The Chief Scientist will be responsible for scanning global research to identify new and emerging opportunities for Australian livestock industries and promote strategic partnerships between researchers and industry.
Dr Willadsen previously headed CSIRO's Livestock Applications of Biotechnology research program in the Queensland Bioscience Precinct.
Mr Coffey said the position of Chief Scientist would be pivotal in making Australia's livestock and allied industries stronger global competitors. "Our research is about creating wealth for Australia by generating strategic partnerships and business opportunities in the key areas of biotechnology and agribusiness," he said. "Dr Willadsen's strong industry overview, combined with the necessary commercial and science skills makes him well placed to identify new and emerging global opportunities for Australian meat, dairy, aquaculture and fibre industries."
Educated at the University of Queensland, where he completed a PhD in enzyme biochemistry and a Bachelor of Economics, Dr Willadsen has worked in Australia, the UK and in Germany. He led a cattle tick vaccine project resulting in the commercialisation of the world's first recombinant anti-parasite vaccine. Dr Willadsen has also worked on the control of ectoparasites of cattle and sheep and diseases of cattle. Dr Willadsen is the author of over 100 journal articles, book chapters, and reviews. He has published conference papers and has contributed over 40 conference presentations.