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Michigan Pet Fund Alliance's 2018 No Kill conference,  Getting to the Goal will be held September 27-28 in  Kalamazoo at the Radisson Plaza Hotel.

The full conference agenda is here

Best Friends beige
Best Friends Animals Society, a Miracle Maker level sponsor, will be holding their Midwest Regional Leadership  Summit as well.

Best Friends, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, operates the nation's largest sanctuary for homeless animals and provides adoption, spay/neuter, and educational programs.  

Sessions conducted by Best Friends staff are open to all registered conference attendees. They include: 

Midwest Region Overview: Best Friends No Kill 2025 Goal 
presented by Tawny Hammond, Jose Ocáño, and Marc Peralta - Hear from Best Friends Animal Society's regional leadership on the status of the No Kill 2025 campaign. Get most recent lifesaving data updates on the nation, regions and states. Learn what you can do to help be part of the bigger picture as well as your community. It takes a village to SAVE THEM ALL!

Midwest Success Stories: Leadership from Around the Midwest States  moderated by Tawny Hammond -  Leaders from around the Midwest Region will share their inspiring and lifesaving success stories and real-life examples from successful collaboration, coalition building, problem solving, programmatic changes, data driven decisions, pilot programs and innovation. 

No Kill: What Does It Mean and How Do You Message It presented by Tawny Hammond - For some people the term "No Kill" can be confusing and controversial. The term has been used in animal welfare circles for over two decades now and not always in a positive way. Although there currently appears to be much less push back within and outside animal welfare circles, it still can be divisive for some people. Attendees will learn what the term "No Kill" means, how it is achieved and what language might be better utilized depending upon your audience. 

The Benefits of  Coalition and Steering Committees presented by Tawny Hammond and Marc Peralta - Coalitions and Steering Committees are a great way to bring together stakeholders in communities, states and regions for creating plans to save pets dying in animal shelters. Who makes a good steering committee or coalition member, who should lead, how do you start a coalition or steering committee, how often should they meet, what is appropriate for the agenda and is a charter helpful in the beginning? We'll discuss this and look at some real-life examples in various stages of development and successes.

Presenters for these sessions are: 

Tawny Hammond
Tawny Hammond
Tawny Hammond, the Director for the Midwest Region with Best Friends Animal Society, and the former Chief of Animal Services for the City of Austin Texas, has over 30 years of experience in the public service arena; creating and implementing programs and services for people and their pets, working effectively with appointed and elected officials, and creating and leading teams focused on professional excellence and best practices.

Tawny currently leads the No Kill efforts in the Midwest working closely with communities and organizations to end the killing of pets in animal shelters throughout the Midwest Region by facilitating lifesaving programming, policies, procedures and partnerships. Tawny has a proven track record of success, serving for more than 25 years in municipal government in Fairfax County, Virginia and bringing the Fairfax County Animal Shelter to 90% live outcome in less than two years by removing breed restrictions, growing a robust volunteer program, establishing a cutting-edge foster program for the dogs losing their lives, strengthening the community cats programs and establishing the animal shelter as a community center for residents of Fairfax.

Under Tawny's leadership, Austin and Travis County Texas, reached a new milestone in 2017: achieving live outcomes for 98% of the more than 17,000 animals who came through the doors. For the majority of Tawny's career, she facilitated leadership programs for professionals and community organizations as well as focusing on building dynamic teams, professional development and succession planning. Tawny is devoted to ending killing of homeless pets as a form of population control, and believes that how we treat pets and their people is connected to social justice, community wellness and our compassion as a society.

Tawny, her spouse, Amy, and their dog Rosie live in Traverse City, Michigan where they enjoy recreating in the beautiful Michigan outdoors.

José Ocáño
José Ocáño 
Tucson native José Ocáño spent the first decade of his career working for Pima Animal Care Center (PACC) in Tucson, Arizona. He started as a shelter technician at the open-admission shelter, which took in more than 30,000 pets each year. After he spent his first day on the job euthanizing dozens of saveable pets, José considered leaving animal welfare, but he decided to stay and work for change at the county facility.
During his tenure, José focused on community engagement and implementing progressive, lifesaving adoption, rescue and volunteer programs to increase live outcomes and decrease intake, which has declined to 18,000 pets per year. In his last role at PACC, as Executive Director, José helped launch a Pet Support Center and overhaul the shelter's medical operations which pushed the open-admission shelter's save rate to the 90 percent it is today. 

Last year, José joined Best Friends Animal Society as its new Pacific Regional Director. In this role, he will oversee the NKLA initiative and work with shelters in California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and Hawaii to help them achieve no-kill by 2025.

Marc Peralta
Marc Peralta is the Senior Director of Regional Programs for Best Friends Animal Society where he heads up leadership, coalition building and lifesaving execution for groups and shelters in key regions of the United States to increase lifesaving results to and above a 90% save rate for said regions. Prior to this move, Marc served as the executive director for Best Friends Animal Society-Los Angeles where he led Best Friends program operations in Los Angeles. In 2011, Los Angeles was struggling to save just over half of the cats and dogs entering city shelters, and under Marc and Best Friends' leadership, L.A. is on target to meet the threshold of a no-kill city, reaching a 90 percent save rate by the end of 2017. Marc's duties as executive director included operations for the Best Friends' Pet Adoption Center in Mission Hills, California, the NKLA Pet Adoption Center in West Los Angles as well as leading the 119 group and growing NKLA coalition. Marc also served as vice president and chief operating officer as well as interim CEO at the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PSPCA) located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In addition to his duties at the Pennsylvania SPCA, Marc also served as a member of the board of directors for the Animal Care and Control Team of Philadelphia. Prior to the PSPCA, Marc worked in animal care manager roles at the Nevada Humane Society in Reno, Nevada and the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Full conference information including schedule, speakers, sessions, sponsors and accommodations can be found here

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About Michigan Pet Fund Alliance 
The single mission of Michigan Pet Fund Alliance is to stop the killing of healthy and treatable homeless cats and dogs in Michigan shelters. 
MPFA is an all-volunteer organization collaborating with shelter and rescue organizations to achieve No Kill through training, technical  assistance,
 education and advocacy.
For more information: 
877-FUR-PALS  (877-387-7257)
Michigan Pet Fund Alliance is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization
 as defined by the IRS (EIN 20-0399162) and is a recipient of the 

Guidestar Gold

 Contributions are tax deductible. 

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