The New Zealand Veterinary Nursing Association (NZVNA)
The New Zealand Veterinary Nursing Association (NZVNA) was set up in 1992 to promote the profession of veterinary nursing in New Zealand. With over 1200 members in veterinary practices throughout New Zealand and Overseas, NZVNA protects, inspires and advances the Allied Veterinary Professionals in Aotearoa New Zealand. We regularly keep in touch with our members through online newsletters, quarterly journals, social media and an annual conference.
NZVNA Executive Committee
The New Zealand Veterinary Nursing Association Executive Committee is made up of a group of dedicated individuals who are passionate about not only veterinary nursing but all Allied Veterinary Professional Careers. The Executive Committee consists of Officers and general committee members who are elected to their positions at AGM. Executive Committee members must be full members of NZVNA.
All members of the Executive Committee hold different portfolios, based on our strategic plan. These include but are not limited to representation on boards, professional advancement, membership benefits, media and marketing, and regulation.
The importance of the NZVNA Executive and the Association itself cannot be overstated. Without the Association, and in particular the Executive Committee, veterinary nurses in New Zealand would not have a collective and effective voice.
The NZVNA Executive Committee is supported by an Administrator.
Amy Ross is a Registered Veterinary Nurse (RVN). Having gained the National Certificate in Veterinary Nursing in 1997 she then worked in general practice for three months before taking a veterinary nursing position at SPCA Auckland. While working there, Amy completed the National Diploma in Veterinary Nursing in 2006.
After working for nine years in shelter medicine, Amy decided it was time for a change and started work at Unitec, teaching veterinary nursing students. It was during this time in 2008 when Amy joined the NZVNA Executive Committee (then council). Amy has held a number of different portfolios while on the Executive Committee including journal editor, social media, e-newsletter, Vet Nurse of the Year and representing veterinary nurses on the board of trustees for Companion Animals NZ. In 2021 Amy took on the position of President. Amy currently works at Auckland Zoo, where she started in 2011.
During her spare time Amy likes to spend time with her family, work in her vegetable garden or work on one of her many hobbies.
Hi I am Laura Harvey and I started in the veterinary sector as a student in 2006 when, partway through a Bachelor of Science (BSc) at Massey University, I realised working in animal health was where my future lay. I put my BSc on hold (to be finished later) and moved back to Auckland to complete my Diploma in Veterinary Nursing (Dip. VN) at Unitec. I was successful in gaining a management role in a veterinary practice soon after qualifying and spent the next five years in clinical practice both in New Zealand and overseas.
In 2013, I swapped my scrubs and stethoscope for a classroom, joining the teaching team at Unitec Institute of Technology as a lecturer in applied animal health. During this time, I focused on how I could improve the education provided to veterinary nursing students through the completion of my BSc (psychology) and the attainment of a Post Graduate Certificate in Veterinary Education. I have recently finished my MSc in Advanced Practice in Veterinary Nursing. I am using this to build on my growing research career with my research focus being in two main areas: the well-being of veterinary nurses, and the utilisation of veterinary nurses in practice.
Whilst I still love teaching, and take the opportunity to get into the classroom any time I can (there is something special about those ‘lightbulb’ moments with students that make teaching so rewarding), I have realised my passion is in leadership and management. I was successful in gaining the position of Academic Programme Manager for Applied Animal Health at Unitec, overseeing the three veterinary nursing programmes and the NZ Certificate in Animal Management, leading a team of 12 staff, with a total of over 200 students.
In 2019, I was instrumental in the writing and subsequent NZQA approval of New Zealand's first Bachelor of Veterinary Nursing. A huge achievement for veterinary nursing education in New Zealand.
I joined the New Zealand Veterinary Nursing Association (NZVNA) in 2013. I am the current vice-president and hold the wellbeing portfolio. I am the NZVNA rep and trustee for Healthy Pets NZ (HPNZ), funding research into companion animal health projects. A key focus of this for me is to help support veterinary nurses wanting to undertake research. I am a board member for South Pacific Animal Welfare, joining the board not long after starting the now annual Unitec/SPAW collaborative charity trip to Tonga in December each year.
I also admin the NZVNA Spoonholders Facebook page, providing support for veterinary nurses with disabilities.
Robyn spent thirteen years at the referral campus of the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) University of London as an Emergency and Critical Care (ECC) nurse, and the primary transfusion medicine nurse for the hospital. In that time, she became highly skilled in critical patient management, and managed the growth of a very busy transfusion department. Robyn rapidly developed her knowledge of companion animal blood collection, blood processing, storage, and transfusion management, due to the exposure of a specialist hospital with a large case load, and high demand for transfusion medicine.
Robyn has since contributed to various international conference lectures and publications on transfusion medicine over recent years, in particular, conscious feline blood collection.
Robyn has been on the NZVNA executive since 2016, and currently teaches the Diploma in Veterinary Nursing in Christchurch.
My name is Luanne Corles and I have been in the veterinary industry for 25 years. I have worked in small animal clinics in Auckland and Hamilton and am currently employed as a veterinary nurse consultant.
I have a special interest in cat & dog behaviour and run successful weight clinic programs for pets as well as puppy pre-school.
I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science & Psychology and hold a current veterinary nursing qualification. I am currently a committee member for the NZVNA and have recently helped with the 2017 conference gifts. I am also the NZVNA representative for the IVNTA (international association).
My passion is behaviour, nutrition and preventative healthcare and I would like to see all veterinary nurses being involved in a consulting nurse program in their clinics.
