Being an animal lover for as long as she can remember, and making news headlines at the age of 10 for leading a flock of geese and their babies back to water down a main road, Laura was always the one that people would call to help with animals – lost, injured or even to pet sit.
Doing volunteer rescue/cruelty work in Detroit for over 15 years, Laura learned alot about “street” animals, their owners and shelter animals. Learning to handle animals, both tame and aggressive, communicating with pet owners, properly restraining, rescuing and cruelty investigations were just some of the reasons that interested her to keep volunteering. Learning about the veterinarian care that was needed,and seeing how shelters functioned was what fascinated her into wanting to do more – to make things better for pet owners.
Realizing that the common denominator for animals living on the streets or in homes where money was tight, was all the same, Laura began conducting a fundraiser to raise money for vaccines and pet food. It was important to her to have animals stay with their owners when times were tough, versus being put into shelters where she saw the euthanasia rates sky-rocket.
Laura’s career working in Advertising, Radio, and the Detroit Tigers along with holding positions as a Development Director and Marketing and Communications Manager gave her the skillset to create a non-profit organization. She left Corporate America in 2011 to begin this journey and has not looked back.
With grant funding and community support, Laura moved the pet food assistance out of her garage and into the first store front in 2011. Within a year, the Wellness Center for Affordable Preventative Pet Care opened – offering vaccination services to anyone, regardless of income level, without needing to “qualify”. The goal is to open a second Wellness Center in 2021 along with bringing back spay/neuter services.
A lifelong resident of the City of Livonia, Laura is a single mom of three adult boys and shares her home with 3 cats and 2 dogs.