Sad Passing of Dr. Bernie Rollin


AVMA has advised Members of the sad passing of Dr. Bernie E. Rollin on November 19th at the age of 78.  A graduate of Columbia University with a doctorate in philosophy, he was appointed to the faculty of Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine to teach ethics and welfare. On his retirement he was a Professor of Physiology and Biophysics and Director of Bioethical Planning at CSU.


Dr. Rollin was intensely practical and was a popular instructor and mentor at Colorado State where he taught for 50 years.  He was the author of Animal Rights and Human Morality published in 1981 followed by a succession of incisive and relevant text including Farm Animal Welfare (1995) and others and editing the two-volume standard work The Experimental Animal and Biomedical Research published in 1989.  Dr. Rollin regarded animals as more than resources but accepted that livestock, if handled and treated appropriately, was consistent with ethical principles.


Colorado took to Bernie who apart from being an astute philosopher rode a Harley and was an avid weightlifter. In commenting on his productive career, Dr. Mark Zabel, Associate Dean for Research at the CSU College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences noted, "he was smart and salty and not always easy to work with but he genuinely cared about animals and students.  He is missed already".


We have lost a mentor and guide and many of us have lost a respected friend.