May 2018

Story of a Compassionate Cancer Veterinarian

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Steve and Jenny Gilbertson enjoyed walking their dog Bill on the lanes at beautiful Suffield by the River. They recently moved into a Villa here where Bill enjoys tethered exercise and plenty of fresh air with Kameron, the Gilbertsons’ black cat.

A six–year–old springer spaniel, Bill, symbolizes much of Steve Gilbertson’s life. The pet represents the career Steve has had as veterinarian and pathologist researching cancer in canines.

A Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Pathology (ACVP) and member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AVMA), in 1983, Steve compiled and edited studies by four pathologists proposing canines as a scientific model for human mammary cancer. Based on similarities between the two species the studies showed “…that a consensus had evolved about many characteristics.”

Steve Gilbertson has contributed greatly to the research and directed it. A native of Minnesota, he graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1970 with a Bachelor’s degree and a Doctor’s degree in Veterinary Medicine.

With the U.S. Army at Ft. Dietrich, Maryland, between 1970 and 1973, Steve served an internship in pathology. Until 1976, he filled a residency at the Animal Medical Center in Manhattan. The following year Steve headed the animal pathology lab at Sloan Kettering Institute researching animal and human cancer.

In 1989, Steve returned to the Animal Medical Center in Manhattan for ten years as staff and clinical pathologist. Meanwhile he had co-founded Cen Vet Laboratories in Manhattan and Queens serving as vice president until 1994.

Steve and his partner sold Cen Vet Laboratories to VCA/Antech Laboratories on Long Island. Steve served there as senior staff pathologist from 1994 to 2007.

Following a stroke in 2007, Steve retired. He and his wife Jenny moved to Suffield by the River for a year of recovery, then moved to the Adirondacks. They returned to Suffield by the River in July 2017. Steve, Jenny and Bill are very much at home here; so is Kameron, their black cat.

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