John Albers, DVM, will step down as executive director of the American Animal Hospital Association on Dec. 31. He has held the position for 23 years.
“I’m honored to have had the privilege of leading this prestigious association for over two decades,” Dr. Albers said. “The most rewarding part of this job has been working with AAHA leadership, staff, other veterinary organizations and the veterinary industry to help ensure the best possible care for companion animals.”
Albers’ decision was not an easy one, according to Jason Merrihew, communications coordinator for AAHA.
“It was a very tough decision for Dr. Albers,” Merrihew said. “However, he feels that the association is heading in the right direction, and that if there was a right time, it was now. He feels comfortable leaving, knowing that the guidance and strength of the current board of directors and leadership team, an experienced staff and a dedicated membership base will make the transition for the association easier.”
The board of directors is appointing a search committee to work with an executive search firm to begin the process of finding a successor.
As executive director, Albers has managed the administrative affairs of AAHA, carrying out its programs and policies. The association reported that it has experienced dramatic increases in membership as well as in programs and services during Albers’ tenure.
“John Albers departs after 23 years at the helm of AAHA as executive director during which he has helped lead a generation of veterinary medicine through countless challenges, changes and improvements,” said John Tait, DVM, president of AAHA. “He has led AAHA to a position of immeasurable respect and leadership within the profession.
“John has positively impacted those in every capacity in veterinary medicine who have had the opportunity to work with him, and while he will be missed at AAHA, his contributions and influence will be carried on by those who have benefited from his friendship and leadership. Everyone at AAHA wishes John the very best in his future endeavors.”
Albers plans to remain active with the association as a past president and as a hospital director emeritus. He will also remain active in the veterinary industry, although specific plans have not yet been announced.