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DAA: Angela L. Siemens

Angela L. Siemens

Wichita, KS | Distinguished Ag Alumni: 2011

Angie Siemens grew up on a diversified livestock and grain farm near Connersville, Indiana, the oldest of five sisters. Her father didn’t hire any help. The strong Midwest work ethic instilled on the farm has served Siemens well in a career dedicated to developing and implementing quality assurance and safety principles and management practices. As vice president of technical services for the Cargill Animal Protein division of Cargill, Inc., Siemens manages food safety for a $17 billion beef, pork, turkey, and meat processing company. She oversees all aspects of food safety and quality control in 32 facilities in the United States and Canada. Her expertise in food safety came not in her formal education but in her working career. The first weekend of her senior year at Purdue, she married fellow animal sciences student Mike Siemens, and the two would pursue divergent but parallel paths in which they alternately followed and led each other’s job choices (he currently oversees animal welfare efforts for Cargill’s global meat businesses). After earning her doctorate in meat science with a collateral emphasis on statistics, she went to Washington, D.C., as a Congressional Science Fellow, which both capitalized on her research skills and shaped her interest in regulatory issues. To move closer to her husband’s work in Wisconsin, she spent a year in research and development at Beatrice Foods, and the next in an Oscar Mayer Foods plant in a position for which she was clearly overqualified. But this period provided her “a pretty amazing combination of governmental training, technical training, and real-world plant experience.” From that broad base, she moved into the regulations and requirements group at Oscar Mayer, which put her on her progressive track in food safety, in executive positions at Smithfield Packing Company and since 2006, at Cargill. The couple keeps busy with their 9-year-old son, church activities, and 80 acres — although they’re still negotiating the number of four-legged creatures that will eventually occupy the property.