The veterinary nursing profession has taken another step forward with the announcement that the BSAVA has appointed Emma Gerrard RVN as a Committee Chair and Council Representative. 

Emma will take over from Kate O’Sullivan MRCVS as the chair of Cymru/Wales region committee in April 2021.

Emma is the first veterinary nurse to be appointed to these positions since the BSAVA gave nurses full voting rights last November, a change which means they can hold any position within the Association, including the presidency!

Emma, who works at Hafren Veterinary Group, an independent mixed practice in Powys, has been a member of the Committee since 2013 and worked alongside Kate and other committee members to launch and host the new event Vets Cymru in 2019. She has also served on the BSAVA Membership Development Committee and has recently become the new Editor of the Pocketbook for Vet Nurses.

As Council Representative Emma will interact with Trustees and members of the Management Team at Woodrow House and will seek members’ views within Cymru/Wales region and make sure they are reflected in discussions at Council meetings. 

She said: “Being appointed the first VN Council Representative and Regional Chair is a massive achievement for myself and my nursing colleagues. It hasn’t been possible for a VN to fill a Regional Officer role until now. I know how long and hard colleagues have worked in order to make this happen and, for that, I am grateful. As the Committee Chair, I would really like to fly the flag for nurses I hope to inspire and empower nurses to join the Association and illustrate what opportunities are available.”

BSAVA President, Professor Ian Ramsey said: “I am so pleased that BSAVA Cymru region has elected a nurse as their Regional Chair and Council Representative.

"Nurses have already served the Association with distinction in many of our Committees for several years and this is another step towards recognising the importance of nurses within the veterinary team and therefore within the Association. I look forward to seeing more nurses coming forward to help shape the Association in the future."

Ian added: "The RCVS Council has, for a few years now, allowed nurses to be full members and so we are not the first veterinary organisation to break this particular glass ceiling but we are proud to have added to the sound of smashing glass!"

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