Board of Directors
Wendy Dahl, Board Member
Vashon Island Pet Protectors has a Board of Directors consisting of 10 members. Below is a brief description of each board member:
GEOFF FLETCHER, Chairman of the Board: In addition to leading a gaggle of cat and dog herders at VIPP, Geoff helps his wife Terri with various cat duties for VIPP, including trapping cats for the feral program and fielding phone calls and emails relating to lost and found cats. He also is the goof-ball with the cat hat on stage at the Fur Ball. Geoff is deputy executive director with the State Educational Technology Directors Association, a non-profit organization in Washington, D.C. supporting members of state departments of education who work with technology. He is a former teacher at the high school and college level, and served in the Texas Department of Education for 11 years. While in Austin, TX, Geoff volunteered for Animal Trustees of Austin. He also has served as a board member for Vashon Allied Arts.
MARCIA BRUYA: Vice President of VIPP, Marcia is a Senior Management Consultant at Point B, a national consulting firm headquartered in Seattle. Marcia has spent over two decades' in numerous roles including executive coaching, business process redesign, change management, operational support, technical project leadership and software implementations. Marcia is honored to support the program as a volunteer and VIPP Board Member.
LESLIE FRYE: Secretary
KELLI DURKIN: Treasurer. Info coming soon.
ELAINE SUMMERS: Animal Lover, Songwriter and Mosaic artist, Cat Person. I have been the administrator of the VIPP website since its re-incarnation in 2007. My duties include keeping the site up to date as well as VIPP's Facebook page. I am on the Fur Ball committee and organizer of a crack cleaning crew called the Furbusters. We clean the shelter from top to bottom each month. I am a self taught artist and have been working in that field for many years. I have been involved with VIPP since 2003 when I adopted two kittens from them.
WENDY DAHL: I am privileged to work with companion animals and their people both in my animal behavior practice and as a licensed small animal massage practitioner. The lessons I learn from each animal improve my communication and bodywork skills and, in turn, support future client companion animals' mental and physical health. My expertise is with rescued dogs and cats, helping their families learn about the particular behaviors these creatures have collected from previous environments. My mission is to increase understanding and knowledge about companion animals, to deepen the bond between human and animal and to reduce the recycling of adopted animals.
I am a member of the Animal Behavior Society, the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) and the National Board of Certification for Animal Acupressure & Massage. I have volunteered with the Seattle Purebred Dog Rescue organization for over 20 years, including time on their Board of Directors. My association with VIPP began when I moved to Vashon in 2003, and I have enjoyed working with other volunteers on Fur Ball activities, assessing, training and fostering VIPP canines and developing valued relationships with this dedicated band of rescuers. I am honored to be a member of the Board of Directors.
KAREN BARGELT: Info coming soon.
LOLA MICHELIN, LMP, LAMP, SAMP: Founder and Director of Education of Northwest School of Animal Massage (NWSAM), Vashon Island. (Founded in 2001, moved to Vashon 2012.) www.nwsam.com
Over 20 years’ experience in the veterinarian and zoological fields. Lola speaks and writes regularly on the topic of animal massage and is active in promoting standards of practice for the industry at large. She was instrumental in lobbying for and promoting legislation to create an animal massage license through the WA State Department of Health. NWSAM offers large animal, small animal and exotic species training programs.
CATHERINE SWEARINGEN an ex-pat from the South, moved to Vashon in 2014. After sixteen years in career development at several universities, she retired from her role as Executive Director of Career Connections at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma in 2015. Prior to her change of direction into higher education, Catherine was a practicing attorney in South Carolina. Since moving to Vashon she has become a VIPP dog walker and a member of the Circle of Directors of Hestia Retreat. Catherine is currently a partner and mediator in Vashon Mediation.
Catherine is blessed to share her life with her husband, two sons, her collie Edward, her kitty, George (whom she stole fair and square from her eldest son), and her youngest son’s red heeler, Moose.