Advanced Breeding team
David Black - BVM&S, DBR, MRCVS
As a vet I have worked with small animals, and equine, and most recently I was involved with the farm animal side of the practice. These days, as Managing Director of Paragon, I am responsible for the overall coordination and running of the practice, and spend time working within other aspects of the veterinary profession. I hold a Diploma in Bovine Reproduction (DBR), and have been recognised for over 15 years by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons as a Specialist in Bovine Health and Production, and am currently studying for a further qualification at the University of Nottingham. I have a a particular interest in cattle breeding and fertility, including Advanced Breeding and recently have been responsible for the establishment of a company called Activf-ET which delivers cattle breeding services, and especially IVF for cattle nationwide. Paragon was one of the founders of XLVets, and I spent 11 years as Managing Director of that organisation before stepping down from the Board in the Summer of 2017. XLVets is a nationally distributed group of independent veterinary practices working together to achieve our joint aim of "Excellence in Practice”. I am Treasurer of the World Association for Buiatrics (which means "Cattle Health") and have a great interest in international collaboration amongst vets and farmers. I am married to Sue and have 3 daughters.
I have been working for Paragon Veterinary Group since 2011 in my role as Advanced breeding Project Manager. I am currently managing two Technology Strategy Board Collaborative Projects involved with IVF in Cattle and Genomic Selection of Bovine Embryos, supporting Stuart Mullan and David Black who are leading this initiative.
Outside work I live on a farm with my husband James and we keep a variety of interesting animals including hens, waterfowl, wallabies and reindeer. I have two grown up children Kate and Daniel and one little granddaughter in Scotland who I see as often as I can.
James and I are currently renovating a small derelict farm which is taking up most of our time and energy and we are the proud owners of 5 Longhorn cattle. I am a keen swimmer and enjoy walking when I get any spare time!
Rob Simmons - BVMS, MRCVS
I joined Paragon in 2016 as a farm clinician, having spent the previous 5 years working in farm practice, with 4 of these in Cumbria. Since joining Paragon I have become more involved with the Advanced Breeding department and is the Team Veterinarian responsible for the work in that area. I have a keen interest in the growing OPU/IVF side of the business and spend the majority of time within that field. I have spent time in Canada working with our partners out there to ensure we maintain our position at the forefront of this field in the UK and Europe.
Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my family, and running in the fells.
I joined Paragon in the summer of 2013 as part of the activf ET team after finishing my studies in Biomedical Sciences at Sheffield Hallam University. I am part of the commercial and research teams that deliver bovine IVF and Embryo transfer.
I live at my family home on a hill farm. I enjoy many sports and social activities but mainly pursue passions in Horses and Rugby.
I joined Paragon's Embryo Transfer team in 2013. My main role is as a flush and IVF technician. My other duties include sterilising and preparing kits, and record keeping.
Outwith work my time is mainly spent helping on my parent's beef, sheep and arable farm and on my boyfriend's dairy farm.
I joined Paragon's Advanced Breeding team in November 2016, where my main role is as an IVF lab technician. My other roles include ET and OPU lab technicianing as well as kit sterilisation and packing.
Outside of work I enjoy an array of sports and outdoor pursuits. I have recently started doing triathalons which keeps me busy alongside competing my horse.