Therapy Volunteer of the Month
Educational Background / Occupation:
- BSN from NIU
- MS in Medical-Surgical Nursing from U of I
- 20 years experience as registered nurse in several major medical centers
- Quality Management Coordinator for Nursing Service at Hines VA Hospital for 14 years
- Since 1998, volunteer coordinator of the Pets for Vets / PAWSitive Therapy Troupe animal-assisted therapy program.
Dog-related experience / credentials:
- Certified Pet Dog Trainer (CPDT)
- Graduate of the San Francisco Academy for Dog Trainers in Behavioral Counseling
- Graduate of the Robert Bailey Operant Conditioning Workshop
- Owner and President of PAWSitive Performance Dog Training, Inc.
- American Kennel Club and APDT Rally judge
- Pet Partners Instructor and Team Evaluator.
- Finished 87 titles on 3 dogs, including championships in obedience and agility from the AKC. Competition areas include agility, flyball, obedience, Rally, and freestyle.
- Designed course content and taught classes in agility, obedience, Rally, flyball and therapy dog training since 2001
Involvement in Animal-Assisted Therapy:
Began visiting with her first Sheltie in 1988. Asked to take over as coordinator of the Pets for Vets program at Hines VA when she retired from nursing at Hines. She always wanted to share the healing power of animals with people who need it most.