Emily Patterson-Kane, PhD, has accepted the position of animal welfare scientist in the AVMA Animal Welfare Division.
The AVMA Animal Welfare Division was established for the purpose of monitoring the science of animal welfare and assisting the Association in proactively addressing developing issues of animal well-being. Dr. Patterson-Kane is the first person to serve as an animal welfare scientist in the division. In the division, she joins Dr. Lyle P. Vogle, director; Dr. Gail C. Golab, associate director; and Kathy Sikora, administrative assistant.
In her new role, Dr. Patterson-Kane will provide scientific support to the AVMA in the area of human-animal interactions, specifically animal welfare and the human-animal bond. She will work with volunteer leadership and staff to identify and research related issues of importance to the veterinary profession. She will also develop and maintain informational and educational materials and programs addressing animal welfare and the human-animal bond for use by veterinarians, governmental agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and the public.
"I have a long-standing interest in supporting and encouraging good animal care and housing," Dr. Patterson-Kane said. "The scientific community produces a great deal of information on animal welfare issues, and I want to help the AVMA communicate this research to the people most interested in it. I think that a position such as the one I (have taken) can serve as a bridge between the research community and communities grappling with animal use."
Dr. Patterson-Kane received her PhD degree in animal psychology from Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand, in 1999. Her research interests include environmental enrichment and human judgments of animal welfare.
She was a postdoctoral researcher in animal sciences at Purdue University, a research scientist studying sustainable livestock systems at the Scottish Agricultural College, a postdoctoral research fellow in the animal welfare program at the University of British Columbia, and an assistant professor and lecturer in psychology at Bradley University and Victoria University.
Dr. Patterson-Kane has written numerous peer-reviewed publications in the area of animal welfare and has taught undergraduate- and graduate-level animal welfare courses. She is originally from Hamilton, New Zealand, where she lived until obtaining a master's degree from the University of Waikato, where she first developed an interest in animal behavior.
"I am very pleased that a person with Dr. Patterson-Kane's outstanding qualities and abilities is joining the AVMA Animal Welfare Division," Dr. Vogel said. "She brings to the AVMA a firm understanding of animal welfare as an interdisciplinary field of research and application. I look forward to using her education and experiences to help us review animal welfare science and develop audience-friendly informational materials."