Presidents report for 22nd January 2006 Meeting of the WEVA Board
at the 9th WEVA conference, Marrakesh, Morocco.
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
My sincere thanks to you all for the pleasure and privilege of your invitation to serve this Association as your President. Your invitation was relayed to me through the then President and now our Senior Vice-President, Warwick Bayly, following the 7th WEVA Congress in Sorrento, in October 2001. I accepted on the condition that WEVA agreed to become less of a global umbrella organisation and more of a continuing education provider, with a special emphasis on providing teaching in countries in which equine CE was not as evolved as it is in some of the world's more fortunate countries.
The then President of the AAEP, Jerry Black was very supportive of this concept. He very kindly arranged for an invitation to discuss it with the AAEP Board at the AAEP Annual Congress in San Diego in December of that year. It was well received and we as WEVA are very fortunate to have been allowed to address the AAEP Board then and in following years. This is an important and valuable precedent and is one that we should seek to maintain. Jerry's successors, Wayne MacIlwraith, Tom Lenz, Larry Bramlage and Scott Palmer together with their ever helpful Executive Director, David Foley have given us invaluable assistance when ever we have sought it. We are honoured to have Thomas Brokken and David with us in Morocco this year. BEVA very kindly allowed a similar opportunity and Sandy Love as President of the BEVA Trust has been both a speaker at a WEVA meeting and a supporter of our applications for funding for speakers. We have also been very fortunate to have enjoyed such magnificent support from AVEF and from SIVE, through their hosting of our 6th and 7th congress in Paris and Sorrento respectively and their unfailing ongoing support for all of our activities.
8th WEVA Congress, Buenos Aires
Our friends in Argentina were wonderful hosts for the 8th WEVA Congress in Buenos Aires in October 2003. They provided us with a tremendous scientific and social programme and importantly, reminded us of the opportunities that we can provide for student participation in our meetings. The Buenos Aires Congress was a significant milestone for WEVA because of the difficult situation that existed at the time of the Argentinian bid for the Congress. Mario Lopez Oliva and his colleagues deserve special recognition for their courage and tenacity in bringing their vision of a WEVA World Congress, in their wonderful country, to such a memorable and successful reality. They provided WEVA with its largest ever World Congress, with 1,364 registrants.
We have used our own funds and funds from the AAEP, AVEF, BEVA, and SIVE to further promote equine continuing education, through a new series of intermediate meetings. These meetings are intermediate, in that they are held between the WEVA World Congress and are intermediate in scope and content. Our commitment to these meetings has varied from helping with a single speaker, to working with the local organisers to provide an integrated programme and all speakers.
Since the inception of this programme, WEVA has been represented at the Russian Equine Veterinary Association in 2002 by Richard Corde and later that year by Julie Fjeldborg. Hugh Dillon (Chairman: Equine Group - Veterinary Ireland) received sponsorship from the International League for the Protection of Horses (ILPH) to act as a WEVA contributor for a weekend of teaching in Kiev, also in 2002. WEVA was fortunate to receive significant support from the Hong Kong Jockey Club when it co-hosted an historic inaugural equine medicine meeting in the Chinese Agricultural University in Beijing in August 2002. The team of speakers included Sandy Love (BEVA), Bobby Lewis (AAEP), Fritz Sluyter (FEI), Roland Devolz (International Stud Book), Keith Watkins (Hong Kong Jockey Club) and myself. A full page report on this meeting was carried in the Equine Veterinary Journal in 2003. Julie Wilson and Maria Masri both fluent in Spanish, taught for a weekend in El Salvador, in the Spring of 2003.The El Salvador meeting was also sponsored by the ILPH. Gary Norwood represented us in Mexico in the same year.
