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Getting to Know Winn

Meet the dedicated people of Winn Feline Foundation

Board of Directors

Winn Feline Foundation’s Board of Directors is a diverse group of respected professionals and dedicated cat lovers. Their depth of expertise is broad, including authors, cat veterinary specialists, chief medical officers, established researchers, businesspersons, lawyers, a columnist/radio personality, and cat fanciers and show judges. These individuals volunteer their time and receive no compensation — all donor contributions go directly to fund critical research.

Glenn Olah

Glenn Olah photoDVM, PhD, DABVP (Feline), Immediate Past President

Albuquerque, NM

Glenn Olah is a practicing clinician at Albuquerque Cat Clinic in his home state of New Mexico. He has been volunteering with Winn for several years, and has provided valuable assistance in summarizing Winn’s scientific research for lay people. He is board certified in feline practice with ABVP, was a member and former chair of the AAFP Research Grant Committee, and is a board member of Felines and Friends, a cat rescue organization in Santa Fe, NM.

Dr. Olah holds a PhD in Physics from Rice University in Houston, TX, and he focused on biophysical and structural biology research for a number of years. Eventually, he pursued his desire to work as a veterinarian, receiving his DVM degree at Oklahoma State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Involvement with Winn allows Dr. Olah to combine his research experience with his passion for feline medicine.

A published researcher and author, Dr. Olah still finds time to honor a number of professional commitments, including writing articles pertaining to feline medicine for veterinary magazines and helping feline rescue efforts in the Santa Fe area. He has also assumed the lead on coordinating Winn’s continuing education efforts with those of other veterinary organizations.

Drew Weigner

Drew WeignerDVM, President

Atlanta, GA

Drew Weigner is one of the first feline practitioners in the nation, having practiced medicine for more than 35 years. He graduated in 1982 from the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine. In 1987, he established The Cat Doctor in Atlanta, the first feline practice in the southeastern United States, which became accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association in 1991.

Dr. Weigner served as president of the Academy of Feline Medicine in 2002 and as a board member of the American Association of Feline Practitioners for several terms. He has been a board director of the Winn Feline Foundation since 2014.

Dr. Weigner is the author of numerous scientific and consumer articles and is sought after as an expert in feline medicine by such organizations as CNN, the Chicago Tribune, and USA Today. He is dedicated to educating the public about feline issues and frequently appears in consumer magazine, newspaper, radio, television, Internet publications, and the WebMD® pet health community.


Janet Wolf


Newport, NJ

Winn Board Secretary Janet Wolf has early memories of a black kitten with a red bow around her neck. That was the start of her love of all things feline — domestic and wild, small and large, pedigreed and random bred. While she had few cats growing up, Ms. Wolf adopted a cat as soon as she left home for college. Over the course of six years, two different cats kept her company as she completed her studies and began her career at the National Park Service.

Ms. Wolf soon discovered how much she enjoyed raising litters of kittens and became a pedigreed cat breeder while also rescuing un-owned cats and their litters. Word spread, and she and her husband, Otto, became known for providing additional help neutering, socializing and placing un-owned litters. Today, they continue to rescue and breed Birmans.

Breeding and rescuing cats has led to Ms. Wolf’s increasing interest in feline health issues. Several years after she started breeding cats, there was a devastating outbreak of FIP in her cattery. She was already volunteering as a writer for Winn, and ended up co-chairing the first International FIP/FECV Conference.

Ms. Wolf previously served as the Winn board’s first executive director and now serves as secretary. She considers her time with Winn rewarding, watching the improvements in feline care and the discovery of new therapies, genetic tests, drugs and so much more.

Vickie Fisher

Vickie Fisher photoTreasurer

Corrales, NM

Having served as president of The International Cat Association (TICA), Vickie Fisher joined the Winn Board of Directors as Treasurer, with a solid background of experience in the world of felines and their well being.

Ms. Fisher’s extensive career in finance and accounting as CFA and VP of finance in the insurance and legal sector also contributes to her role at Winn. She served as cabinet secretary for the New Mexico Tax Department, and chaired the audit committee for the Public Service Company Board of Directors. Ms. Fisher recently retired from the Presbyterian Healthcare Services Board, where she served on the finance committee and chaired the compliance and audit committee for 10 years.

