Guillermo Zavala Hidalgo
Hall of Honor

Born in Mexico City, Guillermo obtained his DVM and Animal Science degree in 1984, and a Specialty in Poultry Production and Pathology at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) in 1985. Guillermo obtained his Master of Avian Medicine (1992), Master of Science in Medical Microbiology (1999), and PhD in Medical Microbiology (2000) degrees at UGA, where he also did postdoctoral work in Molecular Retrovirology (2003-2004). Guillermo is an ACPV Diplomate, a member of AAAP, WVPA, and PSA and has served on the Tumor Virus Committee of AAAP and on the Board of ACPV.

Guillermo started his veterinary career as a small animal orthopedic surgeon. His early poultry related jobs included broiler production in Mexico, technical services at Salsbury Laboratories, and Director of Poultry Health at Avian Farms International, Inc. He spent time working on avian leukosis at the University of Melbourne in Australia and in molecular diagnostics and histopathology at the Georgia Poultry Laboratory Network. In 2003, he joined the University of Georgia as faculty, where he spent 11 years doing research, clinical extension, and classroom and field instruction. Guillermo is now an independent consultant at Avian Health International, LLC and has worked in over 60 countries.

Guillermo’s research has concentrated primarily on oncogenic retroviruses, immunosuppressive viruses, runting and stunting syndrome, and infectious laryngotracheitis. His research is documented in approximately 40 publications in scientific journals and two book chapters. He is an ad hoc reviewer for Avian Diseases, and a coauthor in the chapter on reticuloendotheliosis in Diseases of Poultry.

Guillermo has instructed numerous students and veterinarians in the MAM, MSc, and PhD programs at UGA, where he continues teaching as an adjunct professor. He has taught also at other academic institutions in the US, Mexico, Peru, and China. He created an original Poultry Health and Production Course already taken by approximately 140 poultry veterinarians from 11 Asian countries between 2019 and 2023. He has also taught at multiple seminars and workshops in Latin America.

Guillermo has been married to Louise Dufour-Zavala for 30 years, and has three children, Guillermo, Paloma, and Marcelle, and 3 grandchildren, Brenda, Jessica and Arsenia. He competed for Mexico as a swimmer in the 1976 (Montreal), and the 1980 (Moscow) Olympic Games. He loves running, biking, swimming, wild bird photography, history, and literature. He is working toward living part time in the USA and part time in the city of Merida, Mexico.