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NAVTA Leadership Summit Jan 2018 - at AVMA VLC
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Welcome to the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA) Leadership Summit. The field of veterinary technology has evolved over the course of decades. We are presented with an opportunity, if not a requirement, for the profession to strengthen and organize our activity to pursue profession wide goals. This Leadership Summit is hosted by NAVTA, focused on providing resources to develop solid national and regional leadership within organizations, and refine visions for

When: Thursday, January 4, 2018
8:00 AM
Where: AVMA Veterinary Leadership Conference 2018
Hyatt Regency Chicago
151 East Wacker Drive
Chicago, Illinois  60601
United States
Presenter: Catherine Haskins,PR Consultant, & Malia Friesen, NAVTA Social Media Coordinator, & NAVTA Leadership
Contact: Kenichiro Yagi, MS, RVT, VTS (ECC, SAIM)

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NAVTA Veterinary Leadership Summit 2018



Leaders of State Veterinary Technician Associations and Veterinary Technician Specialty Academies are invited to attend the 2018 NAVTA Veterinary Technician Leadership Summit!

The NAVTA Veterinary Technician Leadership Summit is held in conjunction with the American Veterinary Medical Association’s Veterinary Leadership Conference (VLC) to which all of you are invited to attend. 



Date:                January 4, 2018

Time:                8 am 

Location:          Hyatt Regency Chicago

           151 East Wacker Drive

           Chicago, IL 60601



7:00 am - 8:00 am


8:00 am - 9:50 am

The New Era of Public Relations -Catherine Haskins - PR Consultant

10:10 am - 12:00 pm

Social Media: A Beginner’s Guide - simple tips, tricks, and strategies

-Malia Friesen - NAVTA Social Media Coordinator 

12:00 pm - 12:10 pm

Group Photo

12:10 pm - 1:10 pm


1:10 pm - 1:40 pm

NAVTA Update

2:00 pm - 4:40 pm

Vet Tech Leaders Meeting

5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

AVMA District Caucus

6:30 pm - 7:30 pm




Suggestions for topics to be discussed at the Leadership Summit? Click here to take a short survey. 



Lecture descriptions and speaker bios


Session 1: The New Era of Public Relations 


Tweets and iPhone videos are now the primary sources of news, so it does beg the question, does Public Relations still exist and what does it look like today?


Public Relations is even more important today as it serves to protect, preserve and promote a business or a personal brand. It has evolved from a simple press release to garner media attention to its true namesake – creating a relationship with the public.  


We will discuss how PR works today, how to foster a relationship with your primary stakeholders and we will look at the difference between your brand and that of the hospital and how both can be mutually fostered.


This session will have you rolling up your sleeves for an issues management scenario workshop and put your thinking to the test when a customer vocalizes his/her displeasure with your services. You will also walk away with three things you can do immediately to maximize your PR impact.


Speaker: Catherine Haskins Co-Founder, The Bridge Club President, Haskins Consulting Inc.


For more than 20 years, Catherine has combined strategic insights to solve complex problems, build reputations and protect the integrity of products and services for some of animal health’s most notable companies. Her expertise has enable her to focus solidly on impacting the bottom-line while enhancing a stakeholder's overall experience with a brand. She is an industry insider and is consulted often on both pipeline and issues management. Today, she is the co-founder of The Bridge Club, an engaging network that combines the profound expertise provided in TED-style talks with the friendship, the networking of LinkedIn, with the laughter and insight that develops during long-standing book clubs. Catherine also leads Haskins Consulting, a strategic communications company dedicated to assisting organizations navigate internal and external communications challenges and opportunities. Throughout her career, she has been honored with multiple awards, but her most recent accolade came from being able to call herself an author, by publishing her first children’s book, Nicknames. Catherine and her family live in Chicago, IL.



