Skip to content Skip to navigation

Workshop schedule

Create your schedule from more than 65 Animal Care Expo 2018 workshops

To assist you in selecting workshops that will be most helpful, presenters have coded their workshops using one of the following categories:

  • Level 1: Suitable for all attendees
  • Level 2: Best suited to those new to the field
  • Level 3: Best suited to those with a moderate level of experience in the field and/or those in mid-level leadership positions
  • Level 4: Best suited to those with extensive experience in the field and/or those in high-level leadership positions

View the complete schedule of events

For Monday sessions see the learning labs

All learning labs and workshops have been *approved for CAWA CE credits.


View workshops by date/time

Tuesday, May 15, 2018: 9:45am - 11:15am

Engaging volunteers track

Too big to fail: Tackle a seemingly overwhelming volunteer program—and rock it!
Gain, maintain and retain executive-level support and high-quality volunteers through effective communication and clear expectation-setting. You’ll learn how to host valuable and inspiring orientations, implement consistent training for staff and volunteers using technology, and identify high-functioning volunteers to implement innovative programs to further enrich the lives of the animals in your organization. You’ll learn how to create mission-focused policies and procedures that volunteers will want to adhere to. Level 3
Presenters: Tara Pregnolato, Volunteer Program Manager, Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League; Whitney Steele, Director of Volunteer Services and Special Events, Arizona Animal Welfare League and SPCA

Expanding our reach track

Way beyond tofu: Delicious, mission-consistent food for animal-friendly events
You’re looking for loving homes for the dogs and cats and guinea pigs in your shelter. But how does your desire to save lives and end suffering impact the food you serve at shelter events and fundraisers? Reducing meat consumption and serving animal-friendly fare is mission-consistent for shelters and rescues—and it doesn’t have to be a big fuss. Learn how to easily—and deliciously!—incorporate tasty plant-based foods at your events. We’ll even feed you some samples from the chefs who help at Expo! Level 1
Presenters: Ken Botts, Director of Food and Nutrition, The HSUS; Stephanie Shain, Chief Operating Officer, Humane Rescue Alliance

Field services track

Wind and water: Lessons learned from disaster response
In any large-scale disaster response, there will be challenges and lessons. During this session, we will explore the similarities and differences between Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and the unique challenges we faced in Puerto Rico when assisting people and animals. You’ll leave this workshop with a better understanding of the choices you’ll need to make when presented with challenges such as communication barriers and impacts to infrastructure, as well as how to conduct a large-scale transport after a mass care event. Level 3
Presenters: Kim Alboum, Shelter Outreach and Policy Engagement Director, State Affairs, The HSUS; Sára Varsa, Senior Director, Animal Cruelty, Rescue and Response, The HSUS

Fundraising and marketing track

Beyond bad guys: Maximizing your fundraising efforts with positive messaging
Our role of saving mistreated, abandoned and homeless animals has defined the animal welfare field for decades, and our fundraising and promotional efforts are often built on that identity. But a shift is happening, and there’s value in breaking the mold with messaging that gets beyond the victim/abuser/hero dynamic. Having a greater focus on pet owner support programming celebrates the human-animal connection and brings people together. In this workshop, learn to evolve your marketing and development strategy to differentiate your organization, diversify your donor base and build meaningful relationships with your entire community. Level 3
Presenters: Natalie Corwin, President and CEO, Pet Community Center; Aldwin Roman, Director of Anti-Cruelty and Outreach, Charleston Animal Society; Jason Schipkowski, Mentorship and Training Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS

Future of sheltering track

Up your ante—Leading-edge technologies to raise your game
Technology—is it a wild card in your organization? It’s time for no-limit play. We’ve stacked the deck with leading-edge experts to share innovative solutions you can implement today to increase your odds of saving animals’ lives. Are you all in? Level 1
Presenters: Sheila D’Arpino, Director of Research, Maddie’s Fund; Dr. Michael Greenberg, Program Director, Target Zero; Greg Lucas, President, ShelterLuv; David Meyer, CEO, Adopt-a-Pet.com; Lars Rabbe, CIO, Maddie’s Fund

Global animal issues track

The foundation to protecting animals: legislation
The most effective way to protect animals is to establish strong animal welfare legislation. A number of countries around the world don’t even have a basic animal welfare law. Others may have a law, but little enforcement. Learn about creating the language for effective legislation, strengthening laws that may already be in place and examples of the best legislation out there.
Presenter: Andrew Lurie, Senior Attorney, International Law & Trade, HSI

Leadership track

Veterans and pets, perfect together: engaging veterans with the human-animal bond
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Humane Society of the United States have joined forces to support veterans and promote the human-animal bond, aiming to increase pet-keeping by veterans and encourage veterans' volunteerism with animal welfare groups. Workshop participants will learn about existing programs to facilitate their own outreach and partnership initiatives with local VA hospitals or clinics. The goals of the partnership are to promote veterans' volunteerism at local shelters, provide opportunities for rescues and shelters to introduce animal-assisted activities within VAs, and improve the health and well-being of veterans through animal fostering and adoption. Level 1
Presenters: Presenters: Jamie D. Davis, Ph.D.,Health System Administrator, VA Office of Community Engagement; John LaRoe, President, Mo-Kan Pet Partners, Volunteer, Kansas City VA Medical Center; Heather Luper, LCSW-C, Social Work Program Coordinator, VA Office of Community Engagement; Amy Nichols, Vice President Companion Animals, The HSUS; Heidi K. Ortmeyer, Ph.D., Research Physiologist, VA Maryland Health Care System

Reaching underserved communities track

Tools for starting a community outreach program
Want to incorporate pet owner support work into your mission? Learn the first steps of completing a community assessment and creating a budget, strategies for setting goals and collecting data, techniques for mapping results and tips for conducting door to door outreach. This session will cover everything you need to know to get out in the community and start delivering services. Level 2
Presenters: Nadia Novik, Director of Shelter Outreach, Animal Shelter of the Wood River Valley; Rachel Thompson, Mentorship and Training Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS

Saving cats track

Targeted TNR: It's all about impact
TNR works—if it's done right! To quickly reduce the number of community cats, decrease nuisance behavior and complaints, and improve public health, you have to target your efforts. Success comes from high sterilization rates within colonies and by concentrating trappers, surgeries and outreach in high-need areas. Learn why feral cat population dynamics make targeting so important and how to go about selecting target areas, estimating cat numbers, performing trapping, measuring results and more. Level 1
Presenter: Bryan Kortis, National Programs Director, Neighborhood Cats

Shelter medicine track

Capacity for care: Yes we can! (Part 1 of 2)
Achieving capacity for care can be both a shelter's biggest goal and its greatest fear. There are huge benefits, but at first the risks and challenges of getting to your shelter’s ideal capacity can seem overwhelming. Learn the basics about capacity for care and hear what shelters who have achieved their best balance share about the motivations that inspired them to change, the challenges they faced on the way and the accomplishments that keep them moving forward. Level 1
Presenters: Dr. Allison Clarke, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Shelter Veterinarian, Arizona Animal Welfare League; Alexandre Ellis, DVM, University of Wisconsin Maddie's Shelter Medicine Resident
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Tuesday, May 15, 2018: 2:00pm - 3:30pm

Engaging volunteers track

Sustainable structures: Helping your volunteer program grow
Successful volunteer management relies on a solid program base, a well-structured work schedule, and harnessing the “superhero” qualities of your volunteers. Engaging volunteers to help manage and exponentially grow your programs is all about working smarter, not harder. This workshop will provide you with key tools to keep your volunteers engaged, manage your time and grow your programs, while not getting overwhelmed in the process. Level 2
Presenter: Jennifer Huettich, Volunteer Coordinator, Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter; Margaret Barnard, Volunteer Coordinator, Tree House Humane Society

Expanding our reach track

Keeping them home: A new and innovative alternative to owner surrender
Would you start a surrender intervention program if it cost your organization no money, required no resources and needed almost no staff time? How about if that program actually raised unrestricted funds for your organization? In 2016, Rehome by Adopt-a-Pet.com and the Petco Foundation was launched as a new and innovative alternative to owner surrenders to animal welfare organizations. In this session, we will give an in-depth overview of how the website is decreasing owner surrenders and helping those who must rehome their pets, and what we've learned through data gathered on the pet owners using the service. Level 1
Presenters: April Harris, Director of Animal Welfare Insights, Adopt-a-Pet.com; David Meyer, Chief Executive Officer, Adopt-a-Pet.com; Abbie Moore, Chief Product Officer, Adopt-a-Pet.com

Field services track

Breaking the sickest link: Conducting effective bestiality investigations
Bestiality or “zoophilia” involves a sexual fixation on animals, which is often linked with the sexual abuse of children. In this course, we will examine the link between bestiality and other criminal behavior, and discuss how to investigate these crimes. Level 1
Presenter: Chris Schindler, Vice President of Field Services, Humane Rescue Alliance

Fundraising and marketing track

The power of stories: Working with the media to achieve your mission
Do you wonder why some shelters' and rescue groups' stories get media coverage, while yours remain untold? In this session, the former animal welfare editor for The Huffington Post will explain what makes for stories the media wants to cover, stories that will help you get more attention and support for your work. Level 1
Presenter: Arin Greenwood, Animal Writer

Future of sheltering track

Sprinkling cats and dogs: Our progress in lowering euthanasia numbers—and what it means for our industry’s future
“It’s raining cats and dogs.” For years, the animal welfare community has used this metaphor to describe the seemingly never-ending flow of dogs and cats into our nation’s shelters. However, in recent years, we’ve made significant progress in lowering euthanasia rates. There are even many shelters searching outside their communities for adoptable animals to meet local demand. This workshop will look at the decline in euthanasia rates; the programs, policies and cultural shifts that brought it about; and the challenges for shelters that continue to have high euthanasia rates. We will also look at the challenges facing the shelter of the future in helping the “hard cases,” educating communities and meeting the demand for companion animals. Level 4
Presenters: Lisa Dennison, Executive Director, New Hampshire SPCA; Josh Fisher, MHA, Director, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, Animal Care and Control Division; Holly Hazard, Senior Vice President of Programs and Innovations, The HSUS; Lisa LaFontaine, President and CEO, Humane Rescue Alliance

Global animal issues track

Lobbying around the world
A strong lobbying effort can be make or break the process of introducing and passing important animal welfare legislation. Listen to first-hand accounts of successful lobbying campaigns in Mexico and the Philippines, and the strategies used to achieve these milestones.
Presenters: Anton Aguilar, Director, HSI; Heidi Marquez, Program Director, Animal Kingdom Foundation

