Camp Maddie: Foster Edition

Expanding your dog foster program begins here

Camp Maddie is a new learning series that began with a virtual half-day foster edition on Thursday, December 7, 2024 at 9am-1 pm PT (12 pm-4 pm ET). At Camp Maddie, we covered various topics in to-the-point presentations, panel discussions, strategy-sharing seminars, videos and question and answer sessions. The focus was on recruiting foster caregivers for adult dogs. Presenters discussed breaking down barriers in the foster field, how they recruit foster caregivers and provided insight into strategies they use to make fostering accessible in their communities. 

Camp Maddie Foster is perfect for those interested or involved in existing foster care programs, foster coordinators, marketing, leadership and operations enthusiasts. As a bonus, participants are eligible for up to 4 Certified Animal Welfare Administrator (CAWA) and National Animal Care & Control Association (NACA) continued education credit hours. 

Thanks to everyone who joined us for Camp Maddie Foster Edition!
Recordings are now available to watch on-demand in Maddie's University.

Watch All Sessions From Camp Maddie Foster

Camp Maddie: Foster Edition Agenda

Learn More About The Speakers

Abby's roots in animal welfare started in rural Kentucky fostering bottle kittens and volunteering at her local humane society in highschool. In 2022, Abby joined Operation Kindness with 6 years of experience managing shelter, intake, and foster teams, along with kitten programs for municipal and nonprofit shelters in the DFW area. As the Foster and Intake Manager, Abby oversees their growing foster programs and builds intake partnerships across Texas and Louisiana. In this role, she has been able to connect with her transfer partners to provide foster training, resources and education to help grow their own foster programs. Abby resides in Dallas with her partner and their 3 cats and tripod catahoula.

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Foster Forward: Maximizing Placements through Collaboration"

Visit Abigail's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum

Panelist for session titled, "Fosters Welcome: Low-Barrier Onboarding for High Community Engagement"

Visit Becky Costner's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum
Clare Callison is the Director of National Operations for Austin Pets Alive! She provides guidance and support to help organizations build robust lifesaving programs and improve operations to better serve people and pets. Clare specializes in helping organizations grow their transport relationships and increase their lifesaving through rescue partnerships and inclusive adoption and foster practices. Before joining Austin Pets Alive!, she was the Director of Operations for San Antonio Pets Alive for 5 years where she helped the city go from a 28% to 90% live release rate in 3 years. Clare enjoys helping others seek lifesaving solutions to common challenges that exist in working in a high-volume, fast-paced animal welfare organization.

Panelist for session titled, "Fosters Welcome: Low-Barrier Onboarding for High Community Engagement"

Visit Clare Callison's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Innovative Foster Caregiver Recruitment Techniques at Palm Valley Animal Society"

Visit Faith Wright's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Innovative Foster Caregiver Recruitment Techniques at Palm Valley Animal Society"
Jenay Bennett joined Dallas Pets Alive! in 2018 as a foster caregiver. She quickly “foster failed” her first and third foster pets, Stella and Banjo, and started to get more deeply involved with the rescue by volunteering with the foster team. In 2021 Jenay became the volunteer Foster Director where she oversaw the foster animals and foster humans. While juggling volunteering and being a 4th grade teacher, Jenay realized her true passion was in animal welfare. In 2023 Jenay made the leap to work in animal welfare full-time as the Assistant Vice President of Animal Operations. In this role, Jenay now oversees the lifesaving efforts for all animal operations of DPA! and manages the brand new Dallas Pets Alive! Adoption Container. This Adoption Container is a 40-foot shipping container, opened at a Dallas Brewery, that DPA! has transformed it into a hub for adoptions, fostering, and volunteering. Jenay lives just north of Dallas, Texas, with her husband, five resident pups (four are DPA! alums), and many fosters in and out of the door.

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Expanding Foster Programs with Foster+"

Visit Jenay Bennett's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum
Jennifer Taylor is the Director of Renegade Paws Rescue, a non-profit organization dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating, and rehoming dogs in need. With years of experience in animal rescue and welfare, Jen has a deep understanding of the challenges faced by dogs in need and is committed to making a positive difference in their lives. Her passion for dogs and her dedication to helping them shines through in her work at Renegade Paws Rescue, where she leads a team of dedicated individuals who share her love for animals. Jen's unwavering commitment to the well-being of dogs and her expertise in the animal rescue industry have made her a valuable asset to the Renegade Paws Rescue team. Her leadership and guidance have helped the organization grow and reach new heights, and she continues to inspire others with her dedication and passion for her work. In her free time, Jen enjoys spending time with her own dogs and taking in the great outdoors. With her unique personal interests and her deep love for dogs, Jen is truly an advocate for animal welfare and a valuable leader at Renegade Paws Rescue.

