LSU professors honored at LVMA annual meeting

February 18, 2023

Renee Poirrier, Mustajab Mirza, Brandy Duhon
Christine Navarre and Clare Scully

An associate professor and an alumna from the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine were both honored at the Louisiana Veterinary Medical Association annual conference in Lafayette, La., on February 11, 2023. Mustajab Mirza, DVM, DACVS, associate professor of equine surgery, received the Everett D. Besch Distinguished Service Award, and Christine Navarre, DVM (LSU 1990), DACVIM, professor of veterinary science, received the 2020 Dr. Ralph C. Cooper Award Veterinarian of the Year.  

Dr. Mustajab Mirza received the Everett D. Besch Distinguished Service Award

The Everett D. Besch Distinguished Service Award was established to recognize outstanding service to the community and veterinary profession. Dr. Besch was the founding dean of LSU Vet Med and served as dean from 1968 to 1988 and was instrumental in establishing the veterinary school at LSU. He passed away in 2008.

Dr. Mirza's peer said this in support of his nomination: "For each disaster we ask that the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine put their Large Animal Technical Response Team on standby. Dr Mirza is the lead veterinarian for the team and for the past 17 years he has always been willing to respond to animals in need. He has responded to every disaster in the state since Hurricane Katrina. For animal emergency response our first concern is always responder safety then public safety then animal safety. Technical large animal response can be very dangerous if responders are not properly trained. This is why LSART collaborates with LSU, the LDAF, and national partners to provide a week-long training in animal disaster response including technical large animal response. For over 12 years, Dr Mirza has been the primary trainer for technical large animal response. He has trained hundreds of veterinary students, Veterinarians, vet techs and animal control officers in technical large animal rescue. His dedication to education and teaching these responders has prepared them to respond in their communities and to always think of safety first when responding to large animal emergencies."

Dr. Mirza joined the faculty of LSU Vet Med in July 2006. He received his DVM from the University of Agriculture Faisalabad in Pakistan in 1992 and his MS from LSU Vet Med in 1998. He is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons.

Dr. Christine Navarre named Ralph C. Cooper Veterinarian of the Year

The Ralph C. Cooper Veterinarian of the Year Award is given annually to the person who is recognized by his or her colleagues as having given the most of themselves in time, energy, and ideas to the veterinary profession in the state of Louisiana. Nominee must have had a positive influence in promoting animal health and welfare in the community as well as within the profession. Nominee should be of good character and well respected by colleagues. Nominee should be presently active in local, state, and/or national veterinary associations. Nominee should have shown an outstanding contribution to veterinary medicine, either through his or her work or through his or her actions and public awareness.

Dr. Navarre joined the faculty at LSU in September 2005. She received her DVM from LSU Vet Med in 1990 and her MS from Texas A&M in 1994. She is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (Large Animal). 

The Louisiana Veterinary Medical Association hosted its annual Winter Meeting in Lafayette from February 10-12. LSU Vet Med faculty and staff did a fantastic job representing our school and its missions to teach, heal, discover, and protect.

LSU Vet Med Speakers at LVMA Winter Meeting

  • Rose Baker, Assistant Professor of Equine Medicine (2 hours)
  • Jeremy Redmond, Assistant Professor of Equine Medicine (2 hours)
  • Mustajab Mirza, Associate Professor of Equine Surgery (2 hours)
  • Ann Chapman, Associate Professor of Equine Medicine (1 hour)
  • Jenny Sones, Associate Professor of Theriogenology (3 hours)
  • Colin Mitchell, Director of Large Animal Services and Professor of Equine Surgery (2 hours)
  • Frank Andrews, Head of Veterinary Clinical Sciences and Director, Equine Health Studies Program (2 hours)
  • Britta Leise, Associate Dean for Faculty & Staff Advancement and  Associate Professor of Equine Surgery (1 hour)
  • Clare Scully, Associate Professor of Farm Animal Health Maintenance (2 hours)
  • Torri Collins-Canon, Veterinary Technician, SA Surgery
  • Ashley Benjamin, Veterinary Technician, SA Internal Medicine
  • Jennifer Bridges, Veterinary Technician, SA Rehabilitation

About LSU Vet Med: Bettering lives through education, public service, and discovery

The LSU School of Veterinary Medicine is one of only 33 veterinary schools in the U.S. and the only one in Louisiana. LSU Vet Med is dedicated to improving and protecting the lives of animals and people through superior education, transformational research, and compassionate care. We teach. We heal. We discover. We protect.