Ms. Fisher leads a non-profit “friends” group in Albuquerque, NM that works with the city’s animal welfare department. She also served as deputy chief administrative officer for the City of Albuquerque for eight years and was responsible for budget, finance, strategic planning and the city’s enterprise departments.

Brian Holub

Brian Holub photoDVM

Westford, MA

Brian Holub has been working with the Winn Feline Foundation for nearly two decades. Dr. Holub is a past member of the foundation’s official grant review committee and continues to help select grant recipients each year by reviewing research proposals and making funding recommendations. At present, he works as a clinical instructor at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, Tufts University.

Dr. Holub has significant frontline experience in the world of feline health care. In addition to his role as a contributing veterinarian to the Winn Pet Memorial Program, he has run the Countryside Veterinary Hospital in Chelmsford, MA since 1985. Recently, Dr. Holub joined VetCor, Inc. as its Chief Medical Officer, though he can still be found at his clinic tending to ailing cats at least once a week.

Dr. Holub is focused on practice management and helping hospitals in the VetCor network adopt practices that best serve the needs of its patients and their families. A breeder of pedigreed American Shorthair Cats for over 23 years, Dr. Holub has a special interest in pedigree cat medicine, multiple cat environments and feline reproduction.

George Eigenhauser

George EigenhauserCFA Liaison

Marysville, CA

George J. Eigenhauser Jr. is an attorney at law, licensed in the state of California since 1979. He has served on the Winn Board of Directors and as CFA liaison to Winn for more than 10 years. His expertise in the area of wills, trusts and estate planning allows him to assist donors with planned giving decisions. He is also the legislative coordinator for the Cat Fanciers’ Association, Inc. and has served on the CFA board for 15 years.

Mr. Eigenhauser graduated from law school at Western State University and holds an undergraduate degree from Shimer College. He currently practices law in Marysville, CA, with an emphasis on wills, trusts and estate planning.

As a true cat fancier, Mr. Eigenhauser raises and shows Maine Coon cats. While he started in CFA showing household cats, his first Maine Coon cat was acquired in 1992, and his cattery’s name is Telecoons.

Steve Dale

Steve_RickyCABC, Media Contact

Chicago, IL

Certified animal behavior consultant Steve Dale reaches more pet owners than any other pet journalist in America. Among his many professional accomplishments, Mr. Dale writes a twice-weekly syndicated newspaper column, serves as a contributing editor at USA Weekend, and hosts two nationally syndicated radio shows. He is also an author, a columnist for Cat Fancy, a Chicago Tribune blogger, and a contributor to Advanstar publications for veterinary professionals.

Mr. Dale is a founder of the CATalyst Council and served on its Board of Directors from 2008 to 2012. In addition to his work with Winn Feline Foundation, he serves on the board of the Tree House Humane Society in Chicago and as a national ambassador for the American Humane Association.

After his beloved cat Ricky passed away of feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), Mr. Dale created a fund to raise money to research this often-fatal disease. As a direct result, a genetic test was created to determine if a gene defect for HCM exists for two breeds.

Dean Vicksman

Dean Vicksman

Denver, CO

Dr. Dean Vicksman, a Denver native, graduated with honors from Colorado State University School of Veterinary Medicine in 1986. He was then accepted into Angell Memorial Animal Hospital’s internship program in Boston for advanced training in small animal medicine and surgery. He has co-owned and directed Evans East Animal Hospital since April 1, 1987, with Dr. Steve Kromka. He is a Certified Veterinary Journalist and a participating member of the Veterinary News Network.

His personal interests include skiing and martial arts and Dr. Vicksman has a 2nd degree black belt in Peoples Kenpo Karate. In keeping with his journalist interests, he is a guest speaker on ABC Channel 7 and FOX31 News pet segments. He is currently Chairman of the Board at PetAid Colorado, the past Chairman of the Board at the Dumb Friends League and on the Advisory Board of the Grey Muzzle Organization. He and his wife, Rebecca, and their two children, Sarah and Koby, enjoy their dogs Odin, Whinnie, Jadzia, and Pickles.


