Purdue Veterinary Alumnus, Dr. Joe Klopfenstein, Honored as Mentor of the Year at AABP Conference

Friday, October 28, 2022

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Dr. Joe Klopfenstein received the PVM Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2014
Dr. Joe Klopfenstein received the PVM Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2014

A major award for bovine practitioners was bestowed on Purdue Veterinary Medicine graduate Joe Klopfenstein (PU DVM ’83) during the 2022 American Association of Bovine Practitioners Annual Conference.  Dr. Klopfenstein received the Mentor of the Year Award in a presentation conducted jointly by the AABP and the award sponsor, Merck Animal Health.  The annual award recognizes an individual who goes above and beyond in educating, supporting and advancing the careers of future bovine veterinarians. 

Dr. Klopfenstein serves as clinical assistant professor at the Carlson College of Veterinary Medicine at Oregon State University specializing in food and fiber producing animals. After earning his Purdue DVM Degree in 1983, Dr. Klopfenstein entered private practice in Vermont specializing in dairy and beef production, management and health. He is certified by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (dairy practice) and was previously recognized as the Bovine Practitioner of the Year by the American Association of Bovine Practitioners in 2010.  He received the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine’s highest alumni honor, the Distinguished Alumnus Award, in 2014.

“When he was in private practice, he became a mentor to many students looking to pursue careers in veterinary medicine,” said Dr. Kayla Clark, a partner at Sterner Veterinary Livestock Professionals in Michigan, who nominated Dr. Klopfenstein for the award. “He was a role model to me and many others in the Cooperative for Real Education and Agricultural Management at the University of Vermont.  He leads by example and created a hands-on learning atmosphere, allowing us to gain valuable experience with the cattle we oversaw. He is a natural educator who gains the trust of his students with the right balance of encouragement, honest critiques and through conveying his confidence in their abilities to succeed.”

Dr. Justin Welsh, executive director of livestock technical services at Merck Animal Health, added, “Dr. Klopfenstein is an exemplary veterinarian who shares his thoughts, ideas and experiences with his colleagues and the students he has worked with throughout his career. As part of our unconditional social commitment, we are proud to support and celebrate those in our profession, like Dr. Klopfenstein, who mentor and serve as role models for the future leaders of our profession.”

Merck Animal Health, known as MSD Animal health outside of the United States and Canada, a division of Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, New Jersey, has had long-standing partnerships with educational institutions and associations, like AABP, to ensure the future needs of the industry are addressed. In 2021, the company provided more than $1.5 million in veterinary scholarships and more than $1.5 million in grants to universities, associations and foundations.

The AABP Annual Conference was held September 22-24 in Long Beach, California.  Congratulations Dr. Klopfenstein!  Click here to view a complete news release.

Writer(s): Kevin Doerr | pvmnews@purdue.edu

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