Richard Corde and his colleagues in AVEF have provided all of us with the very best example of international collaboration in their remarkable initiative in Russia. WEVA was privileged to join with Richard, his French colleagues Jean-Francois Bruyas and Vincent Boureau, Bernard Duvernay from Switzerland as the international delegation of speakers at the Russian Equine Veterinary Association (REVA) Congress in March 2004 in Moscow. REVA's President, Ekaterina Zabegina has made an enormous contribution to the development of equine continuing education. This congress provided an illustration of the occasional need for WEVA to speak with an international umbrella voice. I was asked to open the Congress on behalf of WEVA and to write to President Putin re. the view taken of some of our Russian colleagues who had used ketamine for legitimate anaesthetic purposes.
WEVA joined with the newly formed Equine Veterinary Association in India in hosting a continuing education weekend in Pune, in January of 2005. The local organisers Colonel Gupta and Ravi Reddy and their team were inspiring. Our team of volunteers was composed of Tim Greet, Julie Fjeldborg, Mariann Klay and myself. Tim's contribution's were sponsored by the BEVA Trust. The Equine Veterinary Association of India wish to become WEVA members and to host further meetings of this type. Tim has subsequently joined our Board and he wrote a report on the meeting for the BEVA Trust, which was copied to the Board and will appear on our new web-site.
Our new website will also carry the report on the intermediate meeting held in conjunction with the Hungarian Equine Veterinary Association (HEVA) in Budapest, in November 2005. This report was prepared by Bodo Gabor, the HEVA President. He and his colleagues were wonderful and charming hosts. Warwick Bayly and I both spoke at the meeting and Warwick's enormous effort to attend, despite a punishing flight schedule, deserves special recognition.
Revised Statutes, Dues / Subscriptions and New Structures
We have further refined the excellent work done by Warwick Bayly and Bill Jones prior to and at the 7th Congress in Sorrento which provided us with documented Statutes. The revised Statutes will be presented to the WEVA Board for discussion in Morocco. The principal changes relate to the Presidency and to the concept of dues / subscriptions. We have operated a system of Junior Vice President / President Elect, President and Senior Vice President / Immediate Past President, for the last two years. Under our current Statutes, a progression through these three positions could involve four years of service in each post. We are therefore recommending that this should be shortened to two years. We have separated the offices of Secretary and Treasurer, but there are many clear advantages to allowing the re-appointment of these officers for successive terms. We have been very well served in both capacities, by Julie Fjeldborg and Bill Jones, respectively. Julie and Bill, special sincere thanks for all of your many services to this Association.
We have deliberately moved away from the concept of Dues / Subscriptions. We have relied instead on funds from the WEVA Congress and sponsorship, to provide our programme of intermediate meetings and to provide speakers for congress. We have tried very hard to provide evidence of value for the monies that have been donated and entrusted to us by national equine veterinary associations and to spend, as far as possible, only in the provision of teaching. This approach and the voluntary donation of so much time, often in far flung places, by our own Board members and by our other speakers, has enhanced WEVA's reputation. This move from Dues / Subscriptions was a courageous step for the Board to take and I wish to express my sincere thanks for their courage and trust in doing so.
We have a new system of sub-committees. Whilst still in its infancy, it is a means of creating greater involvement of all of our Board members, all of whom have much to offer. The venues committee have the exciting and challenging task of offering to the Board their recommendations for the place and timing of the 10th WEVA congress. It is very pleasing to have had expressions of interest from so many countries. We have joined with IVIS for promoting our meetings and for our Proceedings.
This report documents my period in office and marks the end of my time as your President. I am deeply indebted to each and every one of you, my fellow Board members and to all of those who have assisted WEVA for the last four years. It has been a very enjoyable privilege to work with you. It is a particular pleasure to note that my successor, Richard Corde, has led us all by his example in fostering equine continuing education, in such an exemplary manner. I would like to add my special thanks to those that he will offer for all of us, in Morocco to Mahommed Bakkoury, Ahmed Tibary and Warwick Bayly's Scientific Committee for giving us such an exciting 9th WEVA Congress in Marrakesh.