Conference Speakers (2024)

The 2023 conference saw a wealth of knowledge from key industry speakers, discussing a large range of topics relevant to today’s world in animal health and welfare. We are delighted to announce the speakers for our 2024 conference.

AHDA members can view presentations from the 2023 conference via the AHDA members online portal.

To register for a login, click here.

KEYNOTE SPEAKER – Abi Seager – Veterinary Medicines Directorate

Abi Seager was appointed as the Chief Executive of the VMD in September 2021. Her leadership role encompasses the VMDs full remit of policy and operational delivery together with corporate and accounting officer responsibilities.

Abi was previously the VMD’s deputy CEO and Director of the Authorisations in which her responsibilities included overseeing the rigorous benefit:risk assessment of applications for the marketing authorisations (MA) of veterinary medicinal products and also the VMDs Brexit and International programmes, Covid response and supply chain resilience.

Since joining the civil service in 2002 Abi has held several senior roles across government spanning policy, operational delivery and major project management. Abi’s scientific background is in the field of Genetics and Microbiology.

Speaker George Aspey – Harper Adams University
Description Changes to exam systems, helping you help your staff, and future qualifications
Bio George is a registered veterinary nurse and worked in veterinary practice for 13 years before joining Harper Adams as a lecturer. He took over the role of course manager for the range of AMTRA SQP modules in February 2022. He is particularly passionate about SQP education and creating opportunities.
Matt Colston
Speaker Matthew Colston – Elanco Animal Health
Description Better parasite control for your farmer customers, one step at a time.
Bio Matt has been working with Elanco as a Ruminant Technical Consultant for just over 10 years as part of Elanco’s vet team. Prior to this he spent many years in mixed, mainly large animal practice, initially in the south of Scotland and then in Cumbria where he now lives. While working in general practice Matt served a term as President of the Sheep Veterinary Society, and as a Director of the Moredun Foundation.
Speaker Simon Freear – The Complete Pet Company
Description A brief introduction to omega fatty acids and the benefits of their supplementation for the maintenance of animal health
Speaker Dan Griffiths – Norbrook
Description An overview of the management of pain in youngstock, focusing on best practice use of local anaesthetics in multi-modal pain relief protocols for common husbandry procedures.
Bio This AMTRA approved presentation was put together to support SQPs in best practice prescribing of local anaesthetics for common husbandry procedures in youngstock.
Speaker Emily Hall – Nettex
Description An update on the backyard poultry sector for 2023/2024
Bio Emily Hall is Product Manager at Nettex
Speaker Sarah Hormozi – UK PET FOOD (Formerly PFMA)
Description Introducing new factsheets and educational tools, in this session you will learn about pet food and pet nutrition and where to find reliable sources of information in order to advise pet owners and clients.
Bio Sarah has an MSc in Animal Nutrition from the University of Nottingham and has been with UK Pet Food (Formerly PFMA) for 12 years. As the Head of Science and Education, her role involves running several technical committees, producing educational materials, advising members and representing UK Pet Food at external events.
Speaker Dawn Howard – NOAH
Description Industry Leader’s Panel and Question Time
Bio Dawn Howard is Chief Executive of NOAH, the leading trade association representing the UK animal health industry.

Since joining NOAH in 2014 she has successfully steered the organisation through EU Exit uncertainty, the challenge of COVID-19 lockdown and recovery, whilst providing a robust promotion of the animal health sector which has helped to increase both the profile and membership of the Association. She is a passionate advocate for high standards of both animal health and welfare and the benefits trade associations bring to represent industry and influence policy. Dawn also strongly supports evidence based proportionate regulation, innovation and the advantages new scientific developments can deliver for society. These will continue to be important issues as the UK develops its profile on the global stage.

Prior to joining NOAH Dawn was based in Brussels where she represented UK agriculture in the office of the National Farmers Union. Her responsibilities included animal health, animal welfare and trade. She later headed up the European body for farm animal breeders, EFFAB. Dawn also worked for a number of years in UK Government, in animal health and welfare, pesticides and plant health.

