Our board represents a cross-section of our community and has a passion for our organization and those we serve. The members work hard to ensure long-term sustainability of the organization and oversee that the funds raised directly affect those in need.
Click on board member to learn about them!
Chairman of the Board
Our staff has a strong commitment to serving the many constituents of our organization. But first and foremost, they focus their energies on those who take advantage of our programs and services.
Click on a staff member to learn about them!
Executive Director/ President
Valerie literally grew up with the Hearing Dog program. As a child Valerie helped her mother, IHDI co-founder Martha Foss, train dogs. She officially joined the IHDI team in 1988 as director of training after graduating from Front Range Community College. Since becoming executive director, Valerie has traveled internationally to aid in the start of similar programs. In 2007 she was named “Woman of the Year” by St. Mary’s Episcopal Church for her work with IHDI.
Director of Placements/ Customized Training
Andy joined IHDI in 1997 as a certified veterinarian technician. Prior to IHDI, Andy received her Associates Degree from Denver’s Bel-Rea Institute of Animal Technology. She is responsible for dog selection and dog training on sound response, general obedience, socialization, as well as a variety of custom training options. Andy happily parents three dogs and two cats. Today, Andrea handles our placements and correspondence with recipients.
Director of Selection/Training
Karissa joined IHDI in early 2016, bringing over six years experience of private dog training to the program. She is skilled working with numerous breeds and temperaments of dogs. In her work, Karissa demonstrates her passion for improving the quality of life for both the deaf and hard-of-hearing as well as giving our rescue dogs a new purpose. In addition to the many dogs she cares for at IHDI, she has two Border Collies and a Great Dane.
IHDI welcomed CC, a certified dog trainer, to the training staff in November 2016. Previously she lived in Key West training dolphins and the occasional sea lion. Her love for animals extends to our four-legged companions with her dog, Tippet, a dalmatian. When she's not prepping our dogs for their Hearing Careers, she enjoys long walks on the beach and anything outdoorsy.
Director of Operations
Jules spent the last ten years working and volunteering in kennels, animal shelters, wildlife rehabilitation hospitals, zoos, and equine centers. In her spare time she loves to travel, spend time with friends, and is a passionate advocate for animals rights. She is excited to be involved in caring for the animals and helping with all tasks at Hearing Dog including fundraising and event planning.
She is pictured with her dog Meadow that she adopted in March 2013 from a rescue group who pulled her from a high-kill shelter in Mississippi.
Director of Development
Kendra joined IHDI in Feb 2019. She grew up in Minnesota and went to school at North Dakota State University and majored in Sports Marketing with a minor in Business Administration and Marketing. She took a leap of faith and moved to Colorado beginning of this year and she fits in perfectly with her bubbly personality and love of the outdoors. She is passionate about all things sports, hiking, and her senior pup Jade.
Ashley joined IHDI in May of 2019. She came from 8+ years in the real estate industry but her passion was always for non profits and helping both people and animals. She obtained her Bachelors in Biology from University of Colorado Denver and could not be more excited to join the team to combine her previous admin work and her love for dogs. As a Colorado native, she loves all things outdoors. She loves to travel, watch hockey, spend time with her husband and her 3 dogs.
Samantha is currently a senior at Eagle Ridge Academy. She will be attending Colorado State University in the fall to start her major in Zoology, on her way to getting a degree in Veterinary Medicine. She has worked at IHDI since late summer of 2018 and loves helping in all aspects that she can in order to support the amazing mission of IHDI. Samantha firmly believes in the rescuing of animals and has two rescued horses herself. She enjoys horseback riding, being outdoors, and helping anything on two or four legs.
Terry joined IHDI in 1992. Since that time she has served as an administrative assistant, newsletter editor, Board secretary, and now IHDI’s chief grant writer. Terry is a graduate from Metropolitan State College of Denver with a degree in Communications.