Meet Our Team
Lina graduated with a BSc from University of Southampton and holds the following qualifications: Karen Pryor Academy (KPA) Graduate, Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed (CPDT – KA), Fear Free Certified Professional, Susan Friedman’s Living and Learning with Animals certificant, and AKC CGC Evaluator.
Raised in Sweden, Lina participated in the Swedish Working Dog Club with her family’s dogs, before joining their volunteer force, mentoring under trainers in 1994 and leading group classes by 1996. She then continued to be an active learner and part of various dog training groups in Denmark and England.
When Lina arrived in the USA, she volunteered as a trainer for the Miami Obedience Club, became an externship Mentor for Animal Behavior College, and started her 15 year journey with a National pet and services retailer. In her role there, Lina supported nearly 3,000 dog trainers nationwide by overseeing and creating the internal certification program for dog trainers, as well as the in-store dog training program offered to pet parents and their dogs. Internal training programs included creating a Mentor University, an In-Home Dog Training Program, and a Selling Skills program that won a Hermes Creative Award.
Lina recently started her own Consulting and Training Company – HuMa LLC, in San Antonio, Texas, with a focus on educating pet parents and families of newly added puppies and dogs in the process of setting up successful, enriching, and forever homes. She thrives when pursuing education and certifications in training and behavior consulting.
Lina enjoys working with her two adopted dogs and pet mice. She is also learning how to best create an enriching environment and positive husbandry training for exotic animals such as Zebras, Buffalo, Camels, and Emus. Lina is also discovering the rewarding progress of being a Foster Parent for local Animal Welfare Organizations.
Outside of working with animals, she enjoys raising her two daughters, working on her physical and nutritional wellbeing, and exploring the world.
Melinda has worked with various state and local agencies implementing Information Systems for over 18 years. She is currently studying with Catch Canine Training Academy, is the Director of Volunteer and Foster Engagement with Mr. Bones & Co., an animal welfare non-profit and is a volunteer with the HSUS. Melinda runs a small business part-time offering fine stationery for special events in which she offers calligraphy, letterpress and graphic design services. She is a Supporting Member of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC). She is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP). Melinda currently resides on Long Island with her partner David and their two beloved dogs Shea and Citi.
Kelly is the owner of Keebler Canine Training in Charlotte, North Carolina specializing in fear, reactivity, and aggression-based behaviors. She is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC) with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC), a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner (KPA CTP), a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT) with the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT), and the Chair of Education for the IAABC. She started training in 2011 in Pennsylvania and has worked in multiple training programs at dog daycares in California and North Carolina.
When she’s not reviewing videos and seeing clients, Kelly enjoys goaltending in ice hockey and going on adventures with her border collie, Pluto!
Erin is a CPDT-KA, ADT-IAABC, CDBC, is an Accredited Dog Behaviour Consultant with Companion Animals New Zealand and has a MSc in Anthrozoology. She is currently a PhD candidate in Animal Studies at the University of Canterbury with a primary research focus on the human-dog connection, behaviour of companion dogs, and society. Erin runs Merit Dog Project, an educational/research-based organization also offering behaviour consultations for dogs and their humans, specializing in fearful and anxious dogs. Erin currently lives in Christchurch New Zealand with her husband Mike and dog Juno.
Alison Stannard Is a freelance designer who’s been working with the IAABC Foundation and the IAABC for nearly 15 years.
Ben Chambers is a grant writer and fundraising consultant based in St. Louis, MO who oversees foundation and corporate grants for the IAABC Foundation. He has nearly a decade of experience in the nonprofit sector, with experience in public advocacy, public media, mental health, and a variety of other causes. Ben is an avid animal lover who has a Golden Retriever named Rosie and an Orange Tabby named Meeko. He loves spending time with his wife, Ashley, and his two sons, Elliot and Carson.
Dr. Denise Johnson is a general practitioner of veterinary medicine with a special interest in behavior, particularly feline behavioral wellness. She spends her free time working on Committed to Claws, an education project that aims to reduce declawing by providing cat owners and pet professionals with humane scratching solutions. Dr. Johnson also serves as a handling lab facilitator for the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, with qualifications including Elite Fear Free Certification and Low Stress Handling Silver Certification.
Joan Forry, Ph.D., is a certified dog trainer (CPDT-KA) and owner of The Dog Abides, LLC in Chester Springs, Pennsylvania.
Joan holds a Ph.D. in philosophy (2008) with a specialization in applied ethics from Temple University. Prior to working as a dog trainer, Joan was a philosophy professor and taught applied ethics courses, including animal ethics. She held academic appointments at Vanderbilt University, Linfield College, and the University of Southern California. She is a graduate of the Academy for Dog Trainers, and certified Fear Free Professional.
