Friday, October 15, 2010

Friends (Not) At Work: Where's Mike Wildenstein?

Michael Wildenstein CJF, FWCF (Hons), Adjunct Associate Professor of Farrier Medicine and Surgery in The Department of Clinical Sciences of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, has announced his plans to retire from his position and from the profession of farriery. For the past few weeks, Mike has been on an extended vacation that led straight into his retirement and he is enjoying some private time during the transition, he said today.

"Tell them that I am living the good life and enjoying my retirement!" was Mike's message.

Mike was offered an early retirement by Cornell and New York State, an offer that came one year earlier than Mike had planned to retire. He decided to take the offer and begin the next chapter of his life.

This announcement is a bit of a shock to the farrier and veterinary communities. Michael Wildenstein is one of the highest qualified farriers in the world and one of the most respected. He was the first farrier to gain a faculty position at a US veterinary college. He has been in great demand as a consulting educator and farrier. As an instructor, he shaped the professional lives of hundreds of farrier students in the Cornell farrier school program over the past 19 years.

Mike has left no stone unturned in his pursuit of absolute excellence in his own professional development but more importantly, made friends wherever he went without any regard to his position or skill.

Of course everyone in the horse world wishes Mike the very best and congratulates him on a job superbly and exquisitely well done. He's beaten a path that hopefully will be followed by others, if they have the strength of character to attempt to excel the way that Mike did.

Mike has simply retired from this phase of his professional life, and we can only wonder what he'll do next. He needs some privacy now to make that transition and thanks everyone for understanding that need, and for their good wishes.

Thanks, Mike.