Ken Ramirez is the Executive Vice-President and Chief Training Officer of Karen Pryor Clicker Training where he helps to oversee the vision, development and implementation of training education programs for the organization.
Previously, Ken served as EVP of animal care and animal training at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium, where he developed and supervised animal care and animal health programs, staff training and development as well as public presentation programs for more than 32,000 animals. He worked at Shedd Aquarium for over 25 years and continues as a consultant to this day.
A 35+ year veteran of animal care and training, Ramirez is a biologist and animal behaviorist who has overseen or consulted on training projects for many zoological organizations throughout the world. He began his training career working with guide dogs for the visually impaired and has maintained a close affiliation to pet training throughout his career. He hosted two successful seasons of the pet training television series Talk to the Animals that compared pet training to the important work done with training and caring for animals in zoological facilities. He has also recently worked closely with several search and rescue dog organizations, service dog groups, as well as with bomb and narcotic dogs.
Ramirez has been active in several professional organizations, including the International Marine Animal Trainer’s Association (IMATA), of which he is a past president. Ken has been actively involved in the creation of a certification process for animal trainers in zoological settings.
Ramirez has written for numerous scientific publications and authored countless popular articles. He authored the book ANIMAL TRAINING: Successful Animal Management through Positive Reinforcement, published in 1999. He also teaches a graduate course on animal training at Western Illinois University.
Maya Gupta, Ph.D., earned her bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and her master’s and doctoral degrees in clinical psychology from the University of Georgia, with a predoctoral internship in the Psychology Service at the United States Penitentiary - Atlanta. Her work focuses on connections between animal cruelty and interpersonal violence, particularly family violence, and on using this knowledge to improve coordinated community response to violence in all forms.
Her leadership in the field of human-animal relationships includes previous roles as Executive Director of the Animals & Society Institute and as Executive Director of the Ahimsa House domestic violence safe haven program for animals.
She currently serves as Training Director of the American Psychological Association’s Section on Human-Animal Interaction, on the Steering Committee of the National Link Coalition, on the Animal Cruelty Advisory Council of the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys, as an adjunct faculty member in the Master’s Program in Anthrozoology at Canisius College, and as an instructor for the Veterinary Forensic Sciences program at the University of Florida.
Chief Creative Officer, Valvespring
Bob's passion for effective creativity plays a pivotal role in our brand and strategy development and is the driving force behind our creative execution. A master at creative strategy and positioning, Bob pours himself into every challenge he faces with a boundless capacity for detail about our clients’ business, and expert ability to synthesize insights and information into compelling strategies.
Prior to joining Valvespring, Bob held senior-level creative positions at diverse organizations, including the American Motorcyclist Association, MassMutual and the marketing powerhouse Ketchum in Los Angeles. Most recently, he was the senior creative director at LSHD Advertising, responsible for growing that firm's stem cell technology and novel medical device clientele.
Bob is an all-or-nothing type of guy, completely devoted to the things he's passionate about, with his favorite hobby being a prime example. He has turned motorcycle racing into a precision science, winning five national, and more than 25 regional championship titles in roadracing, dirt track, and sidecars. But when he's not elbow deep in grease twisting a wrench on one his his machines, there's only one other place you'll find him – hanging out at the office, home, or on road trip adventures with his side kicks, Cameo and Kirby.
Bob graduated cum laude from the University of Massachusetts with a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, with minors in Art History and Interior Architecture.
Principal, Managing Director and Public Relations Strategist, Valvespring.
With more than 25 years of experience in global marketing and communications, Christina is a successful strategist and tactician; a true expert at developing innovative, influential and international communications campaigns.
With senior-level experience at the world's largest financial services company and at one of the largest global advertising and public relations networks, she's advised CEOs of global corporations and helped start-ups get off the ground – and everything in between.
As managing director at Valvespring, she brings her big-city savvy and international experiences to all our clients. Her goal? Helping people and businesses succeed and making a real difference, in collaboration with the best team anywhere.
Analyst. Data junkie. Relationship builder. Leader. Project manager. Visionary. That’s Christina in a nutshell. An avid motorcyclist, Christina approaches each project like she rides: with precision, focus and speed.
Christina holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Central Connecticut State University, with dual majors in marketing and organizational management.
