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Ellen Jefferson, DVM

President and CEO

Ellen Jefferson, DVM, is the President and CEO of Austin and American Pets Alive!, on the Executive Team of the Human Animal Support Services (HASS) Project as well as leads the Lifesaving Leadership Masterclass for the Maddie's® Learning Academy.

Dr. Jefferson is formally trained in veterinary medicine but has spent much of her post graduate career founding and leading organizations such as EmanciPET and Austin Pets Alive! as well as practicing veterinary medicine in emergency, private and shelter settings. She has dedicated her life work to stopping unnecessary population control euthanasia in shelters by using data to make programmatic and systemic changes to the shelter system’s outcomes. She is passionate about trying to create standardization and consistency to the mechanisms that can influence lifesaving at every level of an organization.

As she turns her eyes towards HASS, she is focused on understanding and solving for the problems that lead to shelter intake, thereby creating practical wraparound solutions to the age old problem of death in shelters.

Dr. Jefferson was unanimously chosen as the first recipient of the Avanzino Leadership award, named for the father of No Kill and given for her outstanding contribution to the No Kill movement.


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