Outstanding RVT of the Year Awards – Private Practice Winners

2021 Inductee

Leah Shufelt, RVT

Leah Shufelt has demonstrated and shared her passion for the veterinary profession as a Registered Veterinary Technician for nearly 20 years. As defining attributes, Ms. Shufelt’s colleagues are quick to cite her willingness to share her knowledge and ability to lead with confidence and compassion. In addition to her full-time work as a supervisor at an extremely busy radiology oncology service, Ms. Shufelt works as an adjunct instructor in the RVT program at Mesa College and volunteers in a program to mentor honors students, in addition to serving on the California Veterinary Medical Board’s Multidisciplinary Advisory Committee.

Ms. Shufelt understands the importance of organized veterinary medicine and has been involved with the San Diego County Veterinary Medical Association (SDCVMA) board and the CVMA’s House of Delegates and RVT Committee in various roles. Ms. Shufelt says, “Through these groups, I get to work alongside amazing technicians and doctors, who have shown me how important giving back is and how much of a difference one person can make”.

2020 Inductee

Leslie Peek, RVT

Even after 27 years, Ms. Peek does not think of her work as an RVT as simply a job. In addition to her position as head RVT at Sierra Oaks Veterinary Service, she trains and mentors RVTs, assistants, and students, sharing her knowledge and wisdom. She has also strived to continue learning several different aspects of veterinary medicine herself including animal behavior, low stress handling, dentistry, radiography, and surgical procedures.

For the past five years, Ms. Peek has worked as an instructor with the Veterinary Allied Staff Education (aka VASE) organization. She is known for being able to relate her personal with her current practice experiences which her students find very beneficial. “Teaching these classes has enabled me to help more people reach their goal of becoming an RVT. I feel good knowing that in our little hospital alone I have helped three individuals reach their dream. They are now practicing RVTs. Soon we will have a fourth, she starts school this January,” said Ms. Peek.

Ms. Peek became involved with the CVMA CVA Committee in 2006 and was the first RVT to co-chair the committee. She also served on the CVMA’s RVT Committee. She is an advocate of the veterinary profession and “is knowledgable about the CVMA and has inspired others to join,” says fellow RVT, Jodie May. It is no wonder why several of her colleagues believe that she is a perfect example and recipient of the Outstanding RVT of the Year – Private Practice Award.

For a complete list of past winners, contact the CVMA at

© 2022 California Veterinary Medical Association

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