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Research Award Recipient 2007: Prof. Richard D. Moccia

Professor Richard Moccia currently holds research and senior management cross-appointments at the University of Guelph, where he has been employed since 1987. He is the Associate Vice-President of Research (Agrifood and
Partnerships), as well as Director of the university’s Aquaculture Centre and the Alma Aquaculture Research Station
– both centres of excellence dedicated to the development of aquaculture science and technology. Rich also holds a
faculty appointment as a Professor of Aquatic Science in the Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences and is the
Chair of the MSc Aquaculture Program. Professor Moccia has been an enthusiastic member of the Canadian aquaculture sector for nearly 30 years. His career activities have always had a strong focus in research, as well as in education and extension service, in various capacities within the aquatics and fisheries sectors in Canada. Rich is a very student-centred educator, and has advised 32 students in either MSc or PhD programs, and has participated in the committees of over 100 other graduate students. His research career began in the mid-1970s, examining thyroid goiter and neoplasia in Great Lakes fish, using fish and birds as biological sentinels of ecosystem effects and environmental degradation. Rich’s more recent research has been directed at industry related problems and he has dedicated himself primarily to applied studies related to the enhancement of the commercial success of the fish farming industry. These studies are highly varied and span such areas as: applied nutrition, aquatic and fish health, ecotoxicology, environmental impact assessment, reproductive and growth physiology and animal welfare studies related to captive aquatic livestock. Professor Moccia has published widely in journals such as Science, Cancer Research, Journal of Wildlife Disease, Aquaculture, Aquaculture Nutrition, Aquaculture Research, Fish and Fisheries, Environmental Biology of Fishes and many others. Prior to his university career, Rich was President of the Ontario Aquaculture Association, as well as Research Director and Vice-president of an aquaculture technology and fish production company which he co-founded. He also established and ran a private consulting company, which was dedicated to helping farmers with fish health and water quality issues. Rich Moccia was also a founding member of two private sector, national aquaculture lobbying groups, including the predecessor to CAIA, and was instrumental in helping to position the industry within the government’s mandate during the early years of the industry’s commercial development in Canada. Professor Moccia is also the holder of a Distinguish Professorial Teaching Award (2002) and a Distinguished Extension Service Award (2004). In his spare time he is an avid hockey player, scuba diver, hiker and coach of minor league sports.