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NAIA Board and Advisory Board

Board Members

NAIA's board members are volunteers from a wide variety of animal fields, including dog and cat associations and sports, animal agriculture, rodeo, medical research, veterinary medicine, wildlife management and hunting associations, entertainment and education. They are distinguished and respected members of their respective communities and serve without compensation in support of NAIA’s mission and goals. We are honored by their service.


Thomas L. Albert, Attorney at Law Thomas L. Albert, Attorney at Law
Tom Albert is Vice President of Government Relations for Feld Entertainment, Inc., parent company of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey ® and the Ringling Bros. Center for Elephant Conservation (CEC) a state-of-the-art breeding and conservation center in Florida, recognized and respected worldwide for their Asian elephant breeding program, the most successful program outside of Asia, with 20 Asian elephant births. Before joining Feld, Mr. Albert was in private practice in Washington, D.C., where he represented wildlife, natural resource, public lands and conservation issues before Congress and various federal and local regulatory bodies. Mr. Albert received his Juris Doctor cum laude from The American University - Washington College of Law.
Dr. Cindy Buckmaster Cindy Buckmaster, PhD, CMAR, RLATG
Dr. Buckmaster is an active and passionate advocate for animal welfare and biomedical progress. She speaks regularly on the necessary role animals play in biomedical progress we continue to demand for ourselves and our animals and she educates audiences internationally about the highly trained Laboratory Animal Science professionals who have dedicated their lives to caring work with research animals and to the animal and human beneficiaries of the results of their work. Dr. Buckmaster completed her doctoral degree in Neurobiology and Behavior at SUNY Stony Brook, and is the Director of the research animal care program at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. She serves on the boards of several research advocacy and professional organizations, including the American Association of Laboratory Animal Science, Americans for Medical Progress and the Texas Society for Biomedical Research. She writes a monthly public outreach column in the journal Lab Animal. Dr. Buckmaster is committed to educating the public on the distinction between animal welfare and animal rights and believes, wholeheartedly, that animals and people cannot survive without each other: she will draw her final breath defending the human-animal bond.
Caren Cowan
Caren Cowan has served as executive director of the New Mexico Cattle Growers’ Association (NMCGA) for more than 19 years. For the seven years previous to that she served in the same position for the New Mexico Wool Growers, Inc. In 2009 Cowan purchased the New Mexico Stockman Magazine and the Livestock Market Digest which she currently publishes.

Cowan’s work for New Mexico’s livestock industry has included representation at the New Mexico Legislature and on Capitol Hill on issues ranging from federal land use to animal health and trade. Additionally, she works directly with state and federal regulatory agencies addressing the needs of agriculture and the livestock industry. She also manages the day to day operations of a statewide trade organization including communication, membership and financial issues.

Cowan was reared on a commercial beef ranch in Cochise County, Arizona, some of which she and her sister still own. She is a graduate of the University of Arizona with a B.S. in agricultural communications.

She writes a monthly column, “To The Point,” in the New Mexico Stockman Magazine. Her book, No Home On The Range --- Diary of an Executive Cowgirl was published in 2003.
Wendy Davis is the Associate Coordinator of the University of Arizona’s Race Wendy Davis
Wendy Davis is the Associate Coordinator of the University of Arizona’s Race Track Industry Program.  Her teaching responsibilities include coursework focusing on the management of racing animals, form and function of race and sport horses, and racing marketing/media – a course that includes a strong animal issue component, including the effect the animal rights organizations have on racing.  Wendy serves on a number of national racing boards and committees including the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit’s Education and Licensing Committee, The Racing Officials Accreditation Program, Groom Elite (an educational program for race track grooms as well as inmates at facilities that care for retired racehorses) and the American Horse Council’s Research Committee. She continues to actively compete in the hunter/jumper discipline, many times with her off-the-track thoroughbreds.
Nancy Fisk, Chair, AKC Delegates Legislative Caucus
Before relocating to the Northern Neck area of Virginia, Nancy was the owner of Wishing Well Kennel, an all-breed boarding kennel located in Massachusetts. She continues to actively breed and show Akitas and Beagles under the kennel name of “Akiko”. She is the AKC Delegate for the Hockamock Kennel Club and a board member and legislative liaison for the Langley Kennel Club in Virginia.

