Purdue Veterinary Medicine Alumni Provide Leadership to IVMA

Friday, February 25, 2022

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The Indiana Veterinary Medical Association’s (IVMA) newest elected officers are all graduates of the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine.  The installation of the new officers took place February 3 during the IVMA’s annual Crossroads Veterinary Conference in Noblesville, Indiana.

Dr. Aaron Johnson
IVMA's newest officers stand together with immediate past president, Dr. Hilary Christner
Newly installed IVMA Officers (left-right) Dr. Corey Swart, treasurer; Dr. Hilary Christner, immediate past-president; Dr. Greg Kurtz, president-elect; and Dr. Aaron Johnson, president.

Dr. Aaron Johnson (PU DVM 2005) will serve as the association’s president. Originally from Connecticut, Dr. Johnson moved to Indiana to attend Purdue University, where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in animal sciences and Master of Science degree in beef cattle reproductive physiology before enrolling in the College of Veterinary Medicine and earning his DVM degree in 2005. Following graduation, he worked in small animal practices in Fishers and Westfield, Indiana, and then transitioned to industry, accepting a position in U.S. Regulatory Affairs at Elanco Animal Health where he supported new drug development in R&D for both companion and food animal products. He currently serves as a clinical research scientist at Elanco in Greenfield, Indiana, where he is responsible for helping identify and advance new companion animal therapeutic molecules in Elanco’s early R&D pipeline.

Dr. Johnson also has a strong track record of involvement in organized veterinary medicine. He served on the Executive Board of the Central Indiana Veterinary Medical Association from 2009-2013, including two terms as president in 2010 and 2012. During that time, he was chosen as Indiana’s representative for the AVMA Emerging Leaders Program at the 2012 annual AVMA leadership meeting in Schaumburg, Illinois. Most recently, Dr. Johnson served three years on the IVMA Board of Directors, beginning in 2017, as the District 11 (Central Indiana) representative.

Dr. Greg Kurtz

The IVMA’s new president-elect is Dr. Greg Kurtz (PU DVM ’82), a livestock veterinarian and co-owner of Kurtz Veterinary Clinic in Hagerstown, Indiana. Dr. Kurtz and his wife, Robyn, were classmates at Purdue, graduating in the DVM Class of 1982. They started practicing in Hagerstown in 1983, after spending a year in private practice in Wisconsin. 

Today the Kurtz Veterinary Clinic is a four-doctor practice serving the livestock and pet owners of east central Indiana. Dr. Greg Kurtz has a primary interest in cattle reproduction and dairy herd health consulting. He services herds ranging in size from 40 to 6,500 milking cows and herds that vary from grazing organic herds to confined herds milked by robotics. The Kurtz Veterinary Clinic also services several beef cattle elite genetic herds.

Active in organized veterinary medicine, Dr. Kurtz has served as an at-large member of the IVMA Board of Directors since 2019. In addition, he currently serves on several task forces.

Dr. Corey Swart

Another Purdue Veterinary Medicine graduate, Dr. Corey Swart (PU DVM 2008), was elected as IVMA treasurer. A native of Kokomo, Dr. Swart earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in biology at Indiana University Kokomo before enrolling in the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine and earning his DVM degree in 2008. 

Dr. Swart is now the managing veterinarian at the Jefferson Road Animal Hospital/Cat Clinic of Kokomo, a practice where he had volunteered and worked while pursuing his education. Dr. Swart enjoys treating dogs, cats, and pocket pets while also forming bonds with their owners. 

Dr. Swart’s involvement in organized veterinary medicine has included serving on various committees and boards, which he says has been valuable in helping him to serve his community and profession, including as a member of the IU Kokomo Animal Care and Use Committee, an at-large board member of the IVMA, and treasurer for the Wabash Valley Veterinary Medical Association. Dr. Swart also participated in the IVMA Power of You program.

Dr. Hilary Christner

The IVMA’s immediate past-president, Dr. Hilary Christner, also has Purdue ties. She earned her bachelor’s degree in animal sciences from Purdue University in 2003 before enrolling in the DVM program at Ross University, where she graduated in 2006. She then returned to Northeast Indiana and joined her father, Dr. Rob Bollinger, a member of the Purdue DVM Class of 1975, at the Lagrange Veterinary Clinic. Dr. Christner now owns the practice, and supports Purdue by participating in programs affiliated with the University and by hosting externs at her clinic.

Dr. Christner’s involvement in organized veterinary medicine includes participating in the inaugural class of the Power of 10 through the IVMA, serving on several IVMA committees, and participating in task force groups organized by the association. She also has been active with the USDA and the Indiana Board of Animal Health in developing guidelines for dealing with canine brucellosis and co-authoring the “Best Practices for Brucella Canis Prevention and Control in Dog Breeding Facilities” publication.

Dr. Jim Weisman and Dr. Phil Borst

In addition to the officers, two other Purdue Veterinary Medicine alumni serve as AVMA delegate and alternate delegate. PVM’s own Dr. Jim Weisman (PU DVM ’97), assistant dean for student affairs and clinical associate professor, is Indiana’s delegate to the AVMA. Dr. Phil Borst (PU DVM ’75) is newly elected as the Indiana alternate delegate to the AVMA. Dr. Borst joined his father, Dr. Larry Borst, at the Shelby Street Animal Clinic in Indianapolis after earning his Purdue DVM degree in 1975, and practiced small animal medicine there for 46 years. He recently sold the clinic and now practices part-time. Dr. Borst has been very active in organized veterinary medicine throughout his career and has served in all of the IVMA’s officer positions.

At this year’s installation ceremony for the new IVMA officers, the president of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Dr. Jose Arce, was present to officiate. The IVMA is the professional organization for veterinarians in Indiana who care for Hoosier pets, farm animals, zoo animals, wildlife, and public health, and is the human side of animal health.

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

Category: Alumni, Our People

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