DPA’s Pawsome People: July 2019 Leadership Spotlight

“Andra is one of the most dedicated and professional volunteers I have had the pleasure to work with at DPA. Because of her dedication she took the PASS team to new heights last year and this year she is already making the Animal Operations Team a more engaged and well oiled machine. I am so proud to have her serving as our new Animal Operations VP and I cannot wait to see what she will do with this very critical part of DPA. Her positive and professional attitude make her a joy to work with! Thank you Andra for going above and beyond for DPA and the animals we serve.” -Leslie Sans, DPA!’s Executive Director

What does your role within DPA involve? What do you oversee within the organization?

I have been managing the Positive Alternatives to Shelter Surrender (PASS) team and process for the past, almost, year and a half, working on shelter intake diversion which has been tremendously rewarding. My role recently expanded to also be the Vice President of Animal Operations. I am honored to have a larger role within this amazing organization, and look forward to helping bring the DPA family to be the best we can be!

What is your professional background? 

I spent many years in corporate America in the mortgage banking industry, wanting to climb the corporate ladder. As I climbed towards the top of the ladder, I realized I was not fulfilled no matter how many promotions or titles I got. I have always had a deep love for animals starting from a very young age (as evidenced by these embarrassing photos), and I knew I needed to channel that in a productive way. I finally got fed up with corporate life a couple of years ago, and walked away on my own accord to pursue what I knew in my heart was right for me, saving animals. Life is far too short to be unhappy in your profession, I have no regrets and am thrilled to now dedicate my professional time in a much more meaningful way.

How long have you been involved with the organization? I have been with DPA about 2.5 years. I started out volunteering on the rescue team, wanting to work hands-on with animals at shelters. I did rescue evaluations and dog testing, and saw first-hand the desperate need to address the root cause and slow shelter intake down, hence jumped into the PASS role working to prevent shelter surrenders. Partnering closely with the other DPA teams through PASS, made me realize what a powerful, passionate and dedicated team of volunteers and fosters we have which made me want to get even more involved. 

What drives you to dedicate your time to DPA? Well, of course it started with the desire to save more animals, but I quickly realized it is also largely about our people and DPA as an organization. I am in awe of the time and effort our volunteers, fosters and leaders put into saving lives of Dallas area animals. It is truly humbling and inspiring, and I look forward to helping those efforts in a larger way. Each time we are able to help keep a family together through our PASS program, each foster I see rescue an animal out of a shelter likely saving a life, and each volunteer who CHOOSES to support DPA with their precious time and energy are just a few of the reasons I love DPA. 

Tell us a fun fact about yourself. My second favorite thing in life, after animals of course, is travel. I have been to 25 countries and plan to add lots more to that list. My husband and I are heading to Berlin in August, so will be up to 26 soon!

Be Pawsome like Andra. Apply to be a Dallas Pets Alive! volunteer today!

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