In a news release, the group announced that Susan Little, DVM, DABVP, was presented with the International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM)/Hill's Pet Nutrition Award for outstanding contributions to feline medicine at the ISFM’s World Feline Veterinary Congress (WFVC) in Barcelona on June 29. The Award was given to Dr. Little just as she was about to give her final lecture at the event, and the presentation coincided with her birthday.
Dr. Little served as President of Winn Feline Foundation and currently continues with the foundation as a Board Member. “Winn Feline Foundation congratulates Dr. Little on this important recognition of the major contributions she has made to the advancement of feline health and well-being. Her dedication to our organization and cause is as much a part of her outstanding work and we are proud to see her receive this honor,” stated Vicki Thayer, DVM, DABVP (feline), Winn Board President.
Dr. Little has been exclusively in feline practice in Canada since 1990 and is also AAFP’s President Elect. She is editor and contributor to the new feline textbook ‘The Cat – Clinical Medicine and Management’, published in 2012 and also for the upcoming 7th edition of August’s Consultations in Feline Internal Medicine (both published by Elsevier).
Additionally, The Winn Feline Foundation held their annual meeting in Vancouver, WA on June 26, 2013 and voted in a number of new board members, including some new officers. All votes were unanimous. The new members of the board, some of whom began serving their terms on an interim basis earlier in the year, represent the most diverse group of volunteers yet to serve as Winn Board Members and indicate the Winn Feline Foundation’s commitment to expanding their board as needed to meet the needs of a growing foundation.
New Board Members include: Eric Bruner, Partner Spectrum Consulting Group, LLC; Vickie Fisher, president of The International Cat Association (TICA); Brian Holub, DVM and Chief Medical Officer VetCor Inc., and longtime Winn Feline Foundation Veterinary Advisor and Grant Reviewer; and Glenn Olah, DVM, DABVP (feline). Dr. Olah was elected to serve as President-Elect for the term beginning June 2013. Vickie Fisher was elected to serve as Treasurer during the same period.
“Winn Feline Foundation is thrilled with the accomplished volunteers who have joined our board. We now have representation from industry, the veterinary sector, another important global feline organization and significant development experience that will be brought together for the benefit of Winn’s mission in funding feline health studies and improving the welfare of cats. This is a great time to be working with Winn,” stated Winn Board President Vicki Thayer, DVM,, DABVP (feline).
Eric Bruner will lead Winn’s Development Committee and will be focused on growing the foundation and expanding our donor base. Mr. Bruner has more than 35 years service as a consultant and educator. He is an accomplished analyst, change management specialist and a certified business process reengineer. Mr. Bruner brings more than 20 years direct experience in project management, organizational change management, business process reengineering, strategic planning and financial analysis. As a consultant, Mr. Bruner helps clients assess their current processes and performance, and identify opportunities for improvement. Further, Mr. Bruner provides assistance in managing the change associated with reengineering to optimize its benefits. Prior to entering consulting, Mr. Bruner spent ten years as an Associate Professor of Education in the University of Maine system and an additional three years in a professional leadership role with the Boy Scouts of America.
Vickie Fisher joins the Winn Board of Directors as Treasurer with deep experience in the world of felines and their well being, having served as president of The International Cat Association (TICA) since 2009. Vickie is well suited to serve as Treasurer as her extensive finance and accounting background includes her professional career as a CPA and VP of finance in the insurance and legal sectors. Ms. Fisher served as Cabinet Secretary for the New Mexico Tax Department for six years and the Public Service Company Board of Directors and was Chair of the Audit Committee. Recently retired from the Presbyterian Healthcare Services Board after ten years, during which time she served on the Finance Committee and Chaired the Compliance and Audit Committee, Ms. Fisher leads a non profit group in Albuquerque that is a "friends of" the City Animal Welfare Department. Finally, she served as Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for the City of Albuquerque for eight years and was responsible for budget, finance, strategic planning and all of the "enterprise" departments.
