Many faces, one profession

Published on November 15, 2008
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More than 400 positions exist on AVMA councils, committees, and task forces. To showcase the diverse backgrounds and expertise of the volunteers who serve on them and to inspire even more AVMA members to participate, JAVMA News will feature a few entities each month. To be a candidate for one of 78 current vacancies, click here, or contact officeevpatavma [dot] org.

AVMA Council on Veterinary Service
Dr. Barbara Monaghan, Executive Board liaison Dr. Joseph Kinarney, Dr. Cheri Johnson, Dr. Rebecca Stinson-Dixon, Dr. Stanley Held, Dr. Elysia Schaefer, Dr. Laurel Kaddatz, Dr. Carlos Bonnot, Dr. John Davis, and Dr. John Howe (Not pictured: Dr. Dale Lonsford)  

AVMA Council on Veterinary Service 

Charge/mission: Suggest ways to render adequate service to the veterinary profession and deliver high-quality veterinary service to the public, investigate the economic and social aspects of veterinary service, and advise organizations represented in the AVMA House of Delegates.

Dr. Laurel Kaddatz (MIN '77), chair, Pound Ridge Veterinary Center, representing private practice—exclusively small animal
Dr. Barbara Monaghan (AUB '91), vice chair, Kelley Animal Hospital, Birmingham, Ala., representing private practice—exclusively small animal
Dr. Carlos Bonnot (TEX '76), Wharton Veterinary Clinic, Wharton, Texas, representing private mixed practice
Dr. John Davis (COL '80), Rio Cucharas Veterinary Clinic, Walsenburg. Colo., member-at-large
Dr. John Howe (MIN '77), North Country Veterinary Clinic, Grand Rapids, Minn., member-at-large
Dr. Dale Lonsford (TEX '72), full-time companion animal practitioner, Deer Park, Texas, member-at-large
Dr. Rebecca Stinson-Dixon (GA '02), full-time practitioner primarily working in equine medicine, Reidsville, N.C., member-at-large
Dr. Stanley Held (ISU '57), retired production animal practitioner and part-time consultant, Buffalo, Minn., representing private practice—exclusively food animal
Dr. Cheri Johnson (MIN '74), practitioner in companion animal medicine in Williamston, Mich., and professor at Michigan State University, representing academic clinical science
Dr. Elysia Schaefer (IL '05), equine surgical practitioner, Savoy, Ill., representing recent graduates

What current project are you most excited about?
The COVS is providing input to staff in the development of a veterinary practice resource center on the AVMA Web site. This site will provide information regarding the most common nonmedical inquiries that clinical practitioners have, said Dr. Rosemary LoGiudice, director of the AVMA Membership and Field Services Division. For example, there will be links to information on requirements for proper completion of certificates of veterinary inspection, where to find information on regulatory matters, and how to contact licensing bodies. Most of this information is currently available on the AVMA Web site, but not in one location.

Recent meaningful accomplishments:
Developing the Ergonomics Guidelines for the veterinary profession, and developing and continually refining the AVMA policy on electronic identification for companion animals, birds, and equines, are key accomplishments, Dr. LoGiudice said.

How is your entity addressing the profession's pressing issues?
Dr. Kaddatz said the council reviews AVMA policies and decides whether to recommend they be continued, modified, or rescinded.

"The things we deal with are really quite wide-ranging and cover basically anything that could be construed as under veterinary service. And that includes all the way from workforce issues in large and small animal medicine and working conditions to what we have to do while we're in practice," Dr. Kaddatz said.

Concerns of recent graduates:
COVS includes two recent graduates. One fills a position dedicated to represent recent graduates, and the other was selected by the House of Delegates to fill an at-large position. These members bring the perspective and concerns of recent graduates to the table for discussion and deliberation by the entire council. 

Convention Management and Program Committee
Dr. David Schabdach, Teri Kado, Dr. B. Taylor Bennett, Julie Legred, Dr. Dave Prigel, Dr. Mary Anna Thrall, Dr. Kenneth Bartels, Dr. James Creed, Dr. A. Gregorio Rosales, and Dr. Wendy Emerson  

Convention Management and Program Committee 

The CMPC charge is to plan and conduct the AVMA Annual Convention in a manner that provides high-quality educational experiences, networking opportunities, and exciting special events for all attendees.

Dr. James Creed (MO '61), chair, University of Missouri-Columbia
Dr. Mary Anna Thrall (PUR '70); Colorado State University and Ross University in the West Indies, Companion Animal Section manager
Dr. Kenneth Bartels (ISU '73), Oklahoma State University, DVM Interactive Labs Section manager
Dr. B. Taylor Bennett (AUB '69); adviser for the National Association for Biomedical Research, consultant, and retired administrator in biomedical research; Other Convention Activities manager
Dr. Wendy Emerson (TUF '85), Putnam Veterinary Clinic, Topsfield, Mass., Personal and Professional Development Section manager
Teri Kado, executive director of the American Veterinary Exhibitors Association and manager of Living Art-N-Life and EngraVet, exhibitor liaison and industry adviser
Julie Legred, CVT (MIN '85), coordinator and instructor at the Minnesota School of Business and technician in small and exotic animal practice, Veterinary Technician Section manager
Dr. Dave Prigel (MO '86), consultant and companion animal and large animal practitioner, Food Animal and Equine Section manager
Dr. A. Gregorio Rosales (MEX '79), Aviagen Inc., Huntsville, Ala., Poultry Medicine Section manager
Dr. David Schabdach (VMR '85), administrator in laboratory animal medicine, Public and Corporate Practice Section manager

What current project(s) are you most excited about?
The CMPC and Convention and Meeting Planning Division staff are looking forward to the 2009 AVMA Annual Convention, July 11-14 in Seattle, said David Little, director of the division. The city offers a variety of attractions and activities, and the climate should be perfect to enjoy the city.

A recent meaningful accomplishment:
"Although attendance was down for the 2008 AVMA Annual Convention in New Orleans, those joining us took part in a fantastic meeting," Little said. "The city is alive and vibrant. It was wonderful to be a part of the rebuilding process there and to help stimulate the economy."

More than 100 convention attendees took part in AVMA/AVMF "Voluntourism" efforts at four New Orleans parish animal shelters, where they repainted, rebuilt, and rehabbed the shelters.

How is your entity addressing the profession's pressing issues? Concerns of recent graduates?
The CMPC constantly scans for educational content and programming, Little said. The annual convention is used by the AVMA, allied organizations, veterinary industry members, and others to announce scientific advances, policies, and trends.

How is the entity addressing the strategic or operational goals of the AVMA?
Dr. Creed said the continuing education program is the group's primary focus. The committee tries to arrange activities that appeal to as many people as possible and keeps in mind changing demographics—such as the current rise in the percentage of women in veterinary medicine—when developing the convention program.

"You try and develop a continuing education program that you feel meets the needs of veterinary practitioners," Dr. Creed said.