2017 IACUC Conference: March 21

An Open Forum on the USDA, APHIS’ Website Involving Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and Horse Protection Act (HPA) Compliance Information: Recent Changes and What IACUCs Need to Know

Tuesday, March 21
10:45 AM - 12:00 PM
Location: Bissonet Ballroom

On February 3, 2017, USDA, APHIS removed documents from its website that pertain to the HPA and the AWA and that contain the personal information of those who conduct research involving animals, including inspection reports, research facility annual reports, regulatory correspondence, and certain enforcement records. In a statement on its website, USDA, APHIS says the decision is “based on our commitment to being transparent, remaining responsive to our stakeholders’ informational needs, and maintaining the privacy rights of individuals.” Those who want access to this information will need to obtain it through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests. During this session, speakers and attendees will:

Learning Objectives:

Allyson J. Bennett, PhD

Associate Professor, Psychology; Faculty Director, Animal Program
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Dr. Bennett is a developmental psychobiologist on the faculty of the Department of Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she teaches courses in experimental psychology, research methods, and animal cognition. Comparative studies by Dr. Bennett and her colleagues have contributed new insights into how interplay between genes and environments affects neurobehavioral development across the lifespan. She is the author of numerous publications on behavior, physiology, genetics, and neurobiology in prosimians, Old World monkeys, and chimpanzees. Her research is funded by the National Institutes of Health. She also studies how specific features of the environment affect laboratory animals, providing empirical evidence to help inform animal model development and evolving standards for animal welfare, particularly those that also affect scientific outcomes. She is the Faculty Director of the UW-Madison's Animal Program. Dr. Bennett has served on NIH scientific grant review panels, is an Associate Editor for Developmental Psychobiology, and a reviewer for a number of other scientific journals. Dr. Bennett has a long-standing commitment to public education, dialogue, and engagement about the value and conduct of animal research. She is a member of the American Psychological Association’s Committee on Animal Research Ethics (CARE) and of Speaking of Research.


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Management Consultant; Senior Scientific Advisor
National Association for Biomedical Research

B. Taylor Bennett, DVM, PhD, DACLAM, DACAW, currently serves as the senior scientific advisor for the National Association for Biomedical Research. He spent 36 years at the University of Illinois at Chicago overseeing their animal care and use program, and spent the last 10 years there as the associate vice chancellor for research resources, where he was responsible for 14 campus-wide core research support services. Dr. Bennett has been active in a variety of professional organizations, and currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Scientist Center for Animal Welfare and as chair of the Board of Directors of the American Society of Laboratory Animal Practitioners Foundation. Dr. Bennett obtained his DVM from Auburn University and his PhD from the University of Illinois Medical School. Dr. Bennett is a member of the 2017 IACUC Conference Planning Committee.


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Betty Goldentyer, DVM

Director, Animal Welfare Field Operations
USDA, APHIS, Animal Care

Betty Goldentyer, DVM, is Director of Animal Welfare Operations for the Animal Care Program of USDA APHIS. Dr. Goldentyer has been with the Animal Care Program since its organization as a stand-alone unit in 1988. Animal Welfare Operations has a staff of 120 employees who perform compliance inspections, provide outreach and education, and address public complaints regarding humane care and use of animals used by commercial dealers, exhibitors, research facilities, and in commercial transport.


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Ryan Merkley,

Director of Research Advocacy
Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

Ryan Merkley is Director of Research Advocacy for the non-profit Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, where he has worked since 2006. Over the last decade he has been integral to the organization’s efforts to modernize medical training through the replacement of animal use. During that time, he has led efforts that succeeded in replacing the use of animals in more than 100 civilian, military, and other government training and research programs. In 2016, he was part of a team that ended the use of live animals in undergraduate medical training in the United States. He also played a key role in the Physicians Committee’s work to retire chimpanzees from laboratory experiments, which was formalized in 2015.

Ryan’s skillset includes expertise in coalition building, the use of open records laws, and federal regulations and laws regarding the use of animals in laboratories, on which he has lectured at law schools across the country. Ryan also has extensive experience lobbying elected officials.

In his free time, Ryan hikes extensively and is an aspiring photographer.


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Delcianna J. Winders, JD

Academic Fellow, Animal Law & Policy Program
Harvard Law School

Delcianna Winders is an Academic Fellow with Harvard Law School’s Animal Law & Policy Program. Her scholarship focuses principally on the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and its implementation, including the intersection of the AWA and transparency laws and practices. In addition to her academic writing, Winders has published pieces about the AWA in the Arizona Daily Star, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Courier Journal, Des Moines Register, The Hill, Nature, Newsweek, Salon, The Wall Street Journal, and other popular media outlets. She has presented on animal law at venues across the country including Columbia, Harvard, New York University, Stanford, the University of Chicago, and Yale. Before coming to Harvard, Winders practiced animal law in a variety of settings and handled numerous matters involving the AWA and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). She also taught animal law at Tulane University School of Law and Loyola University New Orleans College of Law. Winders is currently a plaintiff in a FOIA suit challenging the Department of Agriculture’s decision to delete thousands of animal welfare-related records from its website.


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An Open Forum on the USDA, APHIS’ Website Involving Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and Horse Protection Act (HPA) Compliance Information: Recent Changes and What IACUCs Need to Know

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Send Email for An Open Forum on the USDA, APHIS’ Website Involving Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and Horse Protection Act (HPA) Compliance Information: Recent Changes and What IACUCs Need to Know