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The College of Veterinary Medicine, Michigan State University, invites applications for the position of Director of the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (VDL). The VDL is a premier, state-of-the-art veterinary diagnostic laboratory, accredited by the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians (AAVLD), occupying a modern 152,000 square-foot facility at Michigan State University and providing broad expertise in anatomic and clinical pathology, endocrinology, nutrition, toxicology, virology, bacteriology, mycology, parasitology, next-generation sequencing and bioinformatics. The diagnostic laboratory is operated by 150 faculty and staff and runs more than a million tests per year with an annual budget of $20M. The laboratory offers a comprehensive catalog of tests with more than 750 diagnostic services designed to assist veterinarians, animal owners, public officials and organizations in identifying, tracking and addressing animal and public health concerns.

Msu Vdl Building Field In Foreground
Located south of main campus near MSU farms, the current facility has housed the MSU VDL since construction was completed in 2004.

The Laboratory is a Level 1 member of the National Animal Health Laboratory Network. In 2023, the MSU VDL was selected to serve as the Midwest representative in the new NAHLN/NBAF Partnership for Early Detection of Emerging Diseases.

Bsl 2 Necropsy Floor
The MSU VDL facility has two BSL-2 necropsy floors (one pictured above) as well as one BSL-3 necropsy floor.
A Wise With Sample Plate In Bl 3 Landscape Lr
The MSU VDL facility also has BSL-3 laboratory space for safe handling and processing of high-risk and high-consequence disease samples.
Bacti Wide Shot Lr
The MSU VDL’s laboratories were designed for efficient workflow; large windows allow for natural light and views of the surrounding fields.

The Director must have a DVM degree or equivalent and to satisfy AAVLD accreditation, at least 5 years veterinary diagnostic laboratory or relevant work experience and at least 5 years directing/supervising experience. Experience may include regulatory/policy, industry, state/federal, finance, practice or quality management. A PhD and/or board certification in a laboratory-related specialty are desirable, as is a demonstrated achievement in research, teaching, diagnostic medicine and/or outreach. Applicants must be licensed or eligible for full or limited (academic institution) licensure in the state of Michigan. The Director reports to the Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine and serves on the Dean’s Cabinet.

Vdl Geography

The Director is expected to uphold and facilitate the VDL mission and vision, including promoting quality within laboratory sections and adherence to AAVLD quality principles. The successful candidate must possess outstanding leadership, administrative, management and entrepreneurial skills, in keeping with the VDL commitment to leading-edge diagnostic service, research and teaching. The Director must possess superb interpersonal and communication skills and a demonstrated ability to work with others in a collegial team atmosphere.

Receiving Packages On Shelves

The successful candidate must be committed to promote an inclusive work environment that welcomes and encourages the VDL’s diverse workforce. The successful candidate will interact closely with colleagues in the College of Veterinary Medicine and University administration, faculty, staff, students as well as clients and the general public and must be an effective spokesperson for the VDL and its programs. In addition, the successful candidate will represent the VDL in interactions with state agencies such as the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services; animal industry groups and organizations including the National Animal Health Laboratory Network; and other agencies including the National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Food and Drug Administration. The Director must have the ability to coordinate activities with national and state associations such as the AAVLD, the United States Animal Health Association (USAHA), the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), and the Michigan Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA). Finally, experience working with and responding to media inquiries is desirable.

Appointment and Salary:

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This position is a full-time annual appointment in the tenure, health programs or fixed term appointment system. Initial and subsequent appointments as Director are for 5-year terms with academic and administrative review initiated in the 4th year of each term. The Director will hold an Academic Administrator title and the successful candidate is expected to qualify for and hold an appropriate professorial title in an academic department within the College of Veterinary Medicine. Salary and rank dependent on qualifications and experience.

Application Instructions:

The Search Committee will begin reviewing applications on August 1, 2024 and will continue until the position is filled. Michigan State University has an online, centralized application procedure and all candidates are asked to submit a package including a cover letter outlining special interest in the position, specific pertinent strengths and experiences, career goals and approach(es) to inclusive excellence; and curriculum vitae. Please visit, posting number 960664 to apply. Qualified applicants wishing more information are invited and encouraged to contact Annette O’Connor, Search Committee Chair (

More information on the VDL also can be found at:

MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer and is committed to achieving excellence through cultural diversity. The university actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans, and persons with disabilities.