Dr. Matthew Edson, Founding Dean

Matthew Edson, Founding Dean

A licensed veterinarian in practice for a decade, Dr. Matthew C. Edson was named founding Dean of the Rowan University School of Veterinary Medicine in June of 2021.

Founder and owner of Rancocas Veterinary Associates, a multi-doctor, multi-location mixed animal practice based in South Jersey, Edson leads a group of veterinary professionals that treat a wide range of species. He has special professional interests in miniature pig and small ruminant medicine and surgery and has lectured nationally on those subjects. He is an advocate for the advancement of affordable, clinically-relevant veterinary education.

A native of Eastampton Township, Edson is a former executive board member and the immediate past president of the New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association, a site visitor for the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Council on Education, former chair of the AVMA Committee on Disaster and Emergency Issues, and former vice chair of the AVMA Practice Advisory Pilot Panel. He also has served as a manuscript reviewer for the Journal of Exotic Pet Medicine.

Licensed in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware, Edson earned his veterinary medical degree from Kansas State University. He earned his bachelor’s degree in animal science and biology from Rutgers University and also completed training as a Mobile Intensive Care Paramedic through Virtua Health.

Named a top veterinarian by South Jersey Magazine in 2017, Edson was voted “Best Veterinarian” in Burlington County by Burlington County Times readers in 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021. Dr. Edson was named to the 2022 NJBIZ Health Care Power 50 list, which ranks the top influencers in health care in New Jersey.

Dr. Lorraine Ricchezza, Associate Dean for Administration

Dr. Lorraine Ricchezza profile photo

Dr. Lorraine C. Ricchezza is the Associate Dean for Administration for the Rowan University School of Veterinary Medicine.

She has over 20 years of combined experience as an educator, early childhood master teacher leader, and higher education administrator. Ricchezza has extensive experience advancing University strategic curricular initiatives originating from the University colleges, community college partners, business, industry, and community organizations, as well as other emergent and entrepreneurial curricular ventures.

As Assistant Dean of the veterinary school, Ricchezza is responsible for accelerating the School’s strategic initiatives, overseeing administrative and operational activities, and serving as liaison to the School’s advisory council.

Ricchezza holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from La Salle University, a master’s degree in teacher education with academic honors from the Widener University School of Human Service Professions, and a doctoral degree in educational leadership from Rowan University.

Dr. Omar Tliba, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies

Dr. Omar Tliba is the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies for the Rowan University School of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Tliba holds a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the El-Tarf College of Veterinary Medicine at University of Badji-Mokhtar Annaba, Algeria, a Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Rennes, France, another master's in the area of molecular and cellular interaction between the host and parasite from the University of Paris XII, France, a University Diploma in immuno-physiology of infection from “Pasteur Institute” in Paris, France, and a doctoral degree from the National Institute of Agriculture Research, Tours, France in the area of animal life science and immunology, specifically characterizing the early immune responses and the mechanisms of immuno-evasion by an important parasite in cattle, Fasciola hepatica.

Dr. Tliba’s academic interests include independent and collaborative research in lung and inflammatory diseases, teaching and mentoring students. He has over 26 years of research experience in the area of allergic diseases. In the last 20 years, he has been conducting airway inflammation-related research and specifically investigated certain pharmacological aspects of pulmonary diseases. He has been awarded several prestigious multiple years grants from foundations such as the Parker B. Francis Fellowship and American Lung Association, as well as the National Institute of Health (NIH) including K99/R00 (5 years), R21 (2 years), and R01 (11 years) and has served as a reviewer for multiple NIH, foundations (both national and international) grant review panels.​