Nancy has also had a long involvement in the horse world. Growing up she enjoyed riding, showing and fox hunting, earning her colors with the Millwood Hunt Club. For many years she and her husband Heath Fisk owned and operated a busy Hunter/Jumper boarding and training stable in Bedford, Massachusetts.

For nearly twenty-eight years Nancy was Director of Riding at the Dana Hall School in Wellesley, Massachusetts which catered to students from the school and the local community, as well as many Boston area colleges. Students from the school successfully competed at the “A” level horse show competitions throughout the Northeast. Though retired from the horse world she has carried her devotion to the human-animal bond forward into her very active life involving dogs.


Arnold L. Goldman DVM, MS, MPH
Dr. Arnold L. Goldman owns Canton Animal Hospital LLC in Canton, CT and is president of the Connecticut Veterinary Medical Foundation. He developed the CTSART disaster response program and the Companions-in-Crisis domestic violence program. Since 2004 Dr. Goldman has served on a variety of emergency preparedness and response committees, task forces and work groups at the local, state and national levels. He also serves on the board of directors of the National Alliance of State Animal & Agricultural Emergency Programs, Americans for Medical Progress, and is currently the AVMA Delegate from Connecticut.

Dr. Goldman was instrumental in passage of Connecticut Public Act 07-11, mandating evacuation of household pets in disasters. For this accomplishment the Connecticut Veterinary Medical Association named Dr. Goldman 2008 Veterinarian-of-the-Year. In 2011 he led the passage of Connecticut Public Act 11-187, which gave the Connecticut Department of Agriculture control over the burgeoning animal importation industry.

Dr. Goldman is a graduate of the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and is a life member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. He speaks frequently on a variety of issues regarding animal welfare and veterinary medicine.

Dr. Betsy Greene
Dr. Greene is a Professor of Animal Science and Extension Equine Specialist in the Animal Science Department at the University of Vermont. She teaches several courses related to equine science, and also works as an adviser to undergraduate students. She has authored several publications focusing on preventative care and maintenance for horse health, safety, equine business, and pasture management, and recently received the Equine Science Award from the American Association of Animal Science and Equine Science Society.

In 2010, Dr. Greene was one of four chosen to participate in the American Horse Protection Association Independent Observer Pilot Program pursuant to their mission to protect and preserve America's wild horses and burros on US public range lands and to insure the humane care and handling of animals removed from the range by Bureau of Land Management contractors and personnel. She presented outcomes at the 2011 International Society of Equitation Sciences meetings held in the Netherlands.


