An unconventional traditionalist
Dr. Tolani Francisco charts unique career path while remaining true to her Native American heritage
By R. Scott Nolen
It's March 19—the feast day of St. Joseph—and the Pueblo of Laguna Tribe of New Mexico is celebrating with a fiesta. There's a carnivallike atmosphere on the Laguna reservation, located roughly 45 miles west of Albuquerque; ceremonial dancers perform before an icon of the saint beneath a row of deer heads adorned with turquoise necklaces. Vendors line a dusty road selling fry bread, handmade jewelry, and traditional tribal clothing.
Dr. Tolani Francisco moves among the crowd, stopping to chat with friends and relatives. She's home for the weekend to spend time with her family, one of her regular visits from Aurora, Colorado, where Dr. Francisco is stationed as a veterinary epidemiologist with the Department of Agriculture. She tells everyone that Reaching UP, the AVMA's high-quality, high-volume spay-neuter clinic for underserved populations, is returning.
“We're having three clinics this year,” Dr. Francisco says. “The next one's in April, then in July and again in November. Please spread the word.” More than a hundred reservation dogs and cats were castrated and spayed when Reaching UP came to the Pueblo for four days last November (see “Reaching UP in New Mexico” on page 1085).
Working with the Native America Humane Society, Dr. Francisco brought the clinic to her reservation because, as she explained, the Laguna people have a sacred responsibility for the welfare of their “four-legged brothers and sisters.” Dr. Francisco takes leave from the USDA to do the clinics; she hopes her participation shows Laguna boys and girls that, like her, they can be educated without compromising their Native American heritage.
“I want the kids here on the reservation to know that school is important,” said Dr. Francisco, who has both a DVM degree and a master's in public health. “Just because you become educated, you don't forget your native identity. You don't forget your customs and traditions; you add to them.”
Dr. Francisco is an American Indian and proud of it. “Tolani,” she points out, is a Navajo word describing a place with an abundance of water. Her father is Laguna, and her mother is a granddaughter of Samuel Blue, the Catawba Nation chief thought to be the last native speaker of the Catawba language. In college, Dr. Francisco became a competitive distance runner because she is a member of the Road Runner Clan within the Laguna tribe. “Traditionally, our clan was messengers who ran between villages, so I wanted to keep that part of me very much intact,” she said.
Growing up on the Laguna Pueblo reservation, Dr. Francisco was surrounded by cattle, horses, and sheep. Her father and grandfather were cattlemen; her great-uncle raised sheep, as the Laguna people had done for centuries. “I always liked it, being around animals,” Dr. Francisco recalled. “I always had a dog, a cat, and a horse. Any critter I could bring home and save, I was always trying to do that.”
As a high school sophomore, around the time she learned how to castrate calves with a pocket knife, Dr. Francisco began to seriously consider a career in veterinary medicine. In 1986, she enrolled at Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine with plans of opening a veterinary clinic on the Laguna reservation. By the time Dr. Francisco graduated four years later, however, her idealism had been tempered by the harsh realities of starting a small business in an impoverished community.
“This was an economically suppressed area,” she explained. “It was no longer an agrarian society, and people weren't willing to put money in their animals, and livestock production was in decline.”
Instead of returning to the reservation, Dr. Francisco took a job at a small animal practice in Las Vegas. But after eight weeks of 12-hour days, six days a week for $20,000 a year, she called it quits. Almost immediately, Dr. Francisco was hired as an associate at a mixed animal practice in Reno, and there she stayed for two years before moving to Albuquerque to work as a relief veterinarian.
It was 1992, and after five months of relief work, Dr. Francisco was recruited into the USDA's Public Veterinary Practice Career Program. Participants were groomed to work for the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and were taught how to protect the nation's animals from economically important animal diseases such as bovine tuberculosis and foot-and-mouth disease.
At first, Dr. Francisco was conflicted about switching from private to public practice. After all, she still longed to return to Laguna and start a practice. Yet, the costs of such a venture continued to keep her dream out of reach.
So in October 1992, Dr. Francisco moved to Helena, Montana, where she spent the next nine months training as a field veterinary medical officer and dealing with a tuberculosis outbreak in cervids, conducting rabies clinics on the state's Native American reservations, and addressing a Brucella infection in bison and elk at Yellowstone National Park. When the program ended, Dr. Francisco was assigned to APHIS’ Albuquerque office to continue her animal disease investigations for the New Mexico region.
From May 1999 until August 2001, Dr. Francisco was a USDA representative in a multinational effort to eradicate FMD in Bolivia. During that period, Ann Veneman, the U.S. agriculture secretary at the time, appointed Dr. Francisco as tribal liaison for APHIS Veterinary Services. In that capacity, when she was stateside, Dr. Francisco visited American Indian reservations across the country to discuss issues relating to animal health.
FMD and 9/11
In February 2001, as Dr. Francisco was trying to eliminate endemic FMD in Bolivia, the first cases of the disease were being reported in the United Kingdom. By the time the U.K. epizootic was finally contained that October, an estimated 10 million sheep and cattle had been slaughtered in a grim effort to contain the virus.
Given her experience with FMD, Dr. Francisco readily volunteered when the USDA called on U.S. veterinarians to assist their U.K. colleagues. She arrived in England in late March and was dispatched to the northern part of the country near the Scottish border. Her task was to determine whether the FMD virus was present on farms where infection was suspected.
The memory of one such visit in particular, to a sheep farm outside Cockermouth, in Cumbria, still brings tears to Dr. Francisco's eyes more than a decade later. She said it was immediately clear that most of the animals on the farm were infected. She phoned headquarters to make her report, and a depopulation team was dispatched.
“While we were waiting for the euthanasia crew, the farmer explained to me these sheep had been in his family for 400 years,” Dr. Francisco said. “It took a half day to depopulate his farm. I found out later from his wife that he took his life. He had said, ‘Without my sheep, I don't know how I'm going to support my family.’”
“It was really, really hard to be part of that,” she continued. “I didn't go to veterinary school to kill animals. That was probably the hardest thing I've ever had to do.”
Following the terrorist attacks of 9/11, Dr. Francisco felt a “burning desire” to serve her country. In August 2002, she joined the Air Force as a public health officer with the rank of captain and, until March 2006, remained on active duty.
“We always had someone in our family serve in the military, and that was important to me,” Dr. Francisco said. The next month, she returned to the USDA as an epidemiologist with APHIS Veterinary Services, her current position.
Her ethnicity, international experiences, and nontraditional veterinary career make Dr. Francisco a much-sought-after speaker at public schools and veterinary colleges alike. And while she's happy talking about alternative careers, Dr. Francisco is eager to return to private practice when she retires from the USDA.
For years, Dr. Francisco has eyed an abandoned house near her parents’ Laguna home for the brick-and-mortar clinic she's dreamed of since her days as a veterinary student. She envisions veterinarians and senior-level veterinary students working at the clinic for one week every month, providing high-quality veterinary care to the reservation animals.
“You don't have to go to Africa to work in a developing area,” Dr. Francisco said. “We have over 500 tribes in the United States, and I haven't been to a reservation yet that is prosperous, where people have money to spend on their animals like they do on non-native lands.
“Reservation animals still deserve the same quality care as those living in more prosperous areas. We owe that much to our four-legged brothers and sisters.”
Reaching UP in New Mexico
By R. Scott Nolen
A team of veterinary professionals spent four days last November on the Pueblo of Laguna reservation in New Mexico providing high-quality, high-volume spay-neuter surgeries and targeted preventive veterinary care as part of Reaching UP, an AVMA program for underserved populations.
It was the third Reaching UP clinic since the AVMA Board of Directors approved the program in 2012. The two previous clinics, managed by the AVMA Animal Welfare Division and funded by the American Veterinary Medical Foundation, were held at the Rosebud Sioux Indian Reservation in South Dakota (see JAVMA, Dec. 15, 2013, page 1646). The Banfield Foundation provided funding to continue the program at Laguna for three Reaching UP clinics in 2016.
