Dr. Walter Colon - DVM 1967

VMX — Veterinary Meeting & Expo 2023

Dr. Walter Colon

Dr. Walter Colon, Tallahassee, Florida, was selected by the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine’s Alumni Association for its 2023 Alumni Recognition Award presented Jan. 14, 2023 in Orlando, Florida, during the annual Veterinary Meeting and Expo, or VMX. This award is given to veterinarians whose careers have served as exemplary role models for future alumni in a professional and community setting.

Originally from Santurce, Puerto Rico, Dr. Colon earned his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 1967 from Kansas State University. After graduating he worked at a practice in Tampa, Florida, and then opened his own practice in San Juan, Puerto Rico, which he ran for 37 years. He also worked as regulatory veterinarian for the Puerto Rico Horse Racing Commission at the Camarero racetrack. He retired in 2020 and moved to Florida.

“Dr. Colon has had a distinguished career as one of the most respected veterinarians in Puerto Rico,” said Dr. Bonnie Rush, Hodes Family Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine. “He has provided tremendous leadership, serving over the years as president, legislative consultant and a delegate representing Puerto Rico with both the American and Puerto Rico Veterinary Medical Associations. We are proud to honor him for his longstanding dedication to the veterinary profession.”

“I feel blessed, humbled and extremely proud to receive this recognition from the Veterinary Medicine Alumni Association,” Dr. Colon said. “I hope this allows future alumni the opportunity to reflect on the magnificent preparation and guidance received at K State to help its graduates develop personally and professionally for the benefit of society.”

Dr. Colon was a past member of the board of director of the Association of the Professions of Puerto Rico, past affiliate member of the American Animal Hospital Associations, past secretary of the Hillsborough County Veterinary Medical Association in Florida, founding member and past-president of the Guaracanal Lions Club and member of the American Veterinary Radiology Society. He was appointed and served as a member of the Puerto Rico Board of Veterinary Examiners. He was honored in 1991 for his work as chair of the legislative commission at the annual convention of the Colegio de Medicos Veterinarios de Puerto Rico (CMVPR). He was also honored at the 1995 and 2013 conventions.

“During my presidency [of the CMVPR], Hurricanes Irma and Maria hit Puerto Rico one week apart, creating a generalized turmoil of all aspects of life in the island including of course animal health services as well as public health issues,” Dr. Colon said. “I am proud to say that that Puerto Rico Veterinary Medical Association and the American Veterinary Medical Association responded in great fashion to help face the circumstances and help those in need of assistance. Three years later, after completing my duties as president of the CMVPR, I retired as a member of the board of directors, a position I had held in one form or another since 1993.”

Dr. Colon and his wife Teresita have three adult children: Walter II, Michael and Nicole, and five grandchildren: Maximo, Isabella, Alex, Cristina and Ricky.