Veterinary consultant Simon Doherty named Junior Vice President

21 September 2017

Simon Doherty, Director of Blackwater Consultancy Ltd and Animal Science & Aquaculture Specialist to the UK Government Department for International Trade (DIT), was today (21 September) elected Junior Vice President of British Veterinary Association (BVA) for 2017-2018 at BVA’s annual Members’ Day in Belfast.

Simon graduated as a veterinary surgeon from the University of Glasgow in 2000, after which he worked for five years in mixed (predominantly farm animal and equine) practice in West Stirlingshire, Scotland, and in North Down, Northern Ireland. He was instrumental in setting up Veterinary Northern Ireland (VetNI) as a ‘one-stop shop’ for the local veterinary associations in Northern Ireland; managing stakeholder relationships, coordinating responses to government consultations, and organising conferences and other CPD events.

In 2007, Simon was appointed as a Veterinary Research Officer at the Veterinary Sciences Division of the Agri-Food & Biosciences Institute (AFBI) in Stormont, Belfast, where his research interests included novel vaccine technologies in farm and aquaculture species, colostrum management in dairy systems, and the detection and control of epizootic diseases. He was appointed an Honorary Lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast in 2011.
Simon returned to the private sector in 2014, and in 2015 he registered Blackwater Consultancy Ltd, which works with companies to drive inward investment and support export trade in the animal health and aquaculture sector on behalf of DIT.

Simon has authored many peer-reviewed scientific papers, tech-transfer articles and reports on a wide range of animal health and welfare issues, including bovine respiratory disease, colostrum management of calves, on-farm biosecurity, mastitis in dairy cows, measures to reduce tail-biting in pigs, and emerging and re-emerging diseases of livestock. A STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) Ambassador, he is also actively involved in veterinary careers advice, regularly mentoring applicants to veterinary school.

Commenting on his appointment as Junior Vice President of BVA, the UK’s largest representative body for vets, Simon said:
“We have entered an era of significant political and economic change that is already presenting challenges to the veterinary professions and animal health industry. It is a tremendous honour to take on the role of Junior Vice President of BVA just now; representing the interests of veterinary surgeons engaged in diverse careers throughout the United Kingdom, who make essential contributions to animal health and welfare, and the protection of public health.”

Simon was President of the North of Ireland Veterinary Association and of the Northern Ireland Branch of BVA from 2015-2016. He is a member of the UK Board of livestock development charity, Send a Cow, and a trustee of the Animal Welfare Foundation.

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