Leadership track

Balancing act: Leading in an XY world
Carrying forward the conversation from last year’s popular session exploring gender issues in animal welfare leadership, we will dive into some of the biggest challenges that remain top-of-mind for animal welfare leaders (such as work/life balance and confidence). We’ll also tackle the topic of harassment and how organizations can ensure a safe and respectful environment for all. The session will be highly interactive and we hope it’ll bring up lively and provocative discussions, allowing us to explore the most pressing issues challenging our field. We want to hear perspectives from across the gender spectrum—come share yours! Level 3
Presenter: Laura Maloney, Principal, Adisa; Betsy McFarland, Principal, Adisa

Reaching underserved communities track

Seeing past the horizon: What’s next in companion animal welfare?
Companion animal welfare is so much more than sheltering and adoptions. Hear from shelter leaders on how the field is changing and what you should be thinking about to take your organization into the future. From generating new revenue streams to tailoring services based on community needs, you will leave this workshop excited about and prepared for the ever-changing landscape. Level 1
Presenters: Sheryl Blancato, Executive Director, Second Chance Animal Shelter; Aimee Christian, Vice President of Community Medicine, ASPCA; Jill Kline, Vice President of Community Impact Programs, Wisconsin Humane Society

Saving cats track

Creating a successful 'working cat' program
Often considered unadoptable and overlooked for rescue, feral and fractious cats can be saved through a progressive working cat placement program and given a new lease on life as employed cats, hard at work at rodent and pest control. Learn how to start a working cat program from scratch, including selecting cats appropriate for alternative placement in barn, warehouse, or retail homes; finding quality adopters; implementing proper relocation procedures; and ensuring safe handling and sheltering practices. Level 3
Presenter: Monica Frenden, Cat Program Manager, Austin Pets Alive

Shelter medicine track

Capacity for care: Yes we can! (Part 2 of 2)
Achieving capacity for care can be both a shelter's biggest goal and its greatest fear. There are huge benefits, but at first the risks and challenges of getting to your shelter’s ideal capacity can seem overwhelming. In this session, you will learn how Edmonton Humane Society and San Francisco SPCA overcame new challenges in sustaining their progress toward maintaining their capacity for care. Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Elizabeth Roberts, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Eslinger Shelter Medicine Fellow and Director of Shelter Medicine, San Francisco SPCA; Dr. Anthea Smith, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Head Shelter Veterinarian, Edmonton Humane Society
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Tuesday, May 15: 4:00pm - 5:30pm

Engaging volunteers track

Volunteering to go nuts? Utilize technology to keep your sanity
Learn how to successfully improve systems within your volunteer program by utilizing technology and tech-savvy volunteers. Whether you’re just getting started with technology or you’re eager to learn new tricks for your existing program, this workshop has something for everyone. We will provide the tools you need to get you from spinning your wheels, to establishing and maintaining an efficiently run volunteer program. Level 3
Presenters: Alex Ropes, Volunteer Manager, Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County; Emily Shelton, Volunteer Coordinator, Pensacola Humane Society

Expanding our reach track

Can we "de-silo" animal welfare?
Feeling isolated? You're not alone! Despite ever-increasing connectivity, animal welfare organizations tend to operate in silos. You can change that! Come learn about the "nuts and bolts" of how organizations across the country are sharing ideas both internally and externally to more efficiently implement best practices and save more lives. We'll take you through real examples and introduce you to the world of "tele-consulting" and animal welfare discussion forums. Level 1
Presenters: Dr. Michael Greenberg, Program Director, Target Zero; Dr. Sara Pizano, Consultant, Team Shelter USA
AAVSB credit

Field services track

Puppy mills: From complaint to court
This course will discuss the unique considerations in dealing with puppy mill cases and other animal cruelty crimes. We will address commercial breeder laws, state cruelty laws and how to be prepared for a seizure of this sort. Level 3
Presenters: Jess Lauginiger, Director of Animal Crimes, The HSUS; David Taylor, Lieutenant, Cabarrus County Sheriff's Ofiice

Fundraising and marketing track

Serve where you save: Community-driven programming that saves lives
In early 2017, Carver Scott Humane Society, a foster-based rescue in Minneapolis, developed a four-pillar, innovative rescue model. The model, based on their Serve Where You Save concept, is designed to prevent animals from entering the shelter or impound system in the first place. In less than two years, they have transformed their intakes, maximized community partnerships, increased capacity and prevented surrender in nearly 80 percent of cases. Level 3
Presenters: Megan Greene, Animal Programs Manager, Carver Scott Humane Society; Kelly Simer, Cat Adoption Center Manager, Carver Scott Humane Society; Mandi Wyman, Executive Director, Carver Scott Humane Society

Future of Sheltering track

Design strategies for shelter renovations: Retrofitting for the future
Most animal welfare organizations find themselves facing several building renovations over their shelter’s lifetime, especially as the field progresses and new projects and programs—and their associated space needs—are embraced. This informative workshop will provide your team with valuable tools to tackle the most common and necessary shelter renovation projects. We will cover HVAC upgrades, flooring projects, noise abatement and animal housing improvements. No matter what your budget, you can make changes to help your shelter function more efficiently and achieve its mission. Level 3
Presenter: Heather E. Lewis, AIA, NCARB, Principal, Animal Arts

Global animal issues track

The wonderful dog: Shifting global perceptions on “man’s best friend”
In many parts of the world, dogs are mistreated or disliked. Highlighting the amazing traits dogs have and the companionship they offer can often be all that is needed to change perspectives. Learn about an HSI campaign that allows rescued dogs to act as their own ambassadors, inspiring people to save more of them and sending a strong message of compassion.
Presenters: Debra Duel, Director of Humane Education, Humane Rescue Alliance; Adam Parascandola, Director, HSI Animal Protection and Crisis Response

Leadership track

What would Winnie the Pooh do? “Beary” good people skills to resolve conflicts with the most difficult animal
In today’s raucous political climate in which civility seems out of style, thinking about a strategy of kindness may seem old-fashioned. But humble, wise Winnie the Pooh was on to something. This workshop will explore how consideration and empathy are not only good, but smart, making for savvy work practices that allow you to get the most out of your staff and volunteers, your irritating boss or demanding board member, and other people with different points of view. The next time your staff forgets to give you a message, your board chair insists on three fundraisers in June, or a notorious online troll demands to debate you, you may just ask yourself, “What would Pooh do?” Level 1
Presenters: Holly Hazard, Senior Vice President of Programs and Innovations, The HSUS; Christie Keith, Communications Consultant, Maddie’s Fund; Lee Ann Shenefiel, Interim Chief Animal Services Officer, Austin Animal Center

Reaching underserved communities track

That awkward moment: Dealing with unexpected situations in community outreach
If your organization has a community outreach program, you have inevitably run into special circumstances, such as a suspected hoarding situation. And if you are thinking about starting pet owner support work, you probably wonder how you’ll handle difficult scenarios, like encountering a pet with severe mange. In this workshop, we will talk in-depth about how to handle the most complex situations you might face when implementing a community support program and give you tools to effectively address these challenges. Level 1
Presenters: Danny Burke, Senior Program Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS; Rhonda Norris, Shelter Operations Manager, PAAS Vinita; Annie Pruitt, Director, Charm City Companions

Saving cats track

What can a catio do for you?
Chances are, you’ve seen fun photos of catios (cat patios) and creative enclosures online. As an organization that protects cats, how can you capitalize on this exciting trend? What other local partners may also be interested in the topic? This class will focus on how catios have been used in Portland, Oregon, to build a collaborative partnership between cat and wildlife groups and keep more cats safe in the community. Learn how to launch a catio tour to build support and about other initiatives in this innovative collaboration. Level 3
Presenters: Karen Kraus, Executive Director, Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon; Bob Sallinger, Conservation Director, The Audubon Society of Portland

Shelter medicine track

Why outbreaks happen: Shelter medicine fundamentals to prevent disease
The University of Wisconsin Shelter Medicine team works with shelters all over the country (and beyond), providing assistance during outbreaks of infectious disease. Learn the fundamental steps every shelter should take to avoid an outbreak. Answers to frequently asked questions about topics such as vaccination, sanitation and housing will be discussed. In addition, you will find out which practices are not as helpful as they may seem. Level 1
Presenters: Dr. Aleisha Swartz, Outreach Veterinarian, University of Wisconsin Shelter Medicine Program; Dr. Deb Yannessa, University of Wisconsin/Dane County Humane Society Maddie's Shelter Medicine Intern
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Wednesday, May 16, 2018: 10:15am - 11:45am

Engaging volunteers track

Why to say YES to creative volunteer roles

 

 

 

Utilizing volunteers in daily operations is a vital practice for successful organizations. But what about busy people who can only contribute limited time, students/community groups looking for a summer project or virtual volunteers who can only work from home? Instead of letting these opportunities pass you by, this workshop will help you embrace non-traditional volunteers, enabling staff to focus on other lifesaving elements of their work and decrease overall workload. Real examples and tools will be shared with attendees. Level 1
Presenters: Hilary Hager, Senior Director of Volunteer Engagement, The HSUS; Ollie Davidson, Principal, Old Dog Consulting

 

 

Expanding our reach track

Life in the Doghouse: Two men. One mission. 10,000 Lives.
The movie, Life in the Doghouse tells the inspiring stories of Danny and Ron and how their unique approach to life and dog rescue resulted in over 10,000 dogs being adopted. Join us to dive deep into their story of rescue which will capture hearts and inspire millions to make the right choices when it comes to man’s best friend. Level 1
Panelists: Danny Robertshaw, Danny & Ron’s Rescue; Ron Danta, Danny & Ron’s Rescue. Moderators: Amy Nichols, Vice President of Companion Animals, The Humane Society of the United States; Kimberley Alboum, Shelter Outreach & Policy Engagement Director, Companion Animals, The Humane Society of the United States  

Field services track

The moving toolbox: Best practices in vehicles and equipment
This workshop will briefly review the key equipment officers should keep in their vehicles and how to maintain and employ these tools properly. Level 2
Presenter: Chris Schindler, Vice President of Field Services, Humane Rescue Alliance

Fundraising and marketing track

Fundraising for your municipal shelter? YES!
For most municipal shelters, fundraising can be a dirty word. It is sometimes perceived as impossible, unethical or even illegal—none of which are true! Telling the stories of the pets in your shelters in unique ways can help take you to the next level and raise critical funds to save lives. By raising millions of dollars from private supporters, KC Pet Project in Kansas City, Missouri has proven that donors can help municipal shelters close the gap between lifesaving dreams and reality. Level 3
Presenter: Tori Fugate, Director of Marketing and Communications, KC Pet Project

