December 2017 President’s Letter

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Published on: December 27, 2017

What a great conference in Orlando! Good weather, comfortable and spacious accommodations, and a host of excellent speakers made this meeting one of the best ever. Furthermore, as I look through the over 100 surveys received, it appears that you felt the same way. The feedback you provide is crucial to providing educational and applicable future meetings of value to those in attendance. Keep up the good work!

We also have good news related to the facility inspections for Chinese export. This long anticipated procedure is now underway! Although starting late in the year, this process is in very capable hands and should move right along. And, I have been assured that no approved facility will have their status expire while awaiting inspection. Many thanks to all those involved who worked very hard to make this happen.

As many of you may have heard or talked about at this past meeting, there are proposals and changes being discussed and voted on regarding embryo transfer in many different states around the country. Some of these states have more influence over ET nationwide compared with others. It has always been the position of the AETA that embryo transfer falls under the individual states Veterinary Practice Act and that our members follow those rules in their home states. Additionally, when the association has been asked to be involved in state requirements related to ET, we have offered to assist but resolutely referred to our position statement above.

It seems ironic that in a time when the public demands more regulation and oversight related to animal agriculture, states would seek to deregulate something as complex and highly scientific as embryo transfer. Believe me when I say there has recently been much discussion and deliberation, as well as time spent, on this topic, by past and present leaders in the association. Therefore, the consensus is nearly unanimous that the AETA has to position itself now to defend the ET industry and its professionals. The Board of Directors will be providing more detailed information to the membership on this topic over the next several months.

If you have any comments or questions regarding the topic of deregulation and defense of embryo transfer, please feel free to contact me directly, or any member of the Board of Directors, for more information.

As for membership, we have great momentum rolling with our scholarly participants. Student membership and participation continues to reach new levels each year. This is great for the association, and I intend to continue working with Dr. Young on the Membership Committee after departing the Executive Committee and Board of Directors.

Let me finish by saying that it has truly been an honor to serve the AETA. I can think of no better privilege than helping to move our unquestionably outstanding association forward. Nonetheless, as I prepare for departure from the board, I do not plan to disappear from the AETA. I do, however, plan to make myself available, in anyway I can be of future service, to you and this great organization.


Respectfully submitted,

Mark F. James, DVM
2017 AETA President

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