Anthony Hutcherson
anthony_and_prestige_IMG_1186_website Port Tobacco, MD

A lifelong passion for cats, especially fascinated by highly patterned wild cats, Anthony Hutcherson began a Bengal Cat breeding program to create his ideal “ocelot–looking” cat in high school when no such domestic feline existed in 1992.  He currently serves as a Director on the Board of The International Cat Association (TICA), Chair of the Bengal Cat Breed for TICA, Past President of The International Bengal Cat Society while still raising and showing his Bengal Cats.  Anthony is breeder and owner of the highest achieving Bengal Cats in the world.

Anthony Hutcherson studied Animal Science at the University of Maryland and is a member of the American Society of Animal Sciences and the International Society for Animal Genetics. In 2018 he collaborated with Katie Lytle, DVM of Wisdom Health/Mars to screen 1000 pedigreed cats for 40+ genetic diseases and continues to work with Chris Kaelin, PhD of Stanford University & Hudson Alpha Institute in the identification of new genetic variants in cats related to pigment and pattern. 

Currently, Anthony is a freelance producer, meeting planner and speech writer in Washington, D.C.Anthony has shared his love of cats on NPR, The TODAY Show, The Martha Stewart Show and in the New York Times, Washington Post, the New Yorker as well as other media. He is especially proud of authoring “All Kinds of Purrfect” a coloring book about the beauty of all cats for TICA in 2016.   

Vicki Thayer

Vicki Bio PictureVicki L. Thayer has a 40 year background in feline medicine. A graduate of Washington State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Thayer is board certified in feline medicine by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (ABVP) and was principal owner of Civic Feline Clinic. Located in Walnut Creek, CA, the clinic was the first exclusively feline veterinary practice in the Diablo Valley region of the state.

She has considerable experience in organized veterinary medicine in the American Veterinary Medicine Association (AVMA) and American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP), as well as through other community activities. Dr. Thayer served on the board of AAFP for 20 years, and as president from 1996-1998. From 2004-2010, she was AAFP’s delegate to AVMA. She is also on the board of the largest private cat shelter in the Pacific Northwest, Cat Adoption Team of Sherwood, OR.

Dr. Thayer joined the Winn Feline Foundation Board of Directors in 2008 and served as board president from June 2011 to June 2014, stepping into the position of Executive Director on July 1, 2014. She is retired from this role at the end of 2018. She lives on a 40-acre heritage farm in the foothills of the Oregon Cascades with her husband, four cats and one dog, and also enjoying time with her two sons’ families.

Kelly Biscoff


Denver, CO

Kelly R. Bischoff is a Certified Public Accountant with 20 years of accounting experience.  Ms. Bischoff currently serves as the Controller for a private equity firm focused on investing in middle market operating companies.  Prior to working in private equity, Ms. Bischoff was the Controller for a venture capital-backed company, providing global customer intelligence information and solutions.      

Ms. Bischoff started her career with a nationally recognized public accounting firm and holds a B.S. and Masters of Accountancy from the University of Colorado.

Ms. Bischoff’s Burmese cat, Bella, is what makes her passionate for Winn’s causes.  Bella suffers from various medical issues, including heart disease and asthma, but is able to lead a happy life due to the extraordinary work of veterinarians and the medicine available for felines with her diseases.


Grant Review Panel

The combined knowledge and experience of the grant review panel enables Winn Feline Foundation to select and fund the most credible proposals. Our reviewers include board members, two appointed veterinary consultants and invited advisors who are most often practicing veterinarians.

Veterinary Consultants

Veterinary consultants are appointed for three-year terms to serve as grant reviewers. Their skill in various areas of research (e.g., statistics, medicine, surgery, cancer therapy, molecular biology, and diagnostics) is invaluable.

Melissa Kennedy

Head_shot_Kennedy_Melissa_BDS_2014_turnDVM, PhD, DACVM

Knoxville, TN

Born and raised in Eastern Tennessee, Dr. Melissa Kennedy is an Associate Professor at the University of Tennessee, College of Veterinary Medicine. She also serves as a veterinary advisor to the Winn Board of Directors.

