J.T. Mercer, DVM Lifetime Achievement Award

There is no higher recognition the Georgia Veterinary Medical Association can give than the J.T. Mercer, DVM Lifetime Achievement Award. The GVMA Awards Committee selects one association member (not necessarily annually) who personifies exemplary leadership and service in the veterinary profession to receive this prestigious honor. Recipients of this award are those who:

  • have spent a lifetime of devotion and service to the care of animals

  • truly understand the importance of the human-animal bond

  • have made unyielding contributions to the veterinary profession with their focus on continuing education

  • are an inspiration to other veterinarians

Dr. J. T. Mercer received the first Lifetime Achievement Award named in his honor. He received this award for his many contributions to veterinary medicine over his entire life. In 1950, he joined the faculty of the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine (UGA-CVM) for one year before entering a private practice. After 12 years of private practice, he returned to the CVM at UGA to direct the first full-time academic continuing education program in the country. During 25 years as a member of the UGA faculty, in addition to director of CE, Dr. Mercer served 12 years as department head for Large Animal Medicine. He retired from the college in 1987 to become the full-time executive director of the GVMA, a position he had held part-time for several years. Under his leadership there was a marked increase in membership and budget, and the association was able to acquire its own professional offices. Dr. Mercer’s AVMA service included being a member of the Committee on Continuing Education, and others. He was recognized and honored many times including “Alumnus of the Year” from UGA-CVM, “Distinguished Service” to the college, and the GVMA “Veterinarian of the Year." He was often referred to as “the father of organized medicine in Georgia." Dr. Mercer was a friend to all and a mentor to many. Dr. Mercer died on May 4, 2000.

Previous Winners 

2015     Dr. Eugene T. Maddox
2014     Dr. Larry Corry
2013     Dr. Needham Bateman III
2012     Dr. James (Jim) Strickland
2011     Dr. John Glisson
2010     Dr. Charles (Gary) Bullard
2009     Dr. Henry Bohn
2008     Dr. Horace Blalock
2007     Dr. Edward Mahaffey
2006     Dr. Susan L. White
2005     Dr. Charles Dobbins, Jr.
2004     Dr. Charles Rigdon
2003     Dr. David P. Anderson
2002     Dr. W. J. (Dub) Greenway
2001     Dr. Dilmus M. Blackmon
2000     Dr. J. T. Mercer