Dr. Doreen M. Houston, Board Chair
Doreen graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College in 1980, and after four years in private practice, returned to OVC to complete an Internship, Residency and DVSc in Internal Medicine. She became a board certified Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM) in 1991. Her career that followed included time in academia at both OVC and the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in Saskatoon, as well as time in industry with Medi-Cal and Royal Canin.
Throughout her career, Doreen has authored multiple published papers, several book chapters and a textbook. She received of a number of academic teaching awards and was the proud recipient of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association’s Outstanding Veterinarian of the Year award in 2011. Doreen officially retired from Royal Canin in 2011 and registered her own business, Doreen Houston Consulting.
Doreen and her husband enjoy spending time with family including their grandson, biking, hiking and traveling across the globe. She has been on every continent, and has even slept on the ice in Antarctica and did a South Ocean swim! Her passion for pets has resulted in a menagerie of rescued dogs over time. Doreen and her husband Kees are now the proud owners of a male Golden Retriever named “Obi” (her grandson named him in honor of the Star Wars character Obi-Wan Kenobi).
Dr. W. Geoffrey (Chip) Coombs, Past Board Chair
Dr. Coombs has practised veterinary medicine since his graduation from the Ontario Veterinary College in 1976 in the United Kingdom, the U.S., Western Canada and Toronto, where he owned a multi-veterinarian practice for 33 years. During that time, he became involved with numerous veterinary boards and committees, including the CVMA, CVO, OVMA, TAVM, University of Guelph and the Ontario Veterinary College. Throughout his career, he's provided management-consulting services to numerous private practices, pharmaceutical companies and other industry stakeholders. Dr. Coombs has been a strong supporter of Pet Trust since its inception, due to its unique role in providing critical investigational studies which are not only essential for veterinarians, but also for pet owners and their pets.
Dr. Jennifer Ogeer, Chair of Finance
Dr. Jennifer Ogeer graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College at the University of Guelph in 1995 and has been practicing veterinary medicine for two decades. Her career has been in clinical practice, academic teaching, research and administration. She was a Clinical Assistant Professor in Emergency Medicine and Critical Care at Texas A & M University and an Associate Professor at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan. Her MSc. research in infectious disease management and antimicrobial resistance was sponsored by Pet Trust and inspired her to support and participate in the altruistic work of the Board. Jennifer is a graduate of the Executive MBA program at the Ivey School of Business, Western University and is currently a Medical Affairs Marketing Manager with IDEXX Laboratories Inc. She is strong advocate of leadership for sustainability and is completing an MA in Leadership at the College of Business and Economics, University of Guelph. She is serving on the Board of Directors of the Oakville-Milton Humane Society and as the Finance Chair for Veterinarians without Borders/Veterinaries sans Frontieres. Jennifer is an advocate for animal welfare and believes in scientific collaboration, corporate social responsibility and the human-animal bond. She shares her home with two dogs and four cats, and in her spare time she enjoys kickboxing, biking, weight training and yoga.
Roly Browning Watt, Chair of the Board of Patrons
Mr. Watt was born and raised in Toronto. He attended Upper Canada College, the University of Western Ontario (B.A. 1962) and the University of Toronto Law School (J.D. 1968). He was called to the Bar in 1970 and was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1982. Mr. Watt has practiced law for the past 40 years in the areas of will and trusts. He has served as Chairman of The Upper Canada College Foundation, The Don Mills Foundation for Seniors, The Better Living Charitable Foundation, The Browning Watt Foundation, the Ontario Licence Suspension Appeal Board and as Vice-Chairman of North York General Hospital Foundation. He currently sits on the Board of the Rosedale Day School and is a member of the Governor's Council of North York General Hospital. Mr. Watt is a supporter of OVC Pet Trust at the Ontario Veterinary College and is currently a trustee. He is an avid animal lover.
Kim Lang, Chair of Marketing
Kim Lang is an avid supporter of a variety of community initiatives. In addition to sitting on the OVC Pet Trust board, Kim is also the Artistic Director of the Eden Mills Writer's Festival. She is also the Vice President of the Angel Gabriel Foundation, a private charitable foundation founded by herself and husband Stu Lang, and President of the Burnett Rivermead Foundation. A graduate of Queen’s University, she currently lives in the Puslinch countryside with her husband and a veritable menagerie of horses, dogs and cats.
Members at Large
Rick Hayward, Trustee
Rick is the founder and president of Brendain Incorporated, based in Toronto, Canada. Brendain Incorporated specializes in interim leadership, business development, and government relations, including the management of proposals and submissions for major funding applications. The practice focuses primarily in the food and agriculture sector and is recognized as a leader in the industry. Before starting Brendain, Rick had held a number of senior management positions in the food industry. Most recently Rick was a Vice President with Nestlé Canada, where he managed the Dairy Business, the Foreign Trade Division, and Business Development, including the mergers and acquisitions portfolio and was appointed to the Executive Committee for Purina. Prior to joining Nestlé, Rick was a Marketing Specialist with the Government of Ontario, Ministry of Agriculture and Food, a position he held for 7 years, and was responsible for promoting Ontario primary agriculture and value added food products to Europe and the Middle East. Previously, he held progressive management positions with Cadbury Schweppes and George Weston Limited, where he moved from a front line sales representative to general management, holding executive leadership roles in both the Quebec and Ontario regions. Rick is a graduate of the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program and continues to remain active with the school. He has served on a number of boards for private companies, committees, trusts and councils. Rick breeds Irish Water Spaniels under the Beachbuoy prefix.
