University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine Dean Carolyn J. Henry presented the 2019 Dean’s Impact Awards on May 23 in the CVM’s Adams Conference Center. The annual awards, established in 1993, honor an individual from outside the college, a staff person and a faculty member for sustained and significant positive impact on CVM programs.
This year’s Impact Award recipients were Bruce Baker, cofounder and hospital manager of Pet Center, Ltd., in Columbia, Missouri; Laura Buck, senior library information specialist at the Zalk Veterinary Medical Library; and Joan Coates, DVM, MS, professor and head of the Neurology and Neurosurgery Service.
Baker earned his Impact Award for decades of service to the CVM, hosting students at the practice and serving on the Gentle Doctor Benefit Community Committee. The annual Gentle Doctor Benefit is the CVM’s fundraising event for student scholarships, and Baker has “skillfully and generously worked behind the scenes, collecting donations from his vast network of friends and business associates, raising thousands of dollars for student support,” according to a nomination letter. Baker’s “deep commitment to support veterinary students is evident by his tireless energy, generosity, and business acumen.”
Baker grew up in Las Vegas, Nevada, always loved animals, and worked in the kennel at the practice of James Sapp, DVM ’67. When Baker moved to Columbia in 1977 to attend MU, he continued working for veterinarians, even living behind the facility so someone would always be on location at Horton Animal Hospital, operated by Jack Horton, DVM ’57. Baker cofounded Pet Center, Ltd., with Burton Schauf, DVM, MS, in 1989.
Baker met his future wife, Lynda, in an MU geology class, prompting Dean Henry to joke that theirs was truly a case of “love on the rocks.” Lynda Baker teaches third grade at Mill Creek Elementary School in Columbia.
Buck began her service with MU Libraries in 1989, moving to the CVM’s Zalk Veterinary Medical Library in 1999. One nomination cited her “sincere dedication, can-do attitude, and excellent organizational skills.” Another noted, “she has always been a positive force in the library, keeping the needs of the students, faculty, and staff foremost in her mind.” Another called her “reliable and helpful,” while yet another called her “an essential, vital resource within the library.”
One nominating letter wrote of Buck, “She is the institutional memory of the library. Wouldn’t it be cool on her 30th year at MU that she received this well-deserved award?”
Coates, DVM ’90, received the award designated for a deserving faculty member. A full professor since 2007 and member of the CVM’s Comparative Neurology Program, Coates was described by a student as “more than a doctor at the top of her field, she is a woman who is compassionate and fair, knowledgeable and motivating.” A nominating student said Coates, “taught us to never stop learning, never stop striving to be better, and to never become complacent as veterinarians.” Cited as having “a long-lasting impact on every student that she has taught,” Coates “shows students every day that it is possible to balance being a compassionate and fearless veterinarian.”
The Impact Award winners each received an engraved crystal plaque presented during a reception that also recognized staff members who achieved milestones in their years of service to the University of Missouri. The following staff members were recognized for their service to MU:
Don Bruno, five years, Lisa Freesemann, five years, Emily Reyland, five years, David Willis, 20 years, Laura Buck, 30 years
Jan Ivey, 20 years
Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory:
Marion Butcher, five years, David Cozad, Jr., five years, Ameia Ferguson, five years, Abigail Fitzsimmons, five years, Susan Martin, five years, Emily Tullock, five years, Mike Wimmenauer, 30 years
Veterinary Medicine and Surgery:
Savannah Buckman, five years, Joyce Guthrie, five years, Terry Lyons, five years, Prashant Sinha, five years, Tatiana Watson, five years, Alyssa Doner, 10 years, Carrie Duran, 10 years, Anastasia Glahn, 10 years, Dee Dee Smith, 10 years, Kimberly Terry, 10 years, Billy Jamison, 15 years, Joan Bohn, 20 years Barbara Moll, 20 years, Kim Morrison, 20 years
Angela Bock, 10 years, Liz Hansen, 20 years