Board of Directors Spring 2016 meeting summary

By: Dr. John de Jong, Board of Directors Chair; Dr. Joe Kinnarney, AVMA President; Dr. Tim Montgomery, House Advisory Committee Chair; Dr. Ron DeHaven, AVMA Executive Vice President

It takes strategy to effectively conduct business. As your AVMA Board of Directors works to advance the association to better meet your needs and to protect, promote and advance the veterinary profession, we continue to hold extensive strategy discussions at each of our meetings. Our meeting last week was no exception.

The meeting kicked-off with several strategic discussions that brought together Board members, staff and other AVMA volunteers and allied group representatives to explore a variety of topics, including:

  • International activities and outreach
  • Diversity
  • The AVMA’s Strategy Management Calendar
  • Project management
  • Marketing and communications
  • Finances and budgets, and
  • Our Strategic Business Units
    • Products and Services
    • Advocacy and Public Policy, and
    • Accreditation and Certification

In the area of international activities and outreach, the Board approved in concept the formation of a department on global advocacy and outreach. Approval of this recommendation provides direction to AVMA staff so that a plan can be developed for determining the feasibility and priority of establishment of a division or department within the AVMA’s Advocacy and Public Policy Strategic Business Unit that is focused on global advocacy and outreach. It is anticipated that a progress update will be provided to the Board later in 2016.

The Board also agreed to the establishment of an Advocacy and Public Policy Review Committee, as well as a Products and Services Review Committee. These committees will oversee the performance of the advocacy and public policy strategic activities, and provide guidance to the products and services team for the assessment and development of key member products and services, respectively. The committees will be comprised of three Board membersBoard-2016-Spring_photo, a member of the AVMA House of Delegates, who will serve in a nonvoting capacity, and a staff representative from the business unit who will serve as an ex-officio member.

AVMA CEO Dr. Ron DeHaven updated the Board on our wellness efforts and received support for moving forward with the formation of a wellness steering committee. The committee is charged with helping create a wellness coalition, determine how the efforts will be funded and what next steps need to be undertaken to advance our efforts to enhance the wellness and well-being of veterinarians and veterinary students. At this point, the steering committee will include, among others, representatives from the AVMA, the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, and the AVMA insurance trusts – AVMA Life and PLIT.

The Board approved a recommendation that one student from each of the veterinary colleges represented in the Student AVMA House of Delegates (currently at 36) be invited to participate in the 2017 AVMA Veterinary Leadership Conference.  The AVMA will reimburse travel expenses and up to three nights’ lodging.  Registration fees for the VLC attendance will not reimbursed by the AVMA. Selection of the student from each veterinary college will be through an application process administered by the SAVMA Executive Board.

During the business meeting, the Board approved revisions to the Principles of Veterinary Medical Ethics and took action on several policies of relevance to members, including:

(All new policies will be posted to our website within the next few weeks.)

Acting on recommendations from the AVMA’s Veterinary Economics Strategy Committee, the Board approved:

  • The continued development of the concept of an Economic Advisory Research Council for the veterinary profession
  • The creation of a graduate veterinary economics program in agricultural economics with a specialization in veterinary economics that will be housed in Colorado State University’s Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics
  • Funding for a new pet demographic survey and an annual metro market demand survey, and
  • The 2016 research priorities for the AVMA’s Veterinary Economics Division

The Board also:

  • Recognized staff members throughout the meeting, acknowledging various individuals and career milestones, and invited staff to a dessert reception to thank them for their service and commitment to the AVMA, our volunteers and our members.
  • Received updates on our financials, and our financial health is strong.
  • Heard a presentation by the PAC Board and how the AVMA will be improving and facilitating an easier way to contribute online. This will also be available for the AVMF.
  • Extended the campaign for AVMA Board treasurer until June 1, 2016. Information was sent to the HOD and to all executive directors of all organizations in the HOD.
  • Updates on the AVMA advisory panels were given and, as a result of their work, we are looking into developing an entity to look specifically at antimicrobials, resistance and harmonization of our policies on the subject.
  • Campaign policies have been changed and financial travel support will be given to president-elect, vice president and district director candidates during the campaign seasons in order to allow them greater opportunity to be familiar with Board actions.
  • Elected Dr. Dave Granstrom as the association’s new assistant executive vice president. 

Finally, the Board presented a recognition plaque to Dr. Elizabeth Curry-Galvin, a dedicated AVMA staff member who has served our profession through two decades of service to the association. Elizabeth participated in her final Board of Directors meeting, and she was recognized by all in attendance with a standing ovation. Elizabeth is a loyal, committed champion of the AVMA, and her service to our members has been exemplary. She will be missed, and we wish her the best of luck in her retirement.


Dr. John de Jong, Board of Directors Chair

Dr. Joe Kinnarney, AVMA President

Dr. Tim Montgomery, House Advisory Committee Chair

Dr. Ron DeHaven, AVMA Executive Vice President

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