Volunteer Of The Month – 2009

2010 Volunteers of the Month - 2009 Volunteers of the Month
2008 Volunteers of the Month - 2007 Volunteers of the Month


December 2009 - Jennifer Terry

Jennifer Terry

Jennifer is a wonderful volunteer who is making a big difference for the cats. Every Sunday, Jennifer comes to MaxFund to love the cats and help socialize them. She is particularly regular with the clinic cats, and she is good with the scared ones. She also makes an effort to pay attention to some of the cats that don't get as much attention. In fact, recently she picked up and carried a long-term cat that other volunteers can't even pet. Not only is she great with the cats, but she is also great at building rapport with visitors and helping them to get to know our great cats.
Jennifer also steps up and helps whenever there are outside events for the cats. For example, she stepped up to help organize an adoption event at Petsmart, and she has staffed other Petsmart events when we've had adopt-a-thons. Similarly, she helped staff the mobile van for the Lucky Mutt Strut, so the cats in the van could receive love, and potential adopters could receive information about the cats from a person who truly knows the cats.
Jennifer has also been instrumental in helping to get cats on the web faster and to generate interest in them by writing many of the bios. She truly has done an amazing job in helping to create interest in our cats with her funny and creative words. Potential adopters cannot help but fall in love with our cats when they read Jennifer's bios.
Thank you, Jennifer, for all you do! The cats love you an appreciate it!

November 2009 - Taylor Vitale

Taylor Vitale

Taylor has been a regular volunteer at MaxFund since April of 2008. One of her first important roles was that of coordinator for the University Boulevard PetSmart mobile adoption site in the summer of 2008. Since that time, she has also become very important to the office/clinic staff when we've had injured animals. At least two times, she has driven injured MaxFund animals (a kitten with a severe leg injury and a dog with the same) all the way to a veterinary clinic in Castle Rock at the request of the office/clinic staff. Of course, she was glad to help out even though it was a long distance.
Her current awesome role, along with her mom Terri is taking pictures of the new dogs every week and then forwarding sends those pictures along to Tami to get those dogs on the web! For those of you who have attempted to photograph dogs, much less unfamiliar and sometimes scared dogs, you know how difficult this is, and she does a fantastic job. She also gets up early on two Thursdays to take a dog or cat to Channel 4 for the Pet of the Week segment. She helps out in the office when it is busy and has found homes for multiple dogs and always has a project dog. She is at the shelter several days a week and puts in a lot of hours with her various projects!! Taylor is very committed and passionate about MaxFund, and an incredible advocate for our beloved animal shelter.
Thank you, Taylor, for all you do. Our furry friends thank you too.

October 2009 - Suzanne Creacy

Suzanne Creacy

Suzanne is an amazing volunteer who has helped to radically change the lives of many of MaxFund's shy and scared cats. Although Suzanne volunteers throughout the shelter, she has made the biggest difference in Janet's Room—the cat room off the laundry where the shy and scared cats live. Thanks to her love, patience and understanding, many of these cats have had a chance for happiness and homes. Many of them can now be pet, when previously they feared or distrusted humans too much.
For example, Katia is a cat who has lived at MaxFund since 2004. She could not be pet for many years. But thanks to Suzanne, Katia is now infamous. Anyone who enters the room is greeted by Katia and her demands for affection. She enjoys laps now and is fine being picked up and carried. It's an amazing transformation!
Suzanne also walks dogs and contributes wherever she can. Not surprisingly, she has also fostered kittens for the shelter.
Recently, Suzanne showed her dedication to the MaxFund cats when one of the cats—Sweet Pea from Janet's Room—got out of its adoptive home. The apartment complex where Sweet Pea lived was an active area for coyotes and foxes. As soon as Suzanne heard about Sweet Pea's escape, she went daily to look for Sweet Pea. She posted flyers, talked to neighbors and didn't give up. She woke up very early many days in the hopes of catching Sweet Pea. Finally, after neighbors sighted Sweet Pea, Suzanne got up in the middle of the night and spent hours waiting to catch her. She finally was albe to find, trap and return Sweet Pea to MaxFund, where she had to have surgery due to bites/abscesses. Sweet Pea is alive because of Suzanne's dedication and perseverance!
Thank you, Suzanne, for your amazing heart, dedication and love! The cats would not be the same without you!