Future of sheltering track

Don’t let the tail wag the dog: Bringing your supporters along in times of change
As organizations see shifts in animal populations in and outside their communities, programs and projects must shift to address those changing needs. But donor dollars don’t automatically follow as we move in new directions. Old faithful fundraising messages may no longer be what is needed for an organization focusing more on the needs of “difficult” animals, surrender prevention, animals in poverty, trap/neuter/return, community engagement or public policy. How do we share our changing vision and activities with donors and motivate them to fund programs that may not have a direct link to the cute adoptable dog in need? How can we shift our business models to meet the needs of animals? This class will explore how to engage donors with changing organizations and strategies. Level 3
Presenters: Karen Kraus, Executive Director, Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon; Anne Reed, President and CEO, Wisconsin Humane Society

Global animal issues track

Starting from zero: From grass-roots to leveraging international support and solidarity
Through volunteerism and networking, the Palestinian Animal League (PAL) was able to transition from a grassroots initiative to a provider of intuitional programming leveraging international support and solidarity. Come and learn of PAL’s experience in starting from zero (launching a new NGO, building a volunteer base, building international solidarity, community outreach and government involvement, transitioning into institutional programming, etc.), and leave inspired in furthering your own efforts!
Presenter: Mai Farsakh, Co-founder, Palestinian Animal League (PAL)

Leadership track

There’s no “I” in team: Why management mentorship matters
Some say leaders are born; others say they are made. Whether you're new to management or plan to be a leader for tomorrow, mentorship will bolster your ability to lead a team or an organization. With limited time, insufficient resources, and fire after fire distracting your focus, who can you count on to assist in your professional development? Learn the elements necessary for leadership in this field and how to attain guidance and insight from veterans who have survived career pitfalls and celebrated amazing accomplishments. Hear tips from those working in leadership throughout the animal care industry and what advice they have for the leaders of tomorrow. Attendees will learn how to identify, approach and secure a mentor in animal welfare and how to make the relationship mutually beneficial. Level 3
Presenter: Jim Tedford, President and Chief Executive Officer, Society of Animal Welfare Administrators

Reaching underserved communities track

Hard choices: Delivering compassionate community-focused medicine
Communication and customer service are essential to providing veterinary care and medical services. In underserved communities, where access and resources are limited and decisions must be made based on practical considerations, conversations with pet owners become more nuanced. In this workshop, customer service and medical experts will discuss techniques for approaching these conversations and ways to assist clients in making informed decisions about their pets’ health. Level 1
Presenters: Dr. Carolyn Brown, Senior Medical Director of Community Medicine, ASPCA; Jocelyn Kessler, Senior Director of Operations Community Medicine, ASPCA
AAVSB credit

Saving cats track

Balancing customer care with capacity for care: Mastering the art of "Yes, and ..."
We never want to say “no” to an animal or community member in need, but how do we balance that with our capacity to care for the animals already in the shelter? In this lively and participatory workshop, leaders in the field will share practical, service-oriented ways to turn, “No, we can’t take this cat today” into “Yes, we will help you, and here are some options.” Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Kate Hurley, Director, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program and Million Cat Challenge Co-Founder; Dr. Julie Levy, Professor of Shelter Medicine, University of Florida Maddie's Shelter Medicine Program, College of Veterinary Medicine and Million Cat Challenge Co-Founder
AAVSB credit

Shelter medicine track

Become a wizard of wellness, Find the magic to minimizing disease outbreak
What are the latest news and developments in shelter medicine? How do you prepare for outbreaks in your shelter or community? You will all become wizards of wellness through this engaging and hands-on session about how to prepare for and what to do when faced with an unexpected disease outbreak. Come to this session for hands-on participation in creating a plan for your community. Level 1
Panelists: Cynda Crawford, Maddie’s Clinical Assistant Professor of Shelter Medicine, Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program, University of Florida; Lena DeTar, DMV, DACVPM, DAVBP-SMP, Maddie's Shelter Medicine Program at Cornell University; Dr. Michael Greenberg, Program Director, Target Zero. Moderator: Laurie Peek, DVM, Executive Leadership Team, Maddie’s Fund
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Wednesday, May 16, 2018: 2:15pm - 3:45pm

Engaging volunteers track

Make new friends and keep the old: Do less recruiting, more retaining
We all need to engage volunteers to achieve our mission, but we often spend more time bringing in new volunteers than keeping the existing ones engaged and happy. This session will explore ways to keep volunteers energized and passionate about the organization’s goals by providing volunteers with intrinsic (rather than extrinsic) rewards and values. It’s all about utilizing volunteers in a variety of ways to increase their sense of significance and worth to the organization. Level 3
Presenters: Emi Griess, Volunteer Coordinator, Helping Hands Humane Society; Michael Salmond, Volunteer Manager, Animal Care Centers of New York; Deb Watkins, Executive Director and Director of Veterinary Services and Animal Welfare, Helping Hands Humane Society

Expanding our reach track

Keeping it all in the foster family
What do you get when you combine sleepovers, team activity and field trips? Even more lives saved through foster care. A national survey was conducted, and we will use the survey responses in a rousing game of Family Feud. Can you identify the top answers to the most pressing questions about lifesaving? Audience polls and panel interaction will inspire you to identify new ways to recruit more fosters, keep your current fosters engaged and having fun, start new types of foster programs and bring in more donations to your organization. Level 1
Panelists: Kristen Auerbach, Director of Animal Services, Pima County Animal Center; Dr. Sheila D’Arpino, Maddie’s Fund; Kelly Duer, Maddie’s Foster Expansion Coordinator; Lisa Gunter, PhD, Research Associate; Arizona State University. Moderators: Lynne Fridley and Lisa Ward, Co-Directors of Education, Maddie’s Fund

Field services track

Asking the right questions: Conducting interviews and interrogations
Are your officers equipped with the critical interview training they need during investigations? Join us for this seminar, where you’ll learn techniques (developed by veteran law enforcement officers) for detecting deception during investigations as well as how to handle those tricky interviews during which the victim, a witness or a suspect may not be forthcoming with information. Level 2
Presenter: Steve MacKinnon, Chief of Humane Law Enforcement, San Diego Humane Society

Fundraising and marketing track

Marketing for dummies (on a tight budget)
No matter how large (or small, or nonexistent) your budget, marketing your pets and programs is essential to the success of your organization. Thankfully, there are marketing tools and tactics for rescue groups of all shapes and sizes. Learn how to increase your donor/stakeholder base, boost adoption rates and improve your position within the community. Remember, just because you're spending money that isn’t directly tied to your animals does not mean it's money wasted! Level 3
Presenter: Brittany Mazzurco Muscato, Digital Marketing Specialist, Humane Society of Broward County

Future of sheltering track

Transporting to the future
As our field evolves, organizations that have reached a tipping point in managing intake and reducing euthanasia in their own regions need to examine what still needs to be done elsewhere, and to take action collectively to provide solutions. The more we organize available capacity and work together, the greater the impact and the stronger the safety net for animals. Learn how St. Hubert’s animal relocation program brings together more than 60 organizations to make efficient use of limited resources and lend a hand to source communities, providing funding for public spay/neuter, trainings, equipment and resources. In this session, we will share the tools, methods and outcomes of this model and the opportunities for strengthening the animal welfare community. Whether addressing the animal population disparity between communities or responding to natural disasters, a hub and spoke relocation model can powerfully serve animals and serve as a catalyst for change. Level 1
Presenter: Heather Cammisa-Davenport, CAWA, CEO/President, St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center

Global animal issues track

Staying focused to your mission
Your mission statement is an articulation of WHY your organization exists, not what you do. By keeping your mission in the front of your mind, and at the heart of your daily activities, you can avoid the distractions and dilution of efforts that can kill any organization. Your mission statement should be your North Star—your point of reference for all time. This presentation will explore how to create an effective mission statement, then how to utilize this statement for maximum impact.
Presenters: Edward Clark, President, Wildlife Center of Virginia

Leadership track

Progressive programming to cure compassion fatigue
Given our exhausting emotional work (that's also rewarding and inspiring), many organizations spend precious resources addressing burnout and compassion fatigue. But what if the challenge isn't the work itself, but how we do that work? We'll explore two initiatives, intake prevention and capacity for care—and their impact not just on live release rates, but on the people doing the work. These initiatives have the potential to reduce stressful situations and shift the focus from what we can't control, to what we can. Level 3
Presenters: Cynthia Karsten, DVM, DABVP (shelter medicine practice), Outreach Veterinarian, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program
AAVSB credit

Reaching underserved communities track

Why access to animal care resources is a social justice issue
Pet ownership crosses all geographic, racial and socio-economic boundaries, but access to information and services does not. Institutional bias and systemic inequality have impacted pets in ways you may not realize. Discover what this could mean in your community and how it should inform your organization’s programming. Level 1
Presenters: Amanda Arrington, Director, Pets for Life, The HSUS; Lori Hensley, Director of Operations, Beyond Fences

Saving cats track

TNR case studies: Using real life examples to find key insights and best practices
What would you think about a large open-admission shelter that went from a 48-percent live release rate for cats to a rate of 92 percent in only a few years? What about a working waterfront that is now cat-free? Or how about one of the largest cities in the world seeing substantial reductions in colonies all over the map? Sound like a dream? Well, it is reality! Join us to hear in-depth case studies of three very different communities and how they made great strides for cats, as well as key takeaways so you can replicate this work in your own location. Level 4
Presenters: Bryan Kortis, National Programs Director, Neighborhood Cats; Dan Spehar, Co-founder, Together Initiative for Ohio’s Community Cats and Senior District Leader Volunteer, The HSUS; Desiree Triste-Aragon, Community Cat Program Manager, Best Friends Animal Society; Peter Wolf, Cat Initiatives Analyst, Best Friends Animal Society

Shelter medicine track

Dog relocation: Taking the express train
Relocating dogs from overpopulated shelters to underpopulated shelters sure sounds like a win-win for everyone involved—and it is! By examining multiple medical and behavioral parameters of relocated dogs, we have learned how to create a safe and efficient method for getting transferred dogs in the door, and then speeding them out to their new homes. Learn how you can start a relocation program at your shelter. Level 3
Presenters: Sarah Byerley, Animal Operations Manager, Dane County Humane Society; Rebecca Stuntebeck, DVM, University of Wisconsin Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Resident; Erica Schumacher, DVM, Chief Shelter Veterinarian, Dane County Humane Society; Dr. Olivia Swailes, University of Wisconsin/Dane County Humane Society Maddie's Shelter Medicine Intern
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Thursday, May 17, 2018: 9:00am - 10:30am

