At the end of a 1,300-foot asphalt driveway on 27 acres of magnificently forested land sits a Lexus LS 460 with the license plate “Anatomy,” letting visitors know that the professor is home.
The professor’s wife, a charming southern woman, rushes out of the house as soon as she hears the distinct sound of a visitor’s vehicle pulling in.
Hidden from the hustle and bustle of the college he has served for 40 years, Kenneth Saladin spends most of his time on his charming porch overlooking his property. However, the supposedly retired professor emeritus is still greatly involved in the world of anatomy and physiology.
Saladin taught at GC after getting his doctorate degree from Florida State University in parasitology.
“I needed a job, and they had an opening,” Saladin explained.
Thus began a long and illustrious career that took him from zoology and parasitology to anatomy and physiology.
Saladin is known worldwide for his distinguished textbook,“Anatomy & Physiology: The Unity of Form and Function,” and consistently receives emails from around the world. His book has been formally translated from English into Spanish, Korean and Italian. At one point, it was the most used anatomy and physiology book in China.
Saladin’s first written accomplishment was for his 10th grade science fair project on Hydra Ecology, a whopping 318 pages typed on a typewriter given to him by his grandmother. It was the start of his ongoing writing career.
Saladin never imagined this is where he would be in his life, but he loves it. He is currently working on the 6th edition of his Anatomy textbook; the outline for the revisions alone are 66 pages with 11-point font, single-spaced.
Saladin recently celebrated his 20th anniversary with McGraw-Hill publishing, and he was presented with a tribute poster featuring the cover of all his textbooks and their editions.
His days consist of countless phone calls with his publishing team on his quaint porch where time passes without notice. If Saladin can’t be found there, he is hidden away in his secluded “man cave” where he writes for hours on end with all of his resources at his fingertips.
Saladin prides himself in his office and has multiple copies of his books in all languages. One of his collections includes the complete works of Libbie Hyman.
Hyman was one of Saladin’s first mentors. When Saladin was asking questions not even his science teacher could answer, he began to correspond with this widely recognized author of the American Museum of Natural History.
Saladin’s name is now one that is quickly recognized by nursing students not only at GC but also globally.
“He’s like an idol to us because we spend so much time with his book,” said Nani Braner, an aspiring nursing student at GC.
Although he is listed as a professor emeritus on the GC website, it is difficult to get in contact with him as a student since his university email is no longer activated. One must search long and hard to find a way to contact the professor who spent his whole teaching career in Milledgeville.
“I get emails all the way from Iraq and Iran,” Saladin said.
Although a professor emeritus, he has cut virtually all ties with the university, even though he lives only five miles away. Everything was taken away from him, such as his email address and his parking pass.
Saladin has continued to stay in touch with his former students and guides them anyway he can. His current dentist is actually a former student of his.
Saladin, 68, easily sees another 10 years of writing in his future, if not more. After that, he will start looking for a qualified author to take his place. Due to his popularity, the textbook will ultimately be called, “Saladin’s Anatomy and Physiology.”
Saladin is nowhere near retired with the amount of work he puts into his books. Alongside the ongoing work with his books, he also spends time taking care of his property. Saladin himself mows parts of the 27 acres of land on a riding mower.
The Saladins’ property is so quiet that deer visit often. At first, they had names. The males’ names incorporated the word “Buck,” and females’ names always included “Doe.” There are now too many to keep track of, but they are still a part of the family.
Saladin is a hidden gem who lives so close yet seems so distant to most students. However, he is not a stranger, and he is always willing to answer questions about his work.
The future expects many additional editions of his books.
“Before the new edition is even released, I already have new corrections,” Saladin said.
Saladin may have formally retired from the world of teaching, but his books will live on beyond his lifetime.