Faculty

dr andersonDr. Cathy Anderson, DVM, MS

Cathy is a 1987 graduate of Michigan State University and completed a master’s degree in shelter medicine through University of Florida in 2017.  She has a certificate in forensic sciences from that institution as well. She is a trainer for Euthanasia by Injection (HSUS course) as well as for Chemical Immobilization.  She also teaches Humane Euthanasia for the University of Florida Shelter Medicine curricula. She currently is the medical director at the animal protection shelter, Adopt a Pet in Fenton, Michigan.  She is the co-founder and president of Pixie’s Animal Welfare Society; an organization that is currently developing a spay/neuter service for rescue groups to serve cats in Jackson, Michigan. She serves as the chairperson of the Legislative Committees of the Michigan Veterinary Medical Association.

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Dr. Jason H. Byrd, Ph.D., D-ABFE

Dr. Jason H. Byrd, Ph.D., D-ABFE

Dr. Byrd is the Associate Director of the William R. Maples Center for Forensic Medicine at the University of Florida’s College of Medicine. At the University of Florida, he instructs courses in forensic science at the University of Florida’s nationally recognized Hume Honors College. He is a Board Certified Forensic Entomologist and Diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Entomology.

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Dr. Louiza Chan, DVM, MBA

Dr. Louiza Chan received her veterinary degree from the University of Sydney, Australia in 2001. She had her first taste of shelter medicine during her externship and voluntary work during vet school. She continued to work with rescue groups and private shelters during her early years in private practice both in Sydney and in Singapore.

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Dr. Aimee Dalrymple, DVM, MS

Dr. Dalrymple has been part of the University of Florida shelter medicine instructional team since 2015. She earned her Master of Science degree in Shelter Medicine in 2018 with a capstone project focused on a case of alleged rescue hoarding. Dr. Dalrymple is a practicing shelter veterinarian in the Boston area. She enjoys the variety and challenges of working in this unique field.

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lacie davis

Lacie Davis, MPA, MS

Lacie earned her Master’s Degree in Veterinary Medical Sciences from the University of Florida with a concentration in Shelter Medicine. She has spent the past 10+ years in various positions within the animal welfare community.

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Dr. Jeff Fortna, DVM, MS

Dr. Jeff Fortna is a seasoned veterinarian with twenty years of animal shelter and clinical experience. He has participated in a variety of shelter programs, services and site-wide assessments in his career. He received his veterinary degree from Michigan State University (2000) followed by the Maddie’s Graduate Certificate in Shelter Medicine (2015) and Master of Science degree in Veterinary Clinical Sciences with a concentration in Shelter Medicine (2016) from the University of Florida. Since completing his post-doctoral education, he has received his Fear Free Shelter Certification and undergone additional training in performing shelter assessments through the University of Florida and Million Cat Challenge.

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Dr. Lawrence Garcia, MS, DVM

Dr. Garcia is a Clinical Assistant Professor in Shelter Medicine and Surgery at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, in the Veterinary Community Outreach Program. He also serves in the Medical Director role for the college’s emergency response team, the Veterinary Emergency Treatment Service (Vets) Team. During his tenure he has participated in disaster response exercises as well as led the team on a state requested field hospital response following hurricane Irma.

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Dr. Emilia Wong Gordon, DVM, DABVP (Shelter Medicine Practice)

Dr. Gordon serves as the Senior Manager, Animal Health for the British Columbia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals where she provides animal health support, training, and oversight to 36 sheltering branches province-wide. She also teaches veterinary students, participates in community partnerships and outreach, and volunteers with several groups focused on animal welfare, One Health, and diversity, equity, and inclusion in veterinary medicine.

Dr. Gordon’s clinical interests include infectious disease (particularly outbreak prevention, investigation, and management), community medicine, internal medicine, and behaviour. She has co-authored several publications on shelter infectious disease and was the lead veterinarian investigating a multi-facility feline gastroenteritis outbreak in 2018 that led to the discovery of a novel feline virus, feline chaphamaparvovirus. Her other research interests and areas of active collaboration include animal welfare epidemiology (particularly factors leading to animal relinquishment and their relationship with human social vulnerability) and shelter feline behaviour and welfare.

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Dr. Leonard (L. A.) King, DVM

Dr. Leonard (L. A.) King, DVM

During the Pandemic of 2020, we lost our dear friend and colleague, Dr. L.A. King.  He was passionate about shelter medicine, teaching, HQHV Spay Neuter, and his rescued pet, “Bandit.”  He was also great fun when he played his guitar and sang for our online faculty members.  Dr. King had a distinguished career in veterinary practice in Texas, scientific research with Texas A & M, completed a surgical residency at Colorado State University, and became associated with the Online Graduate Program in Shelter Medicine from the inception in 2012.  We sorely miss him and so does our profession.  RIP.

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Amy Marder, DVMDr. Amy Marder, DVM, CAAB

Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist, Adjunct Assistant Professor at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University.  Dr. Marder, veterinarian and Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist, through the Animal Behavior Society, is a graduate of the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Veterinary Medicine.