November 2015 was the first time Reaching UP was invited onto the Laguna reservation, located approximately 45 miles west of Albuquerque. From Nov. 18–22, a team comprising six AVMA members, three certified veterinary technicians, and more than 40 other volunteers operating out of a previous tribal detention center were part of an effort during which 125 dogs and cats were neutered and an additional 75 pets received rabies and distemper-adenovirus-parainfluenza-parvovirus vaccinations and antiparasitics.
While pets were being seen, owners were educated about the importance of preventive care.
Dr. Tolani Francisco, a member of the Laguna tribe and a veterinary epidemiologist with the Department of Agriculture, helped bring the clinic to the reservation. Estimates on the numbers of dogs and cats on the reservation—owned and stray—are difficult to come by. The pueblo is home to more than 7,000 people, Dr. Francisco said, and it's not uncommon for reservation households to own as many as six pets.
“We do have a problem with some aggressive dog packs,” she added. “There may be at least five packs that roam certain parts of the 500,000-acre reservation, with each pack made up of five to six dogs.”
Dr. Marc Kramer is chief veterinarian for Project PetSnip, an organization that spays and castrates cats and dogs in the South Florida area.
Dr. Kramer estimates he's performed upward of 5,000 such surgeries since 2009. He participated in Reaching UP because he wants to save animal lives, reduce euthanasia rates in shelters, and improve the health of individual animals.
“It's also a very gratifying feeling to see the positive effects on the communities and the pet owners themselves,” he added. For instance, the clinic is a chance to educate younger generations about the importance of neutering animals and to promote public and animal health by reducing the number of strays in the community.
Learn more about volunteer opportunities at Reaching UP clinics this year at www.avma.org/reachingup.
Students taking wellness seriously
SAVMA symposium encourages attendees to relax, have fun
By Malinda Larkin
Wellness remains top-of-mind for many veterinary students, as evidenced by the focus on the topic during the 47th annual Student AVMA Symposium, held March 17–19 at the Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine.
The symposium featured “Treat yo'self Thursday” with a coffee bar, boot camp, and yoga or Pilates in the morning. The afternoon offered presentations on nutrition, stress management, efficient sleeping, and professional etiquette. Matt Holland, SAVMA president, said Dr. Derralyn Rennix's talk on the “Mindful Veterinary Practitioner” was helpful in teaching how to practice mindful meditation while simultaneously practicing veterinary medicine.
The keynote speakers during the opening ceremony were Drs. Frank Cerfogli, director of the new ISU CVM clinical skills laboratory, and Jennifer Schleining, associate professor in veterinary diagnostic and production animal medicine at the college. Together, they have four children and are owners and operators of Four Charm Farm. They spoke about how they balance it all.
At the Student AVMA House of Delegates meeting, the Mental Health & Wellness Task Force, created last year to address these issues among veterinary students, presented its deliverables.
As reported May 1 in JAVMA, the task force had sent a survey to SAVMA's nearly 14,000 members to gauge their mental health and well-being. Of the 3,888 who responded, 67 percent had experienced a period of depression, and of those, 37 percent said the period lasted longer than two weeks, which meets the clinical definition of depression. In addition, 47 percent had a personal history of depression, anxiety, or substance abuse. Twenty-five percent were taking medication for diagnosed depression or anxiety.
Veterinary colleges’ specific aggregate results have been sent to administrators at each institution as well as to the state VMAs that have veterinary schools in their borders.
The task force also created a series of videos titled “It's OK” to shed light on the state of mental health in the veterinary profession. They feature veterinary students, faculty members, clinicians, veterinary technicians, and school counselors discussing their struggles with mental health and wellness. The full playlist is available at http://jav.ma/itsokvideos.
Holland said, as of the end of March, SAVMA's Facebook post about the videos had reached 65,000 people.
Because the task force had achieved its goals, it was sunset at the symposium. However, SAVMA HOD members unanimously approved forming a Wellness Committee. They are working on developing the committee charge and description, to be discussed and voted on at their next meeting, in August during the AVMA Convention 2016 in San Antonio.
“We currently have seven committees in the HOD, and we tentatively agreed to start an eighth, which means a significant internal reorganization. It's a lot of extra work for a lot of students who are already incredibly busy. Big changes are usually uncomfortable and met with some resistance. The fact that the House unanimously approved the motion is inspiring,” Holland said. “It is a huge issue. It's what people want to focus and spend time on now. Everybody is really excited about the Wellness Committee.”
Other action items
In other SAVMA HOD and SAVMA Executive Board news, a recommendation was passed that students enrolled in cooperative programs, also known as 2+2 programs, are now eligible to run for an executive office. All of the AVMA Council on Education–accredited veterinary colleges in the U.S. are full members in the SAVMA HOD, but partner programs are not. As Iowa State's 2+2 partner, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is represented in the SAVMA HOD; however, its representatives are nonvoting members and were not previously eligible to run for the SAVMA board. One of Nebraska's delegates introduced the motion at last year's symposium to change the Student AVMA Bylaws to allow partner programs’ representatives to do so.
The Prospective SAVMA Member Benefits Education Task Force, which Holland co-chairs, created a presentation that it debuted at the meeting. It's available at http://jav.ma/savmaprezi. The task force is in the process of creating a video with AVMA staff featuring students “discussing what SAVMA and the AVMA mean to us and what we get out of being members,” he said. The plan is to premiere the video at the AVMA convention in August and distribute it to SAVMA chapters.
“The first action of the task force was environmental scanning. What we found is students couldn't really articulate what SAVMA membership did for them, or sometimes even tell you what SAVMA stands for. There's an awareness gap, and we want to close it,” Holland said. “We hope this transparency helps improve the lives of every veterinary student and, ultimately, the profession.”
Calling all veterinary entrepreneurs
Veterinary students with novel ideas on how to improve the profession are wanted for a new competition that was announced at the Student AVMA Symposium in March.
“The Idea” is a yearlong veterinary student innovation competition sponsored by the online study tool VetPrep in collaboration with the Veterinary Business Management Association and SAVMA.
Entries can be projects at any stage, from initial concept to working prototype. The goal of the competition is to help teams of students create a plan that could lead to the development of their innovation.
Registration officially began at the symposium; submissions will be accepted through July. Then, the judges and organizers will determine the semifinalists. Those teams will participate in phone interviews so that the judges and mentors can choose the final teams. The finalists and their mentors will be announced in August at the next SAVMA House of Delegates meeting.
After months of team meetings and development, the final teams will deliver a live pitch and presentation to the judges and panel at the 2017 SAVMA Symposium. The top three teams will take home a combined $15,000-plus in cash prizes, while the winners will also receive a boost toward making their idea a reality.
For more information, visit http://info.vetprep.com/the-idea.
One additional thing the SAVMA HOD did this year was to change its meeting structure from two full days to three half days to allow the student delegates and board members to partake in more of the general attendee events.
The symposium offered approximately 80 lectures and 30 wet labs in addition to day trips to the Science Center of Iowa; Hawkeye Breeders Service, a state-of-the art cattle breeding facility; Blank Park Zoo; and the Department of Agriculture's National Animal Disease Center. An entire day was devoted to diversity, with a poster-viewing session, discussion panel, and lectures on discriminatory language and bias. Attendees also took part in a veterinary trivia contest; a suture derby; the first “Veterinary Feud” competition, modeled off the TV show “Family Feud”; and the MacGyver Challenge, which had teams solve time-sensitive crises with limited supplies.
In all, nearly 1,200 attended the SAVMA symposium this year.
Coming and going
Outgoing 2015–2016 SAVMA officers are Jessica L. Carie, Colorado State University, president; Ilana Yablonovich, University of Pennsylvania, secretary; Eric Nickerson, University of California-Davis, treasurer; Mikaela D.O. Vetters, Kansas State University, international exchange officer; Takashi “Kirk” Kasuya, St. George's University, information technology officer; Stephen Marsh, Texas A&M University, editor of The Vet Gazette; Maria G. Romano, Virginia Tech, global and public health officer; and Elizabeth C. Johnson, University of Tennessee, veterinary economics officer.
