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February 15, 2020

American Association of Equine Practitioners

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American Association of Equine Practitioners’ 65th Annual Convention, Dec. 7-11, 2019, Denver


The 2019 AAEP convention brought 5,443 veterinary professionals, students, and educators to Denver. Attendees had over 137 hours of continuing education options to choose from that included such topics as dentistry, imaging, and reproduction. The event also included networking opportunities and a trade show. The keynote speaker, Tammy Hughes, discussed the connection between culture and the success of an organization. Dr. Dean Richardson, equine orthopedic surgeon, spoke about the surgical opportunities available for fracture repair and the associated importance of improving emergency management when he delivered the Frank J. Milne State-of-the-Art Lecture. The AAEP also announced during its opening session a new charitable arm, the Foundation for the Horse.

The AAEP board of directors approved the association’s 2020-23 strategic plan. The three areas of strategic focus will be the retention and recruitment of equine veterinarians, the welfare of the horse, and continuing education. The board also approved a revised position statement on anti-cribbing devices as well as several infectious disease and biosecurity guidelines, including guidelines on the judicious use of antimicrobials.

The AAEP launched a new mentoring program for young equine veterinarians in fall 2019 called Outrider. The goal is to provide mentorship in nonclinical skills such as general career advice and interpersonal professional relationships.

Dr. Wilson
Dr. W. David Wilson
Dr. Swanson
Dr. Terry Swanson
Ms. Schulte Kappert
Christy Schulte Kappert, program officer for The Right Horse Initiative
Dr. Flynn
Dr. Katie Flynn



Dr. Pezzanite
Dr. Lynn M. Pezzanite
Dr. Johnson
Dr. Sherry A. Johnson







Distinguished Educator–Academic Award
Dr. W. David Wilson (Glasgow ‘75), El Macero, California, received the award for his impact on the development and training of future equine practitioners. Dr. Wilson spent 36 years at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. He retired in 2018. During his time at the veterinary school, he served as director of the Center for Equine Health, director of the William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, and the associate dean of clinical programs.

Distinguished Educator–Mentor Award
Dr. Terry Swanson (CSU ‘67), Littleton, Colorado, received the award for his significant impact on the development and training of equine practitioners. Dr. Swanson is the former owner of Littleton Equine Medical Center, where he continues to practice. Dr. Swanson is a past president of the AAEP and Colorado VMA.

The Lavin Cup
The Right Horse Initiative received the award for its distinguished service to improve the welfare of horses. The Right Horse Initiative is made up of equine industry stakeholders, welfare professionals, and other advocates. The collective formed in 2016 to increase horse adoption in the U.S. The organization successfully transitioned 1,742 horses in 2018.

President’s Award
Dr. Katie Flynn (Glasgow ‘01), Sacramento, California, received the award for her dedication to the AAEP and contributions to the health and welfare of horses. Dr. Flynn is chair of the AAEP’s Infectious Disease Committee and a staff veterinarian for the California Department of Food and Agriculture. She has developed new disease vaccination guidelines and education opportunities for the horse industry regarding biosecurity.

Past Presidents’ Research Fellow
Dr. Lynn M. Pezzanite (Cornell ‘14), a postdoctoral fellow at Colorado State University, won the $5,000 grant for her work on new approaches to the treatment of multidrug-resistant infections. Dr. Pezzanite hopes to address the threat of antimicrobial resistance in health care by developing alternatives to antibiotics.

Equus Foundation Research Fellow
Dr. Sherry A. Johnson (Iowa State ‘19), a doctoral student at Colorado State University, received the $5,000 grant for her research into new approaches to tendon injury rehabilitation in horses. Dr. Johnson completed a residency program in equine sports medicine and rehabilitation at CSU. She is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation. Her current research focuses on novel rehabilitation modalities related to tendon healing.

Dr. Frisbie
Dr. David Frisbie
Dr. Hay
Dr. Scott Hay


Drs. David Frisbie, Fort Collins, Colorado, president; Scott Hay, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, president-elect; Emma Read, Columbus, Ohio, vice president; Lisa Metcalf, Sherwood, Oregon, treasurer; and Jeff Berk, Lexington, Kentucky, immediate past president