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Meet the Board of Directors

Introductions are important. 

Jacqueline F., President, Board Member


A passion for animals goes back to Jacqui's early years.  In fact, she was told that she had a late start in speaking and the doctor had recommended getting a dog or cat to help. She's been told she hasn't stopped speaking since.  😂

Today Jacqui and her husband Tim have 2 Old English Sheepdogs (OES) that were adopted through OES rescue groups as well as 2 adopted cats.  Grown and living on their own are 2 sons and a daughter.  The most recent excitement in their lives is that they have just become grandparents for the first time.

Jacqui grew up and lived in the Valley area of Syracuse and is a graduate of Corcoran High School.  She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Hartwick College in Oneonta, NY.  Having taken an early retirement from her position in the computer software industry, She volunteered with a number of local shelters before finally settling in at AAGS.  It wasn't long before she was named the Chairperson for the LEGUP Program as well as the Volunteer Committee Coordinator.  2018-2020, Jacqui also served as the Vice President of AAGS.   


Katie Y., Vice President, Board Member

Katie started volunteering for AAGS in early 2020 and became a board member several months later. She believes fundraising is an integral part of collaborating with the animal welfare community and has helped organize events for this purpose.


After starting out working in a veterinary clinic at the age of 14, Katie continued on in that field for over 10 years; working in a handful of other clinics in both NJ and here in upstate NY. She also has spent time working in retail stores such as Petco, managed a dog grooming facility, and ran kennels for the Seeing Eye for the blind. Today, Katie is working on her Master's of Animal Science and Behavior degree after recently receiving a BS in Environmental Science. She hopes to use her education in a career in animal nutrition.


Katie lives in Baldwinsville with her husband and two daughters. She also has three pitbulls, four cats, two turtles, three rats and a fish. She currently runs Three Dogs Soap Company, which donates 10 percent of its proceeds to AAGS. 


Donna C., Treasurer, Board Member and Founding Member

Donna became the second President of AAGS in 2012, acting in that capacity for 8 years. She has also been the Treasurer of the organization since its inception.

Prior to her AAGS involvement, Donna and her husband Pat both served on the board of directors of the Central New York Cat Coalition. They have since retired from active rescue to care for their unadoptable kitties.

Sarah A., Secretary, Board Member

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Sarah joined the AAGS Board of Directors during the summer of 2021. She's had a love of animals ever since she was 5 years old and  became inconsolable watching an episode of "Lassie" when a group of piglets became trapped in a burning barn (rest easy - they were rescued!) Previously, she has worked for Stack Veterinary Hospital on Onondaga Hill and the Veterinary Medical Center, both as Client Care Representatives. 


After flip-flopping between having an arts career or pursuing veterinary medicine as a LVT, the arts won out. She received her Masters of Arts Administration from Le Moyne College in 2017 with a focus on Fundraising and Development. Even though she no longer is part of the veterinary field, her passion for animal advocacy, shelter adoption, and helping injured and homeless animals never diminished.  She is currently the Grant Writer for the Everson Museum of Art. Besides working with AAGS, she is also the Lighting Designer at CNY Playhouse and the Production Stage Manager and Lighting Designer for Thanasis Theater Company. At home, she is always greeted by her loving husband Gregg and two cats Annie and Mully. 


Leah S., Board Member

Leah joined the Board of Directors of AAGS in February 2019.  She has always had a strong passion for animals. Growing up in Manlius, she is a proud graduate of Fayetteville-Manlius High School, who achieved a BS and a BA from Binghamton University (Summa Cum Laude) in 2001.  She went on to graduate from Syracuse University College of Law (Cum Laude) in 2004 and worked for 3 years in the legal field. 

Having worked for veterinarians since the age of 16, providing in-home animal care and teaching horseback riding, she left corporate America, and currently owns and operates the Dog Gone Inn Doggie Daycare ( in Manlius.  There she offers daycare, overnights, training, grooming and foster care.


She is the founder/president of DGI Paws, an all-breed dog/cat rescue (, and a regional coordinator for the New York region of IMPS (Internet Miniature Pinscher Service She also organizes fundraising events, teaches and trains at SOTC (Syracuse Obedience Training Club www.SOTC.Info), where her dogs are titled and trained in obedience, lure coursing and agility.  She also visits nursing homes with her dogs that have their canine good citizenship certificates and is a behaviorist with IAABC (International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants  Her pets have included fish, reptiles, bunnies, ferrets, cats, birds, and dogs from 3 pounds to 150 pounds.  Leah is certified by the Red Cross in pet first aid, disaster relief and a canine good citizenship evaluator.  It is all these passions that drive her to help better the lives of animals through volunteering. 


Karen A., Board Member and Founding Member

Karen is a founding member of the Animal Alliance and also a founding member of the CNY Cat Coalition.  She is foster mom to numerous cats, dogs, etc.

In addition to being a participant in the Court Observer program, Karen is a representative to the CNY Animal Cruelty Task Force.


Mary-Ann D., Board Member - Events Coordinator

Mary-Ann joined the AAGS’ Board of Directors in early 2020 after volunteering the year before.  Her merchandising skills from her retail management days found a new purpose in the fundraising activities of this non profit organization. 

Mary-Ann has a Bachelor of Science degree from SUNY Brockport and grew up on Oneida Lake in Bridgeport, N.Y.

Today, Mary-Ann is in the corporate world of investment banking at BNY Mellon. She calls Syracuse her home where you will find her enjoying her large backyard with her husband Tim and fur baby, Abby.   Being a rescue from New Mexico, Abby joins the ranks of many rescue dogs that have incredible stories of how they found their way into her family and her heart. She also has two sons who are now grown and on their own, living out their dreams. 

Animal Alliance of Greater Syracuse Financial Reports

Animal Alliance of Greater Syracuse is committed to organizational financial transparency. Our nonprofit financial information may be viewed using this link from GuideStar at:


Please feel welcome to contact the board with any questions, comments or concerns.

Board members may be reached by emailing us at

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