Missy McCullough, Executive Director
Missy has a BFA and M.Ed. from the University of Texas and taught Special Education for 16 years. After retiring from teaching in 1989, she followed her life-long dream of working with animals.
One of the “founding mothers” of Animal Trustees in 1993, Missy has served as the Board President, volunteered in almost all aspects of the organization, and currently serves as the Executive Director. She has watched the program grow from a tiny rescue group to a well-respected member of the animal welfare community. She is passionate about providing quality health care for animals regardless of the owner’s income. Her mission has been to guide ATA in the direction of being Austin’s Community Clinic for Animals – always there lending voices, love, and resources to make life better for animals.
Missy was honored in 2001 as a nominee for KXAN’s Five Who Care Award and received the Austin Humane Societies Guardian Award in 2008. In 2011, she was proud to receive, for the Animal Trustees, the Austin Community Foundation’s Meriwether Award for collaboration and the I Live Here I Give Here/Whole Foods BIG GIVE award for excellent stewardship of donors.
Missy lives on a peaceful two acres of land with her family and loyal dog companions and delights in frequent visits from her son, daughter-in-law, and one-year-old grandson Brody.
Gabrielle Amster, Development Director
After earning her BA in Communications & Journalism, Gabrielle began her career in non-profit fundraising with positions at The United Way and the University of Virginia, most recently serving as the development director for the Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society. She grew up on a small farm in New England where she spent her free time riding horses and volunteering at the local animal shelter. Her childhood bedroom was home to many critters including lizards, chickens, cats and dogs. She feels blessed to now have the opportunity to serve the donors and community of Animal Trustees. Gabrielle lives in Austin with her family, including two pit bulls and Ping the Cat.
Keni Gallucci, Administrator
Keni started taking care of animals at an early age while working with her dad who trained thoroughbred horses in California. Realizing that animals were her passion, she worked as a veterinary assistant for the next 10 years.
A career in hospital management followed in medical facilities throughout southern California for the next 15 years, but the yearning for animal care never left her, so after moving to Texas in 1998, Keni worked at the Town Lake Animal Shelter as the Rescue and Foster Coordinator, working with the many rescue groups in Austin. It was there that she became acquainted with Animal Trustees of Austin.
The highlight of her thirteen years with ATA has been watching the organization grow to include services for the homeless; education for those clients who truly want to improve the quality of life for their companion animals; and realizing the success of the “Special Surgery Program”.
Keni has four grandsons and one granddaughter and hopes that at least one of them will carry on the animal care career. Her sister is a thorough-bred horse owner and trainer in California, carrying on the tradition and trade of their dad.
Laura J. Kay, Director of Volunteer Services
Laura has had an extensive career of more than 13 years of experience with various non-profit organizations in volunteer management roles. She has served her community through positions at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, The Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary, United Way of Grayson County and Home Hospice of Grayson County. Laura is thrilled to call ATA home because it combines her two passions: the good work of non-profits and the love of animals. Laura grew up on a farm and has had many animal “children”. Laura lives in Austin with her husband, Alfred, their three rescue cats, and Toby the wonder dog.
Autumn Vasey, Practice Manager
Autumn joined the staff of Animal Trustees as a veterinary surgery technician in 2011 and moved to the position of Practice Manager in January 2013. Autumn started in the world of veterinary medicine early in life, and so brings 20 years of experience to Animal Trustees. She thrives in the fast-paced atmosphere of a busy non-profit veterinary hospital where quality is never sacrificed to quantity. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her five-year old son, Spencer, her beautiful Akita, Kai, and her three spoiled kitties. She often enjoys fostering kittens and baby squirrels, and says that her family and animals are the reason she looks forward to every day.
Kirk Lewis, DVM, Medical Director
Dr. Kirk Lewis is a 1993 graduate from Oklahoma State University, College of Veterinary Medicine. He spent the first five years of his career working in New Mexico at various Emergency Clinics. He moved to Austin in 1998 and began working at emergency clinics as well as private veterinary practices and Animal Trustees of Austin. He has always had a strong interest in surgery, primarily orthopedics, and opened a mobile surgical practice in 2003 that serves the Austin area. ATA is extremely fortunate to have had the services of Dr. Lewis for many years. He is kept busy by his four children, two in college, and two under the age of five. He lives in the country with his wife and younger children, and enjoys hanging out with their myriad dogs, cats, horses, guinea fowl, and donkeys. He also loves to travel, when his busy schedule permits!
