animal food labels and food additive petitions in CVM’s Division of Animal Feeds. In 2008, her responsibilities expanded to include work in food safety policy, overseeing CVM’s involvement in the implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act and served as the work group lead for the Preventive Controls for Animal Food rule. She has served as an agency expert on the Integrated Food Safety System and has been the FDA lead of several projects, including the development of the Animal Food Regulatory Program Standards and the Animal Feed Network. In her current role, Murphy coordinates CVM’s food safety policy portfolio and works with staff across the FDA to advance the agency’s animal food safety programs. 

Debbie Phillips-Donaldson


Debbie Phillips-Donaldson is the editor-in-chief of Petfood Industry, directing all content for, e-newsletters, Petfood Forum conferences and related media, and overseeing the magazine. She has been in the industry and with Watt Global Media, parent company of Petfood Industry, since 2006.

Previously, she worked for 13 years at pet publisher BowTie Inc., as editor of Cat Fancy magazine, new product manager and editorial vice president. She also served for five-and-a-half years as editor of Quality Progress magazine with the American Society for Quality. She is a graduate of Southern Illinois University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and is currently ruled by a 15-year-old gray cat named Deacon.

Nancy Rawson


Nancy Rawson, Ph.D., is acting director and president of the Monell Chemical Senses Center, a nonprofit research institute whose mission is to advance public health through the understanding of taste, smell and related senses.

Her career spans academia and industry, including a faculty position at the Monell Center studying the biology of taste and smell in humans and companion animals, and leadership roles in the pet and human food and ingredient industries, where she built research teams from the ground up and received awards for new product innovation. Since 2016, she has served in leadership roles at the Monell Center, catalyzing in the center’s relationships with academic and industry partners around the world and leading strategic and operational planning activities to support its growth and success.

She serves on the Board of the Institute for the Advancement of Food and Nutrition Sciences and is a founding advisory board member for the Smell and Taste Association of North America. Rawson has authored over 100 publications, holds multiple patents and is active in the Association for Women in Science and the Association for Chemoreception Sciences. 

She holds a master’s degree in nutrition from the University of Massachusetts and a doctorate in biology from the University of Pennsylvania.

Nick Rozzi

For the last 5 years, Nicholas Rozzi, Ph.D., has led the product development and product design teams at Hill’s Pet Nutrition. These teams collaborate cross functionally to bring new products to life that exceed customer expectations. Recent commercial successes include the launch of Prescription Diet Gastrointestinal Biome, Science Diet Perfect Digestion and Prescription Diet Derm Complete. In addition to leading product development, over the past 2 years Rozzi has been responsible for site services at the Pet Nutrition Center, which encompasses the experimental foods lab, warehousing and facilities services. Prior to Hill’s, Rozzi served as director of global commercialization at Godiva Chocolatier and applications group manager at Roquette America, where he led his teams in bringing new innovation to their respective markets. Rozzi received both his bachelors and doctorate degrees in food science from Purdue University, where he researched using supercritical carbon dioxide to extract lycopene from the byproducts of tomato processing. In his free time, Rozzi volunteers as adjunct faculty at Kansas State University, where he helps facilitate the development of new talent for Hill’s Pet Nutrition. 

Meredith Smola


Meredith Smola is pursuing her Ph.D. in animal sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research focuses on the inclusion of novelty protein ingredients. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, horse and pets. 

Worth Turner


Worth Turner is the chief executive officer of Custom Veterinary Services, LLC (CVS), a contract manufacturer of pet wellness solutions including, but not limited to, nutritional supplement soft chews, liquid nutritional toppers, nutritional powders, Food and Drug Administration-registered topical dermatological solutions and liquid grooming products.

Prior to joining CVS as an investor and CEO, Turner served for six years as the president and CEO of Colorado Quality Products, LLC (CQP), a contract manufacturer of skin and beauty products to the human consumer packaged goods market. Turner led a team that acquired CQP and transformed it from a small, family-run operation into a market leader in natural and organic beauty manufacturing. A graduate of Vanderbilt University, Turner started his career in Leveraged Finance at Wachovia Securities in Charlotte, N.C.

During his two years at Wachovia, he participated in more than $2 billion of leveraged financings, largely focused on private equity backed acquisitions. Following his time in investment banking, he spent the following nine years at a lower middle market private equity fund with offices in Washington, D.C., and Dallas. While in private equity, Turner invested in seven platform company acquisitions, 10 add-on acquisitions, and had the unique opportunity to serve as a board member for five growing businesses.

Turner resides in Dallas, Texas, with his wife and two young boys.

Terry Ward

Terry Ward, Ph.D., serves as the global director of strategy for Zinpro, where he establishes future strategies for Zinpro’s business growth and has an active role on the senior leadership team. Ward has been with Zinpro for 23 years, beginning as a research nutritionist for starter pigs, laying hens, turkeys, broilers and broiler breeders before being appointed as director in 2002 and subsequently global director in 2012, where he led a multi-disciplinary team of technical specialists on four continents, providing research and technical services for customers in over 60 countries.  

Ward has authored or co-authored more than thirty peer-reviewed journal articles and has written abstracts for and presented research results at numerous scientific meetings, conferences and symposia, nationally and internationally. He has served as a reviewer for several scientific journals and has been active in many professional associations, including serving as past chair of the American Feed Industry Association’s Ingredient Approval and Definition Committee, current Chair of the AFIA Sustainability Committee, participating on the IFEEDER CLEAR Center Advisory Board and the IFEEDER Sustainability Roadmap Advisory Board.  

Ward hails from Oklahoma where he grew on a farm with wheat, cotton, pigs and beef cattle. He holds a bachelor’s degree in animal science from Oklahoma State University and a master’s and doctorate degree in nonruminant nutrition from Louisiana State University. He and his wife, Donnita, have been married for 35 years and have three children. They are active fifth and sixth generation cattle producers on their century farm in Seminole County, Oklahoma. 

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