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Employee Spotlight: Connie Howard, Relationship Manager

Name:

Connie Howard

Job title:

Relationship Manager

Current pets:

Lola (10-year-old Boxer) and Tucker (1-year-old Pointer mix)

How long have you worked at Michelson Found Animals?

I started in August 2017 as a temporary hire and went permanent on October 1.

What do you do at Michelson Found Animals?

Being a Relationship Manager means I work with animal welfare groups to start using our microchip program and registry. I also work with existing partners to build a stronger chipping program.

What is your average workday like?

I work from home and travel to see partners. I spend a lot of time researching potential partners and then contacting them to educate them about our programs.

What is your professional background?

I have an Animal Science degree and started out working with horses and then went to work in animal welfare in 1982.

What attracted you to this position?

In my last position, I became very familiar with Found Animals as the industry disrupter. The advent of Found Animals has lowered microchip pricing and increased access to registration of animals into a system that works to reunite pets and their families. I love that we are breaking down the barriers to pets getting home.

What’s your first memory of animal welfare or animal rescue?

I started working in animal welfare in 1982 when overpopulation was rampant and euthanasia was the only tool to combat it. I am proud that when I started in New England, a group of us built a system of programs that altered the face of animal welfare to this day. No more overpopulation in New England!

What do you wish other people knew about Michelson Found Animals?

We are changing the world and don’t ever doubt it.

What are some of your strongest beliefs about animal welfare?

It is more important to be kind and generous to people than anything else you do. Be kind to those that you provide service to and especially kind to those that are experiencing challenges in their lives. The mantra “Most people are good” is so true.

When I was at the Humane Society of Boulder Valley, I implemented a policy that all who entered our building were first thanked for coming in, no matter the reason. This one policy changed everything for us! Be kind to those who work with you and for you. Be generous with your time and knowledge and it will come back to you in so many unexpected ways.

What would you tell someone who is thinking about getting involved in animal welfare?

If you are an optimist and believe in people you will be good at the job. Animals depend on us and it isn’t enough to just love animals. It is also easier if you are an extrovert. You can do it if you are an introvert, but you must make sure you have time to recharge yourself, ‘cause the animals need you to work with LOTS of people to protect them.

What else can you tell me about animal welfare?

It has changed dramatically in the 30-plus years I have been working in it. The issues that we will face in the next 20 years will be in some ways even more challenging than the early years.

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