Dr. Adam Ruskin - DVM 1990

Western Veterinary Conference 2024

Dr. Adam Ruskin

Dr. Adam Ruskin, Tampa, Florida, has been selected by the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine and its Veterinary Medical Alumni Association to receive a 2023 Alumni Recognition Award. The award is presented Feb. 19 in conjunction with the Western Veterinary Conference in Las Vegas in recognition of his career in veterinary medicine and for having served as an exemplary role model for future alumni in a professional and community setting.

Dr. Ruskin, originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania obtained dual bachelor’s degrees at Penn State University in 1985. He earned his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Kansas State University in 1990. He went on to complete a Master of Public Health degree and a doctorate, both in epidemiology, from Emory University in 1992 and 1993, respectively.

“Going into veterinary medicine, I always knew that I wanted to work in large-scale population medicine, and this background provides a broad knowledge base that lends itself nicely to learn the details of many different therapeutic areas,” Dr. Ruskin said. “This award demonstrates that it's what you do with your skill set, regardless of what field you are in, that can create significant impact.”

Dr. Ruskin started his career as an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) where he put the standards in place to convert the voluntary state reportable infectious disease databases into a mandatory standardized federal database. While in Atlanta, he became the first epidemiologist at Grady Hospital's new HIV treatment facility, where he helped develop the first FDA-approved treatment for HIV, wrote the software for HRSA to distribute federal funds to HIV treatment and care facilities, and was appointed to a presidential advisory committee on HIV treatment and research.

“Dr. Ruskin has been on the front lines of medical research and technology with a significant impact on human health,” said Hodes Family Dean Dr. Bonnie Rush. “He is a great example of how the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree provides a solid foundation for care, and a wide variety of impactful career choices. We’re proud to recognize Dr. Ruskin for his dedication, achievement and inspiration to those who might follow in his footsteps.”

He moved to San Francisco to head up clinical development for a non-profit division of the University of California, San Francisco. He then went on to head up clinical development and biometrics five early-stage biotech companies, leading to an IPO and four company purchases. This included developing the first FDA-approved treatment for MRSA, the first FDA-cleared sample-to-answer multiplexed PCR test which is something now standard in most every diagnostic laboratory worldwide, and the first FDA-cleared tests of any kind for leukemia and autism, among many other pharmaceutical products and medical diagnostics.

More recently, Dr. Ruskin led the clinical operations for the largest successful US-only clinical trial of all time, the Moderna Phase 3 Covid-19 trial, obtaining an Emergency Use Authorization in record time, and is now developing a new class of antimicrobials to aid with current and future antimicrobial resistance issues. He has been appointed to 2 FDA advisory committees, and has been a long-time industry instructor and lecturer in clinical operations, data management, and associated technologies.