Our Board Members
Julia Loew - Chairman
Senior Director, Companion Animal, Elanco
Julia currently serves as senior director of companion animal commercial operations for Europe, the Middle East and Africa at Elanco. She is a graduate of the Ohio State University, and her experience includes positions at Bayer Animal Health, Veterinary Products Laboratories and Columbus Serum Company, now a division of Patterson Veterinary. Julia joined Elanco for the launch of the companion animal business unit in the U.S. Since the launch, she has been district manager, director of companion animal national accounts and U.S. companion animal operations, director of sales (CA western region) and corporate accounts, and most recently as senior director of channel strategy and sales force excellence (North America). Julia lives in Basel, Switzerland with her family.
Rachel Bailey - Vice Chairman
Founder and Co-owner, Penwan Communication Inc.
Rachel is founder and co-owner of Penwan Communication Inc., a strategic communication, sales, marketing and digital media production company. She produces and manages content for animal health and healthcare-related B2B organizations and the audiences they serve. Her clients include the North American Veterinary Community (NAVC), where she currently serves as director of training and channel relationships for NAVC Publishing.
Lesli Stasiek - Secretary
Global Marketing Director, Parasiticides, Elanco
Lesli is the global marketing director for parasiticides at Elanco. She earned her bachelor’s degree in management from the Krannert School of Management at Purdue University, and her master’s degree in clinical counseling from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Lesli has experience working in sales in both primary care and specialty roles for Eli Lilly and AstraZeneca, and as global director of business development and marketing for BioConvergence, a contract manufacturing organization for both human and animal health companies. Prior to her current position, Lesli was Elanco’s U.S. category manager for pain, surgical and dermatology companion animal brands, as well as U.S. category manager for parasiticides. Lesli lives in Fishers, Indiana with her husband, Tim, their two girls, Addy and Gwen, and their Puggle, Sydney.
Tonya Willson - Treasurer
Vice President of Operations, AgriLabs
Ms. Tonya Willson spent her early years growing up on a cow/calf and row crop farm in Northwest Missouri. Tonya pursued her passion for agriculture by obtaining a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science and a minor in Agronomy in 1994 from Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville, MO. After graduation, Tonya became the Farm Editor for 680 KFEQ radio in Saint Joseph, MO, delivering farms news, weather and markets for Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska. In 1996, Ms. Willson joined Agri Laboratories (AgriLabs) as a Customer Service Representative and currently is the Vice President of Operations. For the past 20 years, Ms. Willson’s experience includes customer and vendor relations, inventory management, collaboration with the sales, marketing and finance teams on the daily operations of the business, leading the customer service and logistics team operations.
Jessica Bayer - Board Member
Director Pet Vet Therapeutics Marketing, Boehringer Ingelheim
Jessica is currently the Marketing Director for the Pet Vet Therapeutics for Boehringer Ingelheim. She graduated from Miami University of Ohio with a degree in Marketing. Jessica has more than 15 years’ experience in sales and marketing in the pharmaceutical industry. Prior to her current position, Jessica was the Director of Therapeutics and Vaccines for Merial and prior to that a Product Manager for Allergy, Women’s Health, and Gastroenterology. Jessica lives in Georgia with her husband Russ, her two boys Tyler and Jacob, and her two kittens Gunner and Wally.
Heather M. Fox - Board Member
Vice President of Corporate Sales, LifeLearn
Heather is the vice president of corporate sales for LifeLearn. She graduated from the University of Dayton with a degree in marketing communications, and now has more than 15 years of experience in the veterinary industry. Heather has delivered superior business results at Advanstar Communications (DVM Newsmagazine and CVC/Central Veterinary Conference), Veterinary Learning Systems (Compendium, Veterinary Technician and Vet Forum magazines) and VetStreet, among others. Heather is a strong supporter of veterinary technicians, and has worked with the North American Veterinary Technician Association to develop continuing education programs for the advancement of vet techs and their critical role in the veterinary industry. She is a tireless advocate for continuing education for the entire health care team, and is passionate about collaborating with key opinion leaders across all specialties. Heather is a volunteer in her community, and is currently involved with Eversight Ohio and with LifeBanc as an ambassador/spokesperson for organ donation.
Jennie Hogden, Ph.D. - Board Member
Meat Scientist, Merck Animal Health
Jennie is a meat scientist on Merck Animal Health’s technical services team. She received her bachelor and master degrees in animal science and food science at Oklahoma State University. After completing her doctorate in meat science and muscle biology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Jennie taught high school food classes, provided food sanitation training for large foodservice organizations and helped small processors gain HACCP compliance. At Merck, Jennie has worked on meat quality, sustainability and animal well-being research, as well as consumer sensory and messaging studies. She interacts with foodservice organizations, retailers, associations and governments to answer their questions about animal agriculture. Jennie also serves as adjunct professor at several universities and has taught college classes on meat science, food analysis and dairy processing, among other topics. Jennie grew up on a cow/calf ranch in New Mexico, and now lives on her husband’s family farm in Indiana with their four children.
Mary Pat Thompson - Board Member
Mary Pat Thompson, CPA, Senior Vice President, Finance, MWI Animal Health, a division of AmerisourceBergen
Mary Pat is the senior vice president of finance at MWI Animal Health. She graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor of science in accounting from the University of Idaho. Mary Pat has played important leadership roles throughout most of AmerisourceBergen and MWI’s distinguished history. She became MWI’s controller after working for Arthur Andersen in auditing and accounting services, and then controller of the feedlot and commodity division of AgriBeef, MWI’s parent company at the time. Mary Pat became MWI’s CFO, leading its highly successful IPO and its effective implementation of Sarbanes Oxley requirements. Mary Pat then assumed the title of senior vice president of finance and administration, with oversight of finance, procurement, inventory management, information technology and human resources. Mary Pat has served on the Zions Bank Advisory Board and the Federal Reserve Bank’s 12th District Economic Advisory Counsel, and is currently acting as the vice chair. In addition to her WILMAH board position, Mary Pat is a member of the University of Idaho’s College of Business and Economics Advisory Board and is past-president of the American Veterinary Distributors Association. Mary Pat is a certified public accountant in Idaho, where she serves on the City of Boise Chamber of Commerce Financial Committee Board and the St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center Finance Committee.
Betsy A. Watkins - Board Member
Senior Director, Business Development, Pegasus Laboratories/PRN Phramcal
Betsy is the senior director of business development for Pegasus Laboratories, Inc. and PRN Pharmacal. Originally from Wisconsin, Betsy attended the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and graduated from Arizona State University with a bachelor of science in agribusiness. While at ASU, Betsy interned for Blalock & Associates Commodities and Farnham Companies, Inc. After graduation, Betsy worked for Farnham as a marketing assistant on the equine team, and later moved to the strategic alliance team. Betsy then moved to Ohio and secured a position in veterinary sales at Ralston Purina (Nestle S.A.). At Purina, she specialized in developing and building expansion territories. She later worked at Veterinary Products Laboratories (VPL) as director of marketing, director of sales and marketing and business unit director. When VPL was acquired by Pegasus, Betsy was an integral member of the transition team. She currently leads business development, which is responsible for sourcing new products via licensing and acquisitions, and the Pegasus Contract Manufacturing Team. Betsy lives in Alexandria, Virginia with her husband, Tracy, a colonel in the U.S. Air Force and their Westie, Duncan.