Morgan Grote, Social Media Coordinator

# of Dogs: Bindi my rescue from CACC & Bodhi our foster from DADR

You can’t change the world by rescuing an animal, but you save that animal’s world.

I fell in love with this pit bull a few years back, he was so gentle and obviously adorable. The big old heads get me every time!! He is what sparked my interest in the breed, and I began searching online for dogs. I knew I wanted to rescue one, and that is when I called CACC. I was sent a link to a few dogs, and one happened to catch my eye… that would be my girl Bindi! When we got to CACC they told us she was adopted and then returned for aggression (mind you she was under 1 years old & nothing but a puppy with no manners). We took the leap of faith and walked out the doors with our new baby girl. Here we are two years later, and I wouldn’t change a thing!!


Kathy Kissane-Knapik, Transport Coordinator

Kathy bio# of Dogs: 1
Message to share: “You wish people didn’t have such a cavalier attitude towards their pets…they are not throw away items!”

Kathy got into rescue several years ago when she came across a rescue group helping the dogs from Michael Vick’s dogfighting bust. “I happened to see that a Shar Pei was passing through the area and they needed help to transport

the dog. So I did it. Afterwards, I thought, ‘That was fun!'” Interested in helping on a regular basis, Kathy checked out several rescue groups and found a group who came through her area on the days and times when she could help. She sign up and now she’s hooked! “Yep, it’s the Church of the Holy Puppies every Sunday for me. I move about 5-6 dogs each Sunday. It’s just so sad, you do what you can.” Kathy drives Mobile Mutts–moving dogs from high kill shelters.

Kathy got involved with DADR when Jana asked her to foster. But it was a short foster. In just one day, the dog was adopted. “But I liked her!” Kathy said to Jana. “Well, I have her sister…” Jana replied. And so it began. Now Jade, the Cane Corso + Pit Bull mix, is a bit over a year old and has eaten about $10,000 worth of stuff. Kathy had a pit bull who passed away not long ago. “Such great dogs. I did my research when my son first brought her home”.

Kathy is sometimes disheartened, like last week when she saw a 14-year old pregnant dog dropped in a high kill shelter. “I wish I knew how to change people’s attitudes, but I don’t. We just need to do more spay/neuters.” On the bright side, “when you know that you helped a dog find the right home…you just get so happy!”


Liz Mayer, Grant Coordinator

Dogs are deserving rescue grant coordinator

# of Dogs: 2 Pit Bulls- Mae (a 4-year-old shelter dog) and Duke (a DADR foster fail!)
Message to share:  “I’m hoping through grants that we can have a lasting impact not only on the dogs we save, but on the reputation of shelter dogs.”

Liz got into rescue after volunteering at a shelter.  But, “It didn’t feel like it was enough.”  Fortunately, Liz met the right people at the right time and got involved in saving dogs.  She’s been a professional fundraiser for 10 years.

She has a soft spot for Pit Bulls after a love-at-first-sight moment with her parent’s big pittie.  “Every day, I am saddened by what people put these dogs through, but then I look around and realize that I’m in good company trying to save them and mend their misrepresented reputation.”

As DADR’s Grant Coordinator, Liz will be researching and writing submissions to gain more funding.  Liz also has an understanding and tolerant husband and a 2-year-old daughter, Addison.  “She’s a dog advocate in training!”


Donna Arvia McAdams, Event Coordinator

Donna-Arvia-McAdams# of Dogs:  4 dogs, Max and Lola (puggles), Chaos (pit) and Crash (hound/pit)

Favorite thing: fostering dogs and watching them blossom into amazing family members.  “So many of my fosters have never known love, compassion, a good meal or structure. I love seeing their pride when they learn a simple command or enjoy cuddle time with my family”.

Donna was a stay-at-home mom when she first got involved in rescue in 2012 and adopted Chaos.  She started following his story and some of the other dogs in rescue.   “It broke my heart hearing about the horrific conditions and treatment these precious babies went through.  I needed to find something to do for myself and helping these dogs seemed like the perfect thing to do.  I never knew how much I would love it; the good, the bad and the ugly.  It’s all worth it. Rescue has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.  The dogs are truly grateful and I firmly believe they know you saved their lives.”

Donna loves the challenging dogs who need that little extra training.  She also likes learning about nutrition and health for dogs.  Rescue is a lifestyle for Donna and her family.  “We’re always sad to see a dog go when he/she is adopted, but we know there is always another one who needs us!”

Donna looks forward to growing her rescue family by meeting many new potential adopters and fosters through Dogs Are Deserving Rescue events.


Carol Fletcher, Photographer & Writer 

Carol with Judy Sircher's lap dogs: Rookie, Atticus and a foster pup named Bart.

Carol with Judy Sircher’s lap dogs: Rookie, Atticus and a foster pup named Bart.

# of Dogs:  1 – Charlie, the first dog she walked on the day she started volunteering at the Nashville Humane Association.
Favorite thing:  “Knowing that something I love doing helps dogs get adopted”.

Carol has always adopted “used” dogs…from shelters or from the streets, but never thought of herself as a dog rescuer.  Now, as she gets further into dog rescue by doing “adopt me” photos and writing newsletters, blogs and dog bios–she realizes that she’s in this for the long haul…and loves it!

Carol volunteers with a number of rescue groups, and is working on a multimedia project, documenting the lives of animal rescuers.  She also is the President of The Aniplant Project, a group that supports the only government-approved animal welfare organization in Cuba.   “I am honored to be helping Dogs Are Deserving Rescue and love meeting the rescuers and the rescuees!”

Ellen Reynoso, ApplicationsCoordinator

Lindsay bio# of Dogs:1 Angel







Stacie Walquist, Home Visit Coordinator

#of Dogs: 1Winniefred: “Fight for the things you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.” ~Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Lauren Hughes, Social Media Specialist

#of Dogs: Harper is my god dog (She is a 4 year-old, 95lb rescue from PAWS that thinks she is a lap dog.) Message to share: “It sickens me that any animal or human is treated poorly, but especially big, blocky-head dogs. It is my goal to bring out the best in each one of DADR’s rescue dogs and assist in finding them the perfect home through social media outreach.”

Lauren studied biology with a concentration in management at Purdue University, currently works in marketing, and is an MBA candidate at DePaul University. She discovered DADR when one of the adoptable dogs was on a walk on her street. “I went home right away and read the DADR website. The mission of DADR directly lines up with the social causes I am most passionate about.”

DADR is the first rescue she has been directly involved with, but fell in love with the breed after seeing how the New York Bully Crew heals so many dogs from terrible situations. Lauren has a huge soft-spot for dire cases and senior pets.

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” – Hellen Keller