Richard Yamamoto
AAAP Hall of Honor

Richard was born in Wapato, Washington on May 27, 1927.   He served in the US Navy from 1946 to 1947.  He received his BS degree in Microbiology at the University of Washington, Seattle in 1952.  He then completed his MA (1955) and PhD (1957) degrees in Microbiology at the University of California, Davis (UCD) under Dr. Henry E. Adler. This was an exciting time where studies were being conducted on a very tiny bacteria called PPLO as the cause of chronic respiratory disease of chickens and sinusitis of turkeys. Later the organism was named Mycoplasma gallisepticum (Mg).
In 1960 Richard took a position as Assistant Professor of Veterinary Serology at the Oregon State University, Department of Veterinary Science.  He was involved with the national regulatory programs (NPIP and NTIP) for testing of breeder chickens and turkeys for salmonella and Mg. In 1962 he returned to the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine Department of Avian Pathology (over the years the name of the department was changed to Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine and finally to Population Health and Reproduction).  After returning to Davis, Richard spent the rest of his career at UCD.  Richard retired in 1991 as a Full Professor of Microbiology.
Richard served as Chair of the Faculty (1975-76) and Director of the Master of Preventive Veterinary Medicine program (1990-91). He taught classes in avian medicine, and enjoyed immensely working with graduate students.  His laboratory developed a successful program for the eradication of M. meleagridis from primary turkey breeders.  Rapid molecular methods for diagnosis of all pathogenic mycoplasmas were also developed.  He contributed chapters to textbooks such as Diseases of Poultry.  He served on editorial boards such as the Avian Disease Journal (1975-88). He was the recipient of the Tom Newman International Award (1967), National Turkey Federation Research Award (1970), Honorary Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Microbiologist (1990), Pacific Egg & Poultry Association Poultry Scientist of the Year Award (1992) and the WPDC Achievement Award for 1995. In 1996 Richard was honored as an American Association of Avian Pathologist Life Member.
Mary and Richard have been married for 66 years. They have a beautiful and supportive family of five daughters, two sons, several grandchildren and one great g-child. They bowl in the senior league just for fun. Mary also plays on her ipad to keep her young and mentally alert.  Richard works in the garden once in a while. Life is good!