Engaging volunteers track

Regional coalition-building: Creating strong programs together
This workshop will give you the tools to start a regional volunteer managers roundtable in your area. These groups are a lifesaving tool for rescues and shelters, from those that are just getting their volunteer programs going to those with the most robust volunteer programs in place. Using each other as resources for implementing new programs, learning about successes and failures in volunteer management, and working together to help build a better program is a win-win solution. Meeting and discussing everything from volunteer software to onboarding, retaining and recognizing volunteers helps the entire region advance its animal lifesaving efforts. Level 1
Presenters: Hilary Hager, Senior Director of Volunteer Engagement, The HSUS; Cynthia Sbrocco, Volunteer Manager, Fairfax County Animal Shelter

Expanding our reach track

What comes after one million?
At an Expo not long ago, we dared to imagine reaching a tipping point for how cats are cared for in our shelters and communities. The Million Cat Challenge was born out of the energy of that gathering. Our goal was to document and support the successful cat-saving strategies springing up across North America. Just five years later, the goal of “the million” has been convincingly exceeded—but we’re not done yet. Millions more cats will count on us in the years to come, and shelters need tools, knowledge and community support to succeed. Find out the best lessons learned from the first million and discover how you can be part of locking in and perfecting the methods that work to help cats, the people who care for them and the communities we serve. Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Kate Hurley, Director, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program and Million Cat Challenge Co-founder; Dr. Julie Levy, Professor of Shelter Medicine, University of Florida Maddie's Shelter Medicine Program, College of Veterinary Medicine and Million Cat Challenge Co-Founder
AAVSB credit

Field services track

Improving law enforcement encounters with dogs
This workshop will address how police/dog encounters impact enforcement agencies and why they should care. We will review contributing factors to negative encounters and have a brief discussion of canine body language and the most appropriate way to approach unknown dogs. The conversation will focus on preparedness and relationship-building. Level 1
Presenters: Janette Reever, Senior Manager Animal Crimes, The HSUS; John Thompson, Deputy Executive Director, National Sheriffs’ Association

Fundraising and marketing track

Crafting your story: Honest, simple and powerful
Stories have the power to shape behavior, drive awareness, and inform future decisions. Regardless of the size, budget or mission of your organization, its stories are what establish and maintain connections within the community and across diverse stakeholders. Through a series of conversation-starters, exercises and brainstorming sessions, this workshop will give attendees the keys to building not only a story, but a strategy, for influencing how they are seen and supported by their communities. Level 3
Presenters: Jessica Dolce, MS, CCFE, Consultant; Caitlin Quinn, Director of Operations, HeARTs Speak, Inc.

Future of sheltering track

Making the right connections: Best practices in collaboration
When multiple organizations work separately and compete in a community, are we doing our utmost to serve the animals? This workshop covers a variety of collaborative approaches, including the pros and cons of mergers; how to get buy-in from boards of directors; pitfalls to avoid; topic-based partnerships and collaborations that allow you to maximize impact; and the benefits and costs of participating in state or regional federations and coalitions. Our changing field motivates us to work smarter, not harder—and that may mean looking outside of our own organizations. Level 1
Presenters: Katie Lisnik, Director, Companion Animal Public Policy, The HSUS; Nate Meador, President and CEO, Great Plains SPCA; Stephanie Shain, Chief Operating Officer, Humane Rescue Alliance

Global animal issues track

No Global animal issues workshop is scheduled. Please feel free to attend any of the other Expo workshops.

Leadership track

Finding the signal in the noise: Using the right data to save more lives
Saving more lives requires strategic thinking and planning. But how do you sift through the sea of data available in order to find and use the information that matters? In this session, attendees will learn about the gap analysis process that informs Best Friends' work in Los Angeles and all over the country. You'll learn how to find useful statistics and resources, identify gaps in lifesaving and develop a strategic plan for your community. Level 3
Presenters: Marc Peralta, Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Regional Director, Best Friends Animal Society; Brent Toellner, Co-founder and Board President, KC Pet Project

Reaching underserved communities track

Breaking boundaries: Municipal shelters and community outreach
Do you think that being an open admission shelter or municipal agency prevents your organization from implementing pet owner support programs? There’s good news! Intake prevention, return-to-owners, reallocation of positions and so much more is possible beyond your (and the public's) expectations. You can save animals’ lives, enrich your relationship with the community and be a comprehensive resource for people and pets. Level 4
Presenters: Chris Fitzgerald, Director, Rochester Animal Services; Ken Foster, Community Pets Program Coordinator, Animal Care Centers of NYC; Ashley Mutch, Mentorship and Training Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS

Saving cats track

Kitten kindergarten: Mission-driven, kitten-approved
Studies have shown that puppies who attend training and socialization classes are less likely to be surrendered to shelters later in life. But what about cats? Kittens also have a critical socialization period—an optimal time to learn new skills, have positive new experiences and become well-socialized. Learn how to develop a successful “kitten kindergarten” program to enhance the human-animal bond, keep cats in homes, maintain positive adopter relations and raise confident, well-trained cats. Level 3
Presenters: Ariel Stephens, Training Programs Manager, San Francisco SPCA; Sarah Welsh, Feline Behavior Associate, San Francisco SPCA

Shelter medicine track

Finding an umbrella when it’s raining cats and dogs
Do you ever feel like you are caught in a downpour of pets? The good news is it doesn’t have to be that way. Making a positive impact within a shelter often means reaching beyond your organization’s walls and into the community. Case studies from Flathead County Animal Shelter and Huntsville Animal Services will detail the agencies’ efforts to improve shelter health by working with the community. Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Meg Gordon, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Shelter Veterinarian, Flathead County Humane Society; Dr. Karen Sheppard, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Director, Huntsville Animal Services
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Thursday, May 17, 2018: 11:00am - 12:30pm

Engaging volunteers track

Saving the orphans with volunteers
In 2009, San Diego Humane Society launched the first high-volume, 24-hour kitten nursery. You might not have a kitten nursery, but you can start saving newborn, orphaned kittens with help from volunteers! Attendees will learn how to implement a volunteer-based neonate foster program, including all the secrets, tips and protocols essential to success. We will discuss bottle-feeding, socialization, disease prevention and volunteer recruitment and training. Go home empowered to save your most vulnerable, at-risk animals: neonate kittens. Level 3
Presenters: Beau Archer, Vice President of Animal Welfare, San Diego Humane Society; Jackie Noble, Nursery Supervisor, San Diego Humane Society

Expanding our reach track

Effective resource management for shelter veterinarians
Shelter medicine is quickly becoming a competitive discipline in veterinary medicine, and veterinary professionals working within the animal welfare field often have to do the most good with the least amount of resources. We’ll talk about specific strategies that save lives, and candidly discuss the business side of our passion while sharing examples of effective staff/volunteer training. We’ll also explore the concept of “servant leadership,” which requires emotional intelligence, resilience and outside-the-box thinking—and gets rewards in increased employee engagement and retention. Bring your questions! Level 3
Presenters: Sadie Scott, DVM, Vice President of Veterinary Services, Wayside Waifs; Katie Teutemacher, DVM, Lead Veterinarian, Great Plains SPCA

Field services track

Effective courtroom testimony
Animal abuse cases present unique challenges for law enforcement and prosecutors, both in the field and in the courtroom. This course will discuss tactics for preparing to testify about animal cruelty crimes. Level 2
Presenter: Matt Barnett, Chief of Police, Wiggins, Mississippi

Fundraising and marketing track

Grant writing 101
Get your organization's piece of the pie! This workshop will show you how to find grants, navigate the application process and create a proposal that will wow grant makers. Learn the tools and tricks that will streamline the search and application process and help you secure grant funding. Level 3
Presenters: Kimberlee Dinn, Senior Director of Institutional Giving and Stewardship, The HSUS

Future of sheltering track

A practical guide to rehoming “difficult to place" animals
Something fantastic is happening in animal welfare right now—many regions in the U.S. are seeing fewer animals entering their systems. Whether you are dealing with a large or small number of surrendered animals, you are no doubt trying to figure out a way to find homes for the more “difficult to place” animals in your shelter. These include animals with medical issues, behavior issues and geriatric animals. Sometimes, simply having too many of one type of animal can make rehoming a challenge. This workshop will focus on the practical application of successfully rehoming these animals. We will also explore the philosophical approach to placing these animals and even debate the question, “Should we be placing all of these animals?” Level 3
Presenters: Carmine DiCenso, Executive Director, Dakin Humane Society; Mike Keiley, Director of Adoption Centers and Programs, Massachusetts SPCA

Global animal issues track

No Global animal issues workshop is scheduled. Please feel free to attend any of the other Expo workshops.

Leadership track

Give ‘em a ride: Best practices for transport of companion animals
The Society of Animal Welfare Administrators put together a comprehensive best practices document outlining the optimum ways to design and manage a transport program from the standpoint of both source organizations and destination shelters. In this session, you’ll learn best practice guidelines from two of the experts who helped shape them. You will be challenged to make changes to benefit your extremely precious “cargo” as the animals make their journeys to long, happy lives. Level 1
Presenters: Brad Shear, Executive Director, Potter League for Animals; Jim Tedford, President and Chief Executive Officer, Society of Animal Welfare Administrators

Reaching underserved communities track

What you don’t know might help you: Broaden your research horizons
There is a wealth of information on the benefits pets bring to people, the human-animal bond and on how pet owner support programming deepens community impact. Measurements like shelter intake are not enough to inform the creation of effective community-based programming or show the overall impact of your organization’s work. In this session, industry experts will share exciting studies and research on social science-informed animal welfare to expand your thinking on how your work is structured and assist you in creating a much more inclusive and comprehensive narrative. Level 4
Presenters: Kevin Morris, Associate Research Professor, University of Denver Institute for Human-Animal Connection; Dr. Brittany Watson, Director of Shelter Medicine and Community Engagement, University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine
AAVSB credit

Saving cats track

Crossing the challenge line: Innovation and mojo-based thinking to save more lives
Cat expert Jackson Galaxy has built his cat philosophy around uncovering and cultivating a cat’s “mojo,” or innate confidence. A core element of his process is the concept of The Challenge Line; that line in the sand for cats where, on one side is comfort and the other is challenge. Becoming the best and biggest version of oneself depends on consistently pushing that boundary.

