Dear Fellow Diplomates,
As we head into spring and the 2018 ACVIM Forum approaches, I wanted to update you on the activities of the Board of Regents (BOR) and the central office.
Beatrice Meyer, our interim CEO, has done an excellent job keeping our operations functioning and moving strategic initiatives forward. The search for the permanent CEO is progressing well. The search firm we engaged, Tuft Associates, has done an outstanding job in soliciting and screening approximately 65 applicants! As I write this letter, the first round of interviews of the semi-finalists has been completed, and the final applicants selected for a second interview. We anticipate the new CEO will be present at the Forum and introduced during the annual membership luncheon, this year on Friday. Please come and meet him or her.
As reported earlier, a new electronic platform that will be used in lieu of paper forms for residency training programs (RTPs) and candidate credentials documents is scheduled to go live in July with LAIM as the pilot. In tandem with the development of the electronic platform, the BOR has created a Forms for RESidency Training (FoREST) task force to re-evaluate, update and/or create electronic forms needed for registration of RTPs, resident progress reports and credentialing documents as outlined in the Certification Manual. By deciding the scope of information the ACVIM wants to collect, FoREST can optimize the forms and their use as the electronic platform is being custom built for the ACVIM. We can also use this opportunity to determine what additional data would benefit the ACVIM, RTPs and candidates, e.g. RTP profiles that are comparable and that can be shared with perspective residents.
To remind you, the BOR approved a new at-large specialist in private practice (SPP) BOR position that will be open to Diplomates in any of the specialties. Part of the duties of the new position will be to serve as the BOR liaison to the Marketing and Communication Committee. Given that the majority of our Diplomates are now in private practice, the BOR wants to ensure that SPP have a dedicated voice in College decisions. Even though the BOR endorsed the position, the creation of the position requires a change in the ACVIM Constitution. The Constitution and By Laws Committee is currently revising the Constitution to reflect this and other recommended changes in our governance. A draft of the proposed constitutional changes will be distributed in May, a few weeks prior to the Forum. All Diplomates attending the Forum should take the opportunity to have a face-to-face dialogue concerning the proposed changes with their colleagues. Changes in the Constitution require a membership vote. Following an additional two weeks for discussion and revision post-Forum, the vote will occur. Please review the draft of the Constitution when you receive it and stay abreast of ACVIM announcements for the call for a vote.
I am very excited to announce that the first 3 ACVIM Advanced Research Fellowships have been awarded. The fellowship provides $25,000 for the fellowship, with the understanding the sponsoring institution will match the ACVIM grant. Dr. Karin Allenspach, DECVIM-CA, will be working on “Organ-On-A-Chip for Canine Chronic Enteropathies” at Iowa State University . Dr. Aida Vientós-Plotts, who is completing her residency in SAIM, will be studying “Respiratory Dysbiosis in Dogs and Cats” at the University of Missouri. The North Carolina State Fellowship in “Host-Pathogen Interactions” is still accepting applications at the time of writing this letter.
For the second year, Royal Canin is generously sponsoring 30 2nd-year residents to travel to the 2018 ECVIM- CA Congress, which will be in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and to visit the Royal Canin Research Center in Aimargues, France. Residents in SAIM, Neurology, Cardiology and Oncology who are currently in their second year were encouraged to apply. Applicants will be selected by a lottery system. A letter, detailing the trip details and application form, was sent to all residents eligible to attend.
During this past year, the BOR has advocated nationally on behalf of the membership. First, we wrote a letter to the American Board of Veterinary Specialists (ABVS) and to JAVMA opposing the establishment of Botanical Medicine as a specialty college. As a result of our concerns and other comments provided to the ABVS, the petition was denied. The organizers were redirected to the American College of Veterinary Pharmacology to potentially become part of their college and were given other recommendations for a future petition. The BOR also wrote to the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) with concerns about the proposed policy governing telemedicine. Consequently, the AAVSB met with representatives of the AVMA and ABVS, realized that the policy had implications that the AAVSB did not intend, and will amend the policy. These actions are 2 examples of the advocacy of the BOR on behalf of the ACVIM membership.
Beginning in July, 2017, the BOR began having monthly conference calls to provide better continuity and efficiency in College governance. We continue to have two face-to-face meetings at the Forum and in November of each year. As we want Diplomates to be well informed on BOR activity, we have added information on our meetings to the ACVIM website. You will find a summary of the BOR minutes at http://www.acvim.org/About/Governance.
Believe it or not, the 2018 Forum is less than 2 months away! The good news is that there is still time to register if you have not done so already. If you are attending, please join me at the Membership Luncheon and Awards Ceremony on Friday. This is an opportunity to hear what’s happening within our college. A highlight of the luncheon is the presentations of the prestigious Robert W. Kirk Award for Professional Excellence and the ACVIM Distinguished Service Award. As already mentioned, we are also planning to introduce our new CEO as well. Make sure to sign up for the luncheon during the Forum registration process.
Finally, on behalf of the Board of Regents and ACVIM staff, I would like to extend a huge thank you to all of our volunteers who served on committees during the past year. The work of the ACVIM would not be possible without the numerous volunteers, and we are grateful for their service.
Susan L. White DVM, MS, DACVIM (LAIM)