When she’s not training dogs in her community, she sometimes trains her own six dogs. She enjoys competing with Gustavo, her old, cranky chihuahua mix in Rally Obedience. She also enjoys working on her ongoing photography project, Miles on Hydrants.
Tiro Miller Ph.D SBA is the managing editor of the IAABC journal, lead author of the monthly newsletter, and Chair of advertising and promotions.
He lives in San Francisco with his partner and a rather demanding chihuahua, where he volunteers at the SFSPCA and writes in his spare time.
His favorite thing about working for IAABC is the chance to bring together people with unique and interesting perspectives on animal behavior.
Dae Grodin is the owner and trainer of Dog-Abilities, a professional dog training business, servicing the Northern KY and Cincinnati areas since 2011. She offers private training, behavior consults, group classes, 4H Dog Club classes, and board and trains. Dae has a BA in psychology from the University of Kentucky, is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA), a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner (KPA CTP), and FitPAWS Master Trainer (FP-MT). She also belongs to various dog training organizations, including IAABC and APDT. She was awarded the APDT Member of the year in 2015.
Currently, Dae is the Social Media Director for IAABC, running their Instagram accounts @iaabcfoundation, @iaabcbehavior, and @iaabcpets.
Dae lives with 4 dogs—a Husky/German Shepherd Dog mix, a Parson Russell Terrier, a Border Terrier, a Danish Swedish Farmdog, a house bunny, and a foster Pitbull. Dae’s dogs actively work in search and rescue, therapy dog and crisis response work, nose work, barn hunt, agility, fast cat/lure coursing, dock diving, and trick training. When she is not working with dogs, she enjoys hiking and photography.
Beth (she/her/hers) has been an animal enthusiast her whole life, but started making it into a professional career when she started volunteering at a shelter. She has since earned her CPDT-KSA, CCUI, and CCBC, and is very passionate about bringing cat behavior and welfare into the 21st century. She works as a private consultant for anyone having behavior issues with their cats or dogs, and working to find solutions that work for people and their animals in their normal, everyday life.
In her personal life, Beth lives with her husband and 4 dogs (Picabo, Niflheim, Baby Cthulhu, and Senua) in Houston, Texas and enjoys reading, crocheting, diamond painting, and really anything else that seems like fun at the time, and changing her hair color as frequently as possible.
Course Administrator, IAABC Foundation
Jamie Oliver is a communications strategist who is passionate about animal welfare and education. She has extensive experience crafting messaging for the financial, legal and technology industries. Growing up with horses taught her the importance of LIMA (least intrusive, minimally aversive) and she believes that an education in behavioral science is important when communicating with all species, including humans!
Jamie regularly volunteers with her local SPCA to help guide new pet parents through the “getting to know you” phase with their dogs. In her free time, you can find her hiking in the Blue Ridge Mountains with her fearless pup, Nara Pickles, riding her bicycle and going out for froyo with her nieces.
Sandy Crosby is a graduate of McGill University in Montreal and Strasbourg University in France. Having spent her working career in high tech for the Department of National Defense, in Ottawa, she happily retired in 2005.
After retirement Sandy obtained new skills for Search and Rescue for herself and one of her dogs, Bö. She now uses these skills to teach tracking and air-scenting to students who enjoy working outdoors.
Teaching dog training since 1997, Sandy is CPDT-KA and IAABC-ADT certified. She is a huge supporter and practitioner of methods that are kind, positive and scientific based for her human and canine students.
Sandy has been a member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) since 2004, Responsible Dog Owners of Canada (RDOC) since 2009, a CGC (Canine Good Citizen) evaluator since 2006, and a member of the International Association of Animal Behaviour Consultants (IAABC) since 2017.
Sandy is enjoying a happy retired life of country living in Ottawa, Canada, with her hubby, Pat, and Rottie, Bender.
Consuelo is a professional dog trainer and has been dedicated to education and consulting on the prevention and modification of behavior problems in companion animals for more than ten years. She is a Certified Training Partner from Karen Pryor Academy (KPA – CTP), a Certified Dog Trainer (IAABC – ECA), Certificate in LLA Professional Course (Behavior Works) and holds a Diploma in Animal Assisted Therapy from Universidad Mayor and Bocalán-Confiar Chile and a Certificate in Applied Animal Behavior from the University of Washington. She is currently pursuing a MA in Anthrozoology at the University of Exeter, UK.
