AUSTIN (KXAN) — Gov. Greg Abbott has named a new chair of the Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners (TBVME) after the previous leader resigned last month.
Austin attorney Keith Pardue will head up the TBVME, which licenses and regulates the state’s animal doctors and equine dental providers. Pardue previously served as the Vice President, according to the agency’s website.
His predecessor, Dr. Jessica Quillivan, stepped down days after KXAN investigators attended the board’s April meeting and tried to ask her questions about potentially missing records and flaws in the agency’s public search tool. Quillivan and other board members, including Pardue, refused to answer any questions at that time.
An attorney for the agency said it was migrating records to a new data system, but lawmakers had pointed out many of the same issues during a review in 2017.
A few weeks after the KXAN story was published, TBVME staff reported that many of the records missing from the site had since been uploaded.
Pardue served as the presiding officer at the board’s last meeting in May, as they voted to appoint a new Executive Director over the agency. Records obtained by KXAN investigators show the previous Executive Director, John Helenberg, resigned days before Quillivan. In his resignation letter, Helenberg said he was resigning to “give the opportunity for a new person to lead the agency into the future” and called the agency’s data system the “biggest challenge to overcome.”
In their announcement on Thursday, the governor’s office said Pardue is a member of the State Bar of Texas and is board certified in Administrative Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is also a member of the Southern Nazarene University Board of Trustees and the South Austin Church of the Nazarene Board, according to the news release.