On Thursday 31 March, Professor Ludo Hellebrekers was presented with a royal honour by Mayor Frits Naafs. Ludo received this decoration during his farewell as director of Wageningen Bioveterinary Research (WBVR) in Lelystad.
The award "Officier in de Orde van Oranje-Nassau" was given to Ludo because his contribution to various themes in the field of animal welfare, animal health and public health is of great value to the Netherlands.
Integral approach to animal and human health
As director of WBVR since 2015, he has not only led the institute in an inspiring way, he also dedicated himself more broadly within and outside the university to vision formation and to new partnerships. Ludo developed the institute from a leading institute in the field of animal health within Europe to an institute that is also leading in the field of Global One Health issues.
Under his leadership, WBVR made a valuable contribution to scaling up test capacity for human corona diagnostics in the Netherlands, by actively offering the institute's diagnostic expertise and facilities during the beginning of the pandemic.
Ludo also made major contributions to reducing the use of antibiotics in animal husbandry, in the interest of animal and public health.
Besides his work at WBVR, Ludo is involved with the Centre for Sustainable Animal Stewardship, the Council on Animal Affairs of the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, the Royal Dutch Society for Veterinary Medicine, the Central Committee on Animal Testing and Veterinary Medicines Authority in the Netherlands.
Before Ludo became the director of WBVR, he contributed for 34 years to the training of veterinarians and development of the important field of anaesthesiology. He was associated to the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of Utrecht University as Professor of Veterinary Anaesthesiology.