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Wolfpack Leadership Conference

March 3 – 4, 2023

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The Wolfpack Leadership Conference is hosted annually by the NC State Veterinary Business Management Association (VBMA).  The conference welcomes veterinarians, veterinary technicians, veterinary students, veterinary office managers, and NC State faculty for a weekend of CE focused on developing and enhancing leadership within the veterinary profession. This program is approved for 5 hours of veterinary continuing education credit in jurisdictions that recognize RACE approval.

The program for this year’s Wolfpack Leadership Conference is entitled Cultivating a Sustainable Profession

Friday, March 1, 2024
6:00PMEvent Registration / Social
6:30PMWelcome Announcements
7:30PMKeynote Address: "DEIB is more than just a 'piece' of the is the PEACE we need in Veterinary Medicine." - Dr. Niccole Bruno
8:30 PMClosing Announcements for the Evening
Saturday, March 2, 2024
8:00AMRegistration / Breakfast
9:00AM"Inclusivity First" - Dr. Mia Cary
10:00AM"Creating the Space: Fostering an Environment of Inclusiveness and Advocacy" - Dr. Andrea Gentry-Apple
10:50AM Break
11:00AMWorkshop: NCSU CVM Office of Diversity
12:00PMLunch & Professional Headshots Slots
1:45PM"Leveraging Inclusive Mentorship Principles to Increase Access to Veterinary Medicine" - Dr. Valerie Marcano
2:45PM"Why Large Animal Medicine?" - Dr. Allen Cannedy
3:45PMClosing Announcements
Niccole Bruno, DVM
CEO/Founder, Blendvet
Niccole Bruno
Dr. Niccole Bruno is the CEO & Founder of Blendvet, a veterinary hospital certification program in diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB). As an Afro-Latina, Dr. Bruno's navigation into veterinary medicine has had its share of challenges. During her career, the experiences of racism, misogyny, and stereotypical behaviors, caused Dr. Bruno to develop a sense of disengagement from a profession she once loved. Nevertheless, her perseverance prevailed, and her passion for veterinary medicine resumed when she was offered the role of Medical Director for a veterinary hospital in Long Island, NY. For roughly eight years, her sincere and dedicated service as a hospital leader in NY and Houston fueled her heartfelt endeavors to ensure a culture of diversity and inclusiveness.

Today, Dr. Bruno continues her diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts through speaking engagements, mentorship, and building a pathway for BIPOC students (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) into the profession. Following completion of the Purdue University Diversity and Inclusion program in 2020, her awareness, continual exploration, and study into the diversity deficiencies of her profession ignited her vision to create Blendvet. Blendvet was launched as a DEIB conference
track in December 2021. Over the last two years, Blendvet has provided training and support to veterinary academic institutions, conferences, and hospital groups. In
addition to veterinary educational training, Blendvet has executed several pathway
events in partnership with veterinary conferences and academic institutions to help improve diversity in veterinary medicine.

Dr. Bruno is an Advisory Board member for Cornell University School of Veterinary Medicine and Pawsibillities, a mentorship platform for BIPOC students interested in veterinary medicine. She enjoys activities with her family, traveling, her Peloton,
football, and binge-watching her favorite shows in her spare time. Dr. Bruno has a 15-year-old dog named Jimmy and a 3-year-old cat named Sushi.
Allen Cannedy, DVM
Former Director for Diversity & Multicultural Affairs, NC State College of Veterinary Medicine
Allen Cannedy
Dr. Allen L. Cannedy is a native of Fredericksburg, Virginia and a 1994 alumnus of Tuskegee University. He earned an associate degree in Arts and Science from Germanna Community College, bachelor of science degree from Virginia State University and doctorate of Veterinary Medicine degree from Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine.

He did a Rotating Large Animal Internship at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine and a Ruminant Production Medicine Residency at North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine (NCSU-CVM).

Dr. Cannedy worked at NCSU-CVM as a ruminant group faculty member and as a clinical assistant professor from 1997 to 2000 until he became the Director of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs for the College of Veterinary Medicine. His primary duty as the veterinary college’s chief diversity officer was to promote diversity equity and inclusion in all facets of the profession.

Dr. Cannedy retired from the veterinary college in June 2022 but continues to serve as a consultant and advocate for underrepresented individuals interested in careers in the veterinary profession. He also owns and operates a small ruminant and camelid mobile veterinary private practice that specializes in care for llamas, alpacas, goats and sheep.
Mia Cary, DVM
CEO, Cary Consulting
Mia Cary
Dr. Mia Cary (she, hers), a 1999 UF College of Veterinary Medicine graduate, has a personal and professional purpose of activating others to thrive. She activates her purpose through speaking, meeting facilitation, association leadership, coaching, and customized consulting projects. Her professional experience includes executive leadership and education roles at the AVMA, NAVC, Boehringer Ingelheim, and Novartis Animal Health. She currently serves as CEO and Change Agent for Cary Consulting, CEO for the Pride Veterinary Medical Community (PrideVMC), serves on the board of advisors for Dean Ruby Perry at the Tuskegee University College of Veterinary Medicine, is a Past President of the American Association of Industry Veterinarians (AAIV), and is a certified QPR Gatekeeper Training Instructor. She resides with the Cary Crew in Greensboro, NC and recognizes the Eno, Sappony, and Shakori nations on whose land she lives and works.
Andrea Gentry-Apple, DVM
Clinical Associate Veterinarian and Coordinator of Veterinary Education, North Carolina A&T State University
Andrea Gentry-Apple
Dr. Andrea Gentry-Apple is the Coordinator of Veterinary Education and the Clinical Associate Veterinarian at North Carolina A&T State University. As a proud alumna of NCA&T and NC State College of Veterinary Medicine, her passion for education and creating inclusive spaces expands outside of her office walls. Although no expert in diversity, equity, and inclusion, Andrea has seen firsthand how it can impact effective work environments and team development.
Although her primary career is in academia and laboratory animal medicine, she still practices small animal medicine in North Carolina. Outside of her education work, Dr. Gentry-Apple is the President of the North Carolina Association of Minority Veterinarians and holds several other local positions, stiving to promote her continued passion for the field.
Valerie Marcano, DVM, PhD, DACPV CEO & Co-Founder, Pawsibilities Vet Med
Owner, ValCri Consulting, LLC
Valerie Marcano
Dr. Marcano leans into her core values of authenticity, integrity, and fairness to advocate for health and belonging in the veterinary profession. A diplomat of the American College of Poultry Veterinarians, she received her veterinary (DVM) and PhD degrees from the University of Georgia.

Dr. Marcano has work experience in research, government, diagnostics, and private industry. In 2020, she co-founded Pawsibilities Vet Med, a nonprofit that supports veterinary professionals from historically underrepresented communities through mentorship, professional development and resources.

In 2022, Dr. Marcano was recognized as One of 22 Extraordinary Women by Today’s Veterinary Business and along with her husband, they received the Outstanding Contribution to Diversity Equity and Inclusion award by the North Carolina Association of Minority Veterinarians.
In 2023 she received the Young Achiever Alumni Award at the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine and was also selected by AAHA’s NEWStat and the Latinx VMA as a Latinx veterinary medical professionals “to watch” in veterinary medicine.

Registration includes:

  • 5 hours RACE approved Veterinary Continuing Education Credit
  • Friday evening Social
  • Saturday breakfast and lunch

Registraion fee:

  • Current VBMA students Free
  • VBMA Alumni $100
  • DVM, Veterinary Technicians, Practice Managers $125

Thank you to our sponsors


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