Incoming 2016–2017 SAVMA officers are Matt Holland, University of Illinois, president; Meghana Pendurthi, University of Pennsylvania, secretary; Shawn Wharrey, The Ohio State University, treasurer; Brian Jochems, University of Missouri, international exchange officer; Michael McEntire, Texas A&M University, information technology officer; Alexandria Schauer, University of Minnesota, editor of The Vet Gazette; Melissa Feldman, University of Florida, global and public health officer; and Peter Czajkowski, Oklahoma State University, veterinary economics officer.
Planning is already underway for next year as veterinary students at the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences gear up for the 2017 Student AVMA Symposium, March 16–18.
TV producer-turned-veterinary student now leading SAVMA
By Malinda Larkin
Matt Holland (Illinois ‘17) had a quarter-life crisis. At least, that's the best way he can explain why he left what many would consider a dream job producing sports television to become a veterinarian. As he's gone through veterinary college, though, he's learned that skills acquired in his early jobs continue to serve him well. In fact, Holland recently became the 2016–2017 Student AVMA president at the Student AVMA Symposium (see page 1086). And he has his sights set on creating a big change in the profession.
Holland's first career grew from a love of sports and communication. He studied radio and television production at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, where he also produced college sports shows, interned for the Iowa Cubs Triple-A minor league baseball team, and worked at local TV stations. After graduation, he moved back to the Chicago area and took a job with the Big Ten Network. Holland produced college basketball game coverage in a different city practically every weekend. Because sports was naturally seasonal work, and because he was always drawn to animals, he took a dog-walking job during his first off-season and ended up loving it. The next summer, he worked at the PAWS Chicago animal shelter.
“I had terrible hours and got ringworm and made less than $10 an hour, but I felt fulfilled,” Holland said. Later, he volunteered at a mixed animal practice in Monroe, Wisconsin, and at the Biologic Resources Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
“I got all this animal experience in the off-season and realized over time that I felt more connected doing that kind of work. Working in TV production felt like existing, and working with animals felt like living,” he said.
Initially, veterinary college seemed improbable, given his unrelated undergraduate studies as well as the expense and time commitment. But it became a greater reality as he took science prerequisites at Northwestern University for two years. Holland gained acceptance to Illinois and went in with an ambition to be a Dr. James Herriot–type practitioner. But fate, once again, had other plans.
He was accepted into the joint-degree program leading to a master's in public health from UIC and a DVM degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and took a policy elective that opened his eyes to the less traditional niches of the profession. In his first year, he also got involved in SAVMA as a delegate. Holland sat on the SAVMA Government Affairs Committee and became the AVMA Legislative Fly-in co-chair. Attending the 2015 fly-in showed him firsthand the intersection between veterinary medicine and policy, and attending the 2016 fly-in reinforced his passion for advocacy and shaping public policy. The event also showed Holland where he could play to his strengths.
“When I was making the decision to change careers, I thought I was going to have to let go the six years I spent producing TV and working on those skills. I figured it would be a sunk cost and did not realize how valuable those communication and writing skills would be,” Holland said about his time spent interviewing athletes, writing scripts, and editing media pieces.
He's already used his communication and planning skills to synthesize what he's learned from SAVMA meetings and fly-ins, then bring that information back to his fellow students at Illinois. Holland will do the same with the Economics of Veterinary Medical Education Summit held in late April at Michigan State University. He participated in the summit's working group focusing on debt reduction.
One of his ambitions for the coming year is to create momentum for an advocacy day at each student chapter of the AVMA. Similar to the fly-in, but on a local scale, advocacy day would engage groups of students from each chapter with their state legislators.
Holland wants to be at the forefront of a shift in how advocacy is viewed and practiced in the profession. He likens it to how veterinary colleges have incorporated new treatments or diseases into the curriculum as they are introduced or gain in importance.
He continued, “Maybe something can happen with veterinary students at large, maybe some switch can be flipped in the profession to where advocacy is not only included and incorporated in the curriculum, but also is something every veterinarian feels they should be involved in. We should try to increase the awareness level with student advocacy.”
After earning his veterinary degree, Holland says he would also like to complete his MPH in 2018 and pursue veterinary public policy work in Washington, D.C. He's been particularly passionate about food waste issues after interning with the Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service at a slaughter facility.
“When I learned how much food we produce goes to waste—about 40 percent—it inspired me to reduce that number. Food production is such a resource-intensive process; if we're going to commit so much time, money, and energy into mass agriculture, we better at least be able to say that the end product is feeding a person instead of a landfill. It's putting the cart before the horse to say that food production won't be able to keep up with the growth in human population. Before we figure out how to make more, we first need to figure out how to use what we make.”
But for now, Holland is content to spend more than a fair amount of time on SAVMA activities. In fact, he says it's easier to give time to SAVMA than to do anything else on his to-do list.
“In a selfish way, I love spending my time on something that feels good,” Holland said. “I draw energy from working with other students, and I feel like this is a great use of my time. The profession and SAVMA are my family.”
Cats sickened by canine influenza
Four cats in Indiana have been sickened by a canine influenza virus that caused an outbreak among dogs in Chicago and spread throughout the U.S. during 2015.
Diagnostic tests found that cats in a northwestern Indiana animal shelter were positive for an H3N2 canine influenza virus that had sickened dogs in the same shelter, according to information from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine. Clinical signs in the cats included runny noses, congestion, malaise, excessive salivation, and “lip smacking” behavior.
The infected cats and dogs were quarantined while shedding the virus. The university announcement indicates the virus appeared to spread between cats, with subsequent diagnostic tests showing increases in viral loads.
Infected dogs can develop a persistent cough, runny nose, and fever, and the virus has been connected with some dog deaths.
Cats in South Korea also have been sickened by the virus, but only one cat in the U.S. had a positive test for H3N2 infection prior to the four discovered in Indiana, university information states. Information from Cornell University indicates the H3N2 virus is descended from an avian influenza strain. It was first identified in southern China and South Korea.
Spending on pets surpasses $60 billion
The American Pet Products Association released a report in mid-March indicating that overall spending in the U.S. pet industry increased 3.9 percent between 2014 and 2015, from $58.04 billion to $60.28 billion. The APPA estimates a 4.1 percent overall increase in 2016.
According to the report, spending on veterinary care by U.S. pet owners increased 2.5 percent between 2014 and 2015, from $15.04 billion to $15.42 billion. The association estimates a 3.2 percent increase in spending on veterinary care in 2016.
Spending on pet food increased 3.5 percent to $23.05 billion in 2015. For pet supplies and over-the-counter medications, spending increased 3.9 percent to $14.28 billion.
In 2015, spending increased 11.8 percent to $5.41 billion in the category of pet services such as grooming, boarding, walking, training, pet-sitting, exercise, and yard services. Spending on purchases of live animals decreased 1.4 percent to $2.12 billion.
“The 2016 industry spending forecast is very promising and although spending trends in various market segments ebb and flow, the industry as a whole is continuing to prosper, which is always great news,” said Bob Vetere, president and chief executive officer of the APPA, in an announcement summarizing the report results.
UN takes no action on ketamine
The United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs, while meeting March 14–22 in Austria, took no action to place ketamine under international control.
China previously had proposed that the commission place ketamine under schedule I of the Convention on Psychotropic Substances, the most restrictive category. Following input from stakeholders, China recommended to the commission during a March 2015 meeting that ketamine be placed under schedule IV, the least restrictive category. The commission deferred action and asked for additional information from the World Health Organization.
In September 2015, the WHO asked U.N. member states to complete a questionnaire on ketamine and other drugs in preparation for a November meeting of the WHO Expert Committee on Drug Dependence. The Food and Drug Administration requested public comments and received more than 1,600, all opposing restriction of ketamine, before completing the questionnaire. The AVMA and many members were among the commenters.
At the November meeting, the Expert Committee on Drug Dependence recommended that the Commission on Narcotic Drugs not place ketamine under international control. Ahead of the March 2016 commission meeting, the AVMA also communicated its concerns directly through the U.S. representative on the commission.
Ketamine currently is a schedule III drug in the United States, and it is uncertain whether international scheduling would impact the U.S. classification.
Implants could provide data, then dissolve
Dissolvable electronic implants could be used to transmit vital data for short durations with lower infection risks than those associated with conventional implants.
