2018-2019 AVMA congressional fellows announced

Published on July 09, 2018

We’re thrilled to introduce two distinguished veterinarians who have been named to serve as AVMA congressional fellows in 2018-2019, bringing needed veterinary expertise to policy discussions in Washington.

Beginning in August, Drs. Meera Chandra and Fred D. Lehman will each serve one year as full-time staff for a congressional office or congressional committee in Washington, D.C. As AVMA congressional fellows, they will advise policymakers on a wide range of issues, such as food safety, public health, animal welfare, research, and small business policies.

Please join us in congratulating both of these talented and committed veterinarians:

  • Dr. Chandra is a 2018 cum laude graduate of the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine and College of Public Health & Health Professions, who holds both a DVM and a master’s degree in public health. During her time in veterinary school, she gained significant public health and veterinary experience – including positions at the World Organization for Animal Health in Paris, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Office of Health Affairs, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service. She also was president of the University of Florida’s Public Health and Services Club.
  • Dr. Lehman’s career has included experience in veterinary practice, academia, and the pharmaceutical industry. Most recently, Dr. Lehman served as senior associate director of business development and licensing for Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health. He also has worked in new business and in cattle veterinary operations for Bayer Animal Health and Pfizer Animal Health, respectively; and as an associate professor and extension leader at Mississippi State University. Dr. Lehman has a master's degree in agribusiness management in addition to his DVM, and he began his career as a veterinary practitioner, owning a mixed-animal practice for 10 years in Texas. A graduate of Oklahoma State University and a Diplomate in the American College of Theriogenologists, he served as president of the Society for Theriogenology and treasurer of the Therio Foundation.

This September, both fellows will interview with congressional offices before receiving their year-long assignments.

The AVMA Fellowship Program is sponsored through the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which works to place qualified scientific experts in congressional offices where they are needed. The AVMA provides funding for the fellowship program.

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