Video Length: 51 Minutes
Shelter leaders are faced with difficult decisions that affect the live outcomes of animals every day. How are these decisions made? Is there an ethic of no-kill that guides decision making? Join us in this panel discussion as some of the most integral no-kill leaders share what it means to them to lead with a no-kill philosophy. This presentation was recorded by Maddie's Fund® at the 2019 American Pets Alive! Conference.
Under Kristen's direction, Pima Animal Care Center is saving more than 90 percent of the cats and dogs who come to the shelter including orphaned puppies and kittens, pets recovering from illness and injuries, and animals who have been victims of cruelty or neglect. In 2017, she oversaw the opening of the newly-constructed state-of-the-art, animal services facility. Under her leadership, PACC partners with hundreds of rescue and community groups and engages thousands of volunteers and foster families to help achieve its mission. Kristen has received national recognition for her innovative, lifesaving programs. Her efforts have been featured in numerous national publications and websites, such as Animal Sheltering magazine, the Huffington Post, BarkPost, the Dodo and Buzzfeed, and on TV networks, including CNN, Fox and ABC. Kristen formerly served as the Deputy Director at Austin Animal Center in Austin, Texas as well as the Assistant Director at the Fairfax County Animal Shelter in Fairfax, Virginia.
Rebecca Guinn left behind a successful law career after visiting a county shelter where the majority of animals had been euthanized. Thinking there had to be a better way for a community to address its homeless pet population, she founded LifeLine Animal Project in 2002 and implemented a long-term strategy to redefine metro Atlanta's practices and philosophies regarding caring for companion animals. In 2013, LifeLine was awarded the management contracts for Atlanta's Fulton and DeKalb County animal shelters, where the organization has more than doubled lifesaving rates and positioned Atlanta to become a no-kill community.
Currently the National Director for Leadership Advancement for Best Friends Animal Society, Tawny has more than 30 years of experience in the public service arena, creating and implementing programs and services for people and their pets, working effectively with appointed and elected officials, creating and leading teams focused on professional excellence and lifesaving best practices. Tawny currently leads Best Friends' leadership advancement initiatives with a focus on strengthening existing leader's skill sets for the goal of ending the killing of shelter pets in their communities.
Prior to leading Animal Services, Paula spent 24 years serving the City of El Paso in various operational positions. Before that, Paula served as a 1st Lt in the US Army and was stationed at Fort Bliss. She began her college education at the United States Military Academy and culminated it with her master's in public administration at the University of Texas at El Paso. She received her certification in Shelter Management in 2018 and continues to look for new ways to learn and grow in order to save more of the lives that need us most.
A former nurse/paramedic for 32 years, Cheryl became interested in the city operated animal shelter in Lockhart during her tenure as Emergency Medical Services director. Concerned for the welfare and outcome of the animals at the shelter, she formed the volunteer group Cause for Paws, Inc. in 1999 whose mission was to assist with the shelter's operations and funding. Soon after, Animal Services was placed under her management. After retiring from the City of Lockhart in 2007, Cheryl went to work in Williamson County as the director for the newly built regional animal shelter, which intakes about 7,000 animals annually. During her tenure, the euthanasia rate has steadily decreased and a save rate of over 90 percent has been achieved and kept since December 2010.