September 2009 - Nancy Kuck

Nancy Kuck

Nancy has been volunteering at MaxFund since 2006 and has become a valuable resource. She works with the dogs, and when you see Nancy, you're likely to see a big dog with her. Nancy has a nice, calm manner about her, even in the midst of the chaos often experienced at MaxFund. So she is a wonderful mentor to our new volunteers. She has so much experience that she is often the person to offer valuable advice or come up with a solution.
Although you'd think that Nancy is strictly a dog person, she also has helped some of our oldest cat residents. She has adopted two of our FIV cats who were long-time residents, including Mr. Grey. Mr. Grey was infamous for his drools and occasional grumpiness. Although most people were turned off by an older, drooling cat, Nancy asked who was least likely to get adopted, and she took him.
Thank you, Nancy, for all you do at MaxFund! The volunteers, staff, dogs and cats treasure you!

August 2009 - Daniel Palen

Daniel Palen

Daniel has been volunteering at MaxFund since 2004, which makes him more "senior" than most other volunteers, myself included! In fact, he was just a young kid when he started to volunteer with his mom Leslie Palen (another FABULOUS volunteer!), and since that time, he has made a big difference. For the past year or more Daniel has headed up the mobile adoption committee and been responsible for serving as a liaison with several of the PetsMart/Petco store managers, coordinating volunteers and communicating with the shelter staff to ensure animals are at the mobiles where they are needed.
Thanks to the mobile program, MaxFund has gotten additional exposure, and several dogs have found a home. He has also worked with some locations to get MaxFund cats on location!
In addition to mobile adoptions, Daniel also heads up the technology committee. In this role, he has helped the MaxFund to implement a new animal database and to secure donated computer equipment for the shelter and has also done a lot of general technical support for the computers and network at the shelter which has saved a lot of time and expense of having to call someone in to fix these issues. He has also helped out by printing volunteer handbooks so we aren't so reliant on paying printing companies to print these each time.
Daniel is headed off to college this fall in Kansas, but he still plans to help MaxFundfrom Kansas! He and Leslie will still be working on coordinating mobiles even though Daniel won't actually be able to attend these himself. The Palens can still use help with specific mobile locations though, so if you are interested in helping him with those, or if you'd just like to congratulate him, you can reach him at danielpalenatmacdotcom  (danielpalenatmacdotcom)  .
Thank you, Daniel, for all you do. The animals thank you!

July 2009 - Jeanne Hind

Jeanne Hind

Jeanne is a wonderful volunteer who has helped both cats and dogs at MaxFund -- a unique feat at MaxFund. At mobile adoptions, she is a great face for MaxFund. She is always friendly, courteous and helpful with her smiling face and personality. When MaxFund needs help with mobile adoptions -- whether it is a cat show or a dog adoption -- Jeanne is always one of the first to volunteer. She also is a great dog walker, and the cats love her! Jeanne is especially good with some of the cats who are shy.
Recently, Jeanne has been very important for the MaxFund cats living at Petco. She has been visiting them and trying to coordinate volunteers to visit, so the cats living there get love and attention while they wait for their forever homes. Jeanne is also a wonderful mentor, always willing to help new volunteers become acquainted with the shelter. Jeanne also understands the true meaning of foster care and has offered her services on numerous occasions - she has taken some of the older cats, including Boots, one of the oldest cats at MaxFund.
Thank you, Jeanne, for all you do! The cats and dogs appreciate it.

