The American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) was founded in 1954 by a group of 11 charter members who saw that together they could direct the focus of equine veterinary medicine.
Today, the AAEP, headquartered in Lexington, Ky., at the Kentucky Horse Park, represents an educated group of men and women who cover a broad range of equine disciplines, breeds and associations. Nearly 9,300 veterinarians and veterinary students in 61 countries are members of the AAEP.
The AAEP's mission is to improve the health and welfare of the horse, to further the professional development of its members, and to provide resources and leadership for the benefit of the equine industry. These principles have guided the AAEP for more than six decades in the activities and services it provides.
- The AAEP will be the members' primary resource for education, professional development and ethical standards
- The AAEP and its members will be recognized as the voice and authority for the health and welfare of the horse.
- The AAEP will be financially secure.
- The AAEP will be the respected source of information for influencing public policy
The AAEP conducts regular strategic planning every three to four years in order to establish priorities and set direction for the association over the current planning horizon. Informed by the results of the 2018 membership survey, the AAEP board of directors held its most recent strategic planning session in July 2019. The 2020-2023 plan was formally approved in December 2019.
The three primary goals of the 2020-2023 AAEP Strategic Plan are focused on the following:
1. The Profession. AAEP will work to improve upon the current equine practice model in an effort to improve the practice life of its members and retention within the profession. Secondary strategies to this goal will involve further recruitment efforts to satisfy market demand.
2. Education. The AAEP will continue to provide innovation and improvements in its continuing education offers to members. Key drivers will be to provide member value, return on investment, and community building. Furthermore, the education will be membership-driven and focused on providing education on timely topics and enhancing the member experience.
3. The Horse. AAEP will strive to improve equine welfare, particularly with the racing and performance horse sectors, through education and advocacy of appropriate business and ethical models of practice, enhanced communications amongst members and their clients, as well as between the association and industry stakeholders.