The University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) is pleased to announce that following an international search for a uniquely qualified candidate, Kurt D. Hankenson, DVM, MS, PhD, has been appointed as the first incumbent of the Dean W. Richardson Professorship in Equine Disease Research.

The Dean W. Richardson Professorship was established by Mr. and Mrs. M. Roy Jackson, following the hospitalization of their 2006 Kentucky Derby winner, Barbaro, at Penn Vet’s New Bolton Center. Their desire to contribute to the treatment and elimination of laminitis was the catalyst for their gift to endow the professorship.

The Jacksons commented, "We are very pleased that this position has been filled and are confident that under Dr. Hankenson’s leadership significant steps forward will be made in the study of laminitis and other equine musculoskeletal diseases. We have faith in Penn Veterinary Medicine’s ability to do the kind of in-depth work that will bring about positive results."

Hankenson did his undergraduate work at the University of Illinois, where he earned his BS in 1990, and then he earned his veterinary degree at University of Illinois’ College of Veterinary Medicine in 1992. Following his time as an equine clinician, he returned to academia and completed a Master of Science degree at Purdue University’s School of Veterinary Medicine in 1997. He received a PhD from the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine in 2001.

Hankenson’s career has included an impressive range of clinical and academic positions at both human and