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College of Veterinary Medicine

Keynote Speaker

Each year the Phi Zeta Research Day keynote address is sponsored by a generous endowment by Kenneth D. Olson and his family.

Kenneth Dell Olson was born August 18, 1919, in Frankfort, Kansas, the son of Dell and Gunhild Olson. He graduated from Frankfort High School, then attended Brown Mackie Business College in Salina and Kansas State University. He went on to become a respected and very successful Kansas businessman, and was a loyal K-State Alumnus and member of the President’s Club. In 1941, Kenneth married Marjorie Spiller, who was also a K-State graduate. Their son, Dr. Gary Olson graduated from Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 1972. He spent two years in Elkhart, Indiana, before moving back to Lawrence in 1974 to establish the Clinton Parkway Animal Hospital. Dr. Olson has been a board member of the Kansas City Veterinary Medical Association, the Kansas Veterinary Medical Association, President of the Douglas County Veterinary Association, and area director for the American Animal Hospital Association.

This year’s invited keynote speaker is Dr. Adam Boyko

Dr. Adam Boyko is an associate professor in Biomedical Sciences at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine. His research focuses on genomic investigation of dogs as a model of genetic disease and evolutionary genetics. One aspect of this work is understanding the evolution and genetics of village dogs, the semi-feral pariah dogs found in much of the world today.

Dr. Boyko is a graduate of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and received an MS in Computer Science and a PhD in Biology from Purdue University before his postdoctoral research in the Department of Biological Statistics and Computational Biology at Cornell University. He served as a Research Associate in the Genetics Department at the Stanford School of Medicine before beginning his faculty appointment at Cornell in 2011. Dr. Boyko received the Zoetis Award for Veterinary Research Excellence (2015).

Dr. Boyko also serves as Founder and Chief Science Officer of Embark Veterinary, a canine genetic testing company.

2020 Keynote Address: Dr. Adam Boyko, Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

Previous keynote speakers have included;

Dr. Luis J. Montaner, Wistar Institute, Philadelphia

Dr. Lisa Freeman, Executive Vice President and Provost Northern Illinois University.

Dr. Dori Borgesson, Professor and Department Chair of Pathology at University of California, Davis