John Black completed a Bachelor of Agricultural Science with first-class honours in 1964, a Diploma of Education in 1965 and a PhD in 1971 at the University of Melbourne. In 1970 he was a temporary lecturer in the Department of Animal Husbandry at Melbourne University followed by a CSIRO Postdoctoral fellowship at the National Institute for Research in Dairying at Reading, UK. Between 1971 and 1996 John was a Research Scientist in the CSIRO Division of Animal Production and during that period he undertook many roles including Program Leader for the Quantitative Biology Program, Chief Research Scientist, Assistant Chief and Offi cer-In-Charge of the Prospect Laboratory and Acting Chief of Division. In 1996 he formed John L. Black Consulting, a research consultancy company of which he is Director.
John’s work has spanned a wide range of disciplines and animal species. He has led teams to develop a mechanistic computer simulation model, new experimental techniques and theories to identify factors determining diet selection and intake in sheep and pigs, and completion and commercialisation of the AUSPIG Decision Support Software. The latter has resulted in a NPV for Australia of $40m and benefit : cost ratio of 16:1. His research on protein and energy requirements of ruminants utilising a novel, complete synthetic feeding system, led to the first determination of true amino acid requirements for wool and body growth. He pioneered computer simulations of sheep nutrition, amino acid and energy utilisation in pigs, and impacts of environmental stresses (high temperatures and disease) on physiological responses in pigs. Recently he has jointly developed an artificial pollen for Australian honeybees.
John has published some 250 scientific publications, including 51 refereed journal papers, 54 book chapters, 58 refereed conference papers, 47 conference abstracts and 24 industry publications. He has been invited to speak at more than 40 national meetings and 40 international meetings.
John has received numerous awards for his outstanding work, including being made a Member of the General Division of the Order of Australia (AM), the Urrbrae Memorial Award, the Centenary Medal of Australia, the American Medal of Honor for contribution to Animal Science, and he was elected amongst the 2000 Outstanding Scientists of the 21st Century. He has been elected a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Agricultural Science and Technology, and is an elected Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. John has contributed substantially to the Australian Society of Animal Production having served as a member of the Federal Council from 1972–1974, as committee member of the NSW branch from 1975–1979, as President of the NSW Branch in 1978, and as a member of the Federal Council from 1986– 1988. He was national Secretary of the Nutrition Society from 1977–1979.
For his outstanding contribution to animal science and production, the Australian Society of Animal Production is pleased to enrol Professor John Black as a Fellow of the Society.