A scientific article, “Bioresorbable silicon electronic sensors for the brain,” published earlier this year (Nature 2016;530:71–79), indicates tests on rats showed such implanted silicon-based sensors could provide several days of temperature and pressure information useful in treating traumatic brain injury before the sensor encapsulation layers are permeated by liquids. The sensors had accuracy similar to that of available commercial sensors, the article states.
“In vivo and in vitro experiments demonstrate precision measurements of pressure, temperature, motion, flow, thermal properties and pH, with possible extensions to biomolecular binding events,” the article states. “These features will be useful in diagnosing and treating a diverse range of medical conditions, from acute traumatic injuries such as extremity compartment syndrome, to chronic medical diseases such as diabetes.”
The study results indicated that a pressure sensor in a rat provided intracranial pressure data for three days without notable degradation in accuracy or sensitivity in comparison with a standard wired sensor. A temperature sensor provided accurate measurements for six days.
The article also describes conventional implants as nidi for infection, and implant removal surgeries as sources of stress and complications.
The dissolvable sensors contain a combination of silicon membranes and wafers, silicon oxide coating, magnesium foil, molybdenum wires, and poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid). Components dissolve within days or weeks through hydrolysis and metabolic action. The article cites other studies indicating the PLGA used, for example, dissolves in bodily fluids within five weeks.
The authors are affiliated with the University of Illinois, Washington University, Korea University in Seoul, Pennsylvania State University, the Institute of High Performance Computing in Singapore, Purdue University, and Northwestern University.
New York state requires care instructions for small exotic pets
The state of New York now requires pet dealers and retailers to provide purchasers with written instructions on proper care for small animals.
The requirement applies to small mammals, including but not limited to hamsters, chinchillas, guinea pigs, gerbils, rabbits, mice, rats, and ferrets, and to small amphibians or reptiles, including but not limited to frogs, snakes, and lizards. The requirement does not apply to dogs, cats, birds, fish, or feeder animals.
According to the law, which took effect in mid-March, pet dealers and retailers “shall deliver or provide digital access to the purchaser of a small animal, at the time of sale, general written recommendations for the generally accepted care of the class of such small animal, obtained from sources including but not limited to a state or national: professional association established to further the veterinary professions; association established for the preservation and care of reptiles; or pet industry organization representing pet retailers, including information on housing, equipment, sanitation, environment, feeding and watering, handling, and veterinary care.”
The law appears to be the first of its kind in the country, according to the AVMA State Relations Department.
Report: Veterinary markets provide optimism, opportunities
By Greg Cima
A report from AVMA economists expresses “cautious optimism” about the market for veterinarians, reiterating findings reported during an October 2015 summit on veterinary economics.
The AVMA's first of four economic reports for 2016 is an 80-page overview of information presented during the fall 2015 meeting. The Association is providing the reports to members for free at http://jav.ma/2016markets. A second report, on the market for veterinary education, was published at the same website shortly before press time.
The report describes a robust market for veterinarians, citing as evidence that veterinarians are earning more money and that their unemployment rate of 4.5 percent during 2014 remained lower than the national unemployment rate of 6.1 percent.
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate the mean unemployment rate that year among civilian workers with a university education who were at least 25 years old and had at least a bachelor's degree was 3.2 percent.
The report also cautions that the risk of recession raises concern that veterinarians may be unable to maintain recent income growth and job satisfaction, particularly as the number of veterinarians continues to increase.
Among other findings, the report indicates more people want veterinary services than are willing to pay for them at current prices.
“There are those that would like to purchase veterinary services but cannot or are unwilling to afford them,” the article states.
Citing a presentation by Dr. Matt Salois of Elanco, the report suggests conducting research focused on learning how veterinarians can become invaluable to pet owners and broaden the scope of veterinary clinic visits. He suggested, for example, research on specific products and services that improve pets’ lives, owner convenience, and practice revenue as well as improve practice management, inventory control, and staff use.
Data in the report indicate that, since the early 2000s, the prices of veterinary services have risen at a faster pace than has the consumer price index.
“As relative prices for veterinary services rose, expenditures for veterinary services per pet declined and the number of pets not visiting the veterinarian increased,” the report states.
The report further describes misalignment between prices students are willing to pay for veterinary education and prices pet owners are willing to pay for services. When debt at graduation becomes too high, “the new veterinarian has paid more for the degree than the value placed on that degree by pet owners.”
The report also cautions that, if veterinarians raise prices in response to increased expenses, fewer veterinary services will be sold, and a gap will rise between need and willingness to pay for veterinary services.
BSE rules finalized
The Food and Drug Administration finalized rules that prohibit adding certain cattle parts to foods for human consumption and other human-use products.
An interim rule issued in 2004 and amendments issued in 2005 have been intended to reduce the risk of bovine spongiform encephalopathy by prohibiting human-use foods, dietary supplements, and cosmetics from containing many nervous system materials from cattle at least 30 months old, the tonsils and distal portion of the ileum of any cattle, parts of nonambulatory cattle or cattle not inspected and passed, and mechanically separated beef, agency information states. Further amendments issued in 2008 let countries apply to be exempt from some of the rules.
“Because the United States has had measures in place to prevent the introduction and spread of BSE, including those affirmed in this rule, the risk of human exposure to the BSE agent from FDA-regulated human food and cosmetics is negligible,” a March 18 Federal Register notice states.
The rules includes exemptions for milk products, hide products, tallow containing more than 0.15 percent impurities, tallow derivatives, and gelatin produced under specified conditions.
AABP selects next executive
Dr. K. Fred Gingrich II, current president of the American Association of Bovine Practitioners, will become the organization's new staff executive in 2017.
The dairy veterinarian and practice owner from northern Ohio will end his term as volunteer leader of the association July 1, about two months early, to begin learning how to manage the association as the new executive vice president. He will take over from Dr. M. Gatz Riddell, who is retiring at the end of the year and has been executive vice president since March 2005.
Dr. Gingrich plans to sell his dairy and small animal practices and establish an AABP office in Ashland, Ohio. That office will replace the current AABP headquarters in Auburn, Alabama.
Dr. John Davidson, immediate past president, will fill the remainder of Dr. Gingrich's presidency, which will end at the AABP's annual meeting Sept. 15–17 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The change for Dr. Gingrich follows 21 years in private practice. He said the decision whether to make that change was difficult, as he enjoys working with his dairy clients, but he also enjoys working with veterinary medical organizations and feels a particular attachment to the AABP.
He sees his role as executive vice president as a continuation of Dr. Riddell's work.
“I want to focus on member services—demonstrating the strength of our organization to our members—and listen to our members about what they desire from an organization,” he said.
He wants to advocate for all bovine practitioners as well as continue the AABP's collaboration with allied organizations, including the AVMA.
“I think we have taken a leadership role in the important issues for cattle, cattle producers, and cattle veterinarians over the past many years,” he said.
He noted that has included advocacy on issues of animal welfare, cattle health and productivity, antimicrobial use and resistance, and financial success of rural veterinary practices.
“Our Veterinary Practice Sustainability Committee was one of the first to really address that issue,” he said.
The executive vice president is an employee of all AABP members, answering to the association's board of directors and relying on the expertise of its volunteer members, Dr. Gingrich said. He noted that the position can guide and form committees and task forces but said the organization works as well as it does by guidance from expert volunteers throughout North America.
He also encourages AABP membership for all veterinarians who work with cattle, and he asked for an opportunity to demonstrate to them the AABP's leadership.
Dr. Gingrich is an Ohio native who raised calves for the 4-H Club and what was then named Future Farmers of America, and he knew since he was little that he wanted to be a veterinarian, he previously told JAVMA. He graduated from The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1995 and, after two years of dairy practice in California, started working at the Ashland, Ohio, dairy practice that he owns today.
He will be the fourth to hold the AABP's executive staff position since it was created in 1989, the first two executives being Drs. Harold Amstutz and Jim Jarrett.
BSE identified in France
A cow in northern France has been confirmed to have bovine spongiform encephalopathy, according to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).
The cow had developed partial paralysis and was euthanized March 1, a March 25 OIE report states.
