Five veterinary professionals receive inaugural Unsung Heroes awards


The AVMA and Western Veterinary Partners joined forces to honor 5 veterinary staff members

Inaugural Unsung Heroes award recipients (Courtesy of AVMA)

Inaugural Unsung Heroes award recipients (Courtesy of AVMA)

In honor of all the veterinary team members who are invaluable to the veterinary clinic, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) launched the Unsung Heroes awards program. In partnership with Western Veterinary Partners, the award shines light on individual staff members such as technicians, client service representatives (CSR), and kennel workers, that demonstrate commitment that expends expectations.1 For the inaugural awards program, 5 veterinary professionals in Denver were chosen and honored during the AVMA Convention in Denver Colorado.

This 2023 recipients of the Unsung Heroes award are:1

Lindsey McGregor joined the team at Cherryelyn Animal Hospital 3 years ago as a kennel technician. The person who nominated her shared that she has experienced challenges both professionally and personally and gave out on the other side with so much strength, reliability, and integrity. She is also always willing to step in and help when needed, including being the only person who cares for boarded pets on weekends and holidays.

CSR, Sue Miller, owned her own business until she decided to make a career change, becoming a devoted CSR at Animal Dental Clinic in Aurora, Colorado. She then enrolled in veterinary technician school, releasing her dream was to work with animals. Outside of work, Miller dedicates countless hours to caring for pets of clients that are on vacation.

Jo Stratton, CVT, is a CSR and graduated from the University of Nebraska School of Technical Agriculture with an associate degree in veterinary technology in 1977 to become a CVT. She worked with small animals and exotics until she joined VetCare Animal Hospital in Denver, where she remained for over 20 years. Stratton goes above and beyond with her patients such as giving her number to clients and checking in with them, even on her day off, to ensure her patients are recovering well.

Kendra Jackson, RVT, has worked at Clear Creek Animal Hospital in Wheat Ridge, Colorado for 7 years. Here, she began volunteering shortly after her mother passed away in 2016. She worked hard to get her RVT certification earlier in 2023. Jackson has future plans of apply to veterinary school.

Cailyn Windels is a groomer at the Four Paws Pet Hotel and Resort located in Fort Collins, Colorado. They began working at a rescue for dogs and cats from Native American reservations located in New Mexico and Arizona. There, she saw a lack of veterinary resoruces and care and was determined to help in some way. This led them to pursue a career in grooming and strives to make the experience more fun and safe for dogs.


Unsung Heroes awards acknowledge veterinary staff members’ contributions. News release. American Veterinary Medical Association. August 10, 2023. Accessed August 11, 2023.

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