Mission and Purpose

The mission of PrideVMC is to create a better world for the LGBTQ+ veterinary community. The purpose of our annual report is to inform our membership of progress against our strategic priorities.

PrideVMC Vision

An empowered LGBTQ+ veterinary community that embraces wellbeing by being their authentic selves.

Strategic Priorities

SP 1 Education and advocacy for LGBTQ+ diversity, equity, and inclusion through the lens of antiracism and intersectionality.

SP 2 Student empowerment through leadership development and mentorship.

SP 3 Member recruitment, engagement, and outreach.

Foundational Priority

Strategic partnerships.

2020 Year-Round Partners 

Diamond Partner: Boehringer Ingelheim

Gold Partners: Blue Pearl, Hill’s Pet Nutrition, VCA

Silver Partners: Banfield Pet Hospital, Nationwide Pet Insurance, Zoetis

Sapphire Partner: Relief Rover

2020 Board of Directors

President – Dr. Dane Whitaker (he, him, his)

Immediate Past-President – Dr. Sandy Hazanow (she, her, hers)

President – Elect Dr. Abby McElroy (she, her, hers)

Treasurer – Erin Spencer, M.ED, CVT, VTS (she, her, hers)

CEO – Dr. Mia Cary (she, her, hers)

Industry Liaison – Dr. Omar Farías (he, him, his)

Student Liaison – Grace Gallenberg (she, her, hers)

PrideSVMC Advisor – Dr. Morgan Miller (she, her, hers)

Director-at-large – Dr. Deborah Kochevar (she, her, hers)

Director-at-large – Dr. Russ Drury (he, him, his)

2020 Success Metrics – Targets and Results

SP 1 Target: Launch Brave Space certificate program by 6.30.2020 with 100 completions by 12.31.2020.

SP 1 Result: In progress. The program evolved significantly in 2020 including the addition of new modules.  Due to this and the COVID-19 impact, the program launch was postponed until Q1 2021. Lesson learned:  Do not establish a success metric target that is not at least in some extent within our control.  The original proposal brought by PrideVMC to the AVMA evolved to an AVMA led program that PrideVMC members provided content for, thus PrideVMC is a Founding Educational Partner for the program.  Two board members are participating in the Q1 soft launch.

SP 1 Target: Conference Toolkit established by 12.15.2020.

SP 1 Result:  Achieved.  The original conference toolkit was established Q2 2020 and is in the process of being expanded. The Education & Events WG was established in Q4 2020 and has met regularly since that time.  The speakers bureau application and speaker request forms have been created

SP 2 Target: Successful 2020 SAVMA symposium as determined by survey results of PrideSVMC annual meeting and networking event attendees.

SP 1 Result:  Achieved via pivot.   SAVMA 2020 was cancelled due to COVID-19.  SAVMA instead hosted a virtual webinar series that replaced the diversity brunch.  PrideVMC President Dane Whitaker was the first guest in the webinar series and his episode occured on 6.27.2020.

SP 2 Target: Mentoring program established by 12.31.2020.

SP 1 Result:   Achieved. The Mentoring WG invested much time and energy to discuss ideal mentor program requirements and then evaluate and test four+ mentoring platforms.  This process led to a recommendation of merging our mentor program efforts with the newly launched Pawsibilities program.  The proposal was approved by the Board of Directors and this program is now available to all PrideVMC members.  Within the Pawsibilities platform there is a PrideVMC members-only area.  The platform continues to be analyzed by the Mentoring WG which will advise the Board of Directors by the end of Q3 2021 on a recommendation to either stay with Pawsibilites or move to a solo platform. 

SP 3 Target: Increase number of paid members (186 as of 1.1.2020) by 40%. Target = 260 active members by 12.31.2020.

SP 1 Result:  Achieved.  We ended 2020 with 235 paid members which is a 75% increase over 2019.

SP 3 Target: Host formal or informal networking events at a minimum of 4 veterinary conferences.

SP 3 Result:   Achieved. PrideVMC hosted networking events at VMX 2020 and WVC 2020, all other in-person meetings were cancelled due to COVID-19.  We hosted three virtual Happy Hours that were well attended (average 20 per event) and received positive feedback from attendees on all events.

