Dr. W. Ron DeHaven, AVMA executive vice president, announced Nov. 19 that he has named Dr. Gail C. Golab as director of the AVMA Animal Welfare Division.
"Dr. Golab is globally recognized for her expertise and experience in animal welfare issues," Dr. DeHaven said. "She has served the AVMA exceptionally well in this area, most recently as the interim division director for the past three months."
Dr. Golab succeeds Dr. Lyle P. Vogel, whom the Executive Board elected as AVMA assistant executive vice president. She has been with the Animal Welfare Division since it became operational in May 2006, starting out as associate director.
"I sincerely appreciate Dr. DeHaven's confidence in my abilities and look forward to continuing to serve the profession in this new role," Dr. Golab said. "The animal welfare arena presents great challenges for the profession, but it also creates tremendous opportunities. By taking a balanced, science-based approach and invoking the expertise of our volunteer leadership, I hope the Animal Welfare Division can help AVMA members and their clients find good solutions to animal welfare concerns."
Dr. Golab joined the AVMA staff in 1995 as an assistant editor in the Publications Division. Soon, she began serving as the AVMA staff consultant for issues relevant to human-animal interactions. She moved to the Education and Research Division as an assistant director in 1998, and she transferred to the Communications Division in 2001.
Currently, Dr. Golab is staff consultant to the AVMA committees on animal welfare and the human-animal bond. She sits on several national scientific advisory committees regarding topics such as dog and cat overpopulation and the welfare of farm animals. She helped develop care guidelines for animals used in animal-assisted activities and therapy and for animals sold at retail pet stores. She served as staff consultant to AVMA task forces on preventing injuries from dog bites and on the housing of pregnant sows. She was a member of the AVMA Animal Welfare Governance Task Force.
Earlier this year, Dr. Golab testified before Congress regarding appropriate approaches to ensuring the welfare of farm animals. She also is a member of the National Academies of Practice, an interdisciplinary group that advises government and serves as a forum on issues of health care.