She originally qualified as a botanist and maintains a keen interest in environmental issues and gardening. She speaks Spanish (badly), lives in rural Cambridgeshire and is married with two sons and a cat.

Speaker Alison Lambert BVSc CMRS – Onswitch
Presentation PEOPLE BUY FROM PEOPLE – Be more human, connect and influence your customers
Description Customer behaviour and how to engage customers
Bio Following qualification from Liverpool University in 1989, Alison worked in practice for several years before pursuing a business career with Hills Pet Nutrition and MARS, where she discovered the passion for the customer experience that her award-winning company, Onswitch, is renowned for today. Established in 2001, Onswitch promotes customer-centred practice so pets, horses and livestock receive the best care; providing research, marketing, CPD and business consultancy with an effective, innovative, straight-talking and client-led approach.

Aliso is published widely, and regularly speaks at key international veterinary congresses and events.

Speaker Cat McLaughlin – RUMA
Description Industry Leader’s Panel and Question Time
Speaker John Millward  – Veterinary Medicines Directorate
Bio John graduated from Nottingham University with a BSc(Hons) in Animal Science in 1984, and joined an animal feed manufacturer as a pig/poultry technical adviser.

In 1990 he joined the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain as an inspector in its newly created Animal Medicines Inspectorate (AMI). In that role he inspected businesses manufacturing and distributing medicated animal feed, businesses selling veterinary medicines, and investigated breaches of related legislation.

John became the Head of the AMI in 2000 and remained in that role following the transfer of the Inspectorate into the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) in 2006. He continued to head the team (renamed the Inspections and Investigations Team) until March 2015, when he took up the post of VMD’s Head of Compliance. He’s held several posts since but is currently the Head of the Inspections & Enforcement Division, and a member of the VMD’s Executive Management Board.

John has participated in a number of national and international committees, working groups and training workshops related to animal feed and veterinary medicines.

John was awarded an OBE in the King’s Birthday Honours list in June 2023 and is a Chartered Biologist and Member of the Royal Society of Biology.

Speaker Jonathan Moore BVSc MBA MRCVS – Chanelle Pharma
Description Choosing a branded originator or generic product; what’s the difference?’
Bio Jonathan graduated as a veterinary surgeon in 2003. After 10 years in practice, he then completed his MBA before entering industry. He has held sales, technical and marketing roles across multiple species areas. He joined Chanelle as the company’s Veterinary Technical Services Manager in 2022
Speaker Dr Alison Pyatt – Veterinary Medicines Directorate
Description Initiating stakeholder engagement and contribution to tackle the critical problem of anthelmintic resistance in horses.
Bio Dr Alison Pyatt oversees innovative portfolio of training, international activities, and capacity building in the veterinary medicine regulatory sphere at the VMD. She co-chaired the VMD’s recent equine anthelmintic stakeholder workshop. She holds a doctorate in Veterinary Services, is an experienced academic, and a visiting lecturer in professional veterinary services.
Speaker Dr Esther Rawlinson BVMS MRCVS – Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health UK
Description The principles of effective parasite control. How risk assessment and testing help target treatment for a more sustainable approach.
Bio Esther leads the equine veterinary team at Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health UK, makers of Eqvalan®/Eqvalan® Duo.