BSE is a fatal neurologic prion disease with a typical incubation period of four to five years. The cow in France was almost 5 years old.
The affected cow had the classic form of BSE, which is most often associated with feed containing neurologic tissue from infected animals. It is distinct from atypical BSE, which may develop spontaneously, according to information from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Investigators were trying to identify the source of infection and other animals at risk for BSE at the time the report was published.
Veterinary academia celebrates milestone
AAVMC's conference, gala mark 50th anniversary
By Malinda Larkin
The organization that has built public awareness and recognition for academic veterinary medicine is turning 50.
The Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges’ yearlong anniversary celebration culminated March 4–6 in Washington, D.C., when about 250 gathered from around the world for the AAVMC's Annual Conference, centered on the theme of “Fifty and Forward.”
At the event, a book on the history of the AAVMC debuted. Conference programming examined 50 years of progress in veterinary education and the critical role veterinary medicine plays in promoting public health and safety. And during a gala March 5, attendees experienced a multimedia celebration featuring a host of international officials from the profession, higher education, business, and government.
Tracing its history
Prior to the conference, the AAVMC's publication, the Journal of Veterinary Medical Education, put together an extensive account of the association's history along with the issues and initiatives that have shaped academic veterinary medicine over the years. These articles appear in a special 50th anniversary edition published this past December, available at http://jvme.utpjournals.press/toc/jvme/42/5.
“To fully understand the magnitude of the AAVMC's contributions, we must consider the enduring contributions made by our member institutions in agriculture and food security, biomedical research, and companion clinical medicine as well as their contributions in addressing the core mission of training new generations of veterinarians to serve society,” according to the issue's introduction (J Vet Med Ed 2015;42:393–394).
Dr. Deborah Kochevar, dean of the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, wrote about the important milestones in veterinary education, including the development of offshore schools, the growing international scope of the organization, and the expanded role of the AAVMC in the accreditation process. She explained how the AAVMC's part in the progression of academic veterinary education has been about building successful partnerships in the U.S. and internationally, and that the association has become a source of information and a place for debate on educational trends, innovative pedagogy, and the value of a diverse learning environment.
Dr. James Lloyd, dean of the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, analyzed how economic trends in government funding and support, philanthropic support, student debt, and other elements of the changing fiscal environment have shaped academics, with no exception for veterinary colleges. He wrote, “The recent precipitous decline in public funding highlights the urgent need to develop and maintain an economically sustainable model that can adapt to the changing landscape and serve societal needs.”
Finally, Lisa Greenhill, EdD, the AAVMC's director of institutional research and diversity, and others examined how AAVMC's data-driven organization has enriched academia by developing more sophisticated recruitment and admission programs, expanding diversity programs, and improving student life.
The authors laid out some of the major changes in veterinary student life over the past 50 years, which include the following:
• The doubling of the number of AAVMC member institutions as well as an increase in mean class size, resulting in a dramatic decrease in the number of applicants per class seat.
• A major gender shift from predominantly male to female.
• More students from urban and suburban communities than previously.
• More open admissions in states that previously admitted only their own residents.
• The creation and disappearance of institutions with three-year veterinary degree programs and the development of 2+2 programs.
• An increase in enrollment of diverse student bodies.
• Improvements in pedagogy because of technological advancements such as computerized notes and online resources.
• Increased interest in dual-degree and certificate programs.
• More diverse career goals, including research, academia, commercial companies, and specialization through board certification.
• Greater use of services related to mental health and well-being as well as formal mentoring.
• Substantial increases in educational debt without equivalent increases in entry-level salaries.
• Increased extracurricular opportunities with clubs and chapters.
Strength in numbers
The AAVMC meeting in March began with the introduction of the book “Pathways to Progress,” authored by Dr. Donald F. Smith, dean emeritus of the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine. The limited-edition, 280-page volume explores the history of academic veterinary medicine, profiles AAVMC member institutions, and tells the story of the founding and development of the AAVMC.
Dr. Trevor Ames, AAVMC immediate past president, examined the AAVMC's beginnings. Former University of Guelph Ontario Veterinary College Dean Elizabeth Stone discussed major initiatives by the association such as the Pew National Veterinary Education Program and North American Veterinary Medical Education Consortium. Dr. Oscar Fletcher, former dean of the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, looked at advancements in curriculum and design over 50 years. Other presentations featured the history of the Journal of Veterinary Medical Education, global academic veterinary medicine and one health, and the new Public Policy Faculty Fellows program.
AAVMC President Eleanor M. Green ended the meeting with a presentation that challenged faculty and administrators to embrace their role as change agents in an emerging new world of veterinary medicine being transformed by advancements in information technology.
More than 300 attended the AAVMC 50th anniversary gala celebration. A dozen colorful flags representing the AAVMC's international member institutions framed a stage that featured tributes from more than a dozen dignitaries throughout the evening.
The dinner debuted two new AAVMC videos: one that describes the organization's direction and values, and another that features comments from past and present AAVMC leaders and friends on the value of the organization, its achievements, and future directions.
Early leaders of the AAVMC, including Drs. John Welser of Naples, Florida; Lester Crawford of Georgetown, South Carolina; and Billy Hooper of Lafayette, Indiana, were honored for their leadership.
The inaugural AAVMC President's Award for Meritorious Service was presented to Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota for the leadership role he has played in advancing one health on Capitol Hill (see page 1098).
AAVMC President Green announced the establishment of the Council for International Veterinary Medical Education, a group designed to help inspire higher-quality academic veterinary medicine in developing areas of the world. She discussed important new initiatives in one health and how that framework was a logical approach to expanding the organization's international initiatives.
Dr. Green concluded her remarks by announcing that the AAVMC would join other academic associations in the health professions by moving into the new Association of American Medical Colleges building in September at 655 K St. in Washington, D.C. Referring to the complex as an “incubator for collaboration in the health professions,” she predicted that the AAVMC's move would further bolster the one-health movement.
The announcements were fitting, particularly in light of the article Dr. Smith composed for the JVME anniversary issue. After crafting a minihistory of academic veterinary medicine, he ended by suggesting four future themes in veterinary medicine inspired by his interpretation of the AAVMC's 50-year history. They were one health and expanding the impact of the profession in the medical and biomedical sciences; investing in more experienced or second-career students who have proven skills and an array of aptitudes; a national strategy for veterinary colleges to accomplish shared goals; and zooeyia, or the positive benefits of animals to human health, and the potential impact veterinary medicine can have on the economy and health care.
50 years and counting
At the time of the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges’ establishment in 1966, there were 18 U.S. veterinary colleges, with all but two located at land-grant universities. Since then, 12 additional veterinary degree–granting programs have been established within the U.S. Five Canadian and 14 international veterinary institutions hold membership in the AAVMC as well. Plus, the association has 23 affiliate members that represent not only veterinary colleges but also departments of veterinary science or comparative medicine in addition to Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston. For more information about the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges’ 50th anniversary, visit http://aavmc.org/Anniversary/50th-Anniversary-Celebration.aspx. In addition, the 2015–2016 AAVMC Annual Report is now available at http://jav.ma/aavmc1516report.
OVC gets $23M to address infrastructure needs
The University of Guelph will receive $23 million from the provincial government to support critical infrastructure renewal at the Ontario Veterinary College.
The money will support renovation and expansion at OVC, including new spaces for enhanced clinical teaching and learning and advanced surgery and anesthesia facilities, according to a March 18 OVC press release.
Liz Sandals, minister of education for Guelph, said the funding will allow the college to continue “providing students with hands-on, interactive learning experiences and research opportunities that improve our quality of life.”
The university had asked the government for $23 million toward a $33 million plan to address infrastructure needs at the veterinary college. OVC plans to raise the additional $10 million, with $6.5 million already committed.
Dr. Jeff Wichtel, OVC dean, said in the release that the university and veterinary college have invested in research to remain at the leading edge of learning, care, and discovery, but improvements to physical spaces have not kept pace.
The project will include new laboratory and classroom spaces equipped for computer-based case studies, patient simulators, and demonstration models. Modern surgery and anesthesia areas will be built in renovated spaces, and the college will install new equipment and improved biosecurity and infection control.
