After an extensive, international search the state government has found its new chief veterinary officer from within its ranks.
Elise Spark, who has been acting in the role since October last year, after the departure of Mary Carr, brings diverse technical skills and experience in biosecurity, disease surveillance, animal health and welfare and emergency management.
Dr Spark, who will officially start as CVO in early March, has more than a decade of experience with PIRSA in the areas of livestock and aquaculture as well as policy and governance.
During her time with the public sector she has been instrumental in managing a range of large state and national disease surveillance projects and programs including the Enhanced Abattoir Surveillance Program.
She also designed and implemented a state-wide active surveillance program for early detection of the Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome (POMS) virus.
The CVO is responsible for leading management of major animal health initiatives, including threats and issues, while enhancing trade and market access for animals and animal products, working both for the state and with counterparts at a national level.
The role also includes ensuring SA has a high level of preparedness to contribute to national biosecurity and response and recovery programs and lead PIRSA's Animal Biosecurity Program.
Dr Spark said it was "an honour" to be appointed the new CVO.
"I feel very privileged to play a leading role in animal biosecurity, an area I have been dedicated to over the past decade of my career," she said.
"With biosecurity threats ever increasing, and the devastating impacts a disease outbreak would have, particularly on the livestock industries and regional communities, the need for industry and government to work in close partnership on our shared biosecurity responsibility has never been greater.
"I will be focused on ensuring the delivery of Animal Biosecurity programs are based on epidemiological and risk-based decision-making to support enhanced industry biosecurity, emergency animal disease preparedness and disease surveillance activities".