Jack Easley, DVM, MS, ABVP, AVDC (Eq)
Diplomate, American Veterinary Dental College
A career devoted to the care of horses was a childhood dream for Kenneth Jackson Easley, Jr., who spent every possible free hour, vacation time and summer break on his grandparents’ Standardbred and uncle’s Thoroughbred farms. Care started with basic animal husbandry and advanced to following the “horse doc” from stall to stall learning about the care of sick horses or the equine breeding industry. As a teenager, the Thoroughbred horse sales of Lexington and Saratoga were working vacations that not only taught Jack a good work ethic but helped firm his conviction that an equine veterinary career would be one he would seek. Two years at The Citadel Military College of South Carolina provided the basics, and the University of Kentucky the prerequisites required, before admission to Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine in Tuskegee, Alabama in 1972.
Jack Easley received a DVM degree from Tuskegee University (1976). After completing a Large Animal Internship at Oklahoma State University, he served as an Associate Professor of Surgery at Kansas State University from 1978 to 1980 where he completed an Equine Surgical Residency and received a Masters Degree in Surgery. It was at KSU, under the direction of Dr. Gene Schneider, that the interest of equine dentistry became apparent. Viewing the mouths of horses brought for various other problems, shed new light on the equine oral cavity. Previously ignored or regarded as insignificant, it soon became apparent that study of dental structures and oral tissues were entities to examine, assess and treat. It was in Kansas, Jack’s passion for dentistry took root.
As an Associate Professor of Surgery (1980-1982), Jack served as the first equine surgeon for the newly established Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine. Additionally, he served on the planning board for the building of the Marion-duPont Scott Equine Medical Center. In 1982, Dr. Easley was certified as a Diplomate for the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (Equine) and was re-certified in 1992, 2002 and 2011.
In 1982, Jack and his wife Sydney, returned to their childhood home with their three children, Danny, Gentry and Jeremiah. A private equine veterinary practice was the next career step after many years in academics and as a hospital clinician. Easley Equine Dentistry became a specialty practice within the all-inclusive Equine Veterinary Practice, LLC, of Shelbyville, Kentucky.
Easley is an active member of the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP), having served on various committees, as a lecturer and board member. He is a member of the American Veterinary Dental Society, International College of Equine Veterinary Odontologists, American Veterinary Medical Association, Kentucky Veterinary Medical Association (current board member), Kentucky Association of Equine Practitioners (immediate past president), KY Veterinary Medical Association (equine liaison), Equine Dental Vets (an Australian organization with world-wide educational opportunities), Shelby Co. Chamber of Commerce (board), and Shelby Co. Community Foundation.
For over 30 years, Dr. Easley has lectured on and promoted equine veterinary dentistry throughout the world. Dental programs on six continents prove him widely known and respected for his knowledge and expertise. He has written numerous articles for publication in professional as well as lay equine journals, textbooks, and periodicals. He serves on the editorial review boards for Equine Veterinary Eduction, Equine Veterinary Journal, and the Veterinary Dental Journal. Dr. Easley is the co-editor and major contributor to Equine Dentistry, published in 1999 by Harcourt-Brace Publishing (Saunders); printed in Spanish and German in 2002. The 2nd edition (Elsevier Publishing) of this textbook was published in October 2004 and the 3rd edition co-authored with Drs. Paddy Dixon and Jim Schumacher, was released September 2010. The Veterinary Clinics of North America released an “Advanced Equine Dentistry” edition in the Fall of 2013 with Dr. Easley serving as Guest Editor and contributor. 20+ colleagues and researchers joined the most recent effort to provide the latest equine dentistry research, findings and techniques.
Dr. Easley has served for the past three years on the Specialty Organizing Committee for the newly formed and only veterinary dentistry board designed for equine veterinarians. A goal of over 20 years for such a board to be organized and formed, September 2013 found Dr. Easley and 18 colleagues from around the world writing and passing the first board given to 24 veterinarians. He received diplomate status in the spring of 2014 when the board was formally recognized by the American College of Veterinary Dentistry and the AVMA.
While equine dentistry is Dr. Easley’s work passion, he spends evenings and weekends relaxing with Sydney, his wife of 43 years, or pitching in to help with the endless activities of five grandchildren. Jack feels incredibly blessed to be able to spend every day doing what he loves, sharing knowledge with others and successfully pursuing a childhood dream.