Posted on April 9, 2013
|| Dr. Michael E. Newman
Dr. Michael E. Newman of Decatur, Ala., has won the race for the AVMA Executive Board District III seat.
Throughout March, AVMA members in Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee cast ballots for a successor to Dr. Joseph Kinnarney, whose term as District III representative ends this year.
On April 2, the AVMA announced Dr. Newman had received more votes than challenger Dr. Walter C. Robinson of Greenville, S.C., and was declared winner of the election. Dr. Newman will officially be seated on the Executive Board in July to serve a six-year term.
Dr. Newman received his DVM degree from Auburn University in 1980. Six years later, he established a private surgical referral practice in Birmingham—the first in Alabama and one of five in the Southeast at that time. The practice was eventually relocated to Decatur, Ala., and it currently serves some 250 veterinarians in Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, and Georgia.
In addition to holding leadership positions with the Southeastern Veterinary Surgeons Conference and Alabama Academy of Veterinary Practitioners, Dr. Newman was elected president of the Alabama VMA in 2008 and recently completed a six-year-term on the AVMA Council on Research. He currently sits on the board of Jefferson State Community College’s Veterinary Technology Program in Birmingham.
Dr. Newman believes the AVMA and other stakeholders should foster the profession’s expansion into nontraditional veterinary career fields, most notably, biomedical research.
He sees the coming years as transformative in societal expectations of the veterinary profession. “Expansion of duties into biomedical research, international veterinary service, welfare and shelter issues, government and military careers, and political involvement are reasonable efforts. Such efforts are particularly timely because the number of students in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics is falling across the board except in veterinary medicine,” he said.
“Maintaining and expanding jobs and job value are the answer to student debt,” Dr. Newman continued. “Reducing or minimizing academic requirements ignores the real-world needs for well-educated people to solve real-world problems present today, and that will certainly increase as the world’s human population strains food production and further challenges the environment.”
Dr. Newman is married to former AVMA vice president, Dr. Jan K. Strother.