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katie marrie

Dr. Katie Marrie, DVM, MS

Katie Marrie graduated from UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in 2008 and earned her Master of Science degree in Veterinary Medical Sciences with a Concentration in Shelter Medicine in 2020. Katie’s experience in HQHVSN has allowed her to perform over 50,000 spay and neuter surgeries with multiple organizations in Los Angeles including Spay Neuter Project of Los Angeles and the ASPCA. Currently she is the Vice President of Veterinary Medicine at the Santa Barbara Humane Society.

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dr nettle

Dr. Leah Nettle, Ph.D.

Dr. Leah Nettle earned her PhD. in Biology from SUNY Binghamton University focusing on animal behavior, ecology and evolution. She studied the vocal communication of American Crows deciphering the contexts and functions of two crow calls.

Prior to Binghamton University, Dr. Nettle worked in a companion animal veterinary clinic as a veterinary assistant. From 2014 until 2018, she worked with and learned from Dr. Amy Marder, CAAB, a leading expert in the fields of animal shelter and companion animal behavior, attending to a variety of cat and dog behavior problems at appointments in the clients’ homes and in an office setting. She has also taught college-level classes on animal behavior, evolution and introductory biology. Additionally, she has volunteered with animal shelters and rescues in Massachusetts and New York.

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pedaDr. Andrea Peda, DVM, MS

Dr. Andrea Peda has been involved with co-teaching for the UF online Shelter Medicine program since 2017 when she completed her Master’s in Shelter Medicine. She is a 2009 graduate from Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine. She currently resides in St. Kitts and works as a faculty member at Ross University teaching shelter medicine and small animal surgery to preclinical veterinary students. Dr. Peda has a true passion for teaching shelter medicine to students, promoting animal welfare and wellness to the community, and empowering students and community members to help make a difference.

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Dr. Katherine Polak, DVM, MPH, MS, DACVPM, DABVP (Shelter Medicine Practice)

Dr. Katherine Polak is a veterinarian dedicated to improving animal welfare in Southeast Asia, and in limited-resourced communities around the world. She currently serves as the Head of Stray Animal Care – Southeast Asia for FOUR PAWS International, a global animal welfare organization based in Vienna, Austria working to end the suffering of wild, stray, and farm animals.  Dr. Polak currently manages a variety of companion animal programs in Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Vietnam, with a special focus on combating the cruel dog and cat meat trade in the region.  As part of FOUR PAWS international campaign to end the cruel dog and cat meat trade in Southeast Asia, she manages undercover investigations, rescue missions, and lobbying efforts with local and national stakeholders. Prior to working at FOUR PAWS, Dr. Polak was the International Director of Animal Welfare at Soi Dog Foundation in Phuket, Thailand where she launched and managed a large-scale sterilization program for stray dogs in the capital city of Bangkok.

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Caitlin Quinn

Caitlin Quinn, MPA

Caitlin is passionate about working with animal services organizations to reimagine the way they tell their stories and connect with the community. She has served in the animal welfare field since 2008 and is currently the Director of Operations for HeARTs Speak. This national nonprofit works to increase the visibility of shelter animals by providing training, tools, and partnerships designed to make highly effective marketing a reality for organizations of every shape, size, and budget. She has her BA in Writing and her MA in Public Administration and lives in New York state with two dogs who own her heart.

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Dr. Ken Sieranski, DVM, MS

Full biography coming soon!

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Dr. Lisa Shriver, DVM

Dr. Shriver graduated from The Ohio State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 2009.  She is very passionate about learning and sharing knowledge related to the ever-evolving fields of shelter medicine, veterinary forensics, field medicine and access to care for underserved populations. She has been part of the University of Florida shelter medicine instructional team on and off since 2013.

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Dr. Terry G. Spencer, DVM, MEd

Dr. Spencer serves as the Program Director for the University of Florida Online Graduate Program in Shelter Medicine. She advises students who are pursuing the MS Concentration in Shelter Medicine, supervises capstone project research and presentations, and coordinates faculty who are developing new courses and teaching online. She brings a unique background in both science education and veterinary medicine to the program.

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Deborah K. Turcott, Principal, ORIANA Solutions LLC

Full biography coming soon!

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Dr. Merriss Waters, DVM, MS

Dr. Waters has always felt a deep connection with animals and has been volunteering with animal welfare organizations since she was 8 years old. After graduating with honors from veterinary school at UC Davis, and completing her internship, she worked as an emergency and critical care veterinarian at Seattle Veterinary Specialists while also volunteering at local shelters and traveling with non-profit animal welfare organizations.

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Dr. Laurie Wright, DVM

Dr. Laurie Wright, DVM, MS

Dr. Wright is a 1977 graduate of Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine. She spent her early years in private practice as a practice owner in southern Indiana. During those years, she developed an interest in behavior medicine, completing a practitioner sabbatical at the Purdue University Animal Behavior Clinic in 2004 and earning a certificate as a training partner with the Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training and Behavior in 2008.

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