Journey to leadership: Stories from your peers

Hear the leadership journeys of two veterinarians, and use their stories to examine your own leadership goals and map a course to success. Drs. Katie Ebers and Jananne O'Connell, participants in the AVMA Future Leaders Program, share the challenges they've faced and overcome on their leadership journeys, and lessons and skills learned along the way. They also reveal how their ideas of leadership evolved as their roles and objectives changed.

By the end of this course, participants will be able to:
• Describe what leadership means to you, and the impact it can have on your personal and professional wellbeing.
• Create and outline your leadership goals.
• Identify two challenges you may face in achieving your leadership goals, and explore steps to overcome them.

Dr. Jananne O’Connell is proud to be an advocate for the health and well-being of animals and the veterinarians who care for them.   A 2007 graduate of North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. O’Connell has spent the majority of her career helping to make the world a better place for pets as an Associate with Banfield Pet Hospital.   She is currently Director of Veterinary Quality in the North Carolina Central market, where she works to support DVM engagement and development as well as support the highest quality client and patient centered care.   Dr. O’Connell also holds a Master’s in Veterinary Public Health from NC State and is intrigued with examining pet health and DVM wellness issues from an epidemiological perspective.   Outside of her professional life, Dr. O’Connell is married to David Cooper, an environmental consultant, and they have been granted privileges to live alongside their feline fur crew:  Milli Vanilli, Adelaide Twinklepig, Melissa Bandersnatch and Velcro Louise.   Dr. O’Connell is a certified Jazzercise instructor and enjoys travel, cooking, reading, kickboxing and Irish dancing as time and energy permit.

Dr. Jananne O'Connell

Originally from Jackson, Mississippi, I now call Hattiesburg, Mississippi my hometown. I currently work at Town and Country Animal Hospital which is a private practice focusing on small animals and exotics. Some of my favorite cases include the injured wildlife birds we see and match with rehabilitators. I also teach Companion Animal Medicine and Animal Welfare and Ethics courses in the four-year veterinary technology degree program at the University of Tennessee-Martin. I graduated from Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine with both a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine as well as a Master’s of Veterinary Science with an emphasis in Public Health. My veterinary experience has been very diverse from working on research projects to conducting disaster response workshops to working in private practice to teaching online courses. I have worked in a variety of places because my husband’s job as a college baseball coach proves to be very mobile. I serve on the Mississippi Veterinary Medical Association Board as the At Large District Representative and on the MVMA Convention Planning Committee as well as am a member of the AVMA 2017-2018 Future Leaders Class. I also serve on several church and community service committees. In my free time, I enjoy running, reading, being outdoors, and eating.

Dr. Katie Ebers