Two Veterinarians Honored with WSAVA President’s Award

Two veterinarians are to receive the World Small Animal Veterinary Association’s (WSAVA’s) prestigious President’s Award at its upcoming World Congress. This occasional award recognizes exceptional service to the WSAVA, with the awardees selected by the WSAVA President, currently Dr Siraya Chunekamrai from Thailand. WSAVA World Congress takes place in Lima, Peru from 29-31 October. The awardees are:

Dr Nicola Neumann

Dr Neumann, who practices in Ireland, was the driving force behind developing WSAVA World Congress into the leading global veterinary event it is today. A founder member of the WSAVA’s Congress Steering Committee from 2010-2013, she created the blueprint for World Congress and, following the appointment of a Professional Congress Organizer (PCO), she served on the WSAVA Executive Board as Congress Liaison Officer from 2014-2019. Her role required her to develop congress bidding and evaluation processes and standing operating procedures from scratch, in addition to playing a full role on the WSAVA Executive Board.

Dr Gregg Takashima

Dr Takashima is a distinguished contributor to the WSAVA’s clinical committees. He joined the WSAVA Global Nutrition Committee (GNC) in 2011 and was its long-term co-chair until he stood down in 2019. During this time, he co-authored the GNC’s Global Nutrition Guidelines and Global Nutrition Toolkit, two of the WSAVA’s most frequently downloaded resources. A passionate believer in the human-animal bond, Dr Takashima also served on the WSAVA’s One Health Committee and, during 2017, he contributed to the WSAVA Animal Welfare Guidelines and Welfare Charter created by its Animal Wellness and Welfare Committee. Dr Takashima is CEO of the Animal Care Group of Lake Oswego in the USA.

Commenting on this year’s President’s Award recipients, Dr Chunekamrai said: “Thanks to their passion and dedication over many years, both of this year’s awardees have left an indelible mark on the WSAVA.

“Dr Neumann was instrumental in creating WSAVA World Congress as we know it today – a first rate global congress with an amazing scientific program – but also an annual gathering of our community during which our members can learn and share experiences with their global colleagues. During her time with us, her kindness, common sense and wisdom helped us to overcome every challenge and we are forever grateful for her contribution.”

She added: “During his tenure, Dr Takashima contributed significantly to the betterment of the veterinary profession globally, particularly in the area of nutrition. He also played a key role in the development of the WSAVA through his contribution to our other committees and, in particular, to our current strategic plan. He embodies the core values of the WSAVA and is a great ambassador for our work.”

Dr Takashima said: “We live in challenging times with collaboration and a ‘world view’ more important than ever. We can no longer act alone as veterinarians, as an association or as a profession, because what we do impacts many, as we are impacted by what others do. Technology has helped our profession advance but, to stay relevant, we must stay true to our values of personal compassion, the pursuit of excellence and understanding the value of the human-animal bond. I have cherished my time with WSAVA as these values have been embraced by the association, leading to the betterment of global society.”

Dr Neumann said: “During my career I have volunteered much of my time, both to the Veterinary Ireland Companion Animal Society and to the WSAVA. I hope to continue to do this but the global shortage of veterinary professionals is severe in Ireland, limiting my ‘out of practice’ time and, possibly, even meaning that I will be unable to come to Peru to collect this prestigious Award, which will be very disappointing for me.

“The WSAVA is working hard to raise awareness of the contribution of veterinarians. Its cultural diversity makes its congresses and other initiatives particularly energizing and highlight that the constant thirst for education and raft of shared experiences give its members around the world a deep connection. While the profession certainly faces challenges, it also offers great opportunities and the work of the WSAVA has never been more important.”

The WSAVA represents more than 200,000 veterinarians worldwide through its 114 member associations and works to enhance standards of clinical care for companion animals. Its core activities include the development of WSAVA Global Guidelines in key areas of veterinary practice, including pain management, nutrition and vaccination, together with lobbying on important issues affecting companion animal care worldwide. WSAVA World Congress brings together globally respected experts to offer cutting edge thinking on all aspects of companion animal veterinary care.


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