SP 3 Target: Member survey launched by 2.1.2020. Result utilized to inform strategic and tactical decisions.

SP 3 Result:  Achieved.  31 completions, survey results can be found here.

FP Target: Increase sponsor revenue by $38,000.

FP Result:  Achieved. 2020 actual sponsor revenue = $107,100 which was an increase of $39,100.

In addition to the quantitative results we also saw positive qualitative results. The impact of our plan of attack was already evident in our member survey that was launched in late March 2020.  Select results from that survey follow including word clouds formed from the results of these three questions.

What’s working well in terms of your PrideVMC membership?

“Love the presence at conferences”

“Just the right amount of communication and I feel like I’m kept up to date.”

“Good social media and conference presence.”

What could be even better in terms of your PrideVMC membership?

“More personal news.”

“More visibility and community.”

The comments in this section of the survey led to, among other things, the social media spotlights we developed for Pride month and beyond to share personal stories about members of our community.

Is there anything else you would like to share today?

“Keep it up!  Don’t stop trying in all the different ways”

Plan of Attack

The following activities represent select elements of our plan of attack that were activated in 2020 in order to achieve our success metric targets. 

  • Networking events were hosted at VMX and WVC 2020 and Board members Kara Burns and Dr. Dane Whitaker presented on behalf of PrideVMC at WVC 2020.
  • The PrideVMC members-only Facebook group launched on Feb 4, 2020.
  • Quarterly Member Virtual Town Halls were initiated before COVID-19 which positioned us to easily pivot as the global pandemic changed all of our lives.
  • Monthly Member Messages are sent via email through our CRM from Board President Dr. Dane Whitaker.  These messages include a personal touch and stories from our fabulousPresident as well as progress updates, program recaps, and upcoming event announcements.  
  • We have 5 active working groups (WGs) that provide opportunities for members and Board members to interact on a regular basis and for members to have a direct impact on the direction and success of our association.  A special thank you to all of our WG members*!
    • DEI WG
    • Education & Events WG
    • Mentoring WG
    • Merch WG
    • Social Media WG
  • The Board of Directors worked together to swiftly transition from a full suite of June Pride month  in-person activities to a month bursting with creative and engaging virtual activities including virtual happy hours, scavenger hunts, multiple podcasts, and a social media spotlight campaign. 

  • We amped up our media presence by collaborating with a variety of partners including  MJH Life Sciences, Today’s Veterinary Business, AVMA My Veterinary Life, Veterinary Practice News NextGen, the AAMVC, and The Bridge Club.
  • Each new member receives a hand-written welcome card, member lapel pin, and PrideVMC sticker.
  • We also leverage sponsor partnerships to amplify our messages and extend our reach by inviting them to repost our social media content and submit employees and customers for our social media spotlights.
  • We upleveled our social media presence and use all of our platforms to emphasize our unique approach to membership that includes the SAME benefits for every membership level. This allows our members to pay what they can without stretching themselves financially and includes additional levels for those that have more of a financial cushion and so can donate more.
  • We amplified support of our student arm, Pride Student Veterinary Medical Community (PrideSVMC), because we know they are our future.
  • PrideSVMC hosted 3 virtual Drinks & Discussion events.


*Working Group Members – current as of 1.11.2021


Beckie Mossor
Bonnie Price
Dane Whitaker
Jennifer Neal
Kara Burns
Mia Cary
Russ Drury

Education & Events WG

Andrew Peregrine
Beckie Mossor
Erin Spencer
Mia Cary
Rusty Muse
Ryan Frazier

Mentoring WG

Abby McElroy
Alexander Dhom
Andrea Pires dos Santos 
Andrew Peregrine
Bonnie Price
Dane Whitaker
Francisco O. Conrado
Jesse Navatta
Kristen Pelenskij
Mia Cary
Melissa Brandley
Omar Farías
Paul Miranda
Roberto Moreira
Russ Drury
Rusty Muse

Merch WG

Alex Dhom
Annmarie Morawiak
Judy Rose Lanier
Jessica Rutten
Russ Drury
Mia Cary

Social Media WG

Abby McElroy
Eric Garcia
Kelly Hewitt
Mia Cary
Omar Farías
Paul Miranda
Rhiannon Koehler
Russ Drury
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