Strategy and action

AVMA board actions reflect long-term goals
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The Executive Board met April 19-21 to consider an agenda with recommendations on issues ranging from veterinary economics and leadership development to animal welfare and international relations.

Dr. Kinnarney
Dr. Joseph Kinnarney (right), District III representative Executive Board photos by R. Scott Nolen
Dr. Carlson
AVMA President Réne Carlson

Among the more notable board actions was the commissioning of an economic analysis of the U.S. veterinary workforce and the providing of $250,000 for the American Veterinary Medical Foundation to establish a national program supporting companion animal and equine health studies (see story).

“This is certainly new territory for AVMA,” Executive Board Chair Ted Cohn said about the research initiative. “This is us stepping up and showing we’re serious about the recent goal we added to the Association’s strategic objectives.”

Dr. Cohn was referring to the most recent AVMA Strategic Plan that now includes the promotion of veterinary scientific research and discovery as an Association goal.

The Executive Board approved a $31.5 million budget for 2013 that projects income will exceed expenses by just over $828,000 during the AVMA fiscal year (calendar year). “This is a lean, strategically prepared budget,” commented AVMA Treasurer Barbara Schmidt.

Additionally, the board adopted a policy providing guidance on veterinary internship and residency quality, added the concept of inclusion to the AVMA policy on diversity, and authorized a plan for the Association to host representatives of the Chinese VMA later this year.

Board members voted to postpone the AVMA Animal Welfare Symposium to 2013 and change the meeting topic to current and future approaches to animal euthanasia, depopulation, and humane slaughter.

They also renewed funding support for an AVMA awards program with the National FFA Organization and a leadership development opportunity for members of the AVMA House of Delegates.

“This is a program that has a lot of traction, and it’s been very beneficial to the House,” said Dr. George Bishop, California’s alternate delegate to the HOD, who participates in Executive Board meetings as chair of the House Advisory Committee.

Several strategy sessions were held during the board meeting. Topics included findings from the latest AVMA member needs assessment survey, relationships between AVMA and stakeholder organizations, and the public image of veterinarians.