Hitting the ground running!
As I reflect on 2018, I realize how many changes we have gone through, and how we have grown as an organization. We have a new location for our training facility, new trainers and board members, and puppies! We have had challenges this past year, but it has been a year of learning and growing. I look forward to 2019 being our best year yet!
There are many people to thank for their part in helping VSD become a successful and up and coming nonprofit. Zach and Austin have been an amazing team, focusing on website development and client care. They have been instrumental in helping to put procedures in place and the daily operations.
And then there is Kenny…. what can I say about him! He puts heart and soul into his efforts as our board vice president. He shows up for news interviews and has brought in substantial financial support. We are so grateful for his role in the organization.
I want to give a shout out to our other board members as well. Vinny Maffia has been deployed to Afghanistan since October. He had a critical role putting together VSD’s first graduation, postponing his departure until after the ceremony. We look forward to having him back!
James Smith, one of our first graduates and board member, is someone else who puts heart and soul into his efforts. He and Marlita have been a huge help coordinating our volunteers and helping at events. James is now our director of placements. He is doing a great job matching pups and clients.
We are excited to welcome new board members, Dax Presuto, Janet Bennett, and Jessica Morin. Dax is serving as our interim board president until he departs in June. Janet is our new events coordinator and Jessica is volunteer coordinator. We appreciate each and every volunteer and supporter, even if they do not serve in an official capacity. All of you make important contributions and we are truly grateful.
We are blessed to have some of the best trainers in town! Mike Smith, Brian Hicks, Ciera Wilson, and Lisa Lima. They bring vast experience, solid training methods, and a passion for VSD’s mission.
Mike Smith is our head trainer, and we are very fortunate to have him in that very crucial position. He has many years’ experience in all aspects of dog training and is CGC certified. He has done a great job getting our training program in shape!
We are so happy to be in our new facility and am pleased to report that our Grand Opening was a huge success. There were over 200 attendees, and our silent auction was an amazing fundraiser for us. We are ready to hit the ground running, forging ahead as we continue to provide help to our amazing and deserving veterans. There are also plans in the works to reach out to first
responders as well.
Thanks to all! God bless you and our great country and veterans.