Auburn’s Miller Center to showcase Alabama Poultry Hall of Fame

Published: September 06, 2017
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An 8,000-square-foot administrative and education facility scheduled for completion at Auburn University’s Charles C. Miller Jr. Poultry Research and Education Center in early 2018 will give the Alabama Poultry Hall of Fame a permanent home, Auburn College of Agriculture administrators and Alabama Poultry & Egg Association, or AP&EA, leaders have announced.

The Miller Center is a multi-facility complex north of Auburn’s main campus. The poultry hall of honor will be an interactive digital showcase located in the visitors’ center of the new flagship building.

"Through this display, we will be able to feature the past, present and future of the poultry industry in an interactive and dynamic manner," said Johnny Adams, AP&EA executive director. "In doing so, we will have the unique opportunity to fully capture and preserve the stories of these industry pioneers for future generations."

The hall of fame currently honors 53 innovators, entrepreneurs, educators, researchers and visionaries who have been instrumental in advancing the Alabama poultry industry, which today contributes more than $15 billion annually to Alabama’s economy and is the largest agricultural industry in the state. Nationally, Alabama is the second-largest poultry-producing state.

"Many members of the Alabama Poultry Hall of Fame were pioneers of our state’s thriving poultry industry," Adams said. "They were true innovators, and they knew the value of grit, determination and hard work. They built with their own hands what is today Alabama’s leading agricultural industry."

When the administration and education building opens in early 2018, the Miller Center complex will be 50 percent complete, said Auburn Department of Poultry Science head Don Conner.

"The construction of this building will represent a key milestone in fully establishing the Miller Center," Conner said. "In addition to serving as the flagship facility of the center, it will represent that a majority of the center has become a reality and that we are well on the way to having a premier poultry education and research center where our students and faculty can thrive."

Development of the Miller Center began on the North Auburn campus in 2016, supported by a $2.5 million gift from Miller Jr.’s son, Charles C. "Buddy Miller III, and daughter-in-law Pinney Allen. The complex sits on 30 acres and currently encompasses the poultry and animal nutrition center and feed mill that opened on the site in 2012 along with three new units—one that houses the Auburn-based National Poultry Technology Center and two floor pen facilities that accommodate replicated broiler trials in poultry nutrition and management research.

A hatchery, a poultry processing plant and teaching labs are among future Miller Center facilities that will be built as funding becomes available.

Educational activities at the Miller Center have included workshops and seminars for industry professionals and student academic programming through the poultry science department.

Adams said the decision to locate the Alabama Poultry Hall of Fame in the Miller Center’s administration and education facility is one example of the strong relationship between the Alabama Poultry & Egg Association and Auburn’s Department of Poultry Science.

"This partnership has provided this unique opportunity to not only honor our rich history and heritage, but also to promote our success story to a wide audience, particularly future generations," he said. "Recognizing the founders of our industry is an honor and privilege that we want to share."

Auburn University is a nationally ranked land grant institution recognized for its commitment to world-class scholarship, interdisciplinary research and an undergraduate education experience second to none. Auburn is home to more than 29,000 students, and its faculty and research partners collaborate to develop and deliver meaningful scholarship, science and technology-based advancements that meet pressing regional, national and global needs. Auburn's commitment to active student engagement, professional success and public/private partnership drives a growing reputation for outreach and extension that delivers broad economic, health and societal impact. Auburn's mission to educate, discover and collaborate drives its expanding impact on the world.