Veterinary Woman’s editorial board is chosen from different areas of veterinary practice and industry to aid in the mission of supporting women in the veterinary community to reach their potential and increase their impact across the industry.

Board members:

Liz Barton MA VetMB MRCVS, veterinary surgeon and head of communications at VetCT

Liz Barton had a varied career in clinical practice before diversifying into developing wellness initiatives and later PR and marketing for the veterinary and animal health sectors. As editor of Veterinary Woman 2018-2020, Liz has been a passionate advocate for raising awareness of women’s health issues, championing career development and encouraging women in leadership.

Liz is also co-founder of Vet Mums and has written extensively on parenting in the profession.

“Veterinary Woman is a powerful platform for showcasing fantastic role models within the industry, opening discussion around important issues and fostering career and leadership development for women across the veterinary sector. I’m delighted to see this vital platform develop and grow, and contribute to that journey.”

Lynne Gaskarth BVSc CertSAM MRCVS, Advanced Practitioner in Small Animal Medicine and practice director

Lynne is a practising veterinary surgeon who graduated from Liverpool University in 1999. She is a practice owner and director at the Drove Veterinary Hospital in Swindon and is an advanced practitioner in small animal medicine. Lynne is also a director of XLVets and whilst she is still very much still present ‘at the coal face’ she is now has more of a business orientated role and is passionate about supporting women as leaders and role models within our profession. As a mum of two she also understands the challenges of achieving a work-life balance and is keen to promote flexible new ways of working to allow people to thrive and enjoy working in the veterinary industry.

Kay Watson-Bray, CEO at BVRA

After beginning her career in veterinary nursing, Kay moved into veterinary education, supporting veterinary professionals across the UK and Europe achieve postgraduate qualifications.  She has significant expertise in education, accreditation, awards and certification within the veterinary sector.  Kay founded the BVRA in October 2017 and is passionate about supporting and raising the status of veterinary receptionists through training and education.

Roxanne O’Brien CertNCS VPM GradDipVN RVN, RVN and practice manager at Vet4Life

I graduated from the Royal Veterinary College as a Registered Veterinary Nurse in 2009. After working in primary care leadership roles, I decided to turn my hand to referral Nursing. I become a Clinical Nursing Manager at a large referral hospital where I specialised in Orthopaedic and Neurology Nursing for 6 years. It was here I completed a Graduate Diploma in advanced clinical and professional Veterinary Nursing and published a patient care report on nursing interventions of myasthenia gravis patients under anaesthesia. 

In January 2022, I embarked on a different career path and became Practice Manager of Vet4life. The studies continued, as I recently completed a Certificate in Practice Management. It is a privilege to be a part of such an inclusive, supportive and inspiring company that have empowered me to make changes to improve culture for my team.

I accepted the invitation to join the Veterinary Woman editorial board because I am inspired by so many women in this industry and strive to inspire those around me. In a generation where identity is defining in people’s lives, I am proud to be a woman and a Veterinary Nurse. I am excited to see what the next year brings and how I can be involved.

Janika Patel BVM BVS MRCVS, veterinary surgeon and representative of the British Veterinary Ethnicity and Diversity Society

I was born and raised in South London and was inspired by my uncle in America to embark on a career in Veterinary Medicine. I graduated from University of Nottingham in 2017 and have worked in a mix of independent and corporate small animal practices around the London area. Currently, I am working as a Locum vet around the East Midlands and thoroughly enjoying the variety this is giving me. During the pandemic, I set up my Instagram page @janikathevet with the aim to inspire people of colour like me to pursue a career in the veterinary field as well as to act as a diary of my life as a small animal vet. I came across BVEDS at the same time and really resonated with the work they do to support ethnic minorities in the profession. I am looking forward to representing and supporting BVEDS on Veterinary Woman this coming year. In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my family, cooking and indulging in Korean dramas. 

Jo Woods, Leadership and Development Coach and founder of Shine Coaching

I launched Shine Coaching in February 2020 to work with organisations and grow their business by supporting and upskilling newly promoted and recently appointed managers through 1:1 coaching and mentoring. Prior to that I spent 26 years at Veterinary Business Development (publisher of Veterinary Times), with eight years as a director and five years as Managing Director. Running an organisation of 35 people across multiple teams, my favourite part of the job was helping them overcome problems and seeing them go from puzzled and stuck to knowing exactly what to do next.

Through 1:1 support I help great people become great leaders as they increase their emotional intelligence, become more confident and less overwhelmed, more focused on priorities and better decision-makers.

As someone who spent almost their whole employed career at Veterinary Times, going from YTS to CEO, I was fortunate to have some amazing people support me on my journey, and privileged enough to do the same for others. Joining the editorial board of Veterinary Woman means I can still continue to do that.”