Our diverse membership: A picture says a thousand words

The AASP Public Relations Committee met recently during the Leman Swine Conference to reevaluate the ways we currently are working to promote our organization both externally to swine producers and internally to our own membership and potential members. Several years ago, the decision was made to sponsor a booth at key venues such as the Leman Swine Conference and World Pork Expo. At that time, a primary goal was to educate veterinarians and producers about the various services, both traditional and nontraditional, that AASP members could provide. Examples of these varied services were depicted in photographs that were enlarged and used as a backdrop in the booth. AASP members Drs. Terry Bolton, Jamie Lehman and Lisa Tokach were shown advising their clients about various aspects of pork production such as air quality, building design, computer record keeping, nutrition, and pork quality assurance.

There has been recent discussion among the AASP's leadership concerning changing the name of our organization from the American Association of Swine Practitioners to the American Association of Swine Veterinarians. Part of the rationale for this change is to more accurately reflect the increasing diversity of our members' roles in veterinary medicine. In his President's Message in the last issue of Swine Health and Production, Dr. Bob Morrison discussed this increasing diversity in detail. As Dr. Morrison explained, "no longer does our organization consist of veterinarians practicing veterinary medicine in the traditional sense of the word. Our membership includes veterinarians in production companies, where responsibilities include disease control and management; academic institutions, where members serve in teaching, research and service; allied industry in technical service, research and development, and management; government veterinarians at the USDA and state level; associations such as the NPPC; quality assurance for packing plants; and practitioners in mixed animal practice and exclusive swine practice".

Now it's time to update our booth's photographic backdrop with new pictures demonstrating our organization's diverse membership. The Public Relations Committee invites any and all AASP members to contribute photographs that illustrate this diversity. Please submit your photographs to the attention of Dr. Tom Burkgren at the AASP office, 902 1st Street, Perry, Iowa, 50220-1703. Show us pictorially what you or your coworkers do, so that we can share this with others in a photographic montage. Deadline for submissions is January 15, 2000.

--contributed by Dr. Teddi Wolff,
AASP Public Relations Committee