In 2012, Consuelo founded Moma&Co (as a tribute to her dog Moma), where she offers a wide range of behavior and training programs and educational workshops. She also co-founded two organizations supporting dog and cat rescue and street animals’ TNR (Trap-Neuter-Release), and continues to volunteer in several organizations to assist in integrating dogs and cats into their new families.
Today, she lives between Viña del Mar and Santiago de Chile.
Courtney Johnson has been in the video world for over 13 years, and has produced over 500 videos ranging from weddings to advertisements, and anything in between.
Her passion began in a videography course she took throughout her high school years. During which she honed her skills for everything film, from pre production through post. Since then she has worked to create videos with many professionals including but not limited to: Radio Systems Corporation® (PetSafe®), The Virginia Holocaust Museum, Veterinary Emergency Treatment Fund (VetFund®), Honest To Dog®, and countless others.
Her passion for animals started at a young age, and flourished to a deeper understanding of animal fundamentals when she began working alongside Michelle Mullins. Her training alongside Michelle taught her the proper foundations of how to appropriately approach every animal and their quirks with respect and understanding.
Now, Courtney has the truest honor of working with the IAABC Foundation as their lead Video Editor. Helping to promote and encourage the power of knowledge in all things animal and training. She continues her studies in videography daily in pursuit of perfecting the craft, while also gaining the cognizance that all IAABC Foundation lecturers have to give. Meshing her two purest passions, animals and videography.
Camille Asmer is the owner of Sit, Stay, Play Animal Training and Behavior. She is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC) and Accredited Dog Trainer (ADT) with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC) and a Certified Behavior Consultant Canine (CBCC) and Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT) with the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT). Camille started her dog training career volunteering and then working for a non-profit that breeds, raises, and trains English Labradors to become service dogs for veterans and disabled persons. Very soon after becoming a full time trainer, fascinated with animal behavior, Camille continued to train and study until she became certified in behavior too.
Camille’s favorite thing about her job is bringing clients hope and helping them see results, shaping a strong and happy bond between the owner and pet through positive reinforcement based training. She specializes in canine aggression and fear based behaviors, working closely with veterinarians in the Charlotte, NC, area to help clients understand, train, and live happily with their dogs.
Camille is a true dog nerd and loves to study all things dog. She enjoys being a volunteer parrot trainer with Companion Parrots Re-homed, and being a mentor for other people studying to become trainers. When not working, Camille loves to spend time with her husband, three children, and 2 Labrador Retrievers.
Education Coordinator, IAABC Foundation
Sylvia Currie works with subject matter experts to develop online courses, webinars, and yet-to-be imagined educational programs. She has been designing and facilitating online learning and supporting others to do the same since the early days of web browsers. When Sylvia is not tethered to her computer she is out consulting with dog behaviour clients through her business, Being With Dogs, or romping around trails and dodging wildlife with her own crew in the mountains of British Columbia, Canada.
Zach is a professional dog trainer helping families create and maintain better relationships with their canine companions. He owns/operates Evolved Dog Training out of Oklahoma City where he was born and raised. Zach has received a Certificate in Training and Counseling from The Academy for Dog Trainers, has completed Dr. Susan Friedman’s Living and Learning with Animals course, Mike Shikashio’s Aggression Mastercourse, and plans to continue learning and taking courses from the best. Zach currently has 3 dogs, Tech (M, deaf American Staffy – 8yr old), Villain (M, Catahoula Mix, 2yr old), and Nugget (M, BC/Great Dane mix, 1.5yr old).
Founder of Daack Pack Dog Training, Allison Daack CPDT-KA and Certified Fear Free Animal Trainer, has been working with and training dogs, along with other species since 2008. In the beginning of her career, Allison was a Kennel Technician working closely with a Veterinarian where she learned all about developmental periods of dogs, handling skills and how to prevent behavior issues.
From there she spent several years working with exotic animals at numerous wildlife facilities and reserves, first in North Carolina, then California. She did everything from educating the public, rehabilitation, and using training to help animals cope with life in captivity, usually due to injury or illness. Her passion for behavior modification began with teaching cooperative care cues to a Black Vulture in the raptor / avian exhibits.
Allison then had a long career with Petco, where she became a Dog Training Mentor. Not only did she train other dog trainers to be dog trainers, she taught group classes, and supported part of a corporate team that created continuing education materials for trainers, and updated Petco’s dog training program.
However, Petco does not take behavior modification clients, so on June 1, 2016, Allison founded Daack Pack Dog Training as a way to better support the needs of her clients whose dogs might struggle with fear, anxiety, or display aggressive behaviors. Through this company she has been able to provide the community with custom, in-home training to support their specific needs and the needs of their pets.
