El Blanco Award

El Blanco Award

The School of Veterinary Medicine’s El Blanco Award recognizes significant contributions that animal owners, and other benefactors have made to clinical veterinary medicine.

"These visionary partners have helped our programs across the board, advancing teaching, patient care and the discovery of new knowledge." - Dean Michael Lairmore

2019 El Blanco Award

2019 El Blanco AwardsAwarded in recognition of Anna Zankel’s strong support of older rescue dogs and improvement of facilities in the hospital. Zankel cares tremendously about companion animals. She has been the driver and major donor to the Fango fund, a fund designed to pay for medical care for dogs 5 years old or older care for by regional rescue organizations. The Fango Fund covers expenses up to $7,000 for dogs looking for homes that have severe problems that would likely prevent them from being adopted. - more

Anna Zankel (second from the right) accepting the El Blanco Award with her husband Ken (third from right) from Dean Michael Lairmore (far left), with additional guests.



2018 El Blanco Award

Photo: Dean with recipientsThe DMARLOU Foundation - in recognition for their strong support of the school and clinical veterinary care. The foundation's longstanding commitment to animal health is demonstrated by their contributions to a number of animal service organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area including the Marine Mammal Center. Initial contact was made through a grateful client who knew of the foundation's mission and work. Once they learned of the school's cancer program and initiatives, the foundation stepped forward to provide significant funding to purchase the equipment needed to bring stereotactic radiosurgery to the clinic. This investment was a major achievement for the school, allowing the oncology faculty to advance this unique treatment option for our patients and catapult the service forward as a leader in the field. -more

Barry Joseph and Felipe Santiago accept the El Blanco Award for the DMARLOU Foundation.



Picture: Dean with recipientsTom and Julie Atwood - in recognition of their generosity which has led to advances in clinical veterinary medicine and emergency response training, furthered scientific knowledge and genetic testing, and promoted private support for the school.
The Atwoods have been clients of the VMTH for 30 years, supporting the education of veterinary students and residents while entrusting the care of their animals to our team of experts. -more

Tom and Julie Atwood receive the El Blanco Award from Dean Michael Lairmore.





  • Past Recipients
  • 2017 - T.S. Glide Foundation - in recognition of the invaluable support provided for the education of veterinary students, and for the health and well-being of unwanted horses. For more than 25 years, faculty, residents and students have participated in the health care of the 90 horses, donkeys and other animals residing at their rescue facility just outside of Davis.

    2016 - Bob and Colleen Haas - in recognition of the program changing support they have provided that will have a lasting impact on the School's ability to advance veterinary medicine, as well as their committment to seeing the veterinary profession become more diverse with a recruitment scholarship to attract underserved students in the profession.

    2015 - Pam Green – in recognition of her on-going generous support of the school’s animal health programs, clinical trials and hospital patients.

    2015 - Nicoli and Barbara Nicholas Sr., Nicoli Nicholas Jr., and the Nicholas Livestock Co – in recognition of their contributions to clinical veterinary medical education of DVM students and residents for more than 50 years.

    2014- Susan Koret and the Koret Foundation - In recognition of their long standing support of the School, our shelter medicine programs, and the Center for Companion Animal Health.

    2013 - Ron and Sara Malone - In recognition of long-term support of the School, clinical research programs, and the Center for Equine Health.

    2012 - Denise Powell - In recognition of her contributions and dedication towards eliminating hyperuricosuria in Dalmatians. 

    2011 - Dick and Carol Randall - In recognition of their vision and support for the creation of the CEH Stem Cell Regenerative Medicine Group. 

    2010 - Cornell and Terri Kasbergen and Rancho Teresita -  In recognition of their Contributions in education and research that have advanced the health and well-being of dairy cattle.

    2009 - H.D. Plocher Family and Cache Acres Holstein - In recognition of their many contributions toward education and research that have advanced the health and well-being of dairy cattle.

    2008 - Marcia J. Munro - In recognition of her many contributions to the Feline Familial Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy Project.

    2008 - Piet & Jack Beukelman - In recognition of their many contributions in education and research, that have advanced the health and well-being of dairy cattle.

    2007 - Susan Evans - For her leadership, education and support resulting in the effective use of pacemaker therapy in animal patients.

    2005 - Susan Solomon - In recognition of life-long commitment to the care and well-being of reptiles and efforts with rescue, rehabilitation and relocation of these special animals.

    2003 - Kathleen Doyle & Richard Cunningham -  In recognition of their assistance by enrolling their Connemara Pony, Oisin, in clinical trials to test an innovative vaccine for the treatment of skin cancer.

    2001 - Sheila Cruickshank and Mr. & Mrs. Freid - In recognition their assistance with the first experimental pancreas transplantation procedure performed on dogs. Their unselfish act made significant contributions to science and enabled new opportunity to help animals and people with pancreatic dysfunction.

    2000 - Charles Anderson - In recognition of the development of a unique large animal sling used in airlift rescues, recovery from anesthesia, surgery, and restraint.

    1997 - Leo Grillo - In recognition of his significant contributions in fostering the development of a model animal hemodialysis center, and support in creating a clinical fellowship in renal medicine and hemodialysis.

    1997 - Doug Van Beek - In recognition of his significant contributions toward long term clinical research benefitting dairy cattle health.

    1996 - Martin & Barbara Packard -  In recognition of their dedication and significant contributions to veterinary medicine and animal health resulting in advances in understanding and defining genetically based diseases in purebred dogs.

    1995 - Cecil Johnson and Marco M. & Clair L. Porobich - In recognition of their significant contributions leading to the discovery of a DNA mutation that causes equine hyperkalemic heriodic haralysis.

    1994 - Cyndi Olson Glassauer - In recognition of the significant efforts and outstanding contributions made by her and her cat El Blanco to the advancement of animal health and will-being in the discovery of taurine deficiency as the cause of feline dilated cardiomyopathy.