Billie Smith - Executive Director
Billie with Topaz
Therapy work has been very different this year now that I am back to two therapy dogs. Each of them, just as the ones I had in the past, have their own little niche in therapy work. Topaz remains rock-solid and very content just being with the elderly and doing hospice visits. Haven, on the other hand, finds that venue a bit boring and likes to go where there’s a little more action. She’s proven to be very good in all venues, but she does have her favorites. I hope to have the opportunity to work her at the Denver airport in the next year or so. I love the airport setting and have witnessed such awesome scenes at LAX, Reno, DIA and Albuquerque. People really are drawn to the dogs and even the people just sitting there watching the dogs get petted are smiling. Therapy dogs are in 43 American and international airports now. I find it hard to believe that the only places we had to visit 24 years ago were hospitals and nursing homes. We are literally everywhere now. The board of directors will be putting some emphasis on marketing this next year to help get the Alliance of Therapy Dogs name out, and I’m sure we will hear from many other parties wanting therapy teams to visit in their facilities. I find it interesting that in the last couple of months we have had several requests (even here in podunk Cheyenne, WY!) for therapy teams to go to work places for employee stress relief. Just another sign of the limitless opportunities that lie ahead for all of us. Keep up the good work that all of you are doing in your communities, it is sooooooooooo appreciated by those you serve. ATD also appreciates all the hours that each and every one of you have given in 2016 and wishes you all the best for a new 2017. God bless, stay healthy and let us know if you need anything from the office end; we are always here to help.
Adriana Boyer - Office Staff
Adriana stealing Topaz
Hi, everyone! My name is Adriana Boyer. I just recently became part of the ATD family. I currently do not own a dog due to allergy reasons. I do have a dog at work, Topaz, who belongs to Billie, but she needs to come live at my house. I have a daughter who loves Chihuahuas because they fit inside purses. In one or two years, my family and I plan to adopt one. We just can’t decide if it will be a Siberian Husky or a Chihuahua. As a child I was around dogs all the time. We had Lobo and Chocolate, our black Labs. Lobo was the first and best pet ever. I believe animals are like children, they need love and care 24/7. It’s a great thing what you members of ATD are doing: helping others by sharing their loved ones.
Tia Fitzgerald - Office Staff
Tia with Tugg
Hello, my name is Tia Fitzgerald. I have been a part of ATD since last fall and I love it! I live in a small apartment so unfortunately I cannot have a dog of my own, instead I have a cat named Gatsby who plays fetch, walks on a leash and acts much like a dog. I also spend a lot of time with my parents’ dog, Tugg. We are working with Tugg so that he will hopefully be a therapy dog soon. I love dogs and take every opportunity to dog sit for friends and family. I can’t wait to have my own dog and be able to bond with him/her the way our ATD members do with their own dogs!