Mary Anne Scavone, DVM, Veterinarian
Dr. Scavone has dedicated her veterinary expertise to the ATA Wellness clinic for eight years, helping us grow the program well beyond the initial shot-clinic days. As self-described Army Brat daughter of an army surgeon and nurse, she grew up as the only girl in a house of four brothers. Attending five different high schools taught her to think on her feet and excel in an ever-changing, fast-paced environment. Dr. Scavone earned her veterinary degree at Texas A&M. She spent the first 24 years of her career in a private small animal practice, following her heart to non-profit medicine so that she could help the pets that need help most. She lives with her children, three dogs, and four cats. Her non-animal passions include cultivating orchids, gardening , and has an extensive cookbook collection.
Maggie McDonald, DVM, Veterinarian
Growing up with a father who was a veterinarian, there was never any question what Dr. MacDonald wanted to do with her life. There are a total of four veterinarians in the MacDonald family now, two of whom have been practicing in Ethiopia for the past 10 years helping with their massive food animal problems. Dr. MacDonald enjoys tackling animal issues a little closer to home. She has been performing high-quality, high-volume spay and neuter surgeries at ATA for over two years now. In her spare time Dr. MacDonald enjoys spending time with her dog and cat, and dabbles in stand-up comedy.
Heather Goss-Bazewicz, Veterinary Technician Manager — Spay/Neuter Clinic
A life-long animal lover, Heather grew up in south Texas volunteering for various shelters and rescue groups. She began working in clinics when she was 14. She has worked in large and small animal medicine, including emergency, and specialty care. She has been at ATA for over four years. Heather lives in the country with her husband and young daughter. They have two dogs and seven cats, many with special needs.
Marissa Kilgore, Wellness Clinic Manager
Marissa has nearly seven years of accelerated experience in the non-profit, animal welfare sector and has a BA in business administration from the University of Phoenix. She brings her demonstrated excellence in development and implementation of new program initiatives to ATA, and has been our Wellness Clinic Manager for three years.
Marissa grew up with horses, dogs, and cats. She wanted to be a zoo keeper when she grew up! Her current zoo is relatively small and includes her beloved dogs Cierra, a Pit Bull; Turbeaux, a Dachshund; and her cat named Luna.
In addition to her busy schedule at ATA, Marissa dedicates herself to helping our community through volunteer work. She has given her time to Austin Dog Rescue and Austin Pets Alive, and for the non-animal side of her private life, The Austin Chronicle’s Chrontourage.
She loves Pit Bulls, live music, good food, and vintage furniture, and is engaged to be married in 2014!
Hyden Johnson, Stewardship and Grants Program Officer
After eight years at Animal Trustees, Hyden moved from Operations Director at the Surgery and Wellness Clinics, to the development department in January 2013, where she is now the organization’s grant writer. After earning her MA in English Literature, she spent almost 20 years working in the financial publishing industry where she was lucky to have very tolerant co-workers as she often fostered orphaned squirrels, opossums, and rabbits under her desk. She jumped at the opportunity to follow her heart and join ATA full-time in 2005. Originally from New England, she just barely tolerates Texas summers but loves Texas winters! She and her husband live in Austin with a much loved pack of dogs and cats.
Jill Klucher , Development Operations
Growing up with Fox Terriers, writing a paper in college about owning a ranch with Italian Greyhounds, Jill now lives in the city with Greyhounds,a very busy Jack Russell Terrier, and a Cherrier! Once a donor and volunteer, Jill joined Animal Trustees in the Development Office (Fall 2009) as Database Administrator. With over 20 years experience working with a variety of non-profits as: a greeter, treasurer, editor, strategic planning, event chairman and leader, she understands how non-profits operate. In parallel, Jill held several management positions at Freescale Semiconductor (formally Motorola Semiconductor) in the areas of Marketing, Business Operations, and Project Management managing over $1B in annual sales. Jill holds bachelor’s degrees in Business Management, Economics and Finance from the University of Alabama and Florida Tech. Jill resides just north of downtown Austin with her husband Mike and Quatros Perros (Dolly, Tex, Daisy, and LuLu)!