“The new facilities will ensure that OVC continues to help protect the health of people in Ontario through research, disease prevention, and a safe food supply,” Dr. Wichtel said in the release.
Multimillion-dollar gifts fund translational therapy institute
An anonymous racehorse breeder has donated $20 million to Colorado State University to build a regenerative medicine research facility, fulfilling a $65 million matching challenge from lead donors and fellow horse aficionados John and Leslie Malone.
The donations enable construction of the CSU Institute for Biologic Translational Therapies, which will tap the body's healing powers for innovative treatments that improve animal and human health. Groundbreaking is planned for later this year.
In December 2014, the Malones pledged $42.5 million, the largest cash gift in CSU history, for the planned facility. The gift was prompted by their interest in stem cell therapy and its effectiveness in treating joint problems in horses. The Malones raise world-class dressage horses and Thoroughbred racehorses.
The Malones’ gift provides $32.5 million for construction of the building and $10 million for institute operations during the first five years. The lead gift required $32.5 million in matching donations. That challenge was fulfilled in just over a year with the $20 million gift from the anonymous donor and $12.5 million from other donors and the university.
On Feb. 13, CSU publicly announced its first $1 billion campaign to generate philanthropic support for teaching, research, outreach, and veterinary clinical services. With the gifts for regenerative research, the university is more than halfway to fulfilling that goal.
The leader in planning the institute has been Dr. Wayne McIlwraith, CSU professor and founding director of the Orthopaedic Research Center in the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. He and other faculty members with the center developed the vision for the institute as part of their focus on equine musculoskeletal problems. Then other CSU faculty with interests in regenerative medicine became involved.
AAVMC recognizes excellence in academic veterinary medicine
The Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges recognized the 2016 recipients of five awards during its Annual Conference March 4–6 in Washington, D.C. This year's conference, titled “Fifty and Forward,” commemorated the AAVMC's 50th anniversary.
Dr. Robert “Pete” Bill (Purdue ′80) was the recipient of the AAVMC Distinguished Teacher Award, presented by Zoetis. Dr. Bill teaches pharmacology and toxicology to veterinary and veterinary technology students at Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine. He also serves as assistant dean for academic affairs, teaching, and learning at the veterinary college. For more than 25 years, students have consistently recognized his outstanding teaching ability, infectious enthusiasm, and engaging teaching style through both unsolicited feedback and course evaluations, according to an AAVMC press release.
James E. Womack, PhD, from the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, was honored with the AAVMC Excellence in Research Award.
Dr. Womack is a distinguished professor in the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology at the veterinary college and has a joint appointment in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Medicine at the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine. He also directs the Center for Animal Biotechnology and Genomics. Dr. Womack was recognized for almost four decades of research into animal genomics and comparative mammalian genetics, working to develop comparative genome maps that revealed novel approaches for veterinary medicine, disease prevention, therapeutics, and control.
Dr. Phillip Nelson (Tuskegee ′79), dean and professor of immunology at the Western University of Health Sciences College of Veterinary Medicine, received the Senator John Melcher, DVM, Leadership in Public Policy Award. Dr. Nelson has been active in the AAVMC's advocacy efforts, serving on numerous committees, including its Advocacy Committee. Through the AAVMC, he has participated in Capitol Hill visits for more than a decade, developing relationships with governmental decision-makers, and lobbying Congress to address pressing issues such as the Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program.
As dean, he has played an integral role in promoting the veterinary college's joint public health master's degree with the University of Minnesota, and he has worked with other senior university administrators to implement an interprofessional education program that promotes the important role of the veterinary profession in public health and one health.
Former Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine dean Dr. Ralph Richardson (Kansas State ′70) was chosen to deliver the Recognition Lecture. Dr. Richardson has provided almost 50 years of service in veterinary medicine, including 17 years as dean of KSU's veterinary college before retiring this past summer. He is currently serving as interim dean and CEO of K-State's Olathe campus. He also chaired the AAVMC's 50th Anniversary Celebration Committee. Dr. Richardson's lecture, titled “Reflecting on the Past, Looking to the Future,” identified opportunities that resulted from defining moments of his career. He also noted key concerns for the future of academic veterinary medicine and possible ways to address those concerns.
Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota was presented with the first AAVMC President's Award for Meritorious Service for his leadership in the area of one health. Franken introduced the One Health Act of 2016 (S 2634) on March 3, which would establish an interagency one-health program to address and help prevent the transmission of known and emerging infectious diseases between animal and human populations, among other things.
Last year, a group of seven senators led by Franken sent a letter to President Obama supportive of the one-health approach. The senators urged the president “to develop a National One Health Framework that will outline the steps required to instill a culture of collaboration between human, animal and environmental health agencies.” The senators also encouraged the president to press the United Nations to develop an interagency framework to address the World Health Organization's information gaps in animal and environmental health.
Franken's legislative director, Ali Nouri, accepted the award on his behalf.
Veterinary faculty noted for their exceptional teaching, outreach
The Student AVMA House of Delegates presented awards during its annual session March 17–19 at Iowa State University.
Dr. J. Claudio Gutierrez, assistant professor of clinical anatomy at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, received the SAVMA Teaching Excellence Award. Student nominators cited his ability to encourage problem-solving skills; his ability to engage, motivate, and encourage students; and his efforts to maximize student learning.
Dr. Gutierrez obtained his DVM degree in 1997 from the University of Concepcion in Chile. He received a Fulbright Scholarship to obtain a doctorate, which he did in 2009 from the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine. He joined the UC-Davis faculty in 2014 after serving as a faculty instructor of anatomy at Virginia-Maryland. Dr. Gutierrez's research interests are diabetes, pregnancy and prevention of birth defects, and differing modalities of teaching anatomy and student learning.
The SAVMA Community Outreach Teaching Excellence Award went to Dr. Catherine Anne Muckle, associate professor and clinical bacteriologist at the University of Prince Edward Island Atlantic Veterinary College.
Veronique Savoie-Dufour, a second-year student at the veterinary college who nominated Dr. Muckle, said in a UPEI press release, “She is not only incredibly knowledgeable in bacteriology, but she has an ease of explaining key concepts and their importance. Her upbeat personality makes it a joy to attend each of her classes, and she encourages active learning, requesting students to participate and ask questions.”
Dr. Muckle said in the release that her goal as a teacher is to optimize her students’ learning and to make a difference in their education—to give them a basic understanding of bacterial and fungal disease relevant to veterinary medicine. She is a 1979 graduate of the University of Guelph Ontario Veterinary College.
Event: Annual meeting, March 4–6, Corvallis
Awards: Veterinary Service Award: Dr. Deborah Cochell, Canby. A 1998 graduate of the Oregon State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Cochell co-owns Woodburn Veterinary Clinic in Woodburn and Sequoia Veterinary Clinic in Canby. She serves on the board of directors of Project Pooch, a rehabilitation program that pairs inmates incarcerated at the MacLaren Youth Correctional Facility in Woodburn, with shelter dogs. Dr. Cochell was honored for her work with the program. Practice Manager of the Year: Brenda Bailey, Sherwood. Practice manager of Cascade Summit Animal Hospital in West Linn, Bailey co-manages the clinic's financial plan, administers the practice's use of technology to enhance efficiency, and has created a wellness program for the clinic. President's Award: Dr. Brad LeaMaster, Dallas. A 1982 graduate of the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. LeaMaster is Oregon state veterinarian. Earlier, he worked for the Department of Agriculture for several years.
Business: Discussions were held on the licensure of veterinary practice facilities, including nonprofit facilities that treat privately owned animals; the status of relief veterinarians as independent contractors versus employees; and the Food and Drug Administration's guidance document on veterinary compounding and the Drug Enforcement Administration's restrictions on the compounding of controlled substances for non-patient–specific purposes. Also discussed were the transport of controlled substances and the Veterinary Medicine Mobility Act; antibiotic resistance in food-producing animals and the Veterinary Feed Directive; and concerns and issues surrounding cannabis, including toxicosis in patients and clients “treating” their animals with marijuana.