Following 10 years in clinical practice, she has worked in a variety of veterinary roles in industry. She has a particular interest in educating prescribers and horse owners on sustainable worm control practices

Speaker Jonathan Statham MA VetMB DCHP FRCVS – RAFT Solutions Limited
Description Industry Leader’s Panel and Question Time
Bio Jonathan combines 25 years of experience in veterinary practice with a range of wider industry and academic roles. As chair of Bishopton Veterinary Group, a 40+vet independently owned practice (members of XL Vets) based in Yorkshire, he remains active in practice with an RCVS Diploma in Cattle Health & Production. He is Chief Executive of RAFT Solutions Ltd, an innovation led sustainability company combining applied research with advanced breeding, food futures, consultancy and training. Jonathan has also held a range of representative or policy linked roles including past President of the British Cattle Veterinary Association (BCVA). He serves on the Veterinary Products Committee (VPC) of the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) and is currently Chair of the Animal Health & Welfare Board of England (AHWBE). In 2020 he also took up a chair at the new veterinary school at Harper and Keele and is now Professor of Sustainable Livestock Health & Welfare. Main veterinary interests include progressive herd health and reproductive technologies. He has published a wide range of papers and is a co-author of textbook ‘Dairy Herd Health’. He is a RCVS recognised specialist in Cattle Health & Production and was named UK Dairy Vet of the year 2015.
Speaker Peter Stoker – DATAMARS LIVESTOCK
Description How a few little changes can tip the balance on resistance build up
Bio Peter has worked in UK agriculture for over 10 years as part of the Datamars Marketing Team and now category manages the Datamars Animal Health Delivery Systems (AHDS) range across the UK and Ireland. Prior to this, he worked outside the Agri sector in the Express Courier market, the Australian Oil and Gas sector and was co-founder of an award winning West Australian-based Farm Stay tourist operation.

Agriculture runs deep however, originating from a family run Beef and Sheep farm in Northumberland, Peter now resides back in the North East, once again with a great love of all things Black and White that never need milking and run around St James Park!

Speaker Lesley Stubbings – SCOPS
Bio Lesley is an Independent Consultant and has a central role in SCOPS. Over the last five years she has been heavily involved in sheep scab initiatives, including the VMD and RDPE projects and the Code of Practice for dipping contractors
Speaker Dr Wendy Talbot – Zoetis
Description  A concise overview on current best practice, how to perform a risk assessment and selective therapy
Bio Dr Talbot is the National Equine Veterinary Manager for Zoetis UK, the manufacturer of Equest and Equest Pramox. Prior to joining Zoetis, Dr Talbot completed a residency in Equine Internal Medicine at The University of Liverpool and worked in Equine practice for 9 years. She is a European and RCVS specialist in Equine Internal Medicine. Dr Talbot regularly provides anthelmintic CPD training to RAMAs, Vets and Students with a focus on responsible and practical parasite control plans.
Speaker Sioned Timothy BVSc MSc MRCVS   – Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health UK
Description This presentation will discuss how SQPs can approach developing risk-based, more sustainable parasite control plans on their clients’ farms.
Bio Sioned graduated qualified as a vet from the University of Liverpool and spent 5 years in large animal practice in West Wales before making the move into industry. She has worked at Boehringer Ingelheim, where she leads the livestock technical services team, since 2017. Sioned is interested in how scientific evidence can be translated into practical guidance on integrated parasite control.
Speaker Patricia van Veen DVM MRCVS – Zoetis UK Ltd
Description The role of multiple-active anthelmintics as part of a sustainable worm control plan
Bio Originally from the Netherlands, Patricia graduated as a vet from the University of Ghent, Belgium. In her 16 years in mixed and dairy practice, she worked with farms to help optimise animal management and develop bespoke health plans. In 2020 Patricia joined the Zoetis Ruminant team, currently as UK National Vet for the Ruminant VPS portfolio
Speaker Ian Wright – ESCCAP & the Mount Veterinary Practice
Description How to control them while minimising environmental impact
Bio Ian is a practising Veterinary surgeon and co-owner of the Mount Veterinary Practice in Fleetwood. He has a master’s degree in veterinary Parasitology and is chair of the European Scientific Counsel of Companion Animal Parasites (ESCCAP). Ian has over 125 published peer reviewed articles and papers and is an editorial board member for the Companion animal journal. He continues to carry out research in practice including work on intestinal nematodes and ticks.