Debbie White, DVM, BS
Dr. Debbie White received both her BS in animal science and her DVM from Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. After graduation, she relocated to Las Vegas with her husband and fellow Purdue veterinary graduate, Dr. Kurt Mychajlonka. She has been in practice for over 20 years as a small animal and exotic animal veterinarian. She owns two veterinary practices and is a partner in several other veterinary practices in the Las Vegas area. Since 2008 she serves as “Dr. Debbie” on the weekly national radio program, Animal Radio, where she fields pet owner health questions from around the country. Dr. White has been involved with WVC throughout her career in many capacities and shares WVC’s passion for continuing education and career development. She is especially interested in mentorship roles and the promotion of personal and professional wellness.
Gary D. Weddle, DVM
Dr. Weddle hails from Missouri and is a 1978 graduate from the University of Missouri, College of Veterinary Medicine. After graduation, he practiced small animal and exotic medicine in private practice until 1993. He then went on to practice exotic animal medicine exclusively until 2000 and also established the Veterinary Technology Program at the College of Southern Nevada where he was an adjunct professor. From 2000 until retirement in 2011, he practiced shelter medicine. During retirement, Dr. Weddle has been serving on the IACUC Committee of WVC for the past ten years, is a surgical examiner for the AVMA ECSVG program, is the USDA veterinarian of record for the Oquendo Center, and was elected to the Board of WVC in 2015. Since graduation, Dr. Weddle has been to every WVC Annual Conference. He has served as a session moderator several times for WVC during Conference. His strong appreciation for providing quality continuing education is the driving factor for his deepening involvement with WVC. Dr. Weddle’s hobbies include falconry, land sailing, fishing, and photography.
Heather Prendergast, RVT, CVPM, SPHR
Heather Prendergast has spent over 25 years in the veterinary industry, with 20 years in small animal practice. She has taught several years for both veterinary technology and assistance programs and has authored the book “Front Office Management for the Veterinary Team,” now in its second edition. Heather is well known and lectures nationally and internationally, authoring several articles and participating in published roundtable discussions with the goal of increasing team communication and client compliance within the veterinary practice. Currently, Heather is an education development specialist for Patterson Veterinary University. Heather serves on several advisory boards, including the WVC Board of Directors, the Pet Nutrition Alliance, and the Fear Free Advisory Board. Heather also serves as co-chair for the NAVTA Veterinary Nurse Initiative and is the editor in chief of NAVTA Journal. In addition, Heather was named the 2014 Veterinary Technician of the Year and the WVC 2016 and 2017 Speaker of the Year. Most recently, Heather obtained her SHPR (Senior Professional Human Resources) certification.
E. David Stearns, RVT
Secretary/Treasurer - Parliamentarian
Mr. David Stearns is currently the general manager for VitalRads, a Houston-based teleradiology company. Mr. Stearns’s experience includes many years of sales and marketing leadership for industry-leading companies in diagnostics and animal health, as well as teaching in an AVMA-accredited veterinary technology program. He worked as an RVT in a mixed animal practice and as the hospital administrator of a small animal practice. Mr. Stearns was part of the founding group of NAVTA and is the past-president of the Oklahoma and Kansas Veterinary Technician Associations. He has lectured and authored several articles including a chapter in the Clinical Textbook for Veterinary Technicians. He has served on the AVMA’s CVTEA and chaired the National Board Exam Committee. Mr. Stearns served as the veterinary technician director on the Board of Directors for a five-year term and is currently serving as the secretary-treasurer for WVC.
William Wright, DVM
Dr. Wright is the owner of Wright Veterinary Services in Spring Creek, Nevada. The practice deals primarily in beef cattle with some equine and involves traveling to ranches, large and small, throughout Northeast Nevada. As the chief surgeon for the Dumke-Weeks Spay/Neuter Clinic of the Elko Animal Shelter in Elko, Nevada, he has not completely forsaken the small animal side of things and has an ongoing interest in shelter medicine. He spent nine years as an examiner in the food animal, equine, and anesthesia sections of the ECFVG’s Clinical Proficiency Exam given monthly at the Oquendo Center, until elected to the WVC Board of Directors in 2016. Dr. Wright graduated cum laude from the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1982. A native of Northeast Nevada’s "Buckaroo Country," he credits his mentor, the late Dr. Jack O Walther, for inspiring him to pursue a career as a veterinarian. He has been a WVC attendee since 1977 and met his wife, Vivian, in the conference Exhibit Hall when it was still at the Las Vegas Hilton. Other interests include shooting and cycling.