Mike currently is a behavior consultant with Behavior Vets NYC after previously working with GoodPup and within his own company, The Pawssociates. He is a CDBC, IAABC-ADT, Fear Free certified professional, and will finish his CSAT (Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer) in 2022.
Lili Chin is an illustrator who was born in Malaysia, lived in Sydney for 20 years, and moved to Los Angeles in the early 2000’s to work on “Mucha Lucha” – a masked-wrestling children’s TV series she co-created for Warner Bros Animation.
When Lili adopted a Boston Terrier who bit people, so began her educational journey about dog behavior, training methods, and public misinformation about “reactivity” and “aggression”. Her career shifted towards creating infographics for dog trainers, veterinarians, and organizations who advocate for reading dog body language and humane animal training methods. Her clients include the IAABC, RSPCA, APBC, 4Paws International, Vet Behaviour Team, the late Dr. Sophia Yin, and Petco. Lili enjoys working with progressive animal behavior experts to translate knowledge to a more fun and accessible visual format.
When not working on commissioned art, Lili is creating new gift products for retail and wholesale. Her licensed designs have appeared on puzzles, pet blankets, pet ID tags, dog toys, and paper goods. Her first authored gift book – “Doggie Language” was published in October 2020 by Summersdale/Hachette, and will be translated into several languages.
Although the name of her business is Doggie Drawings, Lili has also drawn cats, rabbits, horses, parrots, hedgehogs, and looks forward to contributing her skills to more species.
Helen is the owner and operator of No Monkey Business Dog Training. Based in Concord, New Hampshire, she is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge and Skills Assessed (CPDT-KSA) and a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC) and an Operation Socialization Certified Trainer (OSCT). Helen has been training dogs for over 19 years. She is a professional member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers, a member of the Association of Animal Behavior Professionals and is a certified member of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants and a member of the Pet Professional Guild. Helen is also a licensed Dogs and Storks presenter, a licensed Dogs and Toddlers presenter, and a certified AKC evaluator.
Helen’s skills range from teaching basic life skills to behavior modification of serious problems including aggression, as well as service dog training. Helen is constantly going to continuing education seminars to learn more about the fascinating world of dog behavior, and she has been featured on the radio, in print, and on T.V. for her work. She volunteers countless hours at the local SPCA and works with homeless dogs to help them learn skills to find a home that is lasting and successful. Her two large facilities in Concord offer state of the art experiences for people wanting to better their relationship with their dogs, offering classes for reactivity, nosework, agility and so much more.
Helen strongly believes that true success in dog training is learning how to educate people kindly, compassionately and fairly so they can be better handlers for their dogs and understand them more. Helen has 9 dogs of her own, and runs a senior and hospice dog rescue out of her home also. When she’s not training her dogs, she’s spending time with her daughters, her horse, and her husband.
Nini is a dog behavior trainer from Taiwan. She established the I Know Pet Behavior Training brand located in the south of Taiwan with her sister who is also a dog trainer.
Nini is a professional dog trainer certified by Karen Pryor Academy. The main job is pet’s behavior training, including cue training and problem behavior adjustment. In her point of view, she pays attention to offering comfort and high quality walking and also giving choices for dogs to improve most problem behavior efficiently.
She has many experiences of being invited as a lecturer by many pet related organizations. She hopes to expand positive- based training by education to make the pet parents more understand dog behavior and enhance the relationship between them and their pet.
She also has experience of working dog training. She has taken Detection dog course at Tarheel Canine and joined a pilot study collaborating with US Fish & Wildlife Service and US Geological Survey as a handler of avian botulism detection dog. Due to the passion of scent work, she sets up related courses of scent work in I Know Pet Behavior Training to make pet parents enjoy the fun of cooperation with their pets becoming the best partner to each other.
Yuching is a certified dog trainer and service dog coach based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She enjoys learning everything about the behaviors of canines and humans. After adopting a fearful dog who was scared of everything and would bite if pushed over his limit, Yuching began her learning journey on dog behavior while exploring all kinds of canine training with her dog. Her dog, Bailey, showed Yuching that learning should be fun in order to help the stressed brain. Through fun exercises such as tricks and nosework, Bailey’s confidence was built and the relationship between them was improved and strengthened. This led to Yuching starting her dog training business K9 Learning to share her learning and help pet owners with fearful dogs to find fun in training.
Prior to being a dog trainer, Yuching worked in the corporate world with a specialty of English-Mandarin translation. This leads to her using her translation skills to translate IAABC journals into Mandarin Chinese to reach a wider readership.