Officials: Drs. Jean Hall, Corvallis, president; Robert Franklin, Portland, president-elect; Amelia Simpson, Portland, vice president; Jay Fineman, Newport, treasurer; and Charles Meyer, Grants Pass, immediate past president
New Mexico VMA
Event: Annual meeting, Feb. 20, Albuquerque
Awards: Veterinarian of the Year: Dr. Teri Wheeler, Albuquerque. A 1983 graduate of the Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Wheeler practices at Blue Cross Animal Clinic in Albuquerque. Distinguished Service Award: Dr. Bonnie Snyder, Edgewood. A 1974 graduate of the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Snyder recently retired as director of the veterinary technology program at Central New Mexico Community College. She serves as secretary-treasurer of the NMVMA.
Officials: Drs. Emily Walker, Albuquerque, president; Daniel Levenson, Albuquerque, president-elect; Bonnie Snyder, Edgewood, secretary-treasurer; and Manuel Garcia, Farmington, immediate past president
Event: Virginia Veterinary Conference, Feb. 25–27, Roanoke
Awards: Paul F. Landis Veterinarian of the Year: Dr. Claudia True, Ashland. A 1986 graduate of the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. True is an associate veterinarian at Woodside Equine Clinic in Ashland. Distinguished Veterinarian Award: Dr. Kimberly Bridges, Christianburg, in recognition of her professionalism, compassion, and humanity while practicing veterinary medicine. A 2005 graduate of the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Bridges is managing veterinary partner and office manager of Appalachian Veterinary Services, a mixed animal practice in Christianburg. Veterinary Service Award: Dr. Jeffery Newman, Fairfax Station, for excellent representation of the veterinary profession through active community involvement and veterinary service. A 1992 graduate of the Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Newman co-owns Caring Hands Animal Hospital, with locations in Virginia and Maryland. Recent Graduate Leadership Award: Dr. Benjamin Halsey, Marion. A 2006 graduate of the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Halsey owns Smyth County Animal Hospital in Marion. Mentor of the Year: Dr. Andrew O'Carroll, Mount Airy. A 2008 graduate of the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. O'Carroll is a medical regulatory reviewer for the Food and Drug Administration's Office of Vaccine Research and Review.
Officials: Drs. Margaret Rucker, Lebanon, president; Melinda McCall, Louisa, president-elect; Jason Bollenbeck, Leesburg, vice president; Martin Betts, Charlottesville, secretary-treasurer; and Terry Taylor, Chesterfield, immediate past president
American College of Veterinary Surgeons
The American College of Veterinary Surgeons certified 97 new diplomates following the board certification examination it held Feb. 1–2 in San Diego. The new diplomates are as follows:
Valeria Albanese, Gainesville, Florida
Petrisor Baia, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Daniel G. Balogh, Fairfax, Virginia
Heather M. Bancroft-Hunt, Devon, England
Katherine H. Barnes, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Rhodes P. Bell, Fallston, Maryland
Christina L. Boekhout, Salt Lake City
Sophie H. Bogers, Leesburg, Virginia
Celine Bourzac, Chenneviers sur Marne, France
Yonathan Buks, Sherman Oaks, California
Megan J. Burke, Raleigh, North Carolina
Andrew F. Burton, Salt Lake City
Jason S. Callard, Wadsworth, Ohio
Nicholas T. Carlson, Salinas, California
Angela G. Carnathan, Easton, Pennsylvania
Michael A. Caruso, Thompson's Station, Tennessee
Po-Yen Chou, Davis, California
Matthew J. Cleveland, San Diego
Aimee C. Colbath, Loveland, Colorado
Grayson L. Cole, San Antonio
Erin E. Corbin, Dallas
Evan C. Crawford, Langley, British Columbia
Briana Danielson, Rockville, Maryland
David Demner, San Diego
Dana DeSandre-Robinson, Oceanside, California
Marie-Soleil Dubois, Guelph, Ontario
Sushmitha S. Durgam, Urbana, Illinois
Margaux Edwards-Milewski, Lexington, Kentucky
Megan S. Fine, Maplewood, Minnesota
Patrick Flynn, Dublin, California
Bronwyn A. Fullagar, Calgary, Alberta
Alison K. Gardner, Columbus, Ohio
Mark Garneau, Seattle
Christopher M. Gauthier, Rockville, Maryland
Deanna M. Gazzerro, Cave Creek, Arizona
Ellyn D. Gouldin, Cherry Hill, New Jersey
Josephine L. Hardwick, Cottesloe, Australia
Geoffrey M. Harriman, Huntsville, Alabama
Jennifer Haupt, Boston
Troy D. Herthel, Los Olivos, California
Darren Imhoff, Englewood, Colorado
Sakthila Jeyakumar, Brecksville, Ohio
Stephen C. Jones, Copley, Ohio
Meredith W. Kapler, Raleigh, North Carolina
Kathryn L. Kaufman, Blaine, Minnesota
Jessica R. Kinsey, Shavertown, Pennsylvania
Jessica L. Knapp, Mill Valley, California
Michael B. Kraun, Liberty Township, Ohio
Kelley A. Kraus, Tinton Falls, New Jersey
Kristin L. Kry, Toronto
Marvin Boon Jin Kung, Brisbane, Australia
Lindsey M. Kurach, Stony Plain, Alberta
Jodie Lamb, Edmond, Oklahoma
Benjamin Ley, Pittsburgh
Patrick G. Loftin, Suffolk, Virginia
Sarah Malek, West Lafayette, Indiana
Renee-Claire Malenfant, Levis, Quebec
Harry J. Markwell, Lexington, Kentucky
Ryan E. McCally, Columbia, Missouri
Marina J. McConkey, Ithaca, New York
Mischa B. McDonald-Lynch, Raleigh, North Carolina
Mattie A. McMaster, Arundel, England
Mustajab H. Mirza, Zachary, Louisiana
Rolf B. Modesto, College Station, Texas
Brittany Neal, Houston
Jefferson S. Nunley, Nashville
Matthew D. O'Donnell, Austin, Texas
Joseph D. Palamara, Clinton Corners, New York
Benjamin S. Perry, Spring, Texas
Lindsay R. Phillips, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
Timothy J. Preston, Lafayette, Indiana
John Przywara, St. Charles, Illinois
Lauren C. Pugliese, Fishers, Indiana
Matthew E. Raske, New York
Robyn L. Read, Flower Mound, Texas
Travis P. Reed, Milwaukee
Stephanie A. Rosenheck, Dresher, Pennsylvania
Desiree D. Rosselli, Orange, California
Marjolaine Rousseau, St.-Pie, Quebec
Jacob A. Rubin, Holt, Michigan
Matt Sherwood, Corpus Christi, Texas
Eduardo Almeida da Silveira, St.- Hyacinthe, Quebec
Harpreet Singh, Madison, Wisconsin
William L. Snell, Stoneham, Massachusetts
Jonathan P. Speelman, Hong Kong
Marko Stejskal, Kuslanova, Croatia
Brian J. Sutherland, Sterling, Virginia
Jessie S. Sutton, Davis, California
Dane M. Tatarniuk, Roseville, Minnesota
Pierre Trencart, St. Cannat, France
David A. Upchurch, Williamston, Michigan
Joanna E. Virgin, Glenwood Springs, Colorado
Wade T. Walker, Bonsall, California
Vincent Wavreille, Columbus, Ohio
Ralph P. Webster, Heatherton, Australia
Chase T. Witfield, Stillwater, Oklahoma
Chloe Wormser, Haverford, Pennsylvania
Obituaries: AVMA member AVMA honor roll member Nonmember
Eugene W. Adams
Dr. Adams (Kansas State ‘44), 96, Tuskegee Institute, Alabama, died Feb. 22, 2016. A diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists, he was professor emeritus and a past associate dean for academic affairs at the Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Adams began his career as a meat inspector with the Department of Agriculture in St. Louis. In 1951, he joined Tuskegee's veterinary school as an instructor in the Department of Large Animal Medicine and Surgery, subsequently transferring to the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology. In 1955, Dr. Adams was named department head and shortly thereafter began graduate work at Cornell University.
