SVM Clinical Excellence Award

This award, first awarded in 2014, was established to honor professorial or staff veterinarians at the VMTH who demonstrate exceptional, sustained, and significant achievements in patient care, clinical instruction, and advancing clinical veterinary medicine. It recognizes veterinarians whose ability, dedication, character, and leadership contribute significantly to the excellent reputation of VMTH clinical programs.

Dr. Verena Affolter is honored for her efficient leadership, compassionate approach and in-depth service to the William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital (VMTH) team and clients through the Anatomic Pathology Service. As chief of service, Affolter ensures staff, faculty, clinicians and clients are all in to provide the best health care possible for VMTH animal patients. She has initiated dynamic changes in the biopsy service over the past seven years, including implementing a faster turn-around time, increasing pathology participation in hospital rounds, and separating biopsy and necropsy duties to improve services.

Affolter has co-written the top rated text on veterinary derma¬topathology and her international presence includes teaching at European College of Veterinary Pathologists (ECVP) workshops around the world and research presentations at national and international meetings.

Affolter embodies all aspects of the faculty award for clinical excellence. She is a world-renowned dermatopathologist who contributes daily to the surgical pathology service in her specialty area. Without her encyclopedic knowledge of the intricacies of dermatopathology, which forms a large portion of surgical pathology submissions, the diagnosis of dermatologic conditions would be compromised. This would adversely affect patient care. Affolter also provides input on cases in the realm of histiocytic disorders of dogs and cats. She conducts weekly dermatopathology rounds that greatly benefit clinical dermatology and anatomic pathology residents and faculty.

Affolter received her DVM at the University of Bern, Switzerland, completed post-doctoral training in veterinary pathology in Switzerland and at Cornell University, and went on to earn a PhD in Comparative Pathology at UC Davis. Board certified in the ECVP, and a dedicated member of the school’s faculty, she adds value to many clinical research projects with faculty and residents. These projects have resulted in a large number of publications that advance the knowledge base in clinical veterinary medicine. Her dedication and academic excellence are exemplary and she has been enthusiastically supported in her nomination for this award.

Past Recipients of the SVM Faculty Clinical Excellence Award