Dr. Fran Rotondo, Trustee
Dr. Fran Rotondo completed an undergraduate B.Sc. degree at University of Guelph in 1994, and obtained her DVM degree from the Ontario Veterinary College in 1998. After graduating, she practiced companion animal medicine for almost ten years. In 2007, she began her career in the pharmaceutical industry. Dr. Rotondo joined Merial Canada in November 2011 as a Technical Service Veterinarian for their Companion Animal division providing support to veterinary customers throughout Canada. Dr. Rotondo lives in Guelph with her husband and their furry children.
Dr. John Reeve-Newson, Trustee
Dr. John Reeve-Newson graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College in 1964. After graduation, John practiced in Chicago for two years then returned to Toronto and established The Animal Clinics One and Two, where he is still in active practice. With Dr. Richard Meen, they established Kishniga Kennels in 1971. In partnership, they have bred group and BIS winning Dobermans, Old English Sheepdogs, Skye Terriers, French Bulldogs, Borzoi and Harriers. They have also owned and exhibited group and BIS winning Lakeland Terriers, Norwich Terriers, Standard Poodles, Scottish Deerhounds, American Foxhounds and Whippets. Dr. Reeve-Newson, since becoming licensed to judge, has officiated at shows in Canada, USA, Mexico, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Belgium, Holland, Columbia, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Venezuela, Uruguay and Portugal. He has had the honour of judging at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York City on five occasions, including the Hound Group at the 2004 show.
Dr. Reeve-Newson is a member of the Ontario Sighthound Association, The Borzoi Club of Canada, Borzoi Club of America, Midwest Borzoi Club and the Santa Barbara Kennel Club. Professionally he is a member of the Canadian Veterinary Association, the American Animal Hospital Association, the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association and the College of Veterinarians of Ontario where he has served as Councilor and as President 1993 - 1994. He was the founder, and is still, the CEO of the Veterinary Emergency and Referral Clinic Partnership of Toronto, the first veterinary emergency clinic established in Canada. Dr. Reeve-Newson is licensed to judge all breeds.
Dr. Jeffrey Wichtel, Dean, Ontario Veterinary College
Dr. Jeff Wichtel, most recently with the Atlantic Veterinary College (AVC), University of Prince Edward Island, began his five-year term as OVC Dean on October 1, 2015. He holds a faculty appointment in OVC’s Department of Population Medicine, and he brings extensive experience as a researcher, clinician and administrator. A faculty member in the Department of Health Management at AVC, Wichtel was the college’s associate dean, graduate studies and research, from 2009 to 2014. He also served at AVC as acting dean, director of animal resources, department chair and chair of the Sir James Dunn Animal Welfare Centre. Before joining AVC, Wichtel taught at Massey University in New Zealand and in the College of Veterinary Medicine at North Carolina State University. Earlier, he was a resident at Iowa State University and a mixed animal practitioner. He studies animal nutrition, disease, production and reproduction, and has specialized in trace element and vitamin nutrition in ruminants and horses. As principal or collaborating investigator, Jeff has attracted more than $2.5 million in grant and contract funding. He has written more than 150 publications on animal nutrition, reproduction and disease, livestock production and veterinary education, and is an associate editor of the Canadian Journal of Veterinary Research. He earned his B.V.Sc. and PhD from Massey University and is board-certified by the American College of Theriogenologists.
Roger Warren, Founding Member and Honourary Trustee
Now retired, Mr. Warren was the Portfolio Manager, RBC Dominion Securities, and began his career in the investment business with A.E. Ames & Co. in 1954. He has worked in their New York, London, UK and Toronto offices. With almost 60 years in the investment industry, Mr. Warren has experience in firm management, investment banking and portfolio management. Mr. Warren has also served on the University of Guelph's BetterPlanet Project campaign cabinet, Heritage Trust Board, chaired the Pet Trust Board and remains active as an Honourary Member. He has served numerous private enterprises including Countryside Holdings, LifeLearn and several other companies and organizations.
Dr. Gordon Kirby, Associate Dean of Research and Innovation, Ontario Veterinary College
Dr. Gordon Kirby has implemented important initiatives that enhance research and graduate studies at the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC), including an innovative graduate fellowship program that has helped the College meet its graduate growth targets. He is also working to increase international partnerships, including establishing links with Northwestern Agriculture University in Yangling, China.
Kirby has developed strategies to assist faculty members, particularly those in the early stages of their careers, to improve their research success. He is also improving OVC’s research communications through a new website to aid faculty and graduate students. Kirby has taken a very active role in the OVC integrated planning process, incorporating research in the College’s long-term strategic vision. His areas of research interest include molecular diagnostics and early biomarkers of disease; regulation of expression of drug metabolizing enzymes; and functional significance of altered expression of drug metabolizing enzymes during cellular injury.
Dr. Stephanie Nykamp, Associate Dean, Clinical Program, Ontario Veterinary College
After graduating from the Ontario Veterinary College in 1997, Dr. Nykamp worked in a mixed animal private practice for two years. She returned to OVC in 1999 for a rotating internship in small animal medicine and surgery followed by a residency in Diagnostic Imaging at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. Dr. Nykamp successfully completed the board certification in Diagnostic Imaging in 2003 and returned to the Ontario Veterinary College as an assistant professor. Dr. Nykamp has been a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Radiologists since 2003. She is currently the Associate Dean, Clinical Program at the Ontario Veterinary College.
Kim Robinson, Managing Director, OVC Pet Trust
Passionate about a variety of social issues, Kim Robinson has worked within the not-for-profit sector for more than 15 years. With diverse experience in managing all aspects of a charitable organization, Kim has focused her career on making contributions towards animal protection, social services and public education causes. As the Managing Director of Pet Trust, Kim oversees all aspects of the charity and its continuing effort to advance veterinary learning, pet healthcare and innovative discoveries to improve the future of companion animal medicine. Kim lives in Guelph with her family and three-year-old dog named Juno.