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Kansas State University

Faculty Member Receives Outstanding Woman Veterinarian of the Year Award


Bonnie Rush
Dr. Bonnie Rush

K-State College of Veterinary Medicine, clinical sciences faculty member Dr. Bonnie Rush will receive the Association for Women Veterinarian's Outstanding Woman Veterinarian of the Year Award for 2004. The award will be presented during the annual meeting of the American Veterinary Medical Association July 26, 2004 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Rush, Professor, Section Head, Equine Internal Medicine and Surgery, and Associate Dean for Career Development, is being recognized by the association for special effort and achievement by a woman veterinarian in any area of veterinary medicine. She was nominated by Dr. Gregory F. Grauer, Professor and Head of the Department of Clinical Sciences of the College of Veterinary Medicine's Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital. "Dr. Rush has demonstrated the ability to excel in not just one but all areas of academic veterinary medicine. She is one of those rare 'quadruple threats' as she is an outstanding teacher, clinician, researcher and leader," said Dr. Grauer.

"We are so very fortunate to have Dr. Bonnie Rush on our faculty," said Dr. Ralph Richardson, Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine. "I can't think of a better role model and mentor for our veterinary students."

Lectures full of energy and vitality, a teaching style that creates a lively interchange that draws students to participate, and a teaching environment where students are comfortable taking risks in front of their peers have lead them to twice select Dr. Rush for the prestigious Norden Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1996 and 2003. Dr. Rush's mentoring and training program for residents and house officers has seen many go on to prestigious academic careers in veterinary medicine. These seasoned protégés are regularly recruited for career track, tenured positions across the United States.

As the Associate Dean of Career Development, Dr. Rush organizes the second half of the Orientation Class with the goal of introducing the students to non-traditional veterinary careers. She fills these eight lectures with K-State alumni that volunteer time and travel to bring experiences in non-practice, high-impact careers to the students; a powerful way to show the road less traveled. Dr. Rush chairs the time consuming but very important College Admissions Committee that helps ensure success in growing the next generation of K-State veterinarians. She also directs the early admission program for pre-veterinary students and advises countless students and residents on career development issues.

Dr. Rush is recognized internationally as one of the pre-eminent equine clinical immunologists of our day, and as an expert on the pharmacotherapy of equine respiratory disease. She is also one of the most sought after general equine internists in the country. In the summer and fall of 2002 when West Nile Virus hit the central states region, Dr. Rush developed therapeutic protocols that resulted in higher than average survival rates for infected horses. She was also the lead person to interface with media regarding treatment and prevention of the disease.

Dr. Rush's research contributions to world knowledge about obstructive airway disease of horses and aerosolized drug therapy is evidenced by her many refereed papers on the subjects. These are considered by many of her peers to be the seminal papers on this very important area of veterinary medicine. She has made the majority of important contributions on the subject during the past decade with basic studies of the mechanisms of action of immunostimulants. These studies have bridged basic research and clinical application to represent translational research demonstrated by today's pharmaceutical market. Current equine immunotherapies make use of at least three regimens developed and evaluated first by Dr. Rush.

Dr. Rush's peers appreciate her enthusiasm in professional activities that include her serving as member of the executive board of the Comparative Respiratory Society, the executive board of Genetraks Ltd., the editorial board of Equine Veterinary Education and the Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society.

Professional memberships include the Association for Women Veterinarians, American Veterinary Medical Association, Kansas Veterinary Medical Association the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine and the American Association of Equine Practitioners.

Before starting her career at K-State in 1993, Dr. Rush completed her undergraduate training in 1985. She received her doctor of veterinary medicine in 1989 from The Ohio State University, completed an internship at North Carolina State University in 1990 and finished a residency in equine medicine at The Ohio State University in 1993 where she also received a master's degree in clinical sciences.