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Awards and Honors

Outstanding Mobile Vet Service Earns Cannedy Coat of Excellence

Members of the NC State College of Veterinary Medicine community are well aware of Allen Cannedy’s exemplary service as director of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs at the college. His work as a mentor, recruiter, advisor and friend in service of inclusivity and equity has been instrumental in the advancement of the college. 

Because of this high-profile role, there has been less focus on Cannedy’s long-standing mobile veterinary practice specializing in ruminant medicine. 

But someone who is quite familiar with Cannedy as a practicing vet is Susan Ward, former president and current vice president of the North Carolina Veterinary Medical Foundation. Cannedy has been Ward’s veterinarian for more than 20 years, tending to the llamas and other large animals kept on the Ward property. 

In May, Ward presented Cannedy with the CVM Coat of Excellence in appreciation for his professional services. Ward, also a past member of the University of North Carolina Board of Trustees, and her late husband Randy have been great friends of higher education in North Carolina and the college of veterinary medicine in particular.

“This is something Randy and I talked about for the last two years,” Ward says. “But with COVID and waiting for Randy’s health to improve, we waited. Randy was a big fan of Allen’s.”

The Coat of Excellence program is a special way clients can recognize a faculty clinician, intern, resident or staff member who has touched their lives and the lives of their animals. The $10,000 donation helps support veterinary hospital services and includes a white lab coat embroidered with the name of the honoree and, in this case, the name of the donor.

With Cannedy stepping down from his position with the college this fall, Susan Ward presented him with his Coat of Excellence at a small ceremony in the college’s Terry Center.

“Allen did lots of work for our llamas, cows and other animals,” Ward says. “He helped us with vaccinations, with shearing, with horses and more. He’s always been there when we needed him.”

Ward also noted how often Cannedy would bring current or aspiring vet students along with him to give them the opportunity to observe the real world life of a practicing veterinarian.

“Recently a copperhead bit one of the llamas in the middle of the night, and it had to be put down,” Ward says. “Allen helped with that and then even loaded the llama into his truck. He always goes above and beyond. He’s been a wonderful asset to the vet school and the community as a whole.”

At the ceremony honoring him, Cannedy said, “This has been a real surprise. Susan, I can’t thank you enough. It’s been a real thrill working on the things I love to do.”

Once he steps away from his director duties, Cannedy will continue to serve the college as a consultant. But not without a break first. “The immediate plan is to take a breath and recharge,” he says.

Others at the ceremony also had high praise for Cannedy. Steve Marks, associate dean and director of medical services for the NC State Veterinary Hospital, said, “Allen is a complete clinician, a gifted educator, a wonderful advocate for diversity and a true role model. We’ll miss you.”

CVM Dean Kate Meurs summed up the day, saying: “We’re so grateful for everything Allen does for the college. I so appreciate you taking our students out for real world experiences. Thank you. We will miss you.”