In this workshop, Jackson will start with concrete methods to bring out the best in the cats in your care—from environmental enrichment to the stability of building the “Three R’s (Routine, Ritual & Rhythm).” Finally, he will guide you, as caretakers of individual cats and architects of programs for them, to step up to your challenge line and abandon safe thinking in favor of a better life for your cats and a new way to define, celebrate, and, yes, market cats to staff, volunteers, adopters and donors. Level 3
Presenters: Jackson Galaxy, Founder, Jackson Galaxy Enterprises

Shelter medicine track

Road construction: Building and evaluating pathways to save lives
Identifying the needs of animals as they enter shelters and determining their best path is crucial to maximizing lifesaving capacity. All pathways begin at intake, but some paths may be smoother than others. We will cover the basics of pathway planning and share case studies from Greenhill Humane Society and ACCT Philly that work through some of the bumps in the road and ways to smooth over some of the potholes. Level 1
Presenters: Brenda Dines, DVM, University of Wisconsin Maddie's Shelter Medicine Resident; Dr. Melissa Resnick, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Shelter Veterinarian, Animal Care and Control Team of Philadelphia; Dr. Gail Schroder, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Director of Shelter Medicine, Greenhill Humane Society
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


View workshops by track

Engaging volunteers track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Too big to fail: Tackle a seemingly overwhelming volunteer program—and rock it!
Gain, maintain and retain executive-level support and high-quality volunteers through effective communication and clear expectation-setting. You’ll learn how to host valuable and inspiring orientations, implement consistent training for staff and volunteers using technology, and identify high-functioning volunteers to implement innovative programs to further enrich the lives of the animals in your organization. You’ll learn how to create mission-focused policies and procedures that volunteers will want to adhere to. Level 3
Presenters: Tara Pregnolato, Volunteer Program Manager, Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League; Whitney Steele, Director of Volunteer Services and Special Events, Arizona Animal Welfare League and SPCA

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Sustainable structures: Helping your volunteer program grow
Successful volunteer management relies on a solid program base, a well-structured work schedule, and harnessing the “superhero” qualities of your volunteers. Engaging volunteers to help manage and exponentially grow your programs is all about working smarter, not harder. This workshop will provide you with key tools to keep your volunteers engaged, manage your time and grow your programs, while not getting overwhelmed in the process. Level 2
Presenters: Jennifer Huettich, Volunteer Coordinator, Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter; Margaret Barnard, Volunteer Coordinator, Tree House Humane Society

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

Volunteering to go nuts? Utilize technology to keep your sanity
Learn how to successfully improve systems within your volunteer program by utilizing technology and tech-savvy volunteers. Whether you’re just getting started with technology or you’re eager to learn new tricks for your existing program, this workshop has something for everyone. We will provide the tools you need to get you from spinning your wheels, to establishing and maintaining an efficiently run volunteer program. Level 3
Presenters: Alex Ropes, Volunteer Manager, Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County; Emily Shelton, Volunteer Coordinator, Pensacola Humane Society

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Why to say YES to creative volunteer roles
Utilizing volunteers in daily operations is a vital practice for successful organizations. But what about busy people who can only contribute limited time, students/community groups looking for a summer project or virtual volunteers who can only work from home? Instead of letting these opportunities pass you by, this workshop will help you embrace non-traditional volunteers, enabling staff to focus on other lifesaving elements of their work and decrease overall workload. Real examples and tools will be shared with attendees. Level 1
Presenters:  Hilary Hager, Senior Director of Volunteer Engagement, The HSUS; Ollie Davidson, Principal, Old Dog Consulting

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Make new friends and keep the old: Do less recruiting, more retaining
We all need to engage volunteers to achieve our mission, but we often spend more time bringing in new volunteers than keeping the existing ones engaged and happy. This session will explore ways to keep volunteers energized and passionate about the organization’s goals by providing volunteers with intrinsic (rather than extrinsic) rewards and values. It’s all about utilizing volunteers in a variety of ways to increase their sense of significance and worth to the organization. Level 3
Presenters: Emi Griess, Volunteer Coordinator, Helping Hands Humane Society; Michael Salmond, Volunteer Manager, Animal Care Centers of New York; Deb Watkins, Executive Director and Director of Veterinary Services and Animal Welfare, Helping Hands Humane Society

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Regional coalition-building: Creating strong programs together
This workshop will give you the tools to start a regional volunteer managers roundtable in your area. These groups are a lifesaving tool for rescues and shelters, from those that are just getting their volunteer programs going to those with the most robust volunteer programs in place. Using each other as resources for implementing new programs, learning about successes and failures in volunteer management, and working together to help build a better program is a win-win solution. Meeting and discussing everything from volunteer software to onboarding, retaining and recognizing volunteers helps the entire region advance its animal lifesaving efforts. Level 1
Presenters: Hilary Hager, Senior Director of Volunteer Engagement, The HSUS; Cynthia Sbrocco, Volunteer Manager, Fairfax County Animal Shelter

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

Saving the orphans with volunteers
In 2009, San Diego Humane Society launched the first high-volume, 24-hour kitten nursery. You might not have a kitten nursery, but you can start saving newborn, orphaned kittens with help from volunteers! Attendees will learn how to implement a volunteer-based neonate foster program, including all the secrets, tips and protocols essential to success. We will discuss bottle-feeding, socialization, disease prevention and volunteer recruitment and training. Go home empowered to save your most vulnerable, at-risk animals: neonate kittens.
Presenters: Beau Archer, Vice President of Animal Welfare, San Diego Humane Society; Jackie Noble, Nursery Supervisor, San Diego Humane Society

Back to Top


Expanding our reach track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Way beyond tofu: Delicious, mission-consistent food for animal-friendly events
You’re looking for loving homes for the dogs and cats and guinea pigs in your shelter. But how does your desire to save lives and end suffering impact the food you serve at shelter events and fundraisers? Reducing meat consumption and serving animal-friendly fare is mission-consistent for shelters and rescues—and it doesn’t have to be a big fuss. Learn how to easily—and deliciously!—incorporate tasty plant-based foods at your events. We’ll even feed you some samples from the chefs who help at Expo! Level 1
Presenters: Ken Botts, Director of Food and Nutrition, The HSUS; Stephanie Shain, Chief Operating Officer, Humane Rescue Alliance

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Keeping them home: A new and innovative alternative to owner surrender
Would you start a surrender intervention program if it cost your organization no money, required no resources and needed almost no staff time? How about if that program actually raised unrestricted funds for your organization? In 2016, Rehome by Adopt-a-Pet.com and the Petco Foundation was launched as a new and innovative alternative to owner surrenders to animal welfare organizations. In this session, we will give an in-depth overview of how the website is decreasing owner surrenders and helping those who must rehome their pets, and what we've learned through data gathered on the pet owners using the service. Level 1
Presenters: April Harris, Director of Animal Welfare Insights, Adopt-a-Pet.com; kitDavid Meyer, Chief Executive Officer, Adopt-a-Pet.com; Abbie Moore, Chief Product Officer, Adopt-a-Pet.com

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

Can we "de-silo" animal welfare?
Feeling isolated? You're not alone! Despite ever-increasing connectivity, animal welfare organizations tend to operate in silos. You can change that! Come learn about the "nuts and bolts" of how organizations across the country are sharing ideas both internally and externally to more efficiently implement best practices and save more lives. We'll take you through real examples and introduce you to the world of "tele-consulting" and animal welfare discussion forums. Level 1
Presenters:; Dr. Michael Greenberg, Program Director, Target Zero; Dr.Sara Pizano, Consultant, Team Shelter USA
AAVSB credit

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Life in the Doghouse: Two men. One mission. 10,000 Lives.
The movie, Life in the Doghouse tells the inspiring stories of Danny and Ron and how their unique approach to life and dog rescue resulted in over 10,000 dogs being adopted. Join us to dive deep into their story of rescue which will capture hearts and inspire millions to make the right choices when it comes to man’s best friend. Level 1
Panelists: Danny Robertshaw, Danny & Ron’s Rescue; Ron Danta, Danny & Ron’s Rescue. Moderators: Amy Nichols, Vice President of Companion Animals, The Humane Society of the United States; Kimberley Alboum, Shelter Outreach & Policy Engagement Director, Companion Animals, The Humane Society of the United States  

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Keeping it all in the foster family
What do you get when you combine sleepovers, team activity and field trips? Even more lives saved through foster care. A national survey was conducted, and we will use the survey responses in a rousing game of Family Feud. Can you identify the top answers to the most pressing questions about lifesaving? Audience polls and panel interaction will inspire you to identify new ways to recruit more fosters, keep your current fosters engaged and having fun, start new types of foster programs and bring in more donations to your organization. Level 1
Panelists: Kristen Auerbach, Director of Animal Services, Pima County Animal Center; Dr. Sheila D’Arpino, Maddie’s Fund; Kelly Duer, Maddie’s Foster Expansion Coordinator; Lisa Gunter, PhD, Research Associate; Arizona State University. Moderators: Lynne Fridley and Lisa Ward, Co-Directors of Education, Maddie’s Fund

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

What comes after one million?
At an Expo not long ago, we dared to imagine reaching a tipping point for how cats are cared for in our shelters and communities. The Million Cat Challenge was born out of the energy of that gathering. Our goal was to document and support the successful cat-saving strategies springing up across North America. Just five years later, the goal of “the million” has been convincingly exceeded—but we’re not done yet. Millions more cats will count on us in the years to come, and shelters need tools, knowledge and community support to succeed. Find out the best lessons learned from the first million and discover how you can be part of locking in and perfecting the methods that work to help cats, the people who care for them and the communities we serve. Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Kate Hurley, Director, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program and Million Cat Challenge Co-founder; Dr. Julie Levy, Professor of Shelter Medicine, University of Florida Maddie's Shelter Medicine Program, College of Veterinary Medicine and Million Cat Challenge Co-Founder
AAVSB credit

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

Effective resource management for shelter veterinarians
Shelter medicine is quickly becoming a competitive discipline in veterinary medicine, and veterinary professionals working within the animal welfare field often have to do the most good with the least amount of resources. We’ll talk about specific strategies that save lives, and candidly discuss the business side of our passion while sharing examples of effective staff/volunteer training. We’ll also explore the concept of “servant leadership,” which requires emotional intelligence, resilience and outside-the-box thinking—and gets rewards in increased employee engagement and retention. Bring your questions! Level 3
Presenters: Sadie Scott, DVM, Vice President of Veterinary Services, Wayside Waifs; Katie Teutemacher, DVM, Lead Veterinarian, Great Plains SPCA

Back to Top


Field services track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Wind and water: Lessons learned from disaster response
In any large-scale disaster response, there will be challenges and lessons. During this session, we will explore the similarities and differences between Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and the unique challenges we faced in Puerto Rico when assisting people and animals. You’ll leave this workshop with a better understanding of the choices you’ll need to make when presented with challenges such as communication barriers and impacts to infrastructure, as well as how to conduct a large-scale transport after a mass care event. Level 3
Presenters: Kim Alboum, Shelter Outreach and Policy Engagement Director, State Affairs, The HSUS; Sára Varsa, Senior Director, Animal Cruelty, Rescue and Response, The HSUS

