Internationally Known Scientist Recognized by Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine
Dr. Alexander (Sandy) de Lahunta will be recognized with the College of Veterinary Medicine's Alumni Association's Daniel Elmer Salmon Award for Distinguished Alumni Service. To be presented at the New York State Veterinary Conference, on October 4, 2008, the award recognizes and honors Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine graduates who have distinguished themselves in service to the profession, their communities or to the College.
The award is named in honor of Cornell's first DVM graduate, who is remembered for his pioneering work in controlling contagious animal diseases in the early 20th century. D.E. Salmon was one of Dr. James Law's first students when Cornell University opened its doors in 1868. He received the Bachelor of Veterinary Science degree in 1872 and entered practice in Newark, NJ. He continued his advanced research at Cornell and in 1876 he was awarded the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree. This was the first DVM degree to be awarded in the United States of America.
Dr. D., as Dr. de Lahunta is affectionately known, is a legend in the College of Veterinary Medicine. He has earned status as a scientist, an astute diagnostician, an exceptional and exceptionally dedicated educator, and a valued mentor and friend to many.
Few people have brought greater distinction to the College in recent decades. Always a humble and hardworking man (legendary for conducting 3 am rounds), Dr. de Lahunta is internationally known as a pioneer and leader of veterinary neurology. He is equally well known as an anatomist. Alone, and in collaboration with Cornell colleagues, he has published five leading text books in these disciplines and is the author of 266 peer reviewed publications in professional and scientific journals. Dr. de Lahunta is also renowned as an exceptional educator. Within the College he was four times the recipient of the Norden Distinguished Teacher Award. In 1991, he was recognized by the national veterinary student organization as the best teacher in basic sciences. In 2000, he received the Robert W. Kirk Distinguished Service Award of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine. Dr. de Lahunta has been granted honorary membership by the American College of Veterinary Pathologists (2002) and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (2005).
Dr. Alexander de Lahunta received his DVM and PhD degrees from Cornell University in 1958 and 1963, respectively. He practiced veterinary medicine in Concord, NH, from 1958 to 1960, when he joined the faculty of the Department of Anatomy at Cornell University as Instructor. He became Assistant Professor in 1963 and was promoted to Associate Professor in 1966 and Professor in 1973. Dr. de Lahunta served as Chief of the Medical and Surgical section of the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital (now the Cornell University Hospital for Animals) from 1975 to 1976 and as Hospital Director from 1976 to 1982. He chaired the Department of Clinical Sciences from 1977 to 1986, and the Department of Anatomy from 1986 to 1991. In 1992, he was elevated to James Law Professor of Anatomy.