Dr. Kennedy attended the University of Tennessee, where she completed her DVM degree in 1983 and her PhD in 1991. She was in small animal practice for approximately five years after achieving her DVM degree, but was drawn back to UT for her PhD in Comparative and Experimental Medicine.

Dr. Kennedy instructs veterinary students in immunology and virology, oversees the clinical virology diagnostic lab, and is involved with research primarily of feline diseases, including those of nondomestic felids. Her research focus has included feline coronavirus in cats and in cheetahs, feline calicivirus in cats, and feline lentivirus in African lions. Dr. Kennedy is currently investigating possible therapeutics for FIP.

Carol Johnson

Carol-and-Poppy2-webDVM, PhD, DACVP

Newbury Park, CA

A graduate of The Ohio State University (OSU) College of Veterinary Medicine with a PhD from the OSU College of Medicine, and board certification in veterinary pathology, Carol W. Johnson has had a lifelong interest in cats.  As a pathologist she has provided pathology services for other cat fanciers and has helped them establish preventive medicine practices in their catteries. 

Carol has been breeding American Shorthair cats for more than 30 years and has served continuously on CFA’s National American Shorthair Club (NASC) Board of Directors since 1993 as a member at large, vice president, and currently president.   Carol has written more than 40 articles for the NASC newsletter explaining disease mechanism, treatment options, and potential adverse effects of over treatment of cats to laymen.   She has twice served as CFA’s American Shorthair Breed Council Secretary. 

Professionally, Carol worked 35 years in numerous pharmaceutical companies evaluating safety and efficacy models for a variety of human and animal pharmaceutics.  She has authored numerous professional articles and has been a reviewer for professional publications.  She is currently proprietor of Potrero Biosciences providing pathology services and clinical biomarker support.   Carol lives with her husband and enjoys gardening and propagating California native plants. 



Joe Hauptman

Hauptman_Joe-lr photoDVM, MS, DACVS

Okemos, MI

Dr. Joe Hauptman has been on the faculty of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Michigan State University since 1981, and is currently a Professor of Surgery, while serving as a Veterinary Consultant for the Winn. With special interest and expertise in Statistical Design and Analysis, he is a consultant, reviewer, presenter, and practitioner in the area of Statistical Design and Analysis to numerous entities.

Dr. Hauptman graduated from the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine in 1975. He completed his MS degree in Surgery at Kansas State University in 1978, and became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in 1981.

Shila Nordone

Dr_S_NordoneMS, PhD

Raleigh, NC

A Veterinary Consultant for the Winn Feline Foundation, Dr. Shila Nordone is currently Director of Research Development for the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University in Durham, NC. She is an adjunct Research Assistant Professor of Immunology at NC State University College of Veterinary Medicine. She has served as a scientific writing consultant to grant writing firms specializing in acquiring non-dilutive federal funds for startup companies in human and animal health.  Dr. Nordone continues to be active in collaborative research involving modeling and forecasting of infections disease in companion animals..

Dr. Nordone graduated from North Carolina State University with a BS in animal science, then completed her MS degree at Iowa State University in nutritional physiology. She received her PhD in immunology at NC State in 2000 and did her postdoctoral training at the Duke University Human Vaccine Institute.



Veterinary Advisors

Each year, veterinary advisors are identified to serve as additional proposal reviewers. These advisors are generally veterinary practitioners or clinicians with special expertise in feline medicine.

Barbara E. Kitchell, DVM, PhD, DACVIM

Barbara E. Kitchell, DVM, PhD, DACVIMBarbara E. Kitchell, DVM, PhD, DACVIM

VCA Veterinary Care Animal Hospital and Referral Center

Dr. Barbara E. Kitchell graduated from Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine in 1979.  Dr. Kitchell completed an internship at the University of Minnesota, then residencies in Small Animal Medicine and Oncology at UC Davis from 1981-1985.  She started an Oncology referral practice at Special Veterinary Services, Berkeley, California in 1985, and continued to manage that practice on a full time basis until 1989, when she embarked upon her graduate studies while continuing to work part time as a clinical oncologist. She received her Ph.D. degree (emphasis in Cancer Biology) from the Department of Comparative Pathology at UC Davis in 1994. Dr. Kitchell completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Comparative Medicine, Stanford Medical School from 1990-1994.  She taught clinical and comparative oncology at the University of Illinois School of Veterinary Medicine from 1994-2003.  Dr. Kitchell joined the faculty of Michigan State University in 2004 as Full Professor and Director of the Center for Comparative Oncology, and held this post until joining VCA Vet Care in August, 2013.

