Plenary Speakers


Meet this year's Plenary Speakers.

Monday 23 May 2022, 10.45am-12.15pm

Welcome to Country and Welcome from AVA President, Warwick Vale

Life Beyond Fear with Mark Mathews

As a world class big wave surfer, Red Bull Athlete and Surf Contest Director Mark Mathews has become obsessed with the relationship between personal growth, high performance and fulfilment. Winner of an unprecedented 3 back to back Oakley Big Wave Awards, Mark has cemented himself as one of the best big wave surfers in the world.

His compelling story offers game changing tips to adapt to stress, harness resilience and perform when it counts. He has deconstructed, fine-tuned, and personalised emotional resilience techniques to successfully strengthen ones mindset and sustain long term performance.

Tuesday 24 May 2022, 12.00pm-1.00pm

Cultivating Climate Courage with Anika Molesworth

Anika Molesworth is a thought-leader of food systems resilience, a researcher in international agricultural development and a sought-after keynote speaker.

In 2014, she established Climate Wise Agriculture as a knowledge-sharing platform, with a modus operandi to facilitate multi-direction flow of information and skill transfer regarding climate change and farming.

With a rapidly growing global population we need to transform the food system to one that is good for both people and the planet. Changes can be made from the paddock to the plate, and by doing so we can create a more just, equitable and sustainable food system. Although the enormity and complexity of the climate challenge seems daunting, with the right skills and know-how the solutions are at hand.

Wednesday 25 May 2022, 12.30pm-1.30pm

Plenary - Veterinary Science, Technology and the Future - Paul Higgins

Paul Higgins is a Futurist and Strategist with Emergent Futures. He holds a First-Class Honours Degree in Veterinary Science, a Bachelor of Animal Science (Research) and a Masters Degree in Strategic Foresight.

Paul Higgins will talk about some of the key technological changes that will affect the future of veterinary science. The emphasis will not be on the “shiny new things” but on what those shiny new things can do for you and/or your clients, what differences these technologies will make to business models, organisational practices, and the way that clients interact. Paul will structure this analysis around a thinking framework you can take with you to think about these things for years to come.

Thursday 26 May 2022, 10.30am-11.30am

Ben Cunneen Memorial Plenary: Hendra: Past, present and future

No other zoonotic viral disease has impacted the Australian Veterinary profession more than Hendra virus (HeV) which has caused the deaths and illness of veterinarians, their veterinary staff and clients. Peter Reid and Ed Annand will take us though luminary scientific discoveries and personal experiences since Hendra virus was discovered 27 years ago including latest research findings.

Since his clinical attendance at the 1994 outbreak of Hendra virus at Vic Rail’s Brisbane racing stables where the virus was discovered, Peter Reid has dedicated a significant part of his professional life to studying the virus and educating others on the risks and prevention of this highly lethal zoonotic disease. In 2010 he successfully lobbied Governments to fund the crucial Hendra virus horse vaccine trials at CSIRO, AAHL. Discoveries have triggered his scientific curiosity of undiagnosed viruses possibly spilling over to horses, and he represents the AVA and EVA on Government and several industry stakeholder scientific advisory authorities including the “Horses as Sentinels” research collaborative.

Ed Annand has worked in referral, stud and first-opinion equine practice, clinical teaching and lecturing holding post-graduate qualifications in Equine Reproduction, Equine Surgery and Epidemiology. His ‘Horses as Sentinels’ research investigated the hypothesis that horse disease, with clinical signs consistent with HeV, but testing negative, was due to novel bat-borne paramyxoviruses posing potential zoonotic risk. He verified the presence of this variant which has allowed updated testing capacity with interpretation of expected pathogenicity, vaccine efficacy and geographical spillover risk.


Register for the AVA Annual Conference

Join us at the 2022 AVA Annual Conference on 22-27 May 2022 @ Gold Coast Exhibition Centre.

2022 AVA Conference Handbook

Download the full Handbook for the AVA Annual Conference as a PDF.

Program in detail

Find out more about the full program on Sched.