Awards of distinction

Distinguished Award 2014A UF equine medicine specialist, a leader in small animal infectious diseases, an internationally known reptile expert and a U.S. congressman received the UF College of Veterinary Medicine’s 2014 Distinguished Awards. Adam Birkenheuer, D.V.M., Ph.D., and Chris Sanchez, D.V.M., Ph.D., both 1995 graduates of the UF veterinary college, were joint winners of the Alumni Achievement Award. U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho, D.V.M., a 1983 graduate of the college, received the Distinguished Service Award. Elliott Jacobson, D.V.M., Ph.D., a professor emeritus of zoological medicine, received the Special Service Award. Andy Roark, D.V.M., received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award. Shown here from left to right are Jacobson, Birkenheuer, Sanchez, Andy Roark and Yoho.

College of Dentistry

Abimbola Adewumi, B.D.S., M.Ped., DentRSC, a clinical associate professor in the department of pediatric dentistry, completed the 2013-14 American Dental Education Association Leadership Institute program. Adewumi was celebrated along with 23 other new graduates at a commencement dinner during the 2014 ADEA Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Texas.

College of Medicine

Barry Byrne, M.D., Ph.D., director of the UF Powell Gene Therapy Center and a professor of pediatrics, has been selected to serve on the Food and Drug Administration’s Cellular, Tissue and Gene Therapies Advisory Committee. Nominated for his expertise in the field of molecular genetics and pediatrics, Byrne will join 12 other committee members who report directly to FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D.

College of Pharmacy

Oliver Grundmann, Ph.D., a clinical associate professor of medicinal chemistry, began a three-year appointment in June to the International Advisory Board of the National Science Teacher’s Association. NTSA is the largest organization of science professionals committed to science education worldwide. Members of its international advisory board guide and provide input on international activities for the association, including development of action plans and specific strategies for implementing international efforts.

Lawrence J. Lesko, Ph.D., a professor of pharmaceutics and director of the Center for Pharmacometrics and Systems Pharmacology at Lake Nona, received the Distinction in Biomarkers Research Award from the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists in May at the 2014 National Biotechnology Conference in San Diego. The award recognizes the continuing impact Lesko’s biomarker research has had on drug development, regulatory science and clinical care.

Mohamed Shahin a third-year doctoral student in pharmacotherapy and translational research working under the mentorship of Julie A. Johnson, Pharm.D., has received a two-year, $52,000 predoctoral fellowship from the Greater Southeast Affiliate of the American Heart Association. Shahin’s work was one of 16 predoctoral projects funded. His two-year fellowship starts in July.

College of Public Health and Health Professions

Steven George, P.T., Ph.D., an associate professor in the department of physical therapy, was named one of the world’s top 10 experts in the research and treatment of back pain by Expertscape. Rankings are based on the quantity and quality of peer-review clinical research publications in the National Library of Medicine’s MEDLINE database.

Ronald Rozensky, Ph.D., a professor in the department of clinical and health psychology, received the Nathan Perry Career Service to Health Psychology Award from the American Psychological Association’s Health Psychology division. The award is named for the late Nathan Perry, a former chair of the UF department of clinical and health psychology. Rozensky will be honored at the association’s annual convention in Washington, D.C., in August.

College of Veterinary Medicine

Andrew Torchia, a third-year veterinary student, received the 2014 Bayer Excellence in Communication Award. Created and funded by Bayer HealthCare LLC’s animal health division, the purpose of the award is to identify and reward veterinary students who are mastering effective communication skills. These skills are considered crucial for helping to establish strong client relationships, which in turn lead to better compliance with medications and treatment plans for their animals.