Dr. Marty Greer, DVM, JD, NAIA Board Chair
Dr Greer has run the Veterinary Village Small Animal Clinic in Wisconsin since 1982, and International Canine Semen Bank-Wisconsin/Illinois since 2002. She works extensively with clients who breed and compete with their dogs. She frequently lectures on canine reproduction and published “Canine Reproduction and Neonatology”, a book for veterinary professionals and breeders.   In 2010, Dr. Greer completed her JD at Marquette University and is involved with Animal Legal Resources LLC. She has served on the Wisconsin Veterinary Examining Board and AVMA Judicial Council. 
Sheila Kessler, Attorney
Sheila Kessler is an attorney at Animal Legal Resources, LLC where she specializes in animal owner’s rights and legal defense. She is the AKC legislative liaison for both the Great Lakes Pug Club and the Pug Dog Club of America and is a member of the board of directors for the Russian Toy Club of America. She is active in her local community where she is president of the Portage County Bar Association, president of the Humane Society of Portage County and past member of the Stevens Point School Board. Sheila was instrumental in the formation and adoption of policies at the Humane Society of Portage County that protect the welfare of animals that recognize and protect owner’s rights. She provides continuing education programs for local humane officers and humane society staff.
Patte Klecan
Patte Klecan has had a lifelong interest in animals. Today she is involved in canine legislation and the movement to protect pet owners rights. Patte is a dog fancier who raises and shows Bouvier des Flandres and owns a professional grooming business.
Jack McDaniel
Jack McDaniel has been involved with animals and farming for a great part of his life. Originally a farmer and rancher, he then moved onto dogs, forming the Academy of Canine Behavior in Bothell, Washington. The Academy has had over 77,000 dogs through its doors, 30 employees, and continues to grow. He has authored two books with his wife dealing with real world solutions to dog behavior issues (Pooches and Small Fry, Parenting Skills for Dogs and Kids). He has also raised Quarter Horses and competed in cutting horse events. Jack has long had an interest in Animal Welfare based on reasonable laws, and served on the board of the Grant County, WA Humane Society for several years. He also just completed a nine year position on the Snohomish County WA Animal Advisory Board, has been an AKC Delegate for the IWSCA, and served as that club's President in the past.
Paul Mundell
Paul is the CEO of Canine Companions for Independence, a national nonprofit organization that breeds, raises and trains assistance dogs for people with disabilities. Paul joined Canine Companions in 1989 as an instructor, training assistance dogs after receiving a BA from Haverford College and attending graduate school at Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Germany. Paul has continued his educational excellence and grown professionally to be one of the most highly regarded practitioners in his field of applied animal genetics and breeding. Additionally, Paul is a consultant for the United States Marine Corps (USMC) assisting in a project to develop specialized search dogs that will remotely detect improvised explosive devices in a tactical environment. He also provides the USMC with expertise in the selection, training, conditioning and deployment of dogs for this purpose.
Margaret Poindexter
Margaret Poindexter is an attorney with Stanley & Poindexter, PLLC. She serves Chairman and President of the Foundation for Shackleford Horses, Inc., the nonprofit designated as the co-manager, together with the National Park Service, of the herd of wild horses that live on Shackleford Banks in the Cape Lookout National Seashore. She previously served as Vice President and General Counsel of the American Kennel Club, with responsibility for its Compliance Division, including the Inspections & Investigations Department, and its Government Relations Division. She is a contributor to DN Magazine. She holds a BA in political science from the University of North Carolina and a JD from the University of Tennessee.
Julian Prager
NAIA’s Legal Analyst and Legislative Coordinator, has helped us in countless ways during his service, acting as an advisor on numerous legal and legislative issues, analyzing legislation, drafting amendments when necessary, helping draft model legislation and speaking at conferences. In addition to his valuable role at NAIA, Julian is a Bulldog breeder and exhibitor, an AKC Delegate and judge who is licensed as an attorney in NY.   He has been a Counselor for the Bulldog Club of America, a member of the PA Dog Law Advisory Board and worked as a member of the National Policy Staff in the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service in USDA as a subject matter expert on dogs under the Animal Welfare Act. Julian serves as the Legislative Chairman for the Pennsylvania Federation of Dog Clubs where his leadership was a key ingredient in gaining reasonable changes in the Pennsylvania Dog Law. In his professional career he held several Commissioner-level positions in NYC government and was the General Counsel and Executive Director of New York City Animal Care and Control, where he negotiated an agreement with the Mayor's Alliance for NYC Animals to reduce euthanasia rates and increase placement rates by the City. In its fourth year as a Maddie's Fund project, this effort has increased adoptions by 96% and reduced total deaths by 49% from the base year. He has been a panel member at the Animal Law Conference of the PA Bar Institute. Julian's unique background makes him a tremendous asset to NAIA where he offers advice on a range of very complex and specialized issues.
