ACVO Diplomate Spotlight



Dr. Kirk N. Gelatt, VMD, DACVO

Dr. Kirk Gelatt and his wife, Jan
in Puerto Rico for the 2013 ACVO meeting

The ACVO Diplomate Spotlighthonors Active or Emeritus Diplomates in the profession who are leaders in their field, are in good standing with the ACVO and have an interesting story to share. Please submit your nomination for this feature to the ACVO office for consideration.

Dr. Gelatt graduated from Pennsylvania State University (Penn State; 1962), and the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania (VMD; 1965). He received his ophthalmology training at the veterinary and medical schools at Penn supported by a US Public Health post-doctoral fellowship. Dr. Gelatt has served as a faculty member at three additional veterinary schools: Kansas State University (1967-70); University of Minnesota (1970-76); and the University of Florida (1976 to present). In 1999 Dr. Gelatt was promoted to Distinguished Professor, the first one in the veterinary college. He retired in April 2006 as Emeritus Distinguished Professor.

Dr. Gelatt’s more than four decades of academia has included didactic and clinical teaching to more than 3,000 veterinary students, and the training of nearly 50 residents and postdoctoral fellows in comparative ophthalmology. He has presented more than 250 professional talks nationally and internationally. He has published more than 220 refereed articles, 80 abstracts, 92 non-refereed articles, 58 book chapters, and 18 books. He served as the editor for the reference, Veterinary Ophthalmology, the ‘gold standard for this discipline, for its five editions (1981; 1991; 1999; 2006; and 2013 (along with Brian Gilger and Thomas Kern). He has also published with his wife, Janice P. Gelatt, Veterinary Ophthalmic Surgery.

GelattDr. Kirk Gelatt and his original mentor (James Watson, DVM, Cornell 1945) and dog, Katie, in 2012. Dr Watson; a country veterinarian in northeastern Pennsylvania, first introduced Dr. Gelatt to a typical mixed animal (mainly dairy) practice.

Dr. Gelatt’s research interests have concentrated on the canine glaucomas, inherited cataracts in the dog, clinical pharmacology of drugs that change intraocular pressure, and ophthalmic surgery. His research grants exceeded $3 million dollars with most concentrated in comparative glaucoma.

Dr. Gelatt is one of 9 veterinarians who petitioned the American Veterinary Medical Association to initiate the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists in 1969 and became a Charter Diplomate in 1970. He was its first secretary-treasurer for 1970 to 1976, and was its President in 1977-78. He served as the first editor-in-chief of the journal, Veterinary Ophthalmology, starting in 1998 for 10 years.

Dr. Gelatt has received the University of Minnesota Phi Zeta research award (1976), Ralston Purina research award (1979), alumni award of merit, University of Pennsylvania (1990), Gaines-Cycle- ‘Fido’ research award (1991), North American Veterinary Conference Founders’ award (1993), Daniel’s senior clinical investigator award (1994), Bourgelatt International award from the British Small Animal Veterinary Association (1995), American Kennel Club Career Achievement Award (1998), Mark L. Morris Senior Life-time Achievement Award (2000), Florida Dog Clubs’ Clinical Investigator Award (2000), and the Pennsylvania State University, College of Agriculture Alumni award (2002). He is also Honorary Diplomate of the Japanese College of Veterinary and Fundamental Ophthalmologists (1990), the Colegio Latinamerico De Oftalmologistas Veterinarios (2001), and the French Veterinary Academy (2008).