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Breaking the sickest link: Conducting effective bestiality investigations
Bestiality or “zoophilia” involves a sexual fixation on animals, which is often linked with the sexual abuse of children. In this course, we will examine the link between bestiality and other criminal behavior, and discuss how to investigate these crimes. Level 1
Presenter: Chris Schindler, Vice President of Field Services, Humane Rescue Alliance

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

Puppy mills: From complaint to court
This course will discuss the unique considerations in dealing with puppy mill cases and other animal cruelty crimes. We will address commercial breeder laws, state cruelty laws and how to be prepared for a seizure of this sort. Level 3
Presenters: Jess Lauginiger, Director of Animal Crimes, The HSUS; David Taylor, Lieutenant, Cabarrus County Sheriff's Ofiice

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

The moving toolbox: Best practices in vehicles and equipment
This workshop will briefly review the key equipment officers should keep in their vehicles and how to maintain and employ these tools properly. Level 2
Presenter: Chris Schindler, Vice President of Field Services, Humane Rescue Alliance

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Asking the right questions: Conducting interviews and interrogations
Are your officers equipped with the critical interview training they need during investigations? Join us for this seminar, where you’ll learn techniques (developed by veteran law enforcement officers) for detecting deception during investigations as well as how to handle those tricky interviews during which the victim, a witness or a suspect may not be forthcoming with information. Level 2
Presenter: Steve MacKinnon, Chief of Humane Law Enforcement, San Diego Humane Society

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Improving law enforcement encounters with dogs
This workshop will address how police/dog encounters impact enforcement agencies and why they should care. We will review contributing factors to negative encounters and have a brief discussion of canine body language and the most appropriate way to approach unknown dogs. The conversation will focus on preparedness and relationship-building. Level 1
Presenters: Janette Reever, Senior Manager Animal Crimes, The HSUS; John Thompson, Deputy Executive Director, National Sheriffs’ Association

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

Effective courtroom testimony
Animal abuse cases present unique challenges for law enforcement and prosecutors, both in the field and in the courtroom. This course will discuss tactics for preparing to testify about animal cruelty crimes. Level 2
Presenter: Matt Barnett, Chief of Police, Wiggins, Mississippi

Back to Top


Fundraising and marketing track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Beyond bad guys: Maximizing your fundraising efforts with positive messaging
Our role of saving mistreated, abandoned and homeless animals has defined the animal welfare field for decades, and our fundraising and promotional efforts are often built on that identity. But a shift is happening, and there’s value in breaking the mold with messaging that gets beyond the victim/abuser/hero dynamic. Having a greater focus on pet owner support programming celebrates the human-animal connection and brings people together. In this workshop, learn to evolve your marketing and development strategy to differentiate your organization, diversify your donor base and build meaningful relationships with your entire community. Level 3
Presenters: Natalie Corwin, President and CEO, Pet Community Center; Aldwin Roman, Director of Anti-Cruelty and Outreach, Charleston Animal Society; Jason Schipkowski, Mentorship and Training Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

The power of stories: Working with the media to achieve your mission
Do you wonder why some shelters' and rescue groups' stories get media coverage, while yours remain untold? In this session, the former animal welfare editor for The Huffington Post will explain what makes for stories the media wants to cover, stories that will help you get more attention and support for your work. Level 1
Presenter: Arin Greenwood, Animal Writer

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

Serve where you save: Community-driven programming that saves lives
In early 2017, Carver Scott Humane Society, a foster-based rescue in Minneapolis, developed a four-pillar, innovative rescue model. The model, based on their Serve Where You Save concept, is designed to prevent animals from entering the shelter or impound system in the first place. In less than two years, they have transformed their intakes, maximized community partnerships, increased capacity and prevented surrender in nearly 80 percent of cases. Level 3
Presenters: Megan Greene, Animal Programs Manager, Carver Scott Humane Society; Kelly Simer, Cat Adoption Center Manager, Carver Scott Humane Society; Mandi Wyman, Executive Director, Carver Scott Humane Society

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Fundraising for your municipal shelter? YES!
For most municipal shelters, fundraising can be a dirty word. It is sometimes perceived as impossible, unethical or even illegal—none of which are true! Telling the stories of the pets in your shelters in unique ways can help take you to the next level and raise critical funds to save lives. By raising millions of dollars from private supporters, KC Pet Project in Kansas City, Missouri has proven that donors can help municipal shelters close the gap between lifesaving dreams and reality. Level 3
Presenter: Tori Fugate, Director of Marketing and Communications, KC Pet Project

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Marketing for dummies (on a tight budget)
No matter how large (or small, or nonexistent) your budget, marketing your pets and programs is essential to the success of your organization. Thankfully, there are marketing tools and tactics for rescue groups of all shapes and sizes. Learn how to increase your donor/stakeholder base, boost adoption rates and improve your position within the community. Remember, just because you're spending money that isn’t directly tied to your animals does not mean it's money wasted! Level 3
Presenter: Brittany Mazzurco Muscato, Digital Marketing Specialist, Humane Society of Broward County

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Crafting your story: Honest, simple and powerful
Stories have the power to shape behavior, drive awareness, and inform future decisions. Regardless of the size, budget or mission of your organization, its stories are what establish and maintain connections within the community and across diverse stakeholders. Through a series of conversation-starters, exercises and brainstorming sessions, this workshop will give attendees the keys to building not only a story, but a strategy, for influencing how they are seen and supported by their communities. Level 3
Presenters: Jessica Dolce, MS, CCFE, Consultant; Caitlin Quinn, Director of Operations, HeARTs Speak, Inc.

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

Grant writing 101
Get your organization's piece of the pie! This workshop will show you how to find grants, navigate the application process and create a proposal that will wow grant makers. Learn the tools and tricks that will streamline the search and application process and help you secure grant funding. Level 3
Presenters: Kimberlee Dinn, Senior Director of Institutional Giving and Stewardship, The HSUS

Back to Top


Future of sheltering track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Up your ante—Leading-edge technologies to raise your game
Technology—is it a wild card in your organization? It’s time for no-limit play. We’ve stacked the deck with leading-edge experts to share innovative solutions you can implement today to increase your odds of saving animals’ lives. Are you all in? Level 1
Presenters: Sheila D’Arpino, Director of Research, Maddie’s Fund; Dr. Michael Greenberg, Program Director, Target Zero; Greg Lucas, President, ShelterLuv; David Meyer, CEO, Adopt-a-Pet.com; Lars Rabbe, CIO, Maddie’s Fund

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Sprinkling cats and dogs: Our progress in lowering euthanasia numbers—and what it means for our industry’s future
“It’s raining cats and dogs.” For years, the animal welfare community has used this metaphor to describe the seemingly never-ending flow of dogs and cats into our nation’s shelters. However, in recent years, we’ve made significant progress in lowering euthanasia rates. There are even many shelters searching outside their communities for adoptable animals to meet local demand. This workshop will look at the decline in euthanasia rates; the programs, policies and cultural shifts that brought it about; and the challenges for shelters that continue to have high euthanasia rates. We will also look at the challenges facing the shelter of the future in helping the “hard cases,” educating communities and meeting the demand for companion animals. Level 4
Presenters: Lisa Dennison, Executive Director, New Hampshire SPCA; Josh Fisher, MHA, Director, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, Animal Care and Control Division; Holly Hazard, Senior Vice President of Programs and Innovations, The HSUS; Lisa LaFontaine, President and CEO, Humane Rescue Alliance

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

Design strategies for shelter renovations: Retrofitting for the future
Most animal welfare organizations find themselves facing several building renovations over their shelter’s lifetime, especially as the field progresses and new projects and programs—and their associated space needs—are embraced. This informative workshop will provide your team with valuable tools to tackle the most common and necessary shelter renovation projects. We will cover HVAC upgrades, flooring projects, noise abatement and animal housing improvements. No matter what your budget, you can make changes to help your shelter function more efficiently and achieve its mission. Level 3
Presenter: Heather E. Lewis, AIA, NCARB, Principal, Animal Arts

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Don’t let the tail wag the dog: Bringing your supporters along in times of change
As organizations see shifts in animal populations in and outside their communities, programs and projects must shift to address those changing needs. But donor dollars don’t automatically follow as we move in new directions. Old faithful fundraising messages may no longer be what is needed for an organization focusing more on the needs of “difficult” animals, surrender prevention, animals in poverty, trap/neuter/return, community engagement or public policy. How do we share our changing vision and activities with donors and motivate them to fund programs that may not have a direct link to the cute adoptable dog in need? How can we shift our business models to meet the needs of animals? This class will explore how to engage donors with changing organizations and strategies. Level 3
Presenters: Karen Kraus, Executive Director, Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon; Anne Reed, President and CEO, Wisconsin Humane Society

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Transporting to the future
As our field evolves, organizations that have reached a tipping point in managing intake and reducing euthanasia in their own regions need to examine what still needs to be done elsewhere, and to take action collectively to provide solutions. The more we organize available capacity and work together, the greater the impact and the stronger the safety net for animals. Learn how St. Hubert’s animal relocation program brings together more than 60 organizations to make efficient use of limited resources and lend a hand to source communities, providing funding for public spay/neuter, trainings, equipment and resources. In this session, we will share the tools, methods and outcomes of this model and the opportunities for strengthening the animal welfare community. Whether addressing the animal population disparity between communities or responding to natural disasters, a hub and spoke relocation model can powerfully serve animals and serve as a catalyst for change. Level 1
Presenter: Heather Cammisa-Davenport, CAWA, CEO/President, St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Making the right connections: Best practices in collaboration
When multiple organizations work separately and compete in a community, are we doing our utmost to serve the animals? This workshop covers a variety of collaborative approaches, including the pros and cons of mergers; how to get buy-in from boards of directors; pitfalls to avoid; topic-based partnerships and collaborations that allow you to maximize impact; and the benefits and costs of participating in state or regional federations and coalitions. Our changing field motivates us to work smarter, not harder—and that may mean looking outside of our own organizations. Level 1
Presenters: Katie Lisnik, Director, Companion Animal Public Policy, The HSUS; Nate Meador, President and CEO, Great Plains SPCA; Stephanie Shain, Chief Operating Officer, Humane Rescue Alliance

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

A practical guide to rehoming “difficult to place" animals
Something fantastic is happening in animal welfare right now—many regions in the U.S. are seeing fewer animals entering their systems. Whether you are dealing with a large or small number of surrendered animals, you are no doubt trying to figure out a way to find homes for the more “difficult to place” animals in your shelter. These include animals with medical issues, behavior issues and geriatric animals. Sometimes, simply having too many of one type of animal can make rehoming a challenge. This workshop will focus on the practical application of successfully rehoming these animals. We will also explore the philosophical approach to placing these animals and even debate the question, “Should we be placing all of these animals?” Level 3
Presenters: Carmine DiCenso, Executive Director, Dakin Humane Society; Mike Keiley, Director of Adoption Centers and Programs, Massachusetts SPCA