Travis McDermott, DVM
Dr. Travis McDermott was born in Galveston, Texas and grew up in a small rural town called La Grange, Texas. He obtained both his undergraduate and veterinary degrees from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. After receiving his veterinary degree in 2006, Dr. McDermott moved to Las Vegas and has been practicing small animal medicine since that time. He is married to his lovely wife Nasim and has 2 two-legged children (Owen and Aiden) and 2 four-legged children (Cooper and Timon).
Thomas N. Tully, Jr., DVM, MS, DABVP (Avian), DECZM (Avian)
Dr. Thomas N. Tully, Jr. is a professor of zoological medicine in the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences and also serves as the service chief of the Zoological Medicine Service, School of Veterinary Medicine, Louisiana State University. Dr. Tully’s academic degrees include BS (Animal Science); DVM and MS (Epidemiology and Community Health) all from LSU. He is also a diplomate for the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (Avian) and a diplomate for the European College Zoological Medicine (Avian). Following graduation from veterinary medical school, Dr. Tully practiced as an associate veterinarian in veterinary hospitals located in southeast Florida and Louisiana before becoming an instructor at the LSU – School of Veterinary Medicine where he participated in a Master of Science program in the Department of Epidemiology and Community Health. While an instructor and graduate student Dr. Tully would regularly perform relief veterinary duties at private veterinary clinics/hospitals in south Louisiana. Upon completion of his Master of Science degree, he was hired as an associate professor in the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences at the LSU – School of Veterinary Medicine. He has remained on faculty at the LSU-SVM, attaining the rank of full professor.
Brian Darrow, DVM, BS
Dr. Brian Darrow received a BS in animal science in 1979 and a DVM from Iowa State University in 1983. His practice career began in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin and a year later, he moved to his hometown of Anamosa, Iowa where he founded the Anamosa Veterinary Clinic. The clinic has grown to become a thriving 6-doctor mixed practice in Northeast Iowa that attends to cattle and companion animals. Dr. Darrow was a track athlete at ISU. In 2005 Sharon Korir, the daughter of one of his Kenyan teammates died of rabies subsequent to a dog bite. Moved by her tragic story, Dr. Darrow founded Sharon’s Foundation through a remarkable series of insights and connections (sharonliveson.org). The foundation’s purpose is to provide rabies control in Kenya by vaccinating animals and educating the Kenyan people about the disease. To date, the organization has vaccinated over 400,000 animals and education outreach is ongoing.
Shawn T. Tsuda, MD, FACS
Human Medical Director
Shawn Tsuda, MD, FACS, is a minimally invasive and bariatric surgeon in Las Vegas, Nevada. Dr. Tsuda graduated from the John A. Burns School of Medicine at the University of Hawaii and completed his residency in general surgery at the University of Nevada. Following a fellowship in laparoscopic and bariatric surgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, he returned to Nevada as associate professor of surgery at the University of Nevada School of Medicine for ten years and director of the Surgical Skills Center. Dr. Tsuda was one of the first in his region to perform fully robotic bariatric, hiatal, inguinal, ventral, and incisional hernia repairs. He recently published the Textbook of Robotic-Assisted Surgery.
