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James H. Smith, Jr., D.V.M.

Dr. James H. Smith was born and raised in the rural town of Eden, New York, 20 miles south of Buffalo.  His teenage years were spent working on local dairy farms, where he developed a strong interest in working with animals, and especially in veterinary medicine.  He received his undergraduate Animal Science degree from Cornell University.  He continued his education, earning his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Cornell in 1990.  He was employed at the Colonial Veterinary Hospital as a kennel attendant, and upon graduation he accepted an associate position at the surgical referral practice. Remaining in Ithaca until 1992, Dr. Smith, his wife Cheryl, and his young family then moved to the Capital District where he worked at an area clinic as an associate veterinarian.


Dr. Smith envisioned a full service small animal facility, providing comprehensive medical and surgical care for his patients.  The Galway Veterinary Hospital was established in 1994 to fulfill this vision of providing patients with high quality medical care.


Dr. Smith and Cheryl reside in Galway where they have raised their three children, Sarah, Justin, and Hannah.  His love of animals follows him home, where his four pets include domestic short-haired cats Clubby and Frank, yellow lab Brewster, and bull mastiff Rocky.  On those rare occasions when he is away from Galway Veterinary Hospital, his hobbies include golf, following Major League Baseball, helping coach the Galway High School varsity softball team, and spending time with his family.


  • Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, 1990
  • Special interests in medicine include diagnostic imaging and surgery


Cheryl was raised in Ballston Spa, NY and graduated from Cornell University, majoring in agricultural economics.  Upon graduation from Cornell, she and Dr. Smith were married and her journey into the world of veterinary medicine began.  As their children matured, Cheryl's participation with Galway Veterinary Hospital has grown.  She now serves as the Hospital Administrator, overseeing the daily management of the business.


She earned the designation of Certified Veterinary Practice Manager (CVPM) in 2009 by completing academic and practical requirements and passing a rigorous examination.  She is also a graduate of the American Animal Hospital Association's (AAHA) Veterinary Management Institute (VMI).


Cheryl's activities away from GVH center around the education of children.  She was a Galway Board of Education member for over ten years and continues to serve as a WSWHE BOCES Board member.  She and Dr. Smith are the proud parents of Sarah, a Johns Hopkins graduate attending UC Irvine Medical School to pursue her M.D./Ph.D., Justin, a Boston College graduate currently at Georgetown in a Masters Program and Hannah, a student in the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University.

Hospital Administrator

  • B.S., Agricultural Economics, Cornell University, 1985
  • Certified Veterinary Practice Manager, 2009
  • Veterinary Management Institute graduate, 2011


Missy grew up in Broadalbin, New York and graduated from Broadalbin Central School. Upon graduation she attended Spencer's Business Institute, graduating with a Medical Business Secretarial Degree. She worked for several years at Charlton School for Girls where she originated the equestrian program for the residents.  Her next move was to Ballston Spa National Bank where she held various positions including Teller, Branch Manager and Auditor.  After 22 years in the banking industry, she resigned her position of Assistant Vice President in the Trust Department and joined the Galway Veterinary Hospital as Practice Manager in 2004. She is a 2006 graduate of the American Animal Hospital Association's (AAHA) Veterinary Management Institute (VMI).


Missy and her husband Herman have lived in Galway for 25 years.  She enjoys reading, antiquing and cooking.  Her son, Aaron, is a graduate of Oneonta State College with a degree in Secondary Education and English and of Union College with a Master's Degree in History.


She also shares her life with her beloved pets: Meadow, a Pembroke Welsh corgi; Quinn, a border collie; and Gus, a Maine Coon cat.  She also shares her prized work cat, Noah, with Dr. Smith. In her time off, Missy trains and competes in agility. Meadow is a two time National Champion in CPE.  Missy and Meadow were featured on the Animal Planet program, Dogs 101, featuring the Pembroke Welsh Corgi.


Missy's passion and interest in the field of veterinary medicine is pet well-being and preventative medicine.  Her goal is to help our clients ensure that their pets live the healthiest and longest lives possible.

Practice Manager

  • Veterinary Management Institute graduate, 2006
  • Special interest in canine agility competition


Michelle grew up in Galway, New York where she was coached by Dr. Smith on various softball teams.  Upon high school graduation, she attended SUNY Delhi, where she majored in Veterinary Science Technology, graduating in 2011 with her Associates Degree in Applied Science.  She is a New York State Licensed Veterinary Technician.


Since the fall of 2011, she has attended Albany College of Pharmacy working towards a Doctor of Pharmacy degree.


When not working at Galway Veterinary Hospital, Michelle can be found relaxing at her family's camp on Sacandaga Lake with her German Shepherd puppy, Oakley.

Licensed Veterinary Technician

  • State University of New York - Delhi, 2011
  • Albany College of Pharmacy


Terry is a long-time Galway resident who graduated from SUNY Cobleskill in 1979 with a degree in Business.  Terry joined our staff in 2005 as the hospital's Facilities Manager and she is employed full-time at Northway 11 Communities.


The team truly appreciates Terry's many contributions, and everyone enjoys her humor and refreshing presence at the end of each day. Terry and her husband have two children, Sarah and John who also reside in Galway.  Terry's interests include reading, gardening, cooking and antiquing.

Facilities Manager

  • State University of New York - Cobleskill, 1979


As a veterinary assistant, Erin brings many years of experience.  She is quite versatile, excelling in all areas of the Hospital from greeting arriving clients and pets to offering amazing patient care.


Erin spent time as an Animal Kingdom Kilimanjaro Safari Guide at Walt Disney World.  The Disney experience is evident in her extreme commitment to client service and communication.


We are very happy she joined our team!  Erin shares her home with her devoted, yet spirited, cat Tilly.

Veterinary Assistant

  • State University of New York - Cobleskill, 1998


Our patients and their parents are fortunate to have Aimee Gildea, LVT on our team.  Aimee has an associates degree and has been pursuing her bachelors degree in Veterinary Technology while working full time.  Her quiet, calm personality is very much appreciated on busy days.  We are amazed at her ambidextrous ability to perform venipuncture and other technical tasks with both hands!

Her favorite after work activity is spending time in the stables with her horse, Monster. 

Licensed Veterinary Technician

State University of NY - Canton AAS - Veterinary Science Technology 2015

State University of NY - Canton BS - Veterinary Technology 2016