I am honored to be named the third executive editor of the Journal of Swine Health and Production and I am wholeheartedly looking forward to this exciting and interesting opportunity. As I sit down to write my first editorial for the journal, my keen fingers poised at the keyboard, I find myself at a loss for words as I follow in the footsteps of two exceptional executive editors: Dr Cate Dewey (executive editor 1998-2012)1 and Dr Robert Morrison (executive editor 1993-1998).1 And, for those of you who know me, I am rarely speechless! While I have met many swine practitioners and researchers over the years at scientific meetings, workshops, and hog-jog fun-runs, I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to those of you who don’t know me.
I am a DVM and have spent many years in private practice in rural Ontario, Canada. Those years have provided me with first-hand appreciation of both the joys and challenges of daily veterinary practice. My years as a practitioner also cultivated in me a well-rooted respect for the valuable role that applied scientific research plays in the day-to-day challenges that veterinary practitioners face. I believe that the timely dissemination of scientifically sound and yet practically applied research is crucial to the viability of the fast-paced nature of veterinary practice today.
I am also an epidemiologist and have a strong background in research, study design, statistical analysis, scientific writing, and the peer-reviewed publication process. I look forward to bringing my combined background in private practice and epidemiology to the journal, as it will enable me to continue to foster and further develop the scientific rigor and quality of the swine-focused research published in the journal today.
I would like to personally thank Dr Cate Dewey for her commitment to the journal during her tenure as executive editor. Dr Dewey’s hard work and dedication to the journal have been obvious to me as a long-term reader of the Journal of Swine Health and Production. But now it is even more evident as I take on a more active role with the journal. I cannot say enough positive things about the first-class editorial board(s) Dr Dewey has established for the journal, the engaged reviewers that participate in the review process, and the dedicated journal staff that, as Dr Dewey has stated, truly are “the backbone of the journal.”2 In his message in the March-April 2012 issue, Dr Tom Burkgren stated that “change is hard”1 as he passed on his heartfelt gratitude to Dr Dewey for her years of commitment to the journal. As I step into the position of executive editor, I also wish to express my gratitude to Dr Dewey for her passion and commitment to the Journal of Swine Health and Production and I am honored to be following in her footsteps. Thank you Cate!
To ease with the changeover, Dr Dewey and I will be working together for a period of time to facilitate the transition for the journal, reviewers, and authors, as well as for myself. Dr Dewey and I have just embarked on this transition, but I can already appreciate the cohesive teamwork of the journal staff. I am committed to overseeing and maintaining the scientific rigor of the journal that other executive editors, editorial board members, peer-reviewers, and authors have developed. Moreover, I would like to thank the staff of both the journal and the AASV for the warm welcome. I am looking forward to working with all of you over the years to come.
Introductions for me have continued elsewhere this spring, as I have just returned from beautiful Bruges, Belgium, where I attended the 4th European Symposium of Porcine Health Management (ESPHM). For those of you who have not been to Bruges, I highly recommend a visit. This was my first trip to the ESPHM as well as to Belgium, and I found Bruges to be a city full of history, beauty, and warm hospitality. The 2012 ESPHM had record attendance with over 950 delegates, and the program was full of high-quality scientific presentations, engaging speakers, and good fellowship. I was able to introduce myself to swine practitioners and researchers that I have not had the opportunity to meet on North American soil. Meeting and speaking to practitioners and researchers around the world regarding the issues they are facing is an ideal opportunity to learn about global swine issues. I hope that these new relationships and the knowledge that I acquired at the ESPHM will help me to continue development of the international scope and readership of the journal. If your busy schedules will allow it, I would recommend attending the 5th ESPHM in Edinburgh May 22 to 24, 2013.
I have introduced myself here today – if you see me at a scientific meeting or crossing the finish line at a hog-jog fun-run, please introduce yourself and say hello.
Have a safe and happy summer!
-- Terri O’Sullivan, DVM, PhD