In 1969, The Veterinary Critical Care Society (VCCS) was established as an outgrowth of the Intensive Care Committee which was formed in 1964 as a subcommittee of the American Animal Hospital Association Circulatory Disease and Cardiology Committee. At that first subcommittee meeting in Miami, Florida,  Dr. Robert Knowles served as the chairman.

In the 1969 first official meeting of the Society, Dr. Fred Sattler, along with Dr. William Whittick, Dr. Knowles and Dr. Ira Zaslow, conducted the first wet lab with the focus on ventilation, cardiac arrest and resuscitation. Approximately 15 veterinarians attended the day-long wet lab. Training programs  have been presented each year since. Also participating in that day-long session were icons in human medicine; Dr. William Shoemaker (Father of Human Critical Care medicine), Dr. Clifford Snyder (a Professor of Plastic Surgery at the University of Utah School of Medicine) and Dr. Forrest Bird (Father of human Ventilation Therapy & Medicine). These four men later became honorary Lifetime VECCS Members.  This early CPR training now over 50 years later has evolved into the development of the RECOVER initiative which is the international standard for CPR.

The VCCS was formally incorporated in 1974. In 1983 the Veterinary Anesthesia Society partnered with VCCS to produce quality educational programs.  The name of the organization was changed to the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society (VECCS) when the American Association of Veterinary Emergency Clinicians joined the Society in July 1984. Dr. Tim Crowe and Jerry Maguire represented the ER doctors at that meeting. Membership has grown from approximately 200 in 1985 to 7,400 in 2023. The membership represents a variety of areas of veterinary medicine, including private general practice, specialty referral practice, emergency practice, and teaching institutions. Membership is worldwide, with representation from nearly 60 countries located on every continent.

Board of Directors
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University of Missouri - Columbia
Class of '2017
Member since 2004
Challenging the field to reimagine veterinary nursing.

Kenichiro Yagi, MS, RVT, VTS (ECC, SAIM)


University of California, Davis
Class of 2004
Member since 2004
Currently lives in Davis, California.

Dr. Steven Epstein, DACVECC


Michigan State University, DVM
Class of '97
Member since 1998
Currently lives in Norwalk, CT and is a Staff Criticalist at Cornell University Veterinary Specialists.

Dr. Elisa Mazzaferro, DACVECC

Past President

University of Georgia
Class of '97
Member since 2010

Dr. Matt Booth, DABVP


Class of '93
Member since 1994
Currently lives in Pennsylvania

Dr. Lori Waddell, DACVECC


Member since 1995
Currently lives in Appleton, WI

Alyce D'Amato, CVT, CVPM


The University of Queensland
Class of '98
Member since 1998
Currently lives in Queensland, Australia

Trish Farry, RVN, AVN, VTS(ECC)(A/A), GCHEd


University of California, Davis
Class of 2000
Member since 2011
Currently lives in San Francisco, CA

Dr. Nicolette Zarday

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Dr. Chris Gray

Chief Executive Officer

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Sarah Kokernot

Director of Meetings & Events

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Lauren San Martin

Director of Marketing & Membership

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Ridglea Callahan


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Braley San Miguel

Membership & Registration Manager

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Natalie Baus

Education Manager

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Judi Sunden

Exhibit Manager

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Kevin Reyes

Staff Accountant

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Nat Aguigui

Administrative Assistant

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Marley Ninosky

Meetings & Events Coordinator

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Jake Lamagdeleine

Marketing Coordinator

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