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Oklahoma State University
Center for Veterinary Health Sciences

Healthy Animals - Healthy People

Longtime Veterinary Educator Retires

Thursday, June 18 2015

Longtime Veterinary Educator Retires

After spending 46 years educating veterinarians, Michael D. Lorenz, DVM, DACVIM-Small Animal, of Stillwater is retiring effective July 1, 2015. Lorenz most recently served as OSU Regents Service Professor of small animal internal medicine in the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences at OSU’s Veterinary Medical Hospital.

He began his career in veterinary medicine at Oklahoma State University earning both his undergraduate degree and in 1969 his DVM degree from OSU. He was the class recipient of the Dean Clarence H. McElroy Award, the highest honor bestowed upon an Oklahoma State veterinary student each year. In 1969, he was also chosen to receive the outstanding male graduate award for the entire university.

Lorenz completed his internship and residency at Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine and served on their faculty before going to the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Georgia where he taught from 1972 to 1988. In 1988 he transferred to Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine where he served as dean from 1988 to 1994.

It was in 1997 that Lorenz returned to Oklahoma State—land of his beloved OSU Cowboys. He served as the associate dean of academic affairs from 1997 to 2001 when he became the interim dean. In 2004, he was officially named dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine—the first alumnus to fill that position.

After serving as the interim dean and dean for 10 years, in 2011 Lorenz stepped down to focus on clinical work and teaching as he began the transition to retirement.  Throughout his career, he received many accolades (Kansas Veterinarian of the Year, Norden Distinguished Teaching Award at UGA and OSU) and as he returned to teaching full time, the awards kept coming. 

In 2011, Lorenz was inducted as an Honorary Diplomate into the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine-Specialty in Neurology. This group recognized the many contributions to the field of veterinary neurology Lorenz has made including as author of The Handbook of Veterinary Neurology. He has also authored Small Animal Medical Diagnosis.

Also in 2011, Lorenz was named Oklahoma Veterinarian of the Year by the Oklahoma Veterinary Medical Association and OSU named him Regents Service Professor.

Lorenz earned the 2013 Regents Distinguished Teaching Award and in the same year, he was inducted into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame.

“Dr. Lorenz embodies the Cowboy spirit and is immensely loyal to his alma mater,” said Dr. Jean Sander, dean of the veterinary center. “His love of teaching and the veterinary profession have had a positive impact on the Center for Veterinary Health Sciences.”

Throughout his career, Dr. Lorenz has touched countless people whether it be students at four different colleges training to be tomorrow’s veterinarians or colleagues attending one of his continuing education seminars at a local, national or international conference.

Lorenz has traveled worldwide sharing his knowledge of veterinary medicine for the betterment of animals and humans alike. His travels have taken him to Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Italy, the Caribbean Islands and Mexico. And let’s not forget the many clients whose beloved companion animals he treated while working at all four veterinary colleges. 

If you wish to be counted among those who congratulate Dr. Michael D. Lorenz on a career well done with more accolades than space permits to list, please feel free to email him at michael.lorenz@okstate.edu

He is known for saying that you live longer if you wear orange and he usually ends a conversation with pistols firing saying ‘Go Pokes!’ Dr. Lorenz will be missed but not forgotten for his service and commitment to the profession of veterinary medicine.


Contact: Derinda Blakeney, APR | OSU Center for Veterinary Health Sciences | 405-744-6740 | derinda@okstate.edu