Back to Top


Global animal issues track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

The foundation to protecting animals: legislation
The most effective way to protect animals is to establish strong animal welfare legislation. A number of countries around the world don’t even have a basic animal welfare law. Others may have a law, but little enforcement. Learn about creating the language for effective legislation, strengthening laws that may already be in place and examples of the best legislation out there.
Presenter: Andrew Lurie, Senior Attorney, International Law & Trade, HSI

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Lobbying around the world
A strong lobbying effort can be make or break the process of introducing and passing important animal welfare legislation. Listen to first-hand accounts of successful lobbying campaigns in Mexico and the Philippines, and the strategies used to achieve these milestones.
Presenters: Anton Aguilar, Director, HSI; Heidi Marquez, Program Director, Animal Kingdom Foundation

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

The wonderful dog: Shifting global perceptions on “man’s best friends”
In many parts of the world, dogs are mistreated or disliked. Highlighting the amazing traits dogs have and the companionship they offer can often be all that is needed to change perspectives. Learn about an HSI campaign that allows rescued dogs to act as ambassadors for saving more of them. And, how dogs can touch young people and send a message of compassion like no other.
Presenters: Debra Duel, Director of Humane Education, Humane Rescue Alliance; Adam Parascandola, Director, HSI Animal Protection and Crisis Response

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Starting from zero: From grass-roots to leveraging international support and solidarity
Through volunteerism and networking, the Palestinian Animal League (PAL) was able to transition from a grassroots initiative to a provider of intuitional programming leveraging international support and solidarity. Come and learn of PAL’s experience in starting from zero (launching a new NGO, building a volunteer base, building international solidarity, community outreach and government involvement, transitioning into institutional programming, etc.), and leave inspired in furthering your own efforts!
Presenter: Mai Farsakh, Co-founder, Palestinian Animal League (PAL)

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Staying focused to your mission
Your mission statement is an articulation of WHY your organization exists, not what you do. By keeping your mission in the front of your mind, and at the heart of your daily activities, you can avoid the distractions and dilution of efforts that can kill any organization. Your mission statement should be your North Star—your point of reference for all time. This presentation will explore how to create an effective mission statement, then how to utilize this statement for maximum impact.
Presenters: Edward Clark, President, Wildlife Center of Virginia

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

No Global animal issues workshop is scheduled. Please feel free to attend any of the other Expo workshops.

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

No Global animal issues workshop is scheduled. Please feel free to attend any of the other Expo workshops.

Back to Top


Leadership track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Veterans and pets, perfect together: engaging veterans with the human-animal bond
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Humane Society of the United States have joined forces to support veterans and promote the human-animal bond, aiming to increase pet-keeping by veterans and encourage veterans' volunteerism with animal welfare groups. Workshop participants will learn about existing programs to facilitate their own outreach and partnership initiatives with local VA hospitals or clinics. The goals of the partnership are to promote veterans' volunteerism at local shelters, provide opportunities for rescues and shelters to introduce animal-assisted activities within VAs, and improve the health and well-being of veterans through animal fostering and adoption. Level 1
Presenters: Presenters: Jamie D. Davis, Ph.D.,Health System Administrator, VA Office of Community Engagement; John LaRoe, President, Mo-Kan Pet Partners, Volunteer, Kansas City VA Medical Center; Heather Luper, LCSW-C, Social Work Program Coordinator, VA Office of Community Engagement; Amy Nichols, Vice President Companion Animals, The HSUS; Heidi K. Ortmeyer, Ph.D., Research Physiologist, VA Maryland Health Care System

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Balancing act: Leading in an XY world
Carrying forward the conversation from last year’s popular session exploring gender issues in animal welfare leadership, we will dive into some of the biggest challenges that remain top-of-mind for animal welfare leaders (such as work/life balance and confidence). We’ll also tackle the topic of harassment and how organizations can ensure a safe and respectful environment for all. The session will be highly interactive and we hope it’ll bring up lively and provocative discussions, allowing us to explore the most pressing issues challenging our field. We want to hear perspectives from across the gender spectrum—come share yours! Level 3
Presenter: Laura Maloney, Principal, Adisa; Betsy McFarland, Principal, Adisa

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

What would Winnie the Pooh do? “Beary” good people skills to resolve conflicts with the most difficult animal
In today’s raucous political climate in which civility seems out of style, thinking about a strategy of kindness may seem old-fashioned. But humble, wise Winnie the Pooh was on to something. This workshop will explore how consideration and empathy are not only good, but smart, making for savvy work practices that allow you to get the most out of your staff and volunteers, your irritating boss or demanding board member, and other people with different points of view. The next time your staff forgets to give you a message, your board chair insists on three fundraisers in June, or a notorious online troll demands to debate you, you may just ask yourself, “What would Pooh do?” Level 1
Presenters: Holly Hazard, Senior Vice President of Programs and Innovations, The HSUS; Christie Keith, Communications Consultant, Maddie’s Fund; Lee Ann Shenefiel, Interim Chief Animal Services Officer, Austin Animal Center

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

There’s no “I” in team: Why management mentorship matters
Some say leaders are born; others say they are made. Whether you're new to management or plan to be a leader for tomorrow, mentorship will bolster your ability to lead a team or an organization. With limited time, insufficient resources, and fire after fire distracting your focus, who can you count on to assist in your professional development? Learn the elements necessary for leadership in this field and how to attain guidance and insight from veterans who have survived career pitfalls and celebrated amazing accomplishments. Hear tips from those working in leadership throughout the animal care industry and what advice they have for the leaders of tomorrow. Attendees will learn how to identify, approach and secure a mentor in animal welfare and how to make the relationship mutually beneficial. Level 3
Presenter: Jim Tedford, President and Chief Executive Officer, Society of Animal Welfare Administrators

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Progressive programming to cure compassion fatigue
Given our exhausting emotional work (that's also rewarding and inspiring), many organizations spend precious resources addressing burnout and compassion fatigue. But what if the challenge isn't the work itself, but how we do that work? We'll explore two initiatives, intake prevention and capacity for care—and their impact not just on live release rates, but on the people doing the work. These initiatives have the potential to reduce stressful situations and shift the focus from what we can't control, to what we can. Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Kate Hurley, Director, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program and Million Cat Challenge Co-Founder; Cynthia Karsten, DVM, DABVP (shelter medicine practice), Outreach Veterinarian, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program
AAVSB credit

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Finding the signal in the noise: Using the right data to save more lives
Saving more lives requires strategic thinking and planning. But how do you sift through the sea of data available in order to find and use the information that matters? In this session, attendees will learn about the gap analysis process that informs Best Friends' work in Los Angeles and all over the country. You'll learn how to find useful statistics and resources, identify gaps in lifesaving and develop a strategic plan for your community. Level 3
Presenters: Marc Peralta, Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Regional Director, Best Friends Animal Society; Brent Toellner, Co-founder and Board President, KC Pet Project

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

Give ‘em a ride: Best practices for transport of companion animals
The Society of Animal Welfare Administrators put together a comprehensive best practices document outlining the optimum ways to design and manage a transport program from the standpoint of both source organizations and destination shelters. In this session, you’ll learn best practice guidelines from two of the experts who helped shape them. You will be challenged to make changes to benefit your extremely precious “cargo” as the animals make their journeys to long, happy lives. Level 1
Presenters: Brad Shear, Executive Director, Potter League for Animals; Jim Tedford, President and Chief Executive Officer, Society of Animal Welfare Administrators

Back to Top


Reaching underserved communities track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Tools for starting a community outreach program
Want to incorporate pet owner support work into your mission? Learn the first steps of completing a community assessment and creating a budget, strategies for setting goals and collecting data, techniques for mapping results and tips for conducting door to door outreach. This session will cover everything you need to know to get out in the community and start delivering services. Level 2
Presenters: Nadia Novik, Director of Shelter Outreach, Animal Shelter of the Wood River Valley; Rachel Thompson, Mentorship and Training Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Seeing past the horizon: What’s next in companion animal welfare?
Companion animal welfare is so much more than sheltering and adoptions. Hear from shelter leaders on how the field is changing and what you should be thinking about to take your organization into the future. From generating new revenue streams to tailoring services based on community needs, you will leave this workshop excited about and prepared for the ever-changing landscape. Level 1
Presenters: Sheryl Blancato, Executive Director, Second Chance Animal Shelter; Aimee Christian, Vice President of Community Medicine, ASPCA; Jill Kline, Vice President of Community Impact Programs, Wisconsin Humane Society

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

That awkward moment: Dealing with unexpected situations in community outreach
If your organization has a community outreach program, you have inevitably run into special circumstances, such as a suspected hoarding situation. And if you are thinking about starting pet owner support work, you probably wonder how you’ll handle difficult scenarios, like encountering a pet with severe mange. In this workshop, we will talk in-depth about how to handle the most complex situations you might face when implementing a community support program and give you tools to effectively address these challenges. Level 1
Presenters: Danny Burke, Senior Program Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS; Rhonda Norris, Shelter Operations Manager, PAAS Vinita; Annie Pruitt, Director, Charm City Companions

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Hard choices: Delivering compassionate community-focused medicine
Communication and customer service are essential to providing veterinary care and medical services. In underserved communities, where access and resources are limited and decisions must be made based on practical considerations, conversations with pet owners become more nuanced. In this workshop, customer service and medical experts will discuss techniques for approaching these conversations and ways to assist clients in making informed decisions about their pets’ health. Level 1
Presenters: Dr. Carolyn Brown, Senior Medical Director of Community Medicine, ASPCA; Jocelyn Kessler, Senior Director of Operations Community Medicine, ASPCA
AAVSB credit

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Why access to animal care resources is a social justice issue
Pet ownership crosses all geographic, racial and socio-economic boundaries, but access to information and services does not. Institutional bias and systemic inequality have impacted pets in ways you may not realize. Discover what this could mean in your community and how it should inform your organization’s programming. Level 1
Presenters: Amanda Arrington, Director, Pets for Life, The HSUS; Lori Hensley, Director of Operations, Beyond Fences

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Breaking boundaries: Municipal shelters and community outreach
Do you think that being an open admission shelter or municipal agency prevents your organization from implementing pet owner support programs? There’s good news! Intake prevention, return-to-owners, reallocation of positions and so much more is possible beyond your (and the public's) expectations. You can save animals’ lives, enrich your relationship with the community and be a comprehensive resource for people and pets. Level 4
Presenters: Chris Fitzgerald, Director, Rochester Animal Services; Ken Foster, Community Pets Program Coordinator, Animal Care Centers of NYC; Ashley Mutch, Mentorship and Training Manager, Pets for Life, The HSUS