Barbara Reichman
Barbara Reichman, NAIA's Shelter Project Director, has been working on NAIA’s Shelter Project since its inception. The Shelter Project is a work in progress; finding, collecting and entering shelter data from shelters and rescues across the country. It is the largest database of its kind, and the only free source of shelter data information that is available to policymakers, the media, and the public. She acquired her first well-bred Golden Retriever over twenty years ago and serves as the Legislative Chair for the Golden Retriever Club of America In addition, she is the Legislative Liaison for Schooley’s Mountain Kennel Club and the Garden State Golden Retriever Club. She is the first two-time recipient of the Walter Bebout Memorial Award given by the American Kennel Club’s Government Relations Department, "For Leadership in Canine Legislation", receiving it in 2014 and 2017. Barbara represents NAIA on the New Jersey Outdoor Alliance.
Cindy Schonholtz
Cindy is the General Manager of the St. Paul, Oregon PRCA Rodeo, the Nation’s Greatest 4th of July Rodeo.  She joined the St. Paul Rodeo team on May 1, 2017 as their first general manager. Her prior experience included 19 years with Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) in various capacities. She served as the President/CEO of the Justin Cowboy Crisis Fund, a non-profit dedicated to providing need-based financial assistance to injured rodeo athletes and their families.  Additionally she was the Director of Industry Outreach where networked with other agriculture and animal use groups and managed the PRCA’s government relations program. She worked extensively on the PRCA's award winning Livestock Welfare Program insuring the proper care and handling of livestock at PRCA sanctioned events.  
In addition to serving on the board of the National Animal Interest Alliance, Cindy is the President of the Animal Welfare Council and is a member of the Public Policy Committee for the American Quarter Horse Association. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. 
Dr. John Richard Schrock
Richard is a Roe R. Cross Distinguished Professor and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Biological Sciences at Emporia State University where he continues to serve on graduate faculty. After teaching high school biology for 10 years, he earned his doctorate in entomology from the University of Kansas. He directed the biology teacher training program at E.S.U. from 1986 to 2016 and is editor of the Kansas School Naturalist and Kansas Biology Teacher. He spends substantial time assisting teacher training programs in a China that is undergoing modernization. He defends appropriate animal use in education, working with researchers and school administrators, as well as providing commentaries in newspapers and on radio. He is author of several books including Controlled Wildlife: State Wildlife Regulations.
Sharon Steckler, Attorney at Law and CPA, NAIA Secretary
Sharon is a licensed attorney in Texas, as well as a Certified Public Accountant. She is a member of the Fort Bend County Bar Association and is admitted to practice before the US Tax Court. As a long time animal welfare advocate, Sharon was a founder of the Houston Animal Welfare Coalition, and a spokesperson and advocate for the rights of responsible animal owners. Sharon is a member of numerous AKC clubs, where she serves in board and officer positions, including the American Boxer Club.
Patti Strand, NAIA President
Patti is a recognized expert and consultant on contemporary animal issues, most notably responsible dog ownership and the animal rights movement. She often appears on radio and television and her articles on canine issues, animal welfare, public policy and animal rights have appeared in major US news publications and in trade, professional and scientific journals. Patti and her husband Rod co-authored The Hijacking of the Humane Movement: Animal Extremism in 1993, the first US book exposing the extremism of the animal rights movement. Patti has been a Dalmatian breeder and enthusiast since 1969, is an approved AKC judge and was a member of the AKC Board of Directors from 1995 through 2011. She holds a degree in political science from Portland State University.
Ellen Yamada
Ellen Yamada has been actively involved in various phases of dogs for over 45 years. Using her background in genetics she has bred over 78 champions with several best in shows, top producers, national specialty winners and number one standard schnauzers.

Ellen has been in the trenches fighting animal rights extremism in California from the beginning. She travels abroad with her husband Burt and has been struck by the effect animal rights has had on legislation in various countries.

In addition to raising dogs and kids, Ellen has been a real estate investor, custom home builder and farm manager. She has also written many articles for The AKC Gazette, Dog News, Canine Chronicle and breed publications. Her BA was from UCLA and her MS from Cal State University SB.





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