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Farewell to retiring faculty

June 12, 2014

The School of Veterinary Medicine community offers farewell and thanks to nine faculty members who retire this year. These individuals have embodied excellence in teaching, dedication to academic veterinary medicine and scholarly research accomplishments that are hallmarks of the school.


Michael Evans, Ph.D. ’68, Researcher, California National Primate Research Center (CNPRC)

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Evans joined the school as a research cell biologist in 1999. As a member of the UC Davis respiratory group—a nationally recognized, highly successful and collaborative research program—his work continues to have a high impact in the area of respiratory medicine. 

As a member of the pulmonary biology team, Evans served as a co-investigator for several NIH funded program projects. He was also involved in the first study to describe an allergic asthma model in rhesus monkeys using a known human allergen. Prior to this discovery in 2001, there were no other appropriate animal models of asthma that closely mimic the disease in humans. This study and later research added to a better understanding of the pathogenesis of asthma. Evans was involved in other groundbreaking research on the pulmonary effects of environmental oxidant pollutants, including tobacco smoke.

Evans published more than 150 articles, as a senior author or a collaborator in top-rated scientific journals, and contributed chapters to a dozen textbooks. 


Dallas Hyde, M.S. ’72, Ph.D. ’76, Professor and Director of the California National Primate Research Center (CNPRC)

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Hyde joined the faculty in 1979 and has served as department chair, associate dean for research and graduate education, and most recently as director of the CNPRC. He is a nationally recognized authority on the biology of asthma and other lung diseases, whose extensive research has focused on topics such as the pulmonary effects of environmental pollutants, lung repair and gene regulation, and immunity. He contributed to 264 publications, 28 book chapters and co-authored one book.

As Director of the CNPRC, Hyde was instrumental in obtaining a major grant renewal from the National Institutes of Health that contributed to the growth and development of programs and facilities. This enabled the CNPRC to play an increasing role in translational research with an ultimate impact on human health. 

Hyde received the 1999 Pfizer Award for Research Excellence and the 2009 Outstanding Veterinary Anatomist Award from the American Association of Veterinary Anatomists. He became a Distinguished Professor in 2010 and a Fellow of the American Association of Anatomists in 2011.


Hailu Kinde, DAH ’68, DVM ’78, MPVM ’82, DACPV, DACVM, Professor of Clinical Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology, California Animal Health and Food Safety Laboratory System (CAHFS)

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Kinde joined the faculty in 1987 as a veterinary diagnostician. He took over as branch chief of the San Bernardino CAHFS facility in 2006. During his tenure at UC Davis, Kinde served for two years as the interim director of the CAHFS system. Kinde recently served as the program leader for the Milk Quality Testing Program at the San Bernardino CAHFS facility.

Described as a “particularly astute diagnostician,” Kinde’s expertise is in poultry pathology. As just one example of his scientific endeavors that have contributed to the overall health and safety of production agriculture in California, Kinde designed a study to monitor the types of Salmonella species present in two commercial poultry facilities to determine the type and amount of bacterium present in the environment over time.

Kinde’s outstanding accomplishments have been recognized by two industry research awards—the 2009 Trek Award for Excellence in Diagnostic Veterinary Microbiology and the 2010 Agilent Thought Leader Award.



Leslie Lyons, M.S. ’87, Ph.D. ’91, Professor of Population Health & Reproduction

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Lyons joined the faculty in 1999 to further pursue disease gene mapping and genetic map construction in companion animals, including cats, dogs, horses and primates.  She proceeded to become recognized as a leading authority in feline genetics around the world.

Her work spanned from basic genomics to applied clinical genetics. Her lab conducted sentinel research on the genetics of the domestic cat, including disease, inherited traits, and population diversity. She helped develop a DNA test for polycystic kidney disease (PKD), an inherited condition most often found in Persian cats that shorten their life by causing them to suffer kidney cysts.

Lyons is widely published in scientific journals with more than 80 publications and is frequently interviewed by popular media about her genetics studies and discoveries. As a member of three graduate groups (genetics, animal biology and forensics), Lyons mentored a range of graduate students, as well as undergraduate and DVM students.  Lyons’ contributions in feline genetics research were recognized by the AVMF/Winn Feline Foundation in 2010. 


Niels Pedersen, DVM ’67, Ph.D. ’72, Professor of Medicine & Epidemiology

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Pedersen returned to his alma mater in 1972 as a research immunologist and veterinarian with a broad interest in viral diseases. As an internationally recognized leader in feline medicine, Pedersen served as the founding director of the Center for Companion Animal Health (CCAH) for more than 20 years and also as the Veterinary Genetics Laboratory’s director for 15 years. 

