President’s Update – My daily routine

I am way overdue with updating you on my recent activities.  I was home for a couple weeks over the holidays, which was very nice, but the calendar is fast filling up again!  This is just a general column today.  Specific trips will be posted separately. 

After 34 years in small animal practice in Wisconsin, I am currently 100% devoted to serving as your AVMA President for the 2011-2012 year.  I have two routines: 

1)  If am home

  • Usually up at 6 AM for a bit of thoughtful reading and meditation
  • Get husband Mark off to work with his lunch (he is a veterinary diagnostician at our WI Veterinary Diagnostic Lab)
  • Attend to my local exercise class at 8:30 AM
  • Work on AVMA business from 10 AM – 4 PM every day.  E-mails and the associated work they produce take up much of that time! I try to spend evenings with Mark, but sometimes I do get glued back to the laptop with AVMA business!
  • Confirm travel plans and logistics (like the best way to get from an airport to a hotel, and where and when I have to be somewhere)
  • Do laundry
  • Pack for the next AVMA trip (usually 1-2 per week).  I do NOT like packing!!
  • Take my dogs for a walk  (today it is 12 degrees BELOW zero with a good NW wind, so I may skip that today.  They will be disappointed!  See photo below > Ally is the 13″ beagle, Mona Lucy is of mixed heritage, like me!)
  • Finalize comments for a variety of speaking obligations and writing assignments
  • Participate in interviews, usually radio, written media, or on-line media (about 4-6 per month)
  • Discuss various AVMA activities with the AVMA Executive Board, other leadership, or staff to move those plans forward. You can be assured we are all very busy working on these important issues even though it may seem to be moving slowly at times. 

2)  If I am “on the road”, my three rules are:

  • Drink enough water
  • Don’t eat so much food
  • Get enough sleep

In addition, I visit with members wherever I am, and deliver whatever updates or addresses are asked of me.

I meet many AVMA members along the way, which is my favorite part of this job.  I want to hear about your personal stories and concerns, as well as your ideas on how we can really change and enhance the public’s sense of value for our complex education and service to society in so many ways.  Our goal is to engage and empower you to be the premier authorities and leaders in veterinary medicine.  We need to consider everyone’s brainstorms and ideas, so don’t be shy about discussing them with us.

How can you help?

  1. Believe in the urgency of improving our economic future.
  2. Become part of our guiding coalition and be part of the solution. 
  3. Know and believe in our economic vision – “Veterinary medicine is a personally and rewarding profession.”
  4. Know our national economic strategy, and spread the word.  The February 1 issue of JAVMA is a great place start to understand the issues.  Despite the economic issues we face, there is also great hope in the stories. 
  5. Don’t be shy about posting your ideas here!  Whenever you think of something, post it here and we will put it in one of our “buckets” of concerns for discussion.

Thanks for tuning in and expressing your opinions.

2 thoughts on “President’s Update – My daily routine

  1. Hi Christina,
    I certainly appreciate your interest in becoming a veterinarian as it is a wonderful profession. My best advice would be to start visiting practices to possibly get some of that experience you mentioned. In addition, you could start exploring the websites of some of the 28 colleges of veterinary medical colleges at

    They would also have someone who could make recommendations for your required coursework for application to their College of Veterinary Medicine, and for financial aid counseling. If you need financial aid for your current course of study at the Delaware Technical Community College, they may have a guidance counselor that could advise you on financial aid and on application to a veterinary medical college. Best wishes to you in your education and pursuit of this dream.

  2. Hello Dr. Rene Carlson, my name is CRISTINA SOLOMES, and right now I am an international student in the U.S.A.
    I came here from Sibiu, Romania as a J1 student and in time, I was approved by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, as a F1 student. I am currently living in Ocean City Maryland, and in January of this year, I enrolled at Delaware Technical Community College. My major is Veterinary Technician, and after two years in this college, I wish to continue my studies in order to earn my Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree. Since I was a teenager, I used to watch the American shows about veterinarians, and my dream was to get a degree in this, in the U.S. and become one of them one day. I am trying to achieve my dream right now, but I know that just my wish is not enough, and all my efforts focused on this dream. I would appreciate if you would provide me with some information regarding educational scholar ships or financial aid. I really wish to finish the first two years of school in order to earn my Associates Degree so I can begin working and gaining experience. Ultimately I would like to enroll at one of America’s leading schools of Veterinary Medicine because in my heart I know I am good enough.
    I would like to thank you very much for your attention.