IAABC Journal Spanish Editor, Head of Translators. Masters in Canine Clinical Psychology and Education, Vet assistant, first aid certified and pet groomer. She is also a journalist, professional translator and proofreader, as well as Editor in chief of El Telégrafo newspaper, Uruguay. She’s been invited by the Uruguayan government to take part in the national shelter program as a dog behavior consultant through the Cero Callejero Foundation, with whom she is taking action on animal welfare.
Living in a country where science-based dog training was not common, many years ago she began her research in order to set herself for success in the field. Thus, she has taken courses at Karen Pryor Academy (KPA), Dunbar Academy, Pet Partners (Delta Society), Victoria Stilwell Academy (VSA) and specialized in children-directed education regarding animal care and behavior. She is also a member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) and Doggone Safe.
She has worked with guide dogs, in cooperation with Freedom Guide Dogs, from New York, supporting organizations for the blind in her country.
Passionate about dogs, she devotes most of her time to ensure their wellness in society, offering a helping hand as a volunteer in rescue organizations and writing articles about animal welfare and behavior in the newspaper at which she works. Her human and non-human children take up most of her heart.
Philip is a certified dog trainer based in the San Francisco Bay Area, but can also frequently be found in the shelters of Taiwan. Having grown up in Taipei, Philip is focused on further improving animal welfare programs among municipal shelters and private rescues. Stateside, Philip works with local and international rescues, hoping for the day when dogs no longer need to fly halfway across the globe to find a home.
A lifelong learner, Philip’s area of study revolves around alleviating fear for his own Taiwanese rescue, Alisa. Philip strives to further his mechanical skill and theoretical knowledge, with eyes set on becoming a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC) with the IAABC.
Sandy lives in Querétaro, Mexico, where she runs a dog daycare called “Pension 3 Perros” with a sensory garden and focused on helping dogs with fear and anxiety regarding social problems. Years ago in Mexico City, Sandy organized events for dog trainers with the ideal of promoting positive education.
Despite working at the dog daycare and taking care of her family, Sandy loves to keep updating her knowledge. She focuses on puppies and young dogs, but she also enjoys studying issues of behavioral relationship and the holistic well-being of the dog’s body.
Uli grew up in Germany, but spent three years of her youth in Spain. She participated in several dog sports with her Catalan Sheepdog, and soon she noticed that training dogs and their humans was much more important to her than she had anticipated. Helping owners with their family dogs’ behavior problems soon became her passion.
After moving to Santiago de Chile with her husband, she dedicated time to raising their three children and founded her dog training business www.citydogs.cl with the country’s first puppy socialization program for owners. Ever since she has been creating awareness of the significance of puppy socialization through talks for owners and an internship program for trainers.
Since 2018 she has been directing the IAABC Español Division. Uli lives in Santiago de Chile with her human family, three cats, two target-trained Mediterranean tortoises and her Border Collie Luke, the tortoise detection dog.
Tom Candy is a Senior Training and Behaviour Advisor for a shelter in the United Kingdom. Tom is responsible for overseeing the training and behaviour at multiple rehoming centres across the UK. His duties include assessment, management and behaviour modification.
A passion for animal welfare and training led Tom to undertake a BSc (Hons) in bio-veterinary science, and an MSc in clinical animal behaviour from the University of Lincoln, UK.
Having started volunteering in rescue at the age of 15, Tom has been involved in a variety of aspects of rescue, including fundraising, home checks, transporting, and general day-to-day activities. Since graduating from University, Tom has been working as a training and behaviour advisor at a DogsTrust, locuming across 7 centres before moving to the senior training and behaviour team.
Tom is a certified clinical animal behaviourist with the Animal Behaviour and Training Council, and a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant and Certified Shelter Behaviour Specialist.
Kira’s career was in restaurant management when she decided to follow her lifelong passion with animals. Today she works at a shelter giving second chances to those who can’t stand up for themselves. She works with dogs and cats that come from other shelters and are deemed unadoptable, and would otherwise be euthanized. Everyday she gets to help an animal live a better life is a great day for her.
In her personal time Kira values learning new things that she can use to help the animals. She enjoys anything to do with arts and crafts, reading, and spending time with her peers.
Nicole is a trainer and animal behavior professional with over 15 years of experience working with animals with behavioral problems. She is a U.S. Veteran and began her career as a Military Police Dog Handler/Trainer for the U.S. Navy and Department of Defense. She is passionate about helping pet owners develop a loving and enriching bond with their pets through positive reinforcement and holistic treatment methods. She is a Boston native and is owned by rescues Charlie, Huckleberry cat and Oscar the tortoise.
Ken Ramirez is the EVP and Chief Training Officer for Karen Pryor Clicker Training where he helps to oversee the vision, development and implementation of training education programs. Previously, Ken served as EVP of animal care and training at Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium. A 40+ year veteran of animal care and training, Ramirez is a biologist and behaviorist who has worked with many zoological organizations and dog programs throughout the world.
