Biographical Sketch


Dr. Ronald D. Smith

Professor Emeritus
College of Veterinary Medicine
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Phone: 269-366-9288


Dr. Ronald D. Smith is a Professor Emeritus in the Department of Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois. He received the DVM degree from Michigan State University in 1967, and the MS and PhD degrees (1972, 1974) in Veterinary Medical Science from the University of Illinois. His thesis research focused on thrombokinetics in canine ehrlichiosis.

From 1967 to 1970 he served as a U.S. Peace Corps veterinarian in tropical Ecuador, working primarily with cattle, swine and horses. From 1970 to 1974 he studied the pathogenesis of thrombocytopenia in canine ehrlichiosis (Ehrlichia canis infection) and described the development of the agent in the tick vector, Rhipicephalus sanguineus. Dr. Smith joined the faculty of the UI College of Veterinary Medicine in 1974. From 1975 to 1980 he was Project Leader for a collaborative research and training program in Mexico directed toward the development of a culture-derived vaccine for bovine babesiosis.

Dr. Smith's research interests have focused on the epidemiology and control of vector-borne blood diseases of animals, including canine ehrlichiosis and heartworm disease, bovine anaplasmosis and babesiosis, and their arthropod vectors. Aspects of this research include the development of these agents in ticks, mechanisms of tick-borne transmission, production of antigens from blood for diagnosis and immunization, and quantitative analysis of transmission cycles through computer stimulation models. Teaching has focused on clinical epidemiology, food safety and public health, and medical informatics. International activities have focused on the epidemiology, diagnosis and control of parasitic diseases of food-producing animals.

Dr. Smith has served as Head of the Division of Epidemiology (1985-1993), Director of Computing Services (1991-1994), Director of Medical Informatics (1994-1998), and Director of Instructional Computing (1998 - 2001). He served as Head of the College's Department of Pathobiology from 2002 until December 31, 2004, and retired on January 1, 2005.  Dr. Smith is the principal or co-author of over 80 scientific publications including the textbook Veterinary Clinical Epidemiology - 3rd Edition, published by CRC Press.

For many years Dr. Smith was the sole instructor for Veterinary Epidemiology and in the past has taught or co-taught:

Following retirement from the University of Illinois in 2005 Dr. Smith and his wife Lupe moved to Dr. Smith's hometown of Vicksburg, Michigan where both are active in community affairs. Lupe is very active in community gardening programs and continues to create one-of-a-kind art in her ceramics/painting studio <Hot Flash Pottery>.  Dr. Smith currently serves on the Vicksburg District Library Board, Sunset Lake Association Board, Vicksburg Historic Village <> and Parks & Recreation Committees, and is a member of the Vicksburg Lions Club.  He manages the Sunset Lake Water Trail Facebook page. Dr. Smith was featured in a Travel Channel "Mysteries at the Museum" episode on ice harvesting and ice-cooled railroad cars (abbreviated version at:


Revised 1/12/19