All of us at Americans for Medical Progress, employees and board members alike, are mourning the loss of former AMP Board of Directors Chair Dr. John Young, VMD, MS, DACLAM. For several years, John played a pivotal and transformative role in AMP’s efforts. He died on Sunday, March 19th at the age of 65.
John served as AMP’s Board chair for over a decade, from 2001 to 2012 after he initially accepted a role on the board in 1999. In addition to guiding the organization for many years, including the turbulent 2007 – 2008 global financial crisis, he assisted in the development of several exciting new initiatives created to support and protect biomedical research. He also played a prominent role in AMP’s advocacy programs on several occasions. Many of you have likely viewed his guided video tour of the Cedars Sinai Medical Center animal care facility that John managed for many years. The video was viewed as a transformative step forward for lab animal education. It was initially distributed by AMP on DVD. Nowadays, you can also find it on AMP’s YouTube channel and at other online locations as well. AMP’s YouTube upload has achieved over 100,000 views and continues to garner more each year. John also regularly spoke with school students about the necessary role of animals in ensuring continued medical advancements.
As for John’s academic and professional career, after graduating from Penn State in 1979, he attended veterinary school at the University of Pennsylvania. He then moved to Los Angeles where he worked at the Sepulveda VA Medical Center as Director of the Animal Research facility. He arrived at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in 1989 where he served in a variety of roles and eventually retired in 2021 as Executive Director of Comparative Medicine and Assistant Dean of Education.
He served for many years in a number of leadership roles for the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS). He was also the recipient of several honors and awards including the President’s Award at Cedars Sinai and the Special Contributions Award at VAMC Long Beach. He authored peer reviewed publications, presented at international conferences and even helped found the POOCH (Pet Therapy) program at Cedars Sinai.
As we remember John, we again thank him for all of his outstanding contributions to laboratory animal medicine and public education. A memorial page with additional information about John containing photos and a chance to post memories can be found at this link. We invite you to join us in honoring him and his lasting legacy.
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