Neal R. Merchen

Associate Dean for Research

228 Mumford Hall
1301 W. Gregory Drive
Urbana, IL 61801

Dr. Neal Merchen assumed his position of Associate Dean for Research in the College of ACES and Director of the Illinois Agricultural Experiment Station in September 2012. An award-winning teacher and researcher, Merchen previously served as head of the Department of Animal Sciences before accepting his new role in the Office of Research.

Merchen received both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Nebraska in animal science. He achieved his Ph.D. from the Department of Dairy Science at the University of Wisconsin in 1981. After finishing his Ph.D., Merchen joined the faculty of the Department of Animal Sciences at the University of Illinois in 1981 on a teaching and research appointment in animal nutrition. As a faculty member, he taught a number of courses in nutrition and has conducted research with beef and dairy cattle, sheep, and companion animals. He is also a member of the Division of Nutritional Sciences.

Merchen received the American Feed Industry Association Award in Ruminant Nutrition Research from the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) in 1997 and the ASAS’s Corbin Award for Research in Companion Animal Biology in 2003. He has received numerous awards from the Department of Animal Sciences for both undergraduate teaching and for graduate teaching and research. He has been named to the List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students on a number of occasions. In 1999, he was presented with the prestigious Paul A. Funk Award by the College of ACES.