The AAVSB Announces Recipient of the 2022 VTNE Celebrating Diversity Award

The American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2022 VTNE Celebrating Diversity Award is Gabrielle Foster, a graduating Veterinary Technology senior from Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

After a change of majors early on in college, Gabrielle discovered her calling of veterinary medicine. She was drawn to the world of client education, animal nursing and care, surgery, critical care, and so much more. She saw the ability to make a difference in people’s lives, whether it was part of a new pet owner’s journey by educating them on vaccines, or it was part of the end of their journey by helping with end of care needs.

This award is given to a veterinary technician/nursing student who has demonstrated a commitment to celebrating diversity and inclusion in the veterinary profession to best serve animals and the public, as well as community involvement and how the recipient has exhibited cultural humility and competence as a veterinary professional.

“The AAVSB is proud to recognize the wonderful veterinary technicians that we have that support us and have worked tirelessly to advance our great profession,” said Dr. Chris Runde, President of the AAVSB. “The pandemic that we have been through has presented special challenges to all of us and especially our hardworking veterinary technicians. This award represents our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion not just for our membership but for the profession as a whole. We are very proud of our commitment, and we will move forward in this direction in the years ahead.”

In her veterinary technology program at Baton Rouge Community College, Gabrielle met many young women with whom she shared a similar upbringing. This was an enormous inspiration, as they might have never seen themselves represented in veterinary medicine in this way. Gabrielle is very involved in both her church and community. She actively volunteers for the Children’s Church and Nursery and continues to grow both as an individual and as a veterinary professional. Gabrielle is also an advocate for clients that not only cannot speak English, but are also hard of hearing. Using a translation system, Gabrielle has taken the time to learn American Sign Language to better engage with all of her clients to better help address the needs of their pets.

After graduating and passing the VTNE, Gabrielle hopes to encourage inclusivity and diversity and represent leadership radiating positivity for humans and animals alike.

Learn more by going to our Veterinary Technician Scholarship Awards page.


About the AAVSB: The AAVSB is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to strengthen the veterinary regulatory community. The membership of the AAVSB consists of 62 jurisdictions representing all of the United States and the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and nine Canadian provinces: Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, and Saskatchewan.