Ken’s work has included guide dogs, service dogs, law enforcement, search and rescue, film and television, and countless private clients. He is past president of the International Marine Animal Trainers Association and has been active in various leadership positions within IMATA for over 30 years. He hosted two successful seasons of the TV series Talk to the Animals. Ramirez authored the book ANIMAL TRAINING: Successful Animal Management through Positive Reinforcement in 1999 and most recently The Eye of the Trainer in 2020. He taught a graduate course on animal training at Western Illinois University for 20 years. He currently teaches at ClickerExpo every year, offers hands-on courses and seminars at the Karen Pryor National Training Center (the Ranch), and teaches online courses through Karen Pryor Academy.
Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist
Board Certified Behavior Analyst
Certified Animal Behavior Consultant
Dr. Mary Burch is the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen Director. She is a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist, one of less than 100 in the United States and a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (the human end of the leash).
Dr. Burch has trained dogs to the advanced levels of obedience and she is considered an international expert on the topic of therapy dogs. She is the author of eight books including “Volunteering with Your Pet” and “How Dogs Learn,” and over 200 articles on dog-related topics. She has lectured at universities and colleges and has given presentations on canine behavior throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and Europe.
Her work with therapy dogs has been featured in US News & World Report, Newsweek and Readers’ Digest. Dr. Burch’s book, “Citizen Canine,” was the training Book of the Year for the Dog Writer’s Association of America and in 2013, she was inducted into the DWAA Hall of Fame.
Dr. Burch is a founding member of the Animal Trainer’s Forum in the Association for Behavior Analysis. Dr. Burch has also been a lobbyist on legislation pertaining to dangerous dogs and responsible dog ownership. She served as a member of a county Animal Control’s “Dangerous Dog Committee,” determining if dogs were to be declared dangerous and the course of action.
Dr. Burch has appeared on “Martha Stewart Living TV” and “Animal Planet” as well as numerous radio programs to discuss animal training.
Dr. Burch is frequently interviewed for print media (newspapers, magazines) on topics related to canine behavior.
Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner
Certified Professional Dog Trainer-Knowledge Assessed
Fear Free Dog Trainer
Family Paws Educator
An evidence-based, Fear Free Certified dog trainer, Ayelet spent nearly a decade volunteering with dog rescue organizations and shelters in Manhattan before creating her first company, Sabra Dog Training, in Nashville. As of September of 2021 she has merged her business with Julie Farris, CBCC and Beth Strickler, CACVB to open Instinct Nashville, where she is a co-owner and Co-Director of Behavior and Training.
Ayelet is a proud graduate of The Karen Pryor Academy and a licensed presenter for Family Paws. She was also a Behavior Technician for Veterinary Behaviorist Beth Strickler, DACVB for 5 years. Some of Ayelet’s favorite work has been teaching group classes at Davidson County Male Correctional Facility, where inmates are paired with rescued Greyhounds to help prepare the dogs for adoption. Finally, Ayelet is a mentor for CATCH and Victoria Stilwell Academy, helping shape the trainers of tomorrow.
Ayelet (pronounced i-yell-it) was born in Israel, raised in Louisville, and lived in New York for a decade before returning to her Southern roots and settling down in Nashville with her husband, sons and “beagle-mix,” Chloe.
Darris has worked in the industries of animal training and behavior, pet lifestyle, and broadcast television for nearly 15 years. Working with pets, pet parents and Trainers everywhere has been a dream come true & an incredible journey. He has trained at zoological facilities, working with both domestic and exotic animals. His passion for all animals and all people has led him on a journey of discovery and very impactful experiences that reinforces the animal and human bond.
Darris has been with Petco The Health & Wellness Company since 2012. He leads National Dog Training Education with a focus on learning and development, program creation, operations, and strategy. He’s a strong believer in industry collaboration and partnerships and knows that true innovation comes to life when Trainers, veterinarians, and grooming professionals all work together. His team works to support the Petco organization and is focused on improving and building operational efficiencies of the national dog training program in all 1,400+ Pet Care Centers across the United States.
As a lifelong learner Darris is also recognized with the Certification Council of Professional Dog Trainers, and holds the Fear Free Animal Trainer certification, he’s also an AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator, Professional Member of APDT and he recently took on a new role leading Diversity, Equity and Inclusion with IAABC Foundation. He volunteers with animal rescue organizations and has worked on the front lines in wildlife rescue and rehabilitation. Darris also serves as an on-air contributor to local and national television and print publications on pet lifestyle and behavior.
