A self-proclaimed IACUC “geek,” Dr. Shepherd has been a tireless and effective advocate for her fellow IACUC administrators/coordinators and the critical role they play in ensuring quality animal care and use programs. She has actively promoted and participated in the education of all those who have expressed an interest in learning more about IACUCs, and that is but one of the many reasons why she is so deserving of this award.
Dr. Shepherd is also a generous and talented volunteer for a number of organizations working in the laboratory animal field. In fact, one can only wonder how she manages to maintain her “day job,” given the unending extracurricular activities in which she participates. The answers can be found in the reams of positive evaluations she receives each time she teaches, speaks, or writes, since, in addition to these considerable professional skills, it is Dr. Shepherd’s generous spirit, personal warmth, and easy humor that make her a beloved colleague to all who know her.
As the director of the Office of the IACUC at Columbia University, Dr. Shepherd administers two IACUCs for one of the largest animal care and use programs in the country. She has worked in the field of laboratory animal medicine since 1988, when she first became an IACUC member. Since that time, she has served as instructor, clinical veterinarian, attending veterinarian, IACUC member, consultant, scientist, and finally, as the professional administrator/director of several well-respected IACUCs, including at Pfizer, Merck, the University of Pennsylvania, and Columbia.
Dr. Shepherd has also volunteered for the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science at the local and national levels as a trustee, member of the editorial review board and branch president. For more than 10 years, she has been actively involved in the planning of the New Jersey Association for Biomedical Research’s annual IACUC seminar. Dr. Shepherd was also on the board of directors of Americans for Medical Progress for five years.
Dr. Shepherd has written numerous articles for magazines and journals, including Advances in Ocular Toxicology, Contemporary Topics in Laboratory Animal Science, Lab Animal, ILAR Journal, and Medical Device and Diagnostic Industries.
Beginning in 2001, she chaired multiple planning committees for PRIM&R’s annual IACUC Conferences, served as a faculty member at each of these meetings, and also been a central member of the preconference program faculties for Essentials of IACUC Administration. In addition, at the time of receiving this award, she was a member of PRIM&R’s Certification Committee, and was a founding member and past chair of the Council for Certified Professional IACUC Administrators (CCPIA). As chair of the CCPIA, she has worked hard to provide those in the profession with a highly visible and highly credible way to advance their knowledge and perform their duties in a professional manner. Largely through her dedication and the sheer force of her passion, Dr. Shepherd has been a key driver and sustainer of the CPIA credential.