June 2009 - Ilene Johnson

Ilene Johnson

Ilene has been nominated several times for volunteer of the month and her winning the award is highly overdue. She is one of those volunteers who has been volunteering with MaxFund for so long and so consistently you can just about set your watch to her. One nominator titled her "Dog Walker Supreme", noting that Ilene is often at the shelter 6 days a week and has been doing so for over 11 years. Her ability to not just walk dogs but work with the dogs at the shelter to truly make life better for them and help find them homes, often working with some of the more challenging dogs despite her own busy schedule is absolutely amazing.  
Just a few recent examples of Ilene going above and beyond include the help that Caesar needed for an injury, which resulted in his adoption, and taking the reins in getting Tanuki's story in the forefront with the Blue Moon Akita Rescue which also resulted in Tanuki's adoption. "She has the spirit that makes MaxFund great".
On top of her regular dog walking, her assistance with new volunteers as a volunteer mentor has been helpful to countless new volunteers, and she has constantly been supportive and constructive with the volunteer program and the shelter as a whole no matter what seems to be going on at the time, which does not go unnoticed! Thank you so much Ilene for all you do for MaxFund!

May 2009 - Diane Stewart

Diane Stewart

Diane is an invaluable volunteer and resource for the MaxFund cats. Every week, she spends time with virtually every MaxFund cat, and she knows their personalities very well. It is obvious watching her that she cares deeply about the cats, and she even cries when some of them go home. Because of her knowledge, she has been able to help get many of the new cats and old timers a home. She also helps to follow-up with adopters, and she makes us all happy when she gives us wonderful updates on the cats in their new homes. 
Diane helps not only with the cats, but she is also a graphic artist and has done many flyers and posters for MaxFund. She designed the cage cards that are currently used for the dogs and cat cages. These cards allow adopters, staff and volunteers to have knowledge of the animal. She not only designed them, but she also prints them at her expense.
Diane is always willing to step up and help when MaxFund needs help. When the cat foster coordinator was out of town, Diane filled in for her and got a couple of cats in homes. When the volunteer who handles the Petsmart adoptions got sick, Diane stepped up to transport the cats to the store and helped to facilitate which cats would go. She also has become a wonderful mentor to new volunteers.
Diane is always willing to step up and help when MaxFund needs help. When the cat foster coordinator was out of town, Diane filled in for her and got a couple of cats in homes. When the volunteer who handles the Petsmart adoptions got sick, Diane stepped up to transport the cats to the store and helped to facilitate which cats would go. She also has become a wonderful mentor to new volunteers.
Diane, thank you for all you do. You are amazing, and the animals at MaxFund thank you!

April 2009 - Andrea Kapsos

Andrea Kapsos

Andrea has only been at the shelter for a few months but is alreayd making a big impact! She does an awesome job with the dogs, and goes above and beyond to help the big and little dogs. She takes them on outings and overnights to get them out of the shelter and to see their true personality shine through.  She buys toys and makes sure that dogs have a toy to help occupy their time, especially the dogs in the shed.  She also makes sure they have water and blankets to snuggle in.  
She has recently taken over the Large Dog walking sheet updates, and she made some nice cosmetic changes. She is always thinking of ways to make their lives easier and happier. She treats the dogs like royalty and makes each dog feel so special. She is always ready to help with the shy, scared dogs in making them feel more comfortable. She participates with the Champs program and helps out with mobile adoptions. She also buys them clothes and harnesses if she thinks they need it. She has recently taken over the Large Dog walking sheet updates, and she made some nice cosmetic changes.  She is always thinking of ways to make their lives easier and happier. She treats the dogs like royalty and makes each dog feel so special. She is always ready to help with the shy, scared dogs in making them feel more comfortable. She participates with the Champs program and helps out with mobile adoptions. She also buys them clothes and harnesses if she thinks they need it.
Andrea knows the dogs so well she is one of those great resources that when a potential adopter comes in and isn't quite sure what they are looking for, Andrea can help them find a match! This ensures that people find the dog they are looking for, but also that some dogs that might not otherwise get seen are getting the attention they deserve!
As if all this wasn't enough, Andrea also spends a lot of her time helping mentor new volunteers to make sure they are comfortable with the process of volunteering and showing them everything they need to know at the shelter.
Thank you Andrea for all that you do! Thank you Andrea for all that you do!

