Hathcock joins FAPC staff as meat lab assistant coordinator
The Robert M. Kerr Food & Agricultural Products Center on the Oklahoma State University campus has provided Oklahoma producers, entrepreneurs and large and small business owners access to staff and faculty with expertise in business and technical disciplines since its inception in 1997.
With that provision in mind, the FAPC recently hired J.D. Hathcock, former Fadler Inc. meat cutter, to fill the position of meat lab assistant coordinator. In this position Hathcock helps the meat pilot manager oversee the harvesting of animals, fabrication of meat and appearance of the second floor meat facilities.
"J.D. has an extensive and diverse background in the meat processing industry, and he is a genuine asset to our meat processing programs at the FAPC," said Jake Nelson, FAPC value-added meat processing specialist. "His past supervisory experience should provide him the tools necessary to mentor, assist and foster successes for the student employees of the FAPC pilot plant."
Hathcock, a Sand Springs native, graduated in 1993 from Charles Page High School, and attended Eastern Oklahoma State College in Wilburton, Okla., from 1994 to 1996. While at EOSC, Hathcock completed an internship with Nobles Town and Country Meat in Skiatook, Okla.
"I started out in the agricultural education program," Hathcock said. "But, I took a meats class and liked it so much that I changed my major."
Since Hathcock has two years of education under his belt, he is considering going back to school in the fall with a major in food science.
While working in the meats industry, Hathcock was employed by Wal-Mart Stores Inc., as a meat manager for eight years. He then made the move to Marshall, Mo., to work at Cargill.
"Wal-Mart stopped cutting their own meat, and I wanted to stay in the meat industry, so I started working for Cargill," Hathcock said.
As a retail meat specialist at Cargill, Hathcock prepared meat for retail sales, making sure it was properly cut for packaging. He also worked in the quality assurance department.
Most recently, Hathcock was employed by Fadler Inc., in Tulsa, Okla. His transition onto the FAPC staff has been smooth. Hathcock said he enjoys working for OSU and the FAPC.
"Working for the university is much more relaxed than working in industry," Hathcock said. "My experiences in industry have definitely prepared me for my position at the FAPC."
Hathcock is excited about the prospect of working with clients on various projects.
"I am looking forward to working on projects with individuals from industry," Hathcock said. "Since I have worked in industry for several years, I have the experience and know what people in industry expect."
Hathcock and his wife, Krystal, have a 10-year-old daughter named Hannah. Together they care for Hathcock's 36-year-old uncle, Jody, who has Down syndrome. The family resides in Bristow, Okla.