The Rise of the Animal Welfare Professional

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Animal welfare is a complex, multi-faceted, and evolving field. As the depth of our work to transform communities becomes more evident, the sector’s drive for professionalization has never been higher. Professionalization is the social process by which a group of workers transforms itself into an occupation of the highest integrity and competence. The natural trend in all professions is toward greater specialization and recognition, but in animal welfare, the career path is not always clear. It can be challenging to enter the field and, while we apply standards for others, we don’t have industry wide standards for ourselves.

The panel of experts will discuss the path to the professionalization of animal welfare and the role of codes of conduct or ethics, education and training, standards, accreditation, certificates, and certifications along that path. We will explore concepts of professionalization both for individuals and for organizations in the animal welfare sector. Learn how you and your organization can rise!

This 75-minute panel session is one of four recordings filmed at The Association's Fall 2019 Conference in Houston. The conference was proudly sponsored by Hill’s Pet Nutrition, ASPCA, IDEXX, Maddie’s Fund, PetSmart Charities, and RKD Group.

Martha Boden

CEO, SPCA Tampa Bay

Martha Boden, PMP, CAWA, has been active in animal welfare for over 30 years. She joined SPCA Tampa Bay in St. Petersburg, Florida, in 2011, and has guided its growth through the addition of a canine training school, pet hospital, spay/neuter practice, and wildlife rehabilitation program. An active member of The Association throughout her career, she is currently chair of the Conference Committee. Martha is also President of the Florida Association of Animal Welfare Organizations.

​Barbara Cartwright

CEO, Humane Canada

Barbara Cartwright represents the largest animal welfare community in Canada  as the CEO of Humane Canada. Over the past six years, Barbara has launched the annual National Animal Welfare Conference, the National Centre for the Prosecution of Animal Cruelty, the National Violence Link Coalition and conference, as well as spearheaded the development of the first accreditation program for Humane Societies and SPCAs in North America. Barbara holds a master’s degree in Environmental Education and Communication. She sits on the Board of Directors for PetSmart Charities of Canada.

Jim Tedford, CAWA

President & CEO, The Association for Animal Welfare Advancement

Jim Tedford accepted his dream job when he joined The Association as President & CEO in June of 2015.  But Jim is no stranger to the organization.  He has been a member for nearly 30 years and served as our Board Chairman some twenty years ago.  Jim has been actively engaged in the animal welfare movement for more than 34 years having served as CEO for animal sheltering organizations in New York, Louisiana and Tennessee.  He served as a regional director for The Humane Society of the United States and then spent six years providing direct response marketing services to animal welfare organizations. Jim presents frequently at national and regional conferences on various animal welfare issues, organizational development and not-for-profit management. 

Roger Haston

President, The Institute for Animals

With nearly 20 years of experience in animal welfare, Dr. Roger Haston has become an internationally recognized leader in data, trends, and metrics. He is now the founder and president of The Institute for Animals which focuses on strategy, research, and thought leadership in the industry. He has served on the boards of Humane Society of Boulder Valley, Colorado Pet Overpopulation Fund, PetAid Colorado, Catalyst Council, Emancipet, Animal Grant Makers, the National Council on Pet Population, and Shelter

Animals Count.

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