March 2009 - Sally & Shannon Thomas

Sally and Shannon Thomas

Sally and her daughter, Shannon, are fabulous volunteers who work behind the scenes and are not known by many, because they work with the cats at Petsmart. They visit with the cats living at Petsmart weekly to ensure they are socialized, healthy and happy, and they have helped the shy cats come out of their shells. Sally, a vet tech, also ensures the cats are healthy and watches for any signs of illness or stress. Thanks to her and Shannon, some long-time or older cats have gotten adopted.

Recently, Sally also has stepped up to keep the Petsmart program going while the volunteer in charge of Petsmart has been recovering from health issues. Sally has been transporting the cats to Petsmart and serving as an invaluable liaison with the Petsmart staff for any potential medical issues. Thanks to her, the cages at Petsmart are full and when we get adoptions at Petsmart, she fills the cages with new cats. Of course, she and her daughter make sure to love the cats and help them transition to the new environment. Our success rate at Petsmart can be attributed to the love and devotion Sally and Shannon give to our cats. Sally also has become a foster parent to one of MaxFund's older cats who was getting very sad. Thanks to the Thomas house, Sadie now has a place to live. Thank you Sally and Shannon for all that you do. Our kitties thank you too!

February 2009 - Donna Ryan

Donna Ryan

The foster program is one of the reasons that MaxFund has always been great - finding temporary (or permanent) homes for some of the animals that are harder to adopt or need to get out of the shelter for whatever reason - health, behavioral or they just aren't doing well with the noises of the shelter. As the foster coordinator, Donna has a huge responsibility and she's accepted and embraced it! She has maintained a network of over 50 foster families and is always reaching out to existing and new homes to get some animals out of the shelter.

In addition to seeking foster homes she also coordinates with foster families and Dr. Lin to ensure foster animals are seen when necessary, receiving their appropriate shots, etc. Donna also works as an intermediary to ensure potential adopters can get in touch with foster families when necessary to see about meeting the animals. With the help of other volunteers, Donna helps select the animals in need of fostering, modifying their bios and keeping everyone in the loop about who is looking for foster homes, who is in foster, and who's been adopted out of their foster homes. Thank you, Donna, for all that you have given to the older, sick and needy animals at the MaxFund! We are lucky to have you on board!

January 2009 - Stacey Sedbrook

Stacey Sedbrook

Stacey is a dedicated volunteer who cherishes and loves MaxFund’s kitties. Stacey has been a champion and friend especially to the cats with FIV and Felv. She spends countless hours with them and loves them like her own. She also has been very helpful with the frightened kitties. On many occasions, she has been known to have a gentle talk with the cats who need a little extra attention and focus. Stacey has also expanded her role even more by assisting in the foster program for the cats. Thanks to her efforts, many of MaxFund’s older, depressed and sad kitties have found a home. She has even gotten some of the tougher cats -- the Felv -- cats into a home. Because many of the foster cats are older or depressed, Stacey stays in regular contact with the foster parents.

She calls them in the first few nights to make sure the cats have adjusted. Recently, Stacey has assisted in helping to get our cats featured on the Pet of the Week segments on Channel 4. She is working with the producer to enhance the segments even more. I’m sure we’ll see great things from her participation. Not only is Stacey a blessing to the cats, but she is also a wonderful mentor. She is always willing to bake cookies for MaxFund events or just brighten someone’s day with her smile. Thank you, Stacey, for all that you do!!!

Volunteer of the Month Nominations

Volunteers are an integral part of the MaxFund, and we are so thankful for all of you! You have contributed thousands of hours and allowed MaxFund to fulfill its mission. There are some whose efforts are particularly commendable, and we would like to recognize these people. Starting in April, we will celebrate and honor one volunteer each month for his/her exemplary contributions and good work.
Because the staff cannot always see all that volunteers do, we need your help in nominating volunteers. The nominations do not necessarily have to be based on time contributed. Rather, we need your help in recognizing people who go above and beyond, whether that’s clipping cat nails, walking around the neighborhood picking up dog poop, doing laundry for hours or any number of things. If you believe someone should be honored, please use the form below to nominate the person. A committee will choose the winner each month and winners will be posted!

Your Name
Your Email Address
Volunteer you are nominating
Reason for nomination

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