Darris loves spending time with his family and is a pet parent to Zakai, his Golden Retriever and 3 aquatic turtles. You can also find Darris at many animal rescue fundraisers, wildlife conservation events, and animal related conferences and tradeshows to continue his quest of lifelong learning.
Executive Director, IAABC Foundation
Marjie was a professional dog trainer and behavior consultant and owner of City Dog Training in Somerville, MA. for decades, during which time she also served as Training Director, and then behavioral consultant for the New England Dog Training Club, the oldest AKC club in the US, and as a member of the American Humane Association’s Advisory Board for Companion Animal Behavior and Training. She currently serves on the Fear Free Advisory Board.
Marjie is the co-founder of the Somerville Foundation for Animals, which operates EveryPetCounts.org, a mobile clinic offering free veterinary care to pets of homeless and at-risk veterans, elderly, and women and families. Marjie is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC) with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. She currently also serves as Executive Projects Director for the IAABC, the professional affiliate organization of the IAABC Foundation.
Shannan Skitch began her career in business development and operations at both entrepreneurial and Fortune 500 companies. Outside of her work, she was volunteering at rescues and shelters, eventually she decided to take her business experience and apply that to her passion in animal welfare and care.
Shannan began working in shelters; organizing fundraisers, veterinary conferences, developing a first aid training program for small mammals, and volunteer training. After that, she started working with the training and behaviour teams, and what started as a volunteer role became her full-time work. Ferrets have been the focus of much of her work, Shannan has worked with over 60 different species in various roles as caretaker, behaviour consultant, and trainer. She has completed the Fear Free Shelter program, LLA, Principles & Practice, and Tag Teach Level 1.
Shannan lives in London, ON Canada with 2 ferrets and a dachshund. She is passionate about animal rights, access to education, and the perfect cup of tea.
Director, IAABC Foundation
Rochelle Burtt is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant through IAABC and a Certified Behavior Consultant (Canine) through CCPDT. Her love of animals was realized at a very young age when she was known for saving baby birds, stray animals, and even the odd worm from the fishing bait box! She earned a diploma in Animal Science nearly 30 years ago but then went on to study Computer Science at the University of New Brunswick and subsequently worked in the field for many years. She returned to working with animals on a full-time basis many years ago as a Behavior Consultant and Service Dog Trainer.
Rochelle is passionate about promoting the LIMA (least intrusive, minimally aversive) model and animal rights and welfare through the development, distribution, and promotion of education through the IAABC Foundation.
When she’s not promoting education, Rochelle enjoys a country life with her husband, four sons, a Labrador Retriever, and a senior cat. Flower and vegetable gardening are what help keep her ‘grounded’.
Matthias Lenz has 10 years’ experience as a professional dog trainer, and is a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner (KPA-CTP). He works full time as the Puppy Raising Manager for ‘BC & Alberta Guide Dogs’ and helps pet dog owners through his business ‘Lenz Dog Training’. He is a Supporting Member of the International Association of Animal Behaviour Consultants (IAABC) where he served as the Chair of the Working Animals Division for two years before taking on his current role as board member with the IAABC Foundation.
An engaged and well-respected member of the international dog training community, he has written and published several articles in the peer-reviewed IAABC journal, and has presented his work at international conferences and events, including the 2019 Assistance Dogs International (ADI) conference.
Catja (she/her) is living with a retired older cocker spaniel, who still loves to work, and a younger Australian Koolie, who is starting his first competitions.
Since 2009, when she finished her instructors’ course via Canis academy, Catja has been working full-time teaching on the topic of training, both online and at in-person workshops and conferences.
She has competed in the highest level of working trials, including obedience, tracking, and search and rescue and has also been working with drug detection and rally obedience over the years. But no matter the topic, her focus is on developing the basic skills through clean training sessions and fluency in the trainer’s skills. She is passionate about clean training, fluency, shaping, backchaining and giving the learner choice in training.
Practicing the basics and having great mechanical skills is one of the things that will elevate your training to the next level, in her opinion. She believes that every dog handler can and should work with their dog, and that planning your session to be as clean and efficient as possible will create more reinforcement opportunities for both learner and teacher. Her first focus is to teach 80 different basic skills that makes it possible to teach just about anything “advanced” later. Dividing all training into the smallest behaviours possible, before even thinking of adding the cue and setting the stage for clean training loops, is a high priority.
She uses shaping wherever it is possible, and always tries to have a clean, smooth session, with clear information for the dog while removing all background distractions. Meeting the learner where they are and getting to be a part of the process where the team grows together is the most rewarding thing for her. Catja works with learners on all levels and also believes in continued education, for everyone.