Brian Holub, DVM, has been working with the Winn Feline Foundation for the better part of two decades. Dr. Holub has been a member of the foundation’s official grant review committee and has helped to select the grant recipients each year, by reviewing and evaluating the research proposals, and making funding recommendations. He also serves as Clinical Instructor at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, Tufts University. Dr. Holub has had significant frontline experience in the world of feline heath care having run Countryside Veterinary Hospital in Chelmsford, MA since 1985. Dr. Holub has been a contributing veterinarian to the Winn Pet Memorial Program for many years. Recently, Dr. Holub joined VetCor Inc. as its Chief Medical Officer though he can still be found at his clinic tending to ailing cats at least once a week. Dr. Holub is focused on practice management and helping hospitals in the VetCor network adopt best practices critical to sustaining a successful practice that serves the needs of it patients and their families. Dr. Holub was a breeder of pedigreed American Shorthair Cats for over 23 years, fueling his special interest in pedigree cat medicine, multiple cat environments and feline reproduction.
Glenn Olah, DVM , DABVP (feline) has been volunteering with Winn for several years and has been a great help in summarizing scientific research for lay people to understand as Winn publishes research summaries. Dr. Olah’s undergraduate degree was in Physics and he stayed focused on research for a number of years, gaining a PhD in Physics along the way. Eventually Dr. Olah moved toward his desire to work as a veterinarian, including his work as a postdoctoral research associate at Ohio State. He became a DVM at Oklahoma State University and has been a practicing clinician ever since. He is board certified in feline practice with ABVP and was a member and former chair of the AAFP Research Grant Committee. Dr. Olah is a published researcher and author and still finds time to honor a number of commitments especially for shelter and rescue animals in the Santa Fe and Albuquerque areas. Dr. Olah has already assumed the lead on working to help Winn Feline Foundation envision a new website that will help to communicate Winn’s mission to a broad spectrum of cat lovers and veterinarians.
William Murphy, PhD, Associate Professor of Genetics, the Department of Veterinary Integrative Biosciences in the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences at Texas A&M University is the winner of the 2013 Excellence in Feline Research Award from Winn Feline Foundation and the American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF). Winn Past President and Board Member, Susan Little, DVM, made the announcement and presented the $2,500 award at the Merial-NIH Veterinary Scholars Symposium, held at Michigan State University on August 3, 2013.
Dr. Murphy was recognized due in large part to his contributions to feline genomics, addressing feline species phylogeny and developing comparative maps by radiation hybrid analysis. Dr. Murphy’s research focus includes feline comparative and conservation genomics specifically focusing on mapping and annotating the domestic cat genome and studying the Y chromosome of cats and dogs as these genes relate to infertility and reproductive isolation between species.
Dr. Little commented that “Dr. Murphy is highly regarded by the best comparative geneticists and evolutionary biologists in the world. His goal of high quality comparative gene maps for the cat, along with the commitment of the National Institutes of Health to sequence the genome of the domestic cat is critical. His work has facilitated the generation of genome –wide SNP arrays that are now providing feline geneticists the ability to identify genes responsible for specific diseases.”
Dr. Murphy has published over eighty articles in peer-reviewed journals and volumes, including many in Science and Nature. His lab has been funded by: Winn Feline Foundation, The National Science Foundation, USDA, Morris Animal Foundation, Cat Health Network, AKC-Canine Health Foundation, and The Snow Leopard Conservancy.
William Murphy received his Ph.D. in Biological Sciences in 1997 from Tulsa University, and completed his postdoctoral work at the Laboratory of Genomic Diversity, National Cancer Institute (NCI). Dr. Murphy held positions as a Research Fellow and Senior Scientist under the renowned geneticist Dr. Stephen J. O'Brien at the Laboratory of Genomic Diversity, NCI, from 1997 to 2004. While in Dr. O'Brien's lab, Murphy conducted frontline research and published an exceptionally strong set of research articles in leading peer-reviewed journals, attaining worldwide name recognition in his field. Dr. Murphy joined Texas A&M University in 2004.
Winn Feline Foundation and the American Veterinary Medical Foundation are pleased to collaborate in this effort to focus attention on the importance of feline health studies and the committed researchers who conduct these lifesaving investigations into the prevention and care of feline disease for “Every Cat, Every Day.”