Former University veterinary professor, poultry pioneer dies

Hayley Odom

Dr. Benjamin S. Pomeroy, former professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine and pioneer in the advancement of the poultry industry, died Saturday from congestive heart failure.

He was 92.

Pomeroy started his career at the University in 1934 and retired in 1981. He remained active at the University, keeping in contact with the veterinary medicine college and lobbying at the Legislature on behalf of the University and the Minnesota Veterinary Association.

“He was totally committed and compassionate for the University, especially the College of Veterinary Medicine,” said his son, Benjamin A. Pomeroy.

Pomeroy contributed not only to the University but also to the poultry industry.

“Because of his contributions, Minnesota has been in the first or second ranks of the poultry industry for so many years,” said Jeffrey Klausner, the College of Veterinary Medicine dean.

Pomeroy’s research efforts helped conquer almost every poultry disease during the past 70 years, said Dr. Walter Mackey, a former University professor of veterinary medicine and current curator of the Minnesota Veterinary Historical Museum.

“No man should be given more credit for the progressive improvements in the poultry industry other than Dr. Pomeroy,” Mackey said. “When he first came, the industry was plagued with problems of disease and management, but through his work he corrected most of their problems.”

In 2001, Pomeroy received an honorary degree as a doctor of science from the All-University Honors Committee. The degree is the highest award the University offers to recognize individuals who have achieved acknowledged eminence in cultural affairs, public service or in a field of knowledge and scholarship. Pomeroy also received many other prestigious honors and awards of recognition.

He is survived by his four children, Benjamin A. Pomeroy, R. Sherwood, Catherine Pomeroy and Dawn Pomeroy-Hewitt.