Dr. Lynam is a clinical psychologist and the Chief Clinical Officer at Homes for the Brave, a transitional housing program for veterans experiencing homelessness. Dr. Lynam received her doctorate in clinical psychology from Xavier University and completed her postdoctoral training in psychosocial rehabilitation at VA Connecticut Healthcare System (VACHS). Dr. Lynam stayed on as staff psychologist at VACHS for several years as a supervisor in the HUD VASH (VA Supported Housing) program where she assisted Veterans who were homeless acquire housing and treatment for substance use and mental health disorders.
After several years with the VA, she became the Chief Clinical Officer at Homes for the Brave where she continues to work with Veterans who are experiencing homelessness. Currently, she oversees clinical programming and works to implement new clinical program needs to support individuals working towards achieving their identified recovery goals, which may include housing, employment, mental health and/or substance abuse recovery. Previously, she worked at community mental health centers and inpatient psychiatric hospitals. Dr. Lynam’s clinical and research interests include psychosocial rehabilitation, supportive housing, integrated dual diagnosis treatment, harm reduction, psychological assessment and other areas that are closely related to assisting individuals diagnosed with severe mental illness and/or substance abuse live well in the community. Dr. Lynam is passionate about helping individuals develop their recovery goals and make strides towards achieving them. She also aspires to work towards policy and system change to help prevent homelessness as well as improve access to quality integrated dual diagnosis treatment for all who need it.
Dr. Lynam values the role that animals play in our lives and the positive impact they can have on our mental health. Her pets include her childhood cat named Kitty and a rabbit named Abby.
Kathryn Bayne, MS, PhD, DVM, DACLAM, DACAW, CAAB, is the Executive Director of AAALAC International. She oversees the administration of AAALAC's offices in North America, Europe and Asia; supervising fiscal and personnel management for the association; providing oversight of AAALAC's Accreditation, Program Status Evaluation and Education & Outreach programs; and serving as AAALAC International's spokesperson.
Previously, Dr. Bayne was Global Director for AAALAC International. In this role she directed the accreditation program and traveled extensively worldwide to advance AAALAC's accreditation program and laboratory animal welfare. She has served on the AAALAC International staff since 1994. Her many achievements over the years include the development of the Council on Accreditation into regional Sections serving Europe and the Pacific Rim, the hiring of regional Directors to the AAALAC International staff, her extensive work introducing numerous countries to the AAALAC International accreditation program, and her extensive work in Asia to advance research animal welfare.
Prior to joining AAALAC International Dr. Bayne worked at the National Institutes of Health leading a research program on non-human primate psychological well-being and environmental enrichment programs for primates, dogs, cats and swine. She is a certified applied animal behaviorist, and is internationally renowned for her work in laboratory animal behavior and welfare. Dr. Bayne has held several leadership positions including service as President of the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine, the Association of Primate Veterinarians, as well as the District of Columbia Veterinary Medical Association. She is past Chair of the American Veterinary Medical Association's Animal Welfare Committee, and was the inaugural Chair of the American Society of Laboratory Animal Practitioner's Animal Welfare Committee. Dr. Bayne was the 2009 recipient of the American Veterinary Medical Association's Animal Welfare Award, the 2012 recipient of the Charles River Prize, and the 2016 recipient of the KCLAM Award for Global Support to Laboratory Animal Medicine in Korea.
Tammy was born in Houston, Texas and is a USA Combat Veteran who spent eight years in the Military, including a tour in the Middle East during Operation Desert Storm, until she was medically retired due to PTSD. Tammy has worked with many nonprofit organizations in support of Veterans, especially those with PTSD and has worked with rescue organizations to save dogs. While working with Pets for Vets as a Veterans Representative, she also discovered her passion for training and has continued to build her skill set in animal training. Tammy is also one of our Veteran-pet matches and understands the matching process firsthand. The combination of her people skills, experiences and veteran perspective along with her animal training skills is a wonderful asset to our team.
As a former Army Medic, DAV, American Legion member and dog lover, Sean believes the organization is the perfect way to combine two things he is very passionate about: Veterans and dogs. He looks forward to improving the quality of life for Veterans and providing loving homes for dogs in need.