Paige Mazzoni joined Canine Companions for Independence as CEO in 2018 and brings more than 25 years of professional experience, concentrated in corporate strategy and management, strategic initiative development and marketing implementation, including directing product and company positioning.
Anne Gittinger became involved with Canine Companions because she strongly believed in the mission—a marriage of excellent dog breeding and commitment to helping people with disabilities—and saw an opportunity to further the work of the organization.
Keith Edwards joined Canine Companions in 2022 as the chief financial officer to lead the financial strategy and financial operations of the organization. He brings more than 25 years of professional experience that spans across all aspects of auditing, accounting, reporting and financial management, from positions within both the for-profit and nonprofit sectors.
Barbara Barrow first joined Canine Companions for Independence in December 2011 as the Executive Director of the Southwest Region. Under Barbara’s leadership, the Southwest Region’s operating income grew from $3 million in 2012 to over $5 million in 2016. In March 2017, Barbara assumed her current role as chief development officer and is responsible for shaping the organization’s overall fundraising strategy.
Barrie Graham was an early and fervent admirer of Canine Companions and became involved with the organization in the 1990’s while working at Exchange Bank. Although active with other non-profits providing services to people with disabilities, Canine Companions’ unique focus in teaming dogs with people with disabilities appealed to Barrie.
Dr. Brenda Kennedy joined Canine Companions as their national veterinarian in 2014 and was promoted to her current position as the director of canine health and research in 2016 – a role that combines her passion for research with her love of veterinary medicine.
Jeanine Konopelski joined Canine Companions in 2006, leading the organization’s marketing and public relations efforts. Jeanine manages the overall Canine Companions brand marketing strategy, with the core objective to engage more people in Canine Companions’ mission. She oversees the creation and execution of integrated marketing campaigns and programs to grow, mobilize and steward the broad and diverse family of Canine Companions stakeholders.
Dawn Gatley joined our team as the director of human capital in 2019 and brings more than 20 years of human resources experience within privately-held and public Fortune 100 and 500 companies. Her career began as an HRIS specialist and has grown over the years in various roles including HR consultant, HR manager and HR director.
Melinda began her career with Canine Companions in April 2004. She has held multiple roles during her time with the organization including helping individuals and families through the application process and working with our staff to provide ongoing support to graduates to ensure quality partnerships.