Panelist for session titled, "Learn from the Pros: Dog Foster Recruitment Strategies that are Working Right Now"

Lucy Fernandez always had a knack for engaging with the public. Formerly a Geeks Who Drink quizmaster, an amateur stand-up comedian, and LGBTQIA+ rights grassroots advocate, shy isn't her leading trait. She officially entered the animal welfare industry in 2019 as a cat adoption counselor (aka used cat salesperson) with Austin Pets Alive! When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2020, she assisted with the development of the virtual adoptions process to combine technology and foster-centric frameworks and establish a 30% increase in adoptions and the lowest owner surrenders for cats in APA!’s history. Shortly after the launch of the Human Animal Support Services project, she volunteered to lead the Supported Self-Rehoming Working Group to invite collaboration among the leaders of, Home-Home, and, along with the intake diversion staff from rescue groups around the globe. In 2021, she was promoted to Positive Alternatives to Shelter Surrender (PASS) program coordinator to work directly with the public to keep pets with their owners and out of the shelter. In 2022, she became the PASS program manager to integrate data-collection tools, set volunteer procedures, and expand community support to make common sense common for animal support services.

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Converting Pet Finders to Foster Caregivers at Austin Pets Alive!"

Visit Lucy Fernandez's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum

Panelist for session titled, "Fosters Welcome: Low-Barrier Onboarding for High Community Engagement"

Visit Luis Quintanilla's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum
Meaghan Colville is a founder and the Director of Shelter Operations at Cincinnati Animal CARE (CAC). CAC was founded in 2020 to transform animal services in Hamilton County, Ohio and remarkably achieved no-kill status overnight at the county shelter. In CAC's young, three-year existence, Meaghan has led a dedicated and scrappy team of staff and volunteers committed to applying contemporary and creative lifesaving strategies and programming. Prior to CAC, Meaghan was the Shelter Director at Clermont Animal CARE and Shelter Manager at Ohio Alleycat Resource (OAR). She began her career in animal welfare in 2010 in Los Angeles as a violence-prevention humane educator in L.A.'s most in-need communities and eventually as a volunteer coordinator while also volunteering in trap-neuter-vaccinate-return efforts in L.A. County. In 2020, Meaghan was part of the second cohort of the Best Friends Executive Leadership Certification program, a collaboration with Southern Utah University to develop leaders in animal welfare, and she was a 2019 graduate of Dogs Playing for Life Level 1 and is a certified humane agent in Ohio. Meaghan is currently working on a certificate from the University of Texas, Austin in Nonprofit Management and holds a master’s degree in education from Canisius College and a bachelor’s in education from The Ohio State University.

Panelist for session titled, "Learn from the Pros: Dog Foster Recruitment Strategies that are Working Right Now"

Visit Meaghan Colville's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum
Sam Wolfman, KPA CTP, CPDT-KA is the Director of Behavior and Pathway Planning at the Animal Welfare League of Arlington (AWLA). She lives with her long term partner and her reactive pup in Alexandria, VA. Sam's passion for animal welfare and teaching her community about animal behavior has been truly life changing. Coming from a background in fashion and retail, her "customer"-based approach to sheltering has helped steer her programming into open and empathetic relationships with the community that AWLA serves. Sam is a proud member of the AANHPI community and sits on her shelter's DEI Committee to help improve DEI initiatives in her own organization, and the field as a whole.

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Foster Dog Social Events"

I am a California native now doing the good work in the DFW area of Texas. I am a life-long member of animal well-being. Beginning with obsessively watching Steve Irwin as a child, starting as a volunteer at just 16 years old, and working my first gig at a big box pet store. Not able to afford a dog trainer and limited access to resources, I decided I wanted to learn all I could to help my personal dog, the dogs of family and friends, and the dogs sitting in our city shelters with love. That kickstarted my career in animal well-being where I’ve remained. I am currently working as a Behavior Manager/Certified Trainer at Operation Kindness in Carrollton, TX where we hope to keep pets in their homes. Here, I lead our behavior programs, working with two skilled specialists, Angelica and Chanel, who excel in shelter and community client behavior support. I am a pet parent to two cherished senior dogs, though I love all things and would honestly have a zoo. Although far from my California roots and my family, I love to embrace travel to continuously learn and grow.

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Foster Forward: Maximizing Placements through Collaboration"

Visit Shonyae Johnson's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum
Tori Fugate joined the KC Pet Project team in March 2012 – shortly after the organization took over the Kansas City, MO, animal shelter in January 2012. Tori’s role with KC Pet Project has enabled her to build the organization’s brand and promote its mission from inception to what it is today. She oversees all marketing, events, web management, social media, retail sales, education initiatives, and media relations, and she recently served on the design and construction committee of the KC Campus for Animal Care, Kansas City’s new animal shelter. She enjoys the opportunity to promote KC Pet Project and its pets through social media and in print, radio and television appearances on a local and national level – including People Magazine, The Dodo, The Huffington Post, CBS News, USA Today, Queer Eye, and The Rachael Ray Show.

Guest Speaker for session titled, "Doggy Day Out Marketing Process at KC Pet Project"

Panelist for session titled, "Learn from the Pros: Dog Foster Recruitment Strategies that are Working Right Now"

Visit Whitney Fang's Profile on Maddie's Pet Forum