Dr. Gay obtained a BSc in Chemistry and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Auburn University, and a Ph.D. in Microbiology from The George Washington University. Dr. Gay has worked in the animal health research field for the last 25 years holding several positions of increasing responsibility in the federal government and the pharmaceutical industry. As Chief, Biotechnology Section, Center for Veterinary Biologics (CVB), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Dr. Gay developed the procedures for licensing molecular vaccines that led to the first license for a live recombinant vectored vaccine. In the pharmaceutical industry (SmithKline Beecham Animal Health and Pfizer Animal Health) Dr. Gay led several cross-functional teams that successfully developed and licensed veterinary vaccines for companion animals and livestock.
As Director, Global Product Development, Pfizer Inc., Dr. Gay developed strategic and tactical plans that interfaced R&D, clinical development, manufacturing, marketing, and product life-cycle management. Dr. Gay joined Agricultural Research Service (ARS), USDA, in 2002. Dr. Gay currently holds the position of Senior National Program Leader and provides program direction and national coordination for the Department’s intramural animal health research program, with focus on eight research laboratories located in Ames, Iowa, East Lansing, Michigan, Clay Center, Nebraska, Athens, Georgia, Orient Point, New York, Beltsville, Maryland, Pullman, Washington, and Manhattan, Kansas. Dr. Gay was the 2010 recipient of the USDA Secretary’s Honors Award for interagency response to the pandemic H1N1 influenza outbreak; the ARS Special Administrator’s Award for outstanding and rapid research support for pandemic H1N1; and the USDA Secretary’s Honor Award for Heroism and Emergency Response for contributions as a team member to the ARS/APHIS response to the 2013 Chinese H7N9 avian influenza outbreak.