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

What you don’t know might help you: Broaden your research horizons
There is a wealth of information on the benefits pets bring to people, the human-animal bond and on how pet owner support programming deepens community impact. Measurements like shelter intake are not enough to inform the creation of effective community-based programming or show the overall impact of your organization’s work. In this session, industry experts will share exciting studies and research on social science-informed animal welfare to expand your thinking on how your work is structured and assist you in creating a much more inclusive and comprehensive narrative. Level 4
Presenters: Kevin Morris, Associate Research Professor, University of Denver Institute for Human-Animal Connection; Dr. Brittany Watson, Director of Shelter Medicine and Community Engagement, University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Saving cats track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Targeted TNR: It's all about impact
TNR works—if it's done right! To quickly reduce the number of community cats, decrease nuisance behavior and complaints, and improve public health, you have to target your efforts. Success comes from high sterilization rates within colonies and by concentrating trappers, surgeries and outreach in high-need areas. Learn why feral cat population dynamics make targeting so important and how to go about selecting target areas, estimating cat numbers, performing trapping, measuring results and more. Level 1
Presenter: Bryan Kortis, National Programs Director, Neighborhood Cats

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Creating a successful 'working cat' program
Often considered unadoptable and overlooked for rescue, feral and fractious cats can be saved through a progressive working cat placement program and given a new lease on life as employed cats, hard at work at rodent and pest control. Learn how to start a working cat program from scratch, including selecting cats appropriate for alternative placement in barn, warehouse, or retail homes; finding quality adopters; implementing proper relocation procedures; and ensuring safe handling and sheltering practices. Level 3
Presenter: Monica Frenden, Cat Program Manager, Austin Pets Alive

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

What can a catio do for you?
Chances are, you’ve seen fun photos of catios (cat patios) and creative enclosures online. As an organization that protects cats, how can you capitalize on this exciting trend? What other local partners may also be interested in the topic? This class will focus on how catios have been used in Portland, Oregon, to build a collaborative partnership between cat and wildlife groups and keep more cats safe in the community. Learn how to launch a catio tour to build support and about other initiatives in this innovative collaboration. Level 3
Presenters: Karen Kraus, Executive Director, Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon; Bob Sallinger, Conservation Director, The Audubon Society of Portland

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Balancing customer care with capacity for care: Mastering the art of "Yes, and ..."
We never want to say “no” to an animal or community member in need, but how do we balance that with our capacity to care for the animals already in the shelter? In this lively and participatory workshop, leaders in the field will share practical, service-oriented ways to turn, “No, we can’t take this cat today” into “Yes, we will help you, and here are some options.” Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Kate Hurley, Director, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program and Million Cat Challenge Co-Founder; Dr. Julie Levy, Professor of Shelter Medicine, University of Florida Maddie's Shelter Medicine Program, College of Veterinary Medicine and Million Cat Challenge Co-Founder
AAVSB credit

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

TNR case studies: Using real life examples to find key insights and best practices
What would you think about a large open-admission shelter that went from a 48-percent live release rate for cats to a rate of 92 percent in only a few years? What about a working waterfront that is now cat-free? Or how about one of the largest cities in the world seeing substantial reductions in colonies all over the map? Sound like a dream? Well, it is reality! Join us to hear in-depth case studies of three very different communities and how they made great strides for cats, as well as key takeaways so you can replicate this work in your own location. Level 4
Presenters: Bryan Kortis, National Programs Director, Neighborhood Cats; Dan Spehar, Co-founder, Together Initiative for Ohio’s Community Cats and Senior District Leader Volunteer, The HSUS; Desiree Triste-Aragon, Community Cat Program Manager, Best Friends Animal Society; Peter Wolf, Cat Initiatives Analyst, Best Friends Animal Society

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Kitten kindergarten: Mission-driven, kitten-approved
Studies have shown that puppies who attend training and socialization classes are less likely to be surrendered to shelters later in life. But what about cats? Kittens also have a critical socialization period—an optimal time to learn new skills, have positive new experiences and become well-socialized. Learn how to develop a successful “kitten kindergarten” program to enhance the human-animal bond, keep cats in homes, maintain positive adopter relations and raise confident, well-trained cats. Level 3
Presenters: Ariel Stephens, Training Programs Manager, San Francisco SPCA; Sarah Welsh, Feline Behavior Associate, San Francisco SPCA

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

Crossing the challenge line: Innovation and mojo-based thinking to save more lives
Cat expert Jackson Galaxy has built his cat philosophy around uncovering and cultivating a cat’s “mojo,” or innate confidence. A core element of his process is the concept of The Challenge Line; that line in the sand for cats where, on one side is comfort and the other is challenge. Becoming the best and biggest version of oneself depends on consistently pushing that boundary.

In this workshop, Jackson will start with concrete methods to bring out the best in the cats in your care—from environmental enrichment to the stability of building the “Three R’s (Routine, Ritual & Rhythm).” Finally, he will guide you, as caretakers of individual cats and architects of programs for them, to step up to your challenge line and abandon safe thinking in favor of a better life for your cats and a new way to define, celebrate, and, yes, market cats to staff, volunteers, adopters and donors. Level 3
Presenters: Jackson Galaxy, Founder, Jackson Galaxy Enterprises

Back to Top


Shelter medicine track

Tuesday, May 15
9:45am - 11:15am

Capacity for care: Yes we can! (Part 1 of 2)
Achieving capacity for care can be both a shelter's biggest goal and its greatest fear. There are huge benefits, but at first the risks and challenges of getting to your shelter’s ideal capacity can seem overwhelming. Learn the basics about capacity for care and hear what shelters who have achieved their best balance share about the motivations that inspired them to change, the challenges they faced on the way and the accomplishments that keep them moving forward. Level 1
Presenters: Dr. Allison Clarke, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Shelter Veterinarian, Arizona Animal Welfare League; Alexandre Ellis, DVM, University of Wisconsin Maddie's Shelter Medicine Resident?br> AAVSB credit

Tuesday, May 15
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Capacity for care: Yes we can! (Part 2 of 2)
Achieving capacity for care can be both a shelter's biggest goal and its greatest fear. There are huge benefits, but at first the risks and challenges of getting to your shelter’s ideal capacity can seem overwhelming. In this session, you will learn how Edmonton Humane Society and San Francisco SPCA overcame new challenges in sustaining their progress toward maintaining their capacity for care. Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Elizabeth Roberts, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Eslinger Shelter Medicine Fellow and Director of Shelter Medicine, San Francisco SPCA; Dr. Anthea Smith, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Head Shelter Veterinarian, Edmonton Humane Society
AAVSB credit

Tuesday, May 15
4:00pm - 5:30pm

Why outbreaks happen: Shelter medicine fundamentals to prevent disease
The University of Wisconsin Shelter Medicine team works with shelters all over the country (and beyond), providing assistance during outbreaks of infectious disease. Learn the fundamental steps every shelter should take to avoid an outbreak. Answers to frequently asked questions about topics such as vaccination, sanitation and housing will be discussed. In addition, you will find out which practices are not as helpful as they may seem. Level 1
Presenters: Dr. Aleisha Swartz, Outreach Veterinarian, University of Wisconsin Shelter Medicine Program; Dr. Deb Yannessa, University of Wisconsin/Dane County Humane Society Maddie's Shelter Medicine Intern
AAVSB credit

Wednesday, May 16
10:15am - 11:45am

Become a wizard of wellness, Find the magic to minimizing disease outbreak
What are the latest news and developments in shelter medicine? How do you prepare for outbreaks in your shelter or community? You will all become wizards of wellness through this engaging and hands-on session about how to prepare for and what to do when faced with an unexpected disease outbreak. Come to this session for hands-on participation in creating a plan for your community. Level 1
Panelists: Cynda Crawford, Maddie’s Clinical Assistant Professor of Shelter Medicine, Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program, University of Florida; Lena DeTar, DMV, DACVPM, DAVBP-SMP, Maddie's Shelter Medicine Program at Cornell University; Dr. Michael Greenberg, Program Director, Target Zero. Moderator: Laurie Peek, DVM, Executive Leadership Team, Maddie’s Fund
AAVSB credit

Wednesday, May 16
2:15pm - 3:45pm

Dog relocation: Taking the express train
Relocating dogs from overpopulated shelters to underpopulated shelters sure sounds like a win-win for everyone involved—and it is! By examining multiple medical and behavioral parameters of relocated dogs, we have learned how to create a safe and efficient method for getting transferred dogs in the door, and then speeding them out to their new homes. Learn how you can start a relocation program at your shelter. Level 3
Presenters: Sarah Byerley, Animal Operations Manager, Dane County Humane Society; Rebecca Stuntebeck, DVM, University of Wisconsin Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Resident; Erica Schumacher, DVM, Chief Shelter Veterinarian, Dane County Humane Society; Dr. Olivia Swailes, University of Wisconsin/Dane County Humane Society Maddie's Shelter Medicine Intern
AAVSB credit

Thursday, May 17
9:00am - 10:30am

Finding an umbrella when it’s raining cats and dogs
Do you ever feel like you are caught in a downpour of pets? The good news is it doesn’t have to be that way. Making a positive impact within a shelter often means reaching beyond your organization’s walls and into the community. Case studies from Flathead County Animal Shelter and Huntsville Animal Services will detail the agencies’ efforts to improve shelter health by working with the community. Level 3
Presenters: Dr. Meg Gordon, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Shelter Veterinarian, Flathead County Humane Society; Dr. Karen Sheppard, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Director, Huntsville Animal Services
AAVSB credit

Thursday, May 17
11:00am - 12:30pm

Road construction: Building and evaluating pathways to save lives
Identifying the needs of animals as they enter shelters and determining their best path is crucial to maximizing lifesaving capacity. All pathways begin at intake, but some paths may be smoother than others. We will cover the basics of pathway planning and share case studies from Greenhill Humane Society and ACCT Philly that work through some of the bumps in the road and ways to smooth over some of the potholes. Level 1
Presenters: Brenda Dines, DVM, University of Wisconsin Maddie's Shelter Medicine Resident; Dr. Melissa Resnick, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Shelter Veterinarian, Animal Care and Control Team of Philadelphia; Dr. Gail Schroder, University of Wisconsin/UC Davis Maddie's Shelter Medicine Fellow and Director of Shelter Medicine, Greenhill Humane Society
AAVSB credit

Back to Top


Continuing Education

All workshops labeled with "AAVSB credit" have been approved for 1.5 hours of continuing education credits in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB RACE approval. Call HSVMA at (530) 759-8106 or email info@hsvma.org for further information.

2018 Registration Sponsor