Session 2: Social Media: A Beginner’s Guide - simple tips, tricks, and strategies 


How organizations can properly identify their target audience to ensure wide spread reach and maximize user/follower engagement will be discussed. Believe it or not, a lot of pages are not maximizing their engagement, because they are not communicating with, or taking into account their target audience. Top social media applications, their pros/cons, as well as their appropriateness for the target audience will be highlighted. During the workshop, we will discuss a few favorite free tools social media “managers" can use to maximize reach, analytics and social media post schedules. Finally, an open forum discussing ideas of what makes a successful social media post that appropriately reach the target audience for maximum engagement and reach will be held.


Speaker: Malia Friesen - NAVTA Social Media Coordinator 


Living most of her life in the desert, and attending the University of Arizona as a Music Education major Malia decided to follow her family to the East Coast. She began working in a private small animal clinic in 2004 as a client service coordinator and fell in love with the veterinary world. Malia decided to go back to school and graduated Summa Cum Laude from Northern Virginia Community College with an Associate’s Degree of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology to become a Licensed Veterinary Technician in 2009. She completed a rotating internship at the Hope Center in Vienna, VA and spent time at the VA Tech Equine Center in Leesburg, VA.


After her internship, Malia spent two years in an Oncology practice, a year in Neurology and short stint in Surgery and decided to return to small animal general practice. As she developed her skills as an LVT, she became aware of the need for animal welfare advocacy. Once again, Malia returned to school and graduated Summa Cum Laude from George Mason University with a BA in Nonprofit Studies. During that time at GMU she was a student intern with Dr. Katy Nelson and "The Pet Show with Dr. Katy" on WJLA – News Channel 8. She was able to manage and help develop the show's social media presence as well as gather a number of professional contacts within the animal welfare/advocacy community. Malia is currently the Social Media Coordinator for the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America.


In whatever free time she does have, Malia loves to read (any and all genres), watch old black and white movies, pretend she is a professional photographer, and spend time with family, friends and her four-legged feline love, Gracie.


Hotel Reservations


Please book your hotel reservations online at the link below:




Association Travel Grant


NAVTA is pleased to offer the Association Travel Grant to state associations participating in the NAVTA State Leadership Network and VTS Academies. This grant is made possible by the generosity of VCA Hospitals. 



A message from our sponsor:


VCA recognizes the hard work, time and dedication you invest in your Veterinary Technician State and VTS Associations.  We applaud all of your efforts for helping to move the profession forward and see the value and importance of attending conferences such as the NAVTA Leadership Summit not only to network and collaborate with fellow leaders but to find resources and tools to help you and your Association meet your goals. Not only is VCA sponsoring the NAVTA Leadership Summit, we are helping to cover the costs of attendance.  Please complete the application below to qualify for funds to help make your attendance at this Summit possible.


Grant Recipient Requirements

  • Apply for the grant by November 30, 2017. (Applicants will be notified by December 3, 2017)
  • Be a NAVTA member
  • Be an official representative of a
    • State association which is part of the NAVTA State Leadership Network with updated state association information for 2018 or
    • Currently recognized VTS Academy in good standing

Grant Recipient Responsibilities

  • Distribute recognition for VCA’s sponsorship through website, newsletter, and/or social media. A “Thank you” graphic with NAVTA and VCA logo will be provided, with space to add the state association logo.
  • (Optional) Send Summit Agenda survey to membership to receive input on discussion topics" and this is the same survey as the one under the agenda. 

Grant Application


Interested in applying for the Association Travel Grant? Click here


The dollar amount provide to each association will be determined by the number of associations applying for the travel grant. The total amount of the grant is $4500 which will be equally shared with all associations that apply an qualify by the application deadline.


Thank you to VCA Hospitals the exclusive sponsor of this event!


2018 AVMA Veterinary Leadership Conference and House of Delegates Regular Winter Session


As a leader of the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America, you are invited to attend the American Veterinary Medical Association’s 2018 Veterinary Leadership Conference (VLC) at the Hyatt Regency Chicago January 4-7, 2018.


Register Today at


A "VIP CODE" is required for registration, which will be sent to you once you register for the NAVTA Veterinary Leadership Summit. 


Registration is $340 and includes robust networking and workshop opportunities designed for veterinary professionals interested in learning more about leadership, team building, and how the AVMA works with you and for you.


To view the most up-to-date schedule visit,


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