Northern Ireland Veterinary Nurses of the Year winners

The results are finally out, and Agria Pet Insurance is delighted to announce the winners of the much-anticipated Northern Ireland Veterinary Nursing Awards!

These prestigious awards recognise the Veterinary Nurses that make the biggest difference to the individuals and animals whose lives they touch. Agria Pet Insurance and the Association of Veterinary Surgeons Practicing in Northern Ireland (AVSPNI) were organisers and sponsors, together with extensive support from Naoimh Toner, RVN (Registered Veterinary Nurse) and ROC (Regional Coordinator for the BVNA).

Those nominated were put forward for consistently going far above and beyond their job description to make a compassionate, positive and significant impact to the animals they care for, the owners they interact with, and their colleagues. Just how much their dedication and care means to these groups is evident in the record number of nominations received for the 2018 awards.

After much review and deliberation by judges Erika Feilberg, BVNA Treasurer, Phillip Walsh, AVSPNI President and Simon Wheeler, Managing Director, Agria Pet Insurance, the winners were revealed at the fantastic AVSPNI Conference prize-giving gala. The results were as follows:

Registered Veterinary Nurse of the Year – WINNER Catherine Gorman RVN – Cedar Grove
Judges’ comment, ‘Catherine deserved the top slot due to her impressive career path and qualifications, team-focus and colleague mentoring, client and patient care, and her exceptional level of engagement, despite challenges outside work. She was also supported by a high number of nominations.’

Student Veterinary Nurse of the Year – WINNER Laura Feeney SVN – Roe Valley
Judges’ comment, ‘Laura was chosen for perseverance with her qualifications, self-development into large animal work, her activities outside the practice with rescue volunteering and support, and her clear dedication and passion for her vocation.’

Animal Nursing Assistant of the Year – Beth Williams ANA – Braemar Vets
Judges’ comment, ‘While facing a challenging backdrop, Beth has grown from her first tentative days in the kennels to a valued, capable and confident member of the team. She has steadily acquired additional responsibilities and her aptitude at dispelling client worries around in-patients is a credit to her.’

Special Recognition Award – WINNER Louise Patterson RVN
Judges’ comment, ‘Despite not currently working in-practice, we wanted to give Louise a Special Recognition Award in recognition of the incredible and inspirational support she gives to Animal Nursing Assistants and Student Nurses.’

Judge Simon Wheeler said, “The quality of the nominations was exceptionally high, evidencing the outstanding difference made by Vet Nurses in Northern Ireland. The winners we unanimously selected are incredibly well-deserving of their awards, proving their absolute dedication and consistent drive to go the extra mile to help animals and owners, even under challenging circumstances.

“It was an honour to play a part in recognising such incredible individuals. The other judges and I would like to thank everyone who took part in the awards. Sincere congratulations to the winners and all other nominees who work so hard to keep Veterinary Nursing kind, compassionate and life-changing.”