His particular interests in the infectious diseases of cats and dogs in shelter environments led him to help create the world’s first shelter medicine program at the school. He was also instrumental in creating a residency program in clinical genetics and helped inspire the Adler estate gift to the school, which created two endowed chairs in companion animal genetics and oncology. As a clinician-scientist, Pedersen contributed or authored more than 250 scientific publications.

Among numerous awards and honors throughout his career, Pedersen received the 2003 International Award for Outstanding Contribution to Feline Medicine from the European Society of Feline Medicine, and the 2012 American Veterinary Medical Foundation/Winn Feline Foundation Award.


William Reisen, M.S. ’68, Ph.D. ’74, Professor and Director of the Center for Vectorborne Diseases (CVEC)

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Reisen joined the faculty in 1995 as a research entomologist. He served as director of the CEVC for five years, focused on the genetics, epidemiology, ecology and control of arboviruses of public health concern in California—particularly West Nile virus. 

His molecular diagnostic laboratory played a key role at the state and national level in combating the West Nile virus out-break in coordination with other mosquito control agencies in California. Reisen also provided leadership on policy advisory committees at the state and federal levels. He published more than 80 scientific papers and 11 book chapters, and provided mentorship for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.

Among many awards, Reisen was honored with the 2001 Lifetime Award for Achievement in Medical Entomology from the Society for Vector Ecology, International Congress and the 2012 Harry Hoogstraal Medal from the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene for outstanding achievement in medical entomology.


Jack Snyder, DVM ’82, Ph.D. ’89, DACVS, Professor of Surgical & Radiological Sciences

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Snyder joined the faculty in 1990 and built an international reputation as an equine surgeon. He served five times as a veterinarian for the Olympic Games and in other professional roles, including head surgeon and foreign veterinary delegate for the 2011 Pan American Games in Mexico, president of the 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, and hospital director of the 2008 Olympic Games in Hong Kong.

While chief of equine lameness and surgery at the teaching hospital, Snyder helped develop a new equine physical therapy service, using specialty technologies to promote healing at the cellular level with less reliance on invasive procedures or drugs. He was instrumental in securing donations toward building new teaching laboratories and an athletic performance-testing facility at the school. His primary areas of research were in equine gastroenterology, with a secondary focus on sports medicine in performance horses.

Snyder has contributed to hundreds of publications and lectured extensively at international conferences and symposia. 


Jerrold Tannenbaum, M.A. ’72, J.D. ’77, Professor of Population Health and Reproduction

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Tannenbaum joined the faculty in 1999 to teach veterinary ethics and jurisprudence as required for a DVM degree. He was also a major contributor to the undergraduate course, Ethics of Animal Use. He taught a course in animal law and developed a course on agricultural law and policy through the UC Davis School of Law. Tannenbaum was instrumental in initiating an ethics component of the senior clinics, which represents the first formal instruction in ethical issues taught both in a clinical context and a hospital setting at the school. 

Throughout his tenure, Tannenbaum has served on departmental committees (personnel, resources and curriculum) and a school committee on animal welfare. His most recent publication was a commentary in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association. Along with two veterinary dentists (Frank Verstraete and Boaz Arzi), Tannenbaum helped lead a collaborative effort with professors from other universities to speak out against the use of dental implants in dogs and cats.


Dennis Wilson, DVM ’75, M.S. ’79, Ph.D. ’82, DACVP, Professor of Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology 

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Wilson joined the faculty in 1982 as a veterinary pathologist who became nationally and internationally recognized for his research expertise pertaining to the cardiopulmonary system. Among 110 publications and 18 book chapters, his studies include the pathogenesis of pulmonary hypertension, atherogenesis, and the vascular response to inhaled environmental particulate matter. 

In a collaborative study from the San Joaquin Valley, Wilson and colleagues found that exposure to airborne fine-particulate matter significantly elevates the risk for premature deaths from heart disease and strokes. Although much of Wilson’s research was carried out in animal models, it carries a strong translational component to understanding the health impacts of air quality on human and animal health. 

Wilson served as department chair, associate director for diagnostic services in the teaching hospital, and a graduate advisor for the Comparative Pathology Graduate Group. He was also active in the American College of Veterinary Pathology and participated as a member of the National Toxicology Program Panel Review Board.