I have a Samoyed named Minnie, four cats; Hagrid, Lyla, Hartley and Layla and a budgie named Harry. I am also married and have a daughter who is currently away studying film, media studies and english (creative writing) at Victoria University in Wellington.
Executive Committee Members
Antoinette graduated from Otago Polytechnic with a Certificate in Veterinary Nursing, with the Award of Excellence in 2007. She has worked at clinics in Wellington, Auckland and the Wairarapa in both companion and mixed animal practices. In 2015 she became the editor of The New Zealand Veterinary Nurse journal. During this time she has built a team of proof readers and regular contributors, along with redesigning the layout, but her favourite part of the editing process is helping new authors publish their first articles and watching their writing careers develop. In 2020, Antoinette left veterinary nursing to pursue a career as a full-time taxidermist in Wellington where she works on pieces for taxidermy stores, commissions, restoring pieces for private taxidermy art collectors, creating work for exhibitions, and teaching private tuition students in her studio. In 2021 she gave a TEDx talk about ethical taxidermy in New Zealand. In her spare time she enjoys sleeping in with her cat Cece and spending time with other artists in their studios.
Sam first undertook the role of Administrator for NZVNA in May 2021, returning to the role in May 2022, after a brief break to welcome her second child. Sam graduated from Massey University with a Bachelor or Business majoring in Marketing. Sam enjoys living in Waihi, close to both bush and beach, with her husband Ben, children Georgia (4) and Heath (10 months), and fur babies Alfie and Betty.
NZVNA is a membership organization and everything that the NZVNA Executive Committee does is to promote and support our members.
This includes sourcing Member Benefits
Representing veterinary nurses in Aotearoa New Zealand Partnerships
Providing CPD and Events as well as hosting My CPD Record
Members Support: Samantha Chapman firstname.lastname@example.org
Website Support: Samantha Chapman email@example.com
Member Benefits: Amy Ross firstname.lastname@example.org
CPD: Libby Leader email@example.com
Continuing Professional Development
While all of our full members hold formal qualifications in veterinary nursing or technology, our career is science based and it is continually advancing. Because of this, we encourage all of our members to under-take continuing professional development (CPD) to ensure that they are able to provide best practice veterinary nursing care to their patients.
The CPD committee organizes an annual conference and sources other CPD opportunities for our members.
They also scrutinize and accredit CPD to ensure that it reaches quality and integrity so that our members are able to use it for their registration.
Veterinary nurses often progress in their career to senior veterinary nurses and practice managers. This portfolio also supports their career advancement with the broad range of CPD opportunities that they source.
CPD Committee Lead: Libby Leader firstname.lastname@example.org
Committee: Steph Mann
Conference Committee Lead: Robyn Taylor email@example.com
Committee: Steph Mann
CPD Committee also assist where required
We engage with our members over various communications to keep them up to date with what is happening within the wider veterinary community.
This includes our members only journal - the New Zealand Veterinary Nurse (NZVNJ), emails directly to our members, and social media - Instagram and Facebook, which includes eight support groups.
If you would like to contribute to the New Zealand Veterinary Nurse Journal please contact Antoinette.
NZVNJ Editor: Antoinette Ratcliff firstname.lastname@example.org
Antoinette is supported by volunteers within the New Zealand Veterinary Nursing Community that assist with editing and sourcing articles.
Social Media Lead: Yani Riley email@example.com
Committee: Amy Ross
Emails: Samantha Chapman firstname.lastname@example.org
The NZVNA Executive Committee sit on a wide range of national and international boards, trusts, committees and working groups to advocate for our members. By sitting on these boards, we are able to give a collective voice and advocate for the veterinary nursing profession.
We are the voice of veterinary nurses in Aotearoa New Zealand and we work together to make positive changes for all Allied Veterinary Professionals.
Companion Animals New Zealand
Lead: Amy Ross email@example.com
World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA)
Lead: Julie Hutt firstname.lastname@example.org
Committee: Wendy Jarnet & Anna McConnell
Healthy Pets New Zealand
Lead: Laura Harvey email@example.com
International Veterinary Nurses and Technicians Association (IVNTA)
Lead: Luanne Corles firstname.lastname@example.org
Veterinary Futures Aoteroa
Wellbeing Initiative Group: Steph Mann
Language Working Group: Laura Harvey email@example.com
Steering Group: Amy Ross firstname.lastname@example.org
Workforce Dynamics: Amy Ross email@example.com
Business Sustainability: Currently no representation
New Zealand Veterinary Association and Vet Council New Zealand
Lead: Amy Ross firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2014 the NZVNA Executive Committee created a regulation working committee tasked with initiating the move toward professional regulation of veterinary nurses. This working committee was given autonomy for operative governance within the NZVNA constitution to ensure minimal conflict of interest between the representative and regulatory branches of the organisation.
Without the support of the Veterinary Industry, the NZVNA would not be able to provide our members with the many benefits that we are able to offer.
We are thankful for their ongoing support of NZVNA and our members.
Committee Lead: Luanne Corles email@example.com
Committee: Amy Ross
This portfolio ensures that NZVNA operates with financial security and sustainability to meet the needs of the allied veterinary professional community in Aotearoa New Zealand.
This portfolio provides clarity on operational structure, adherence to the constitution and overseas the expenditure on projects.
It also develops position statements on issues that impact the veterinary nursing profession and wider veterinary community in Aotearoa New Zealand.
Portfolio Lead: Amy Ross, President firstname.lastname@example.org
Committee: Laura Harvey, Vice President
Robyn Taylor, Treasurer
Luanne Corles, National Secretary
All members of the NZVNA Executive Committee give in-put into matters arising from this portfolio.