Megan Skeffington, DVM
Dr. Megan Skeffington is a Professional Services Veterinarian for IDEXX, Laboratories. For almost 15 years she practiced as an associate veterinarian for both private and corporate hospitals, as well as a Chief is Staff. She loves all aspects of veterinary medicine and has a special interest in diagnostics, soft tissue surgery, and endocrinology. She is very passionate about the human-animal bond and making sure that pets are healthy, happy members of the family for as long as possible. Dr. Skeffington has worked in several capacities of the veterinary profession, including mentoring new veterinary graduates, developing critical skills and has been a speaker and advocate for veterinary communication. She has spoken at WVC Annual Meeting and Recent Graduate Symposium and has worked to develop the new Clinical Skills Training continuing education course at WVC.Dr. Skeffington was born and raised in Eastern Iowa where her veterinary career started at the age of 11, riding along on farm calls and working in the kennels. She attended Iowa State University, where she obtained her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 2006. She and her husband moved from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Upstate New York in 2010, where they enjoy traveling, hiking and camping with their two Brittany Spaniels.
Miguel Ortiz, DVM
Dr. Miguel Ortiz was born and raised in Guatemala City, Guatemala before moving to the United States. He received his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine. Currently, he serves as Medical Director at Munhall Veterinary Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Areas of professional interest include Preventive Medicine, Chronic Disease Management, Palliative Care, Behavior and Dermatology. When not taking care of patients, Dr. Ortiz likes to spend time with his family and friends. He enjoys traveling, reading adventure books, and is in training to complete a full-distance IronMan Triathlon.
Meredyth Jones DVM, MS, DACVIM
Dr. Jones received her DVM from Oklahoma State University in 2002. She entered private mixed-animal practice in Brandenburg, Kentucky, later completing a residency in Large Animal Internal Medicine-Emphasis Food Animal and received an MS degree in Veterinary Biomedical Sciences at Oklahoma State University. She then taught food animal field services at Kansas State and Texas A&M. She is the owner of Large Animal Consulting & Education, an online continuing education company. She joined the food animal faculty at Oklahoma State in the fall of 2018.
Joan S. Bowen, DVM
Following graduation in 1976, Dr. Joan Bowen opened a mobile small ruminant veterinary practice in Weld and Larimer Counties in northeastern Colorado. This included herd health services for the Colorado State University Bovine Embryo Transfer Program from 1978-1980 and the American Breeders Service Artificial Insemination Facility from 1980 to 1996.
Over the years, the majority of her clients were small farm flock sheep and goat producers, and while on farm calls, Dr. Bowen provide a variety of small animal services.
Dr. Bowen has been an active member of the American Association of Small Ruminant Practitioners since 1975 and has served in multiple positions on the Board of Directors including two terms as President from 2005-2007 and 2011-2013. She represented AASRP in the AVMA House of Delegates from 2009 through 2019 and on the AVMA Food Safety Advisory Committee from 2012 through 2018.
Dusty Nagy DVM, MS, PhD, DACVIM
Dr. Nagy received her veterinary degree from Cornell University and completed a Masters, residency, and PhD at the University of Missouri. She spent 5 years on the faculty at University of Illinois and 13 at the University of Missouri primarily seeing patients on the food animal ambulatory service, treating beef and dairy cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, and camelids. Dr. Nagy is currently a Clinical Associate Professor at Texas A&M University where she leads the food animal medicine and surgery clinical service and instructs students in the preclinical and clinical professional training program.
Michael P. Jones DVM, DABVP (Avian)
Dr. Jones earned his DVM from the University of Missouri in 1992, followed by a small animal internship and a residency in Avian and Zoological Medicine, both at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine (UTCVM). He is board-certified by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (Avian) and served as an Avian/Exotic consultant for Antech Diagnostics (1995 – 2015). Currently, he is a Professor of Avian & Zoological Medicine at the UTCVM and the primary veterinarian for the American Eagle Foundation. His primary responsibilities include instruction of clinical students, interns, and Avian and Zoological Medicine residents. Mike is passionate about veterinary education, leadership, diversity, and personal and professional growth and enjoys falconry, fishing, playing the trumpet, and dancing.
Mrs. Linda Markland, RVT
Linda Markland, RVT, has been a member of the veterinary community for more than 40 years. Her work includes a diverse range of experience, from small animal clinical practice and teaching, to corporate management. She has a special interest in engaging, educating, and empowering veterinary nurses and technicians. She is an active member of veterinary nurse/technician related organizations and has served in many leadership roles including NAVTA, as the Global Outreach Chair and on the CE Committee. Linda has received many awards from the organizations she supports.