After earning both his masters and doctorate in veterinary pathology from Cornell, he returned to Tuskegee as head of the Department of Pathology and Parasitology. In the early 1970s, Dr. Adams served two years on the faculty of Ahmadu Bello University in Nigeria as professor, head of the Department of Veterinary Pathology and Microbiology, and assistant dean for student affairs. He then returned to Tuskegee, and, in 1973, was named associate dean for academic affairs. As associate dean, Dr. Adams developed the veterinary school's educational reform program and directed the minority recruitment program. He retired from Tuskegee University in 1989 as vice provost and director of international programs.
Dr. Adams authored the book “The Legacy: A History of the Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine (1945–1995).” In 1995, he established an endowed scholarship in his name at Tuskegee, using the proceeds from the sale of the book. Dr. Adams was a past president of the American Veterinary Medical History Society and a member of the Conference of Research Workers in Animal Diseases and American Association of University Professors. In 1964, he received what is now known as the Zoetis Distinguished Veterinary Teacher Award, and, in 1979, was honored with Tuskegee's Faculty Achievement Award.
Dr. Adams is survived by his wife, Myrtle; two sons; three grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren. Memorials may be made to the Eugene W. Adams Endowed Scholarship, Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine, Tuskegee, AL 36088.
Elinor A. Brandt
Dr. Brandt (Pennsylvania ‘63), 77, Porter Ranch, California, died Jan. 13, 2016. A small animal veterinarian, she practiced at East Valley Veterinary Clinic in Sun Valley, California, prior to retirement. Dr. Brandt volunteered at the Wildlife Waystation in Sylmar, California. Her wife, Susan Pastorek; two sons; and four grandchildren survive her. Memorials may be made to Wildlife Waystation, 14831 Little Tujunga Canyon Road, Sylmar, CA 91342.
Schuyler R. Enochs
Dr. Enochs (Washington State ‘57), 81, Caldwell, Idaho, died Sept. 19, 2015. A mixed animal veterinarian, he established Caldwell Veterinary Hospital in 1963, retiring in 1996. Prior to that, Dr. Enochs worked in Idaho at Homedale and Burley. He was a past president of the Idaho VMA and Caldwell Chamber of Commerce and served on the board of directors of the American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho. Dr. Enochs is survived by his companion, Mary Cook; a son and a stepson; and three grandchildren. His stepson, Dr. Brett W. Bauscher (Oregon State ‘91), is a small animal veterinarian in Caldwell. Memorials may be made to the Greatest Need Endowment Fund for Southwest Idaho, Idaho Community Foundation, 210 W. State St., Boise, ID 83702, www.idcomfdn.org/funds/swgreatest.
Jesse D. Kerley
Dr. Kerley (Texas A&M ‘82), 59, Denton, Texas, died Feb. 5, 2016. He owned Decatur Veterinary Clinic in Decatur, Texas, focusing on bovine and dairy medicine, from 1984 until retirement 22 years later. Early in his career, Dr. Kerley practiced in Muleshoe, Texas. He is survived by his wife, Cathy, and a stepson and stepdaughter. Memorials toward the Dr. Dirk Kerley Children's Fund may be made to the National Foundation for Ectodermal Dysplasias, 6 Executive Drive, Suite 2, Fairview Heights, IL 62208, https://support.nfed.org/donate-now.
Paul J. McAndrew
Dr. McAndrew (Iowa State ‘52), 92, Springfield, Missouri, died Jan. 24, 2016. He worked as a meat inspection supervisor for the Department of Agriculture from 1976 until retirement in 1989. Prior to that, Dr. McAndrew practiced mixed animal medicine in Kalona, Iowa, for more than 20 years. He was an Army Air Force veteran of World War II. Dr. McAndrew is survived by six children, 18 grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.
Robert W. Otto
Dr. Otto (Washington State ‘57), 93, Everett, Washington, died Dec. 7, 2015. Following graduation, he taught at Kansas State University before moving to Edmonds, Washington, where he established his practice. In 1975, Dr. Otto took a sabbatical for a year, serving as veterinarian for the island of Kauai in Hawaii. He then returned to his practice, retiring in 1992. Dr. Otto was a past Washington State Veterinarian of the Year. He served in the Army during World War II, earning two Purple Hearts and a Distinguished Flying Cross. Dr. Otto's three children, four grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren survive him.
Myron G. Schultz
Dr. Schultz (Cornell ‘58), 81, Atlanta, died Feb. 19, 2016. An infectious disease epidemiologist, he was senior medical officer in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Global Disease Detection Operations Center. Following graduation from veterinary school, Dr. Schultz attended Albany Medical College, practicing part time in a small animal hospital in Albany and as a track veterinarian in Saratoga Springs. After obtaining his medical degree in the early 1960s, he worked at a U.S. Public Health Service hospital in Boston, subsequently beginning his career with the CDC as an officer in the Epidemic Intelligence Service program. Dr. Schultz went on to earn a diploma in clinical tropical medicine from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
On his return to the CDC from London, he founded and served as director of the CDC's parasitic diseases unit, which grew into the Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria. Dr. Schultz also established the parasitic diseases drug service, enabling access to drugs for tropical and parasitic diseases. He helped found field epidemiology training programs in developing countries, designed and implemented a program to protect the health of CDC officers traveling internationally, and developed the CDC brochure Yellow Book, advising international travelers on health risks. Dr. Schultz was instrumental in the discovery of babesiosis in the United States and brought attention to diseases such as giardiasis and Pneumoncystis carinii pneumonia. In the early 1980s, his detection of a cluster of pneumonia cases helped public health officials identify the AIDS epidemic.
Dr. Schultz served as an epidemiological consultant to the World Health Organization, Pan American Health Organization, American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, and several foreign health ministries. A fellow of the American College of Physicians, he was a past recipient of the LSHTM Frederick Murgatroyd Award and CDC William C. Watson Jr. Medal of Excellence. Dr. Schultz also twice received the USPHS Meritorious Service Medal and was honored with the ASTMH Bailey K. Ashford Medal. He is survived by his wife, Selma; a son and a daughter; 13 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.
Russell J. Smith
Dr. Smith (Kansas State ‘85), 56, Glasgow, Montana, died Sept. 29, 2015. Following graduation, he moved to Glasgow to begin his career in mixed animal medicine. Dr. Smith served as a partner at Glasgow Veterinary Clinic, a practice he took ownership of in 1993. He was active with several community organizations, including the 4-H Club and Montana Make-A-Wish Foundation. Dr. Smith's wife, Kathy, and two sons survive him. Memorials toward local charities may be sent to 1120 Valley View, Glasgow, MT 59230.
William H. Sweeney
Dr. Sweeney (Iowa State ‘67), 82, Vermont Township, Wisconsin, died Feb. 3, 2016. An equine veterinarian, he and his brother, Dr. James Sweeney (Iowa State “64), co-founded Bloomington Veterinary Hospital in Bloomington, Minnesota, and Equine Medical Center in Lakeville, Minnesota. Early in his career, Dr. Sweeney worked in Minnesota at Minneapolis and St. Paul. He served as the veterinarian for the Minnesota State Fair beginning in 1968 and was the veterinarian for the Minnesota State Horse Expo from 1990–2015 and the North Star Morgan Americana Horse Show from 1973–2013. Dr. Sweeney was a past president of the Minnesota Association of Equine Practitioners; a member of the Tri-State Horseman Association, Minnesota Thoroughbred Association, and United States Equestrian Association; and an honorary member of the American Association of Equine Practitioners. He served in the Army during the Korean War.
Dr. Sweeney's wife, Jackie; three sons; and seven grandchildren survive him. One son, Dr. David J. Sweeney (Minnesota ‘90), is a small animal veterinarian in Sunset, Utah. Memorials may be made to Jesuit Retreat, 8243 Demontreville Trail, Lake Elmo, MN 55042; Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine (with memo line of check notated to Equine Excellence Fund), ISU Foundation, 2266 Vet Med, 1800 Christiansen Drive, Ames, IA 50011; or AAEP Foundation, Attn: Memorial Fund Department, 4033 Iron; Works Parkway, Lexington, KY 40511.