Oluademi James-Daniel (she/her) has 10+ years of experience in the dog training world. She currently lives in Upstate NY with three dogs: a 15 year old Yorkie/Silky, a 10 year old Windsprite, and a 1.5 year old Windsprite. As though these three aren’t already a handful, Oluademi is also owned by two cats. (She even breeds ball pythons!)
Oluademi is currently the owner of AfroPup Training in Ithaca, NY. She worked for 6+ years at a dog daycare, where she painstakingly sculpted the business from a basic daycare model to a dayschool facility, complete with a “Puppy Kindergarten” training program. Prior to this, Oluademi worked at an animal rescue on Long Island for 3+ years.
Even with her Bachelor’s in English Literature, Oluademi always knew her passion – and thus her future – would involve animals, especially dogs. While she continues to develop her brand new business, she is also hoping to earn her IAABC Accreditation by the end of 2022. Oluademi is also deeply dedicated to the topic of inclusion in the animal world. She hopes to be able to open doorways for as many marginalized people in the animal care community as possible.
Dr. Kristina Spaulding has been in the dog training and behavior profession since 1999. She earned her undergraduate degree in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. While in college, she worked for the Dane County Humane Society and volunteered as an assistant trainer at Dog’s Best Friend, then owned by Dr. Patricia McConnell. She opened Smart Dog Training and Behavior LLC in 2001. She completed her PhD in biopsychology—the study of the biological basis of behavior—in 2016. In 2017, Dr. Spaulding became a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist. She is particularly interested in stress, neurobiology, cognition, emotion, and wellbeing and how to apply these concepts to the prevention and early intervention of behavior problems in dogs.
Dr. Spaulding has a passion for teaching and offers a variety of online courses and webinars on the science of behavior through her website, www.smartdogtrainingandbehavior.com. During graduate school she taught undergraduate courses for several years. She was trained in innovative and effective teaching skills through the Institute for Teaching, Learning, and Academic Leadership and the University at Albany. In 2012, Dr. Spaulding received the Excellence in Teaching by a Graduate Student Award through the local chapter of Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology. In 2019, Dr. Spaulding received the Association of Professional Dog Trainer’s (APDT’s) Member of the Year Award.
In addition to teaching other professionals, she regularly presents on canine behavior science at conferences and other events. She also continues to work with private training clients where she specializes in fear, reactivity, and hyperactivity/impulsivity. She currently serves on the IAABC Foundation Board and the Fear Free Advisory group.
Amy is a partner in the Animal Behavior Wellness Center and runs the Richmond, VA office. She attended her undergraduate education in Bethlehem PA receiving a BS in Biology, and worked at a wildlife conservation park in Texas before being accepted to the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. After graduation in 2003, she completed an internship at Red Bank Veterinary Hospital in NJ, and then she went into general practice until 2017 at which time, she started a Residency in Clinical Behavioral Medicine under the mentorship of Dr. Lisa Radosta in South Florida and Dr. Amy Pike in Northern Virginia.
Amy completed her residency training and is currently the Chief of Clinical Behavioral Medicine at the Animal Behavior Wellness Center in Richmond VA where she counsels clients from Richmond, Charlottesville, Hampton Roads, Virginia Beach, Roanoke, and North Carolina. She has contributed to veterinary textbook chapters, journal articles, blogs and received the RK Anderson Resident Research Award. She has lectured for APDT, Veterinary Behavior Symposium, IAABC, Virginia Veterinary Medical Association, VMX. Her memberships and certifications include: Fear Free elite, Fear Free Compliance Committee, Low Stress Handling Silver, Pet Professional Guild, IAABC Foundation Board Member.
Michelle Mullins is the owner and director of training at Honest To Dog® in Richmond, Virginia, USA. As an IAABC Certified Dog Behavior Consultant she offers private in-home pet training with a focus on evidence-based training and behavior modification for dogs with fear, aggression, and reactivity, basic training for puppies, and Fear-Free training of pets for veterinary and grooming procedures. In her work she collaborates closely with veterinary professionals to ensure her clients have a complete pet care team.
She has guest lectured at Ohio State University and the University of Tennessee and presents at a variety of training and veterinary conferences. Michelle has served on the board of directors for the IAABC (International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants) and is the current board president of the IAABC Foundation as well as mentoring IAABC courses. She is a content contributor to the Fear Free Animal Trainer Course, and both a Fear Free Certified Animal Trainer and Elite Certified.
All her work has the goal of developing long, enriching relationships between pets and their people. Michelle is passionate about sharing continuing education in her field as it ultimately provides our clients, both human and canine, the highest quality services available.