Officers on the road

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Officers on the road

What is the role of AVMA president-elect?

AVMA president-elect,
Dr. Bonnie V. Beaver,

There are a number of roles. It's a year to learn about being the spokesperson for the AVMA. It's a time to work with the AVMA president to achieve identified goals. Since the president-elect attends various state and allied group meetings throughout the year, there's an opportunity to hear from veterinarians about issues important to them.

Is there anything you're hearing that will influence you as president?

The issues I'm hearing are not necessarily new ones; we've certainly heard them before. But to me, it's interesting to look at the breadth of concern about certain areas. One of those areas is going to be attracting veterinarians into large animal and mixed practices. Other areas of concern have to do with animal welfare and animal rights issues. There's also concern about legislative matters occurring at state and even local levels.

Overall, I'm hearing that the AVMA has a very positive imagine, not only among our veterinary colleagues, but also among those colleagues in other professions, particularly the medical profession. They are very impressed with the influence that veterinarians have on their national organization, which is quite different from the other medical organizations. The role the AVMA has taken in helping with legislative and regulatory issues is being received positively by various state and allied groups. I'm very excited about the positive attitude toward our profession.

As the second woman to serve as AVMA president-elect, do you feel that sends a positive message, considering that the veterinary profession is becoming a woman-dominated profession?

I realize that I'm going to stand out, particularly to relatively recent women graduates, as a model of what women veterinarians can do, and I take that role very seriously. But I also see that as an officer in the AVMA, I am a role model for both men and women, and that's also a role that I take very seriously.

As part of her president-elect duties, Dr. Beaver is scheduled to attend six meetings between November and December: AVMA Animal Welfare Forum in Hoffman Estates, Ill.; AVMA House Advisory Committee in Schaumburg, Ill.; AVMA/Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges Joint Committee followed by the AVMA President's Roundtable in Washington, D.C.; AVMA Executive Board in Schaumburg, Ill.; AAEP in New Orleans; and AVMA Group Health and Life Insurance Trust in New York City.