The AVMA presented Dr. James E. Nave, of Las Vegas, with the AVMA Advocacy Award July 14 during the AVMA House of Delegates (HOD) regular annual session, held concurrently with AVMA Convention 2023 in Denver.
The AVMA Advocacy Award recognizes an individual for their contribution to advancing the AVMA’s legislative agenda and advocating on behalf of the veterinary profession.
Nominating Dr. Nave (Missouri ’68) for the award were Dr. Chuck Lemme, AVMA Board of Directors (BOD) vice chair and Legislative Advisory Committee chair, and Dr. Lori Teller, 2022-23 AVMA president, saying that Dr. Nave has been an extremely significant supporter of advocacy efforts on behalf of the profession.
They highlighted Dr. Nave’s ability to build relationships with members of Congress and state legislators and to lend his personal connections to support the positions of the AVMA at the federal level and the Nevada VMA (NVMA) at the state level. He has also contributed greatly to the AVMA Political Action Committee (AVMA PAC).
Dr. Nave served in the U.S. Army from 1968-71, reaching the rank of captain and earning the Bronze Star for his service in the Vietnam War. Afterward, he worked at two veterinary clinics in Las Vegas until founding Tropicana Animal Hospital in 1974. He has since come to own and manage multiple companion animal hospitals.
Dr. Nave is a renowned leader in organized veterinary medicine, having served as
the president of both the NVMA in 1985-86 and the AVMA in 2000-01. Other positions he’s held with the AVMA include member and chair of the AVMA Executive Board, now called the AVMA Board of Directors (BOD), in the 1990s, and co-founder of the National Commission on Veterinary Economic Issues in 2000 and serving as its first chair, from 2000-2007.
In addition, Dr. Nave has been president of the NVMA, vice president of the Nevada Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners, and delegate or alternate representing Nevada in the AVMA House of Delegates from 1985-1991. He is a former president and board member for the Western Veterinary Conference.
Dr. Nave has also been recognized multiple times over the years for his keen business acumen, support of the veterinary profession, and mentorship of young veterinarians. He was previously awarded the AVMA President’s Award in 2003, AVMA Award in 2009, and AVMA Global Veterinary Service Award in 2022.
Outside of veterinary medicine, he served on and chaired the Nevada Athletic Commission, winning the title of Boxing Commissioner of the Year once from the North American Boxing Federation and five times from the World Boxing Council. He currently serves on the board for the Western Alliance Bancorporation and Red Rock Resorts Inc.
A version of this story appears in the August 2023 print issue of JAVMA.
In his acceptance speech, Dr. Nave tells the story of how treating a Sheepdog named Alice led him to meet former Nevada Gaming Commissioner Franks Schreck and build more relationships that allowed him to become involved in advocacy work for the veterinary profession. (Video by Matt Zingale)