The AVMA Fellowship Selection Committee in April announced the AVMA Congressional and Executive Branch Fellows for 2005-2006.
Dr. R. Douglas Meckes of Apex, N.C., and Dr. Kathleen M. Connell of Olympia, Wash., have been selected as congressional fellows, while Dr. Jean Lin of Raleigh, N.C., has been named the AVMA's first executive branch fellow.
The two congressional fellows will serve in the offices of members of Congress or on congressional committee staffs as experts in public health policy. The executive branch fellow will work for a federal department, such as the Department of Health and Human Services or Department of Homeland Security.
Fellows are selected on a competitive basis after the completion of an application process, writing assignment, and interview. The fellowship begins this August and continues until August 2006.
During that time, fellows will receive a stipend, thanks to the support of the AVMA, American Veterinary Medical Foundation, and other organizations and individuals. The AVMA Executive Board recently increased the stipend by $15,000, to $65,000.
Dr. Meckes is a 1975 graduate of Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine. He is a commissioner on the Apex town board on which he has served three terms, in addition to practicing veterinary medicine for the past 30 years.
Dr. Connell is a 1991 graduate of Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. From July 2003-July 2004, she served as the Washington state veterinarian, focusing on disease eradication, prevention, and detection.
Dr. Lin is a 2005 graduate of the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine. While there, she was awarded an externship with the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Lin is currently working toward a master's in public health from the University of North Carolina.