7-30-2009

Contact: Amy Murray, (614) 292-8385

Ohio State graduate, national expert in animal-borne diseases, chosen to lead College of Veterinary Medicine

Lonnie King, a national leader in veterinary medicine, has been named dean of The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. King currently serves as a director of the Centers for Disease Control's (CDC) National Center for Zoonotic, Vector-Borne, and Enteric Diseases. Subject to approval by the university Board of Trustees, his appointment will be effective September 1.

At the CDC, he led activities for surveillance, diagnostics, disease investigations, epidemiology, research, public education, policy development and disease prevention and control programs. The national center also focuses on waterborne, foodborne, vector-borne, and zoonotic diseases of public health concern.

A native of Wooster, King received his B.S. and DVM degrees from The Ohio State University in 1966 and 1970, respectively. He was in private veterinary practice for seven years in Dayton and Atlanta, Georgia.

"Dr. King is a remarkably accomplished scholar and a national leader in understanding emerging diseases as well as the connections between human and animal health," said Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee. "His enormous talents will be invaluable in leading our gifted faculty and making our top-tier veterinary medicine program even stronger."

Before joining the CDC he served as dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Michigan State University from 1996 to 2006. Earlier, he held positions at the national Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. There, his assignments included directing the development of the agency's National Animal Health Monitoring System, serving as the country's chief veterinary officer, and director for national veterinary and animal health programs.

"It is with a real sense of pride and enthusiasm that I return to my roots and alma mater as dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine at The Ohio State University. The college is truly one of this nation's premiere institutions whose stature has been built by a distinguished faculty and staff and remarkable students," King said.

"Society has expanding needs and expectations for the veterinary profession and this college is well positioned to be a national and global leader in both defining and meeting these needs. I am grateful to Ohio State for the opportunity to be part of an outstanding university and I'm thrilled to help lead the College of Veterinary Medicine with its rich heritage and great promise for the future," he said.

In addition to his degrees from Ohio State, King earned an M.S. in epidemiology from the University of Minnesota while on special assignment with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 1980. He also received his MPA (Master of Public Administration) degree from American University in 1991.

The author of more than 100 publications, King is a board-certified member of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, and has completed the Senior Executive Fellowship program at Harvard University. He has served as president of the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges from 1999-2000 and was the vice-chair for the National Commission on Veterinary Economic Issues from 2000-2004.

King helped start the National Alliance for Food Safety, served on the Governor's Task Force on Chronic Wasting Disease for the State of Michigan, and four National Academy of Sciences Committees; most recently he chaired the National Academies Committee on Assessing the Nation's Framework for Addressing Animal Diseases. He was elected as a member of the Institute of Medicine of The National Academies in 2004.

Ranked by U.S. News and World Report as fifth in the nation among 28 schools, The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine has one of the first and finest clinical residency programs in the nation. Established in 1885, the college has graduated more than 7,200 veterinarians, and currently enrolls 621 students. Within Ohio, graduates comprise 85 percent of the practicing veterinarians in the state. The colleges' comprehensive referral veterinary teaching hospital admits more than 35,000 animal patients each year representing a wide range of species, including companion, farm and service animals. The 130 faculty members are on the leading edge in the development of advanced orthopedic procedures including fracture repair and arthroscopy in horses and total hip replacement in dogs; and are recognized internationally for their work in infectious diseases.