Story by Sabra Jackson, Staff writer
Debbie Reed of the Breathitt Veterinary Center was named Kentucky Veterinarian of the Year in September.
Reed, director of the Breathitt Veterinary Center, said she knew absolutely nothing about getting the award and was attending the Kentucky Veterinarians Association (KVA) annual meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, when she was surprised with the award.
The award is nominated through the KVA committee and is the highest honor awarded to association members.
Reed had no idea her family was there at first, but she said it was a wonderful surprise.
“I got up to the podium, and I looked at the back of the room, and there was my husband, my mother, my youngest son and his girlfriend, and they were waving at me,” Reed said. “They had known for a month and didn’t tell me.”
Reed grew up on a family farm and said she approached medicine from the agriculture side.
“I was into it in the beginning because of the agriculture background,” Reed said. “It was my goal to do food animal medicine.”
Reed credits the Breathitt Veterinary Center for offering her the experience and the attention for the award.
“It reflects particularly on the construction of the new Breathitt Veterinary Center that we moved into last February,” Reed said. “I think the publicity that was gained for the university and for me as director was a lot of the reason I was selected for the award.”
Tony Brannon, dean of the Hutson School of Agriculture, said they school is very proud of her and her receiving the award.
“This award is all about a personal professional accomplishment of Dr. Reed but it also signifies the faith and trust that the Veterinary community places in the BVC and its service to animal agriculture,” Brannon said.
Brannon said Reed attends all industry association and commodity organization meetings.
“In this role, she is the connection between veterinary diagnostics in our state and the state veterinarians,” Brannon said. “[she] works closely with everyone in animal agriculture industry to help promote and preserve a quality and safe food supply in our region.”