I’m not sure how I was so lucky to get two Dr. Richardsons in my professional life.
First, I met Dan Richardson, DVM, dipl. ACVS in 1994, at the time heading up the t/d (dental diet) project launch for Hill’s Pet Nutrition. Dr. Dan graciously introduced me to all the dental diplomates (veterinarians board-certified in veterinary dentistry). That led to the “Pets Need Dental Care, Too!” campaign my team and I created on behalf of Hill’s Pet Nutrition, the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Veterinary Dental College. Dr. Dan went on to become Vice President of Clinical Nutrition and Chief Animal Welfare Veterinarian at Hill’s and later led the Kansas State Olathe Innovation Center. I will be forever grateful for his paving the way for me and I know I’m not alone. For many years he’s been a mentor and friend – and I’m happy to say, still is.
What I didn’t know at the time I met Dan was another Richardson would enter my life – one who has also paved the way for so many. His brother, Ralph Richardson, DVM, dipl. ACVIM and charter diplomate of the ACVIM Oncology Specialty, was Dean of the Kansas State Veterinary College. When Germinder & Associates helped launch the Kansas City Animal Health Corridor, Ralph was there “from the get go.” I remember that small group gathering at the Stower’s Institute who feasted on paper plated barbecue very well. In the early years that we worked with the Corridor the concept needed much publicity. Ralph was always gracious with his time when we had the media call – not always in advance. “We’ll make it work” or “we’ll get it done” was a familiar phrase. It is especially fitting that Ralph takes the 2015 Iron Paw Honoree mantle at the 10th anniversary Homecoming Dinner. You can read more about him too in my interview here.
And yes, I hear Dr. Dan Richardson will be there at the Homecoming Dinner to celebrate Ralph’s award with him. Two Richardsons in one night that have given tremendously to veterinary medicine. And I’ve had a front row seat. Congratulations to Ralph and thank you to both of you for always making my job and my team’s job easier. I am more than delighted that we are sponsoring the KC Corridor Homecoming Dinner this year. I hope to see many old friends as we celebrate. If you don’t have your ticket yet, there’s still time to register. Coming Home will be a special time this year in more ways than one.