She is the Director of Residency Training Programs for VCA, as well as Specialty Medical Director and staff oncologist at Vet Care.  Dr. Kitchell is an ACVIM Diplomate in the specialties of Internal Medicine and Oncology. She is past president of the Veterinary Cancer Society and Past Chair of the Board of Regents of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine.

Dr. Kitchell is the author of over 100 scientific publications, abstracts, proceedings, book chapters, handbooks in her field of veterinary and comparative oncology. 

Like most veterinarians, she has a menagerie of dogs and cats.  Dr. Kitchell also keeps in touch with her 5 wonderful young adult children, and was active in adoption, foster care and Transition to Independence for foster adolescents in Lansing, Michigan.



Lauren Demos


Waterford, MI

Dr. Lauren E. Demos joined Winn Feline Foundation as a veterinary advisor to the Grant Review Committee in the fall of 2018. Dr. Demos earned her DVM from Murdoch University in Perth, Australia in 2012 and currently practices at Exclusively Cats Veterinary Hospital in Waterford, Michigan. While completing her DVM, Dr. Demos also participated in an intensive program studying influenza viruses at Cambridge University in the UK.

President of The American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) in 2017, Lauren is also completing a residency in Feline Practice with the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (ABVP). 

An avid sailor, Dr. Demos recently purchased her first sailboat, Little Minute, and is often seen sailing the Great Lakes with her paddle-boarding cat companion, Pancake.



Scientific Advisors

Periodically, an outside scientific advisor may be approved by the Winn Board of Directors to attend a board review meeting. The scientific advisor is not assigned grants for review, though they can offer advice for consideration.

Karen Greenwood

karengreenwoodVice President, Research and Development

Overland Park, KS

Karen Greenwood is the Vice President of Project Management at Kindred Bio. She moved to this role in March 2017 after 30 years in the industry with Pfizer Animal Health/Zoetis and Parnell. She is enjoying working on many projects to benefit cats, as well as dogs and horses. Karen particularly enjoys seeing projects move from ideas and early science to commercially available products that make a difference to pets and their owners.

Karen received a Bachelor of Science degree in biochemistry from Southampton University in Southampton, UK. She lives in Shawnee, Kansas with her husband Sean, and her two children, Zoe and Hayley.

Tracey Williams

Tracey_WilliamsSenior Principal Scientist in Global Therapeutics Research
at Zoetis

Kalamazoo, MI

Tracey Williams graduated from Liverpool John Moores University, UK with a BSc in Applied Biology in 1994 and joined Pfizer Animal Health, Sandwich, UK in 1996 as a trained microbiologist. She relocated with Pfizer to Kalamazoo, MI in 2008, remaining in the Animal Health group throughout the transition to Zoetis in 2013.

With over 20 years’ experience in the Animal Health industry, Tracey brings her passion for research into understanding the biological pathways and mechanisms of companion animal diseases and identifying how these can be exploited to improve the health and wellbeing of our closest companions.

Tracey currently lives in Kalamazoo caring for her “kitty commune” of eleven rescue cats.


Many thanks to these dedicated volunteers for generously offering their time and expertise to help improve the health and welfare of all cats.

Winn Staff

Though Winn’s board, volunteers and advisors are located across North America, Winn’s headquarters in Wyckoff, NJ is the heart of our operations.

Julie Legred

Vicki ThayerExecutive Director

Bricelyn, MN

Julie Legred, CVT is the new Executive Director of the Winn Feline Foundation. Legred has held leadership positions in veterinary medicine throughout her career. Most recently she served as the Executive Director of the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America, where she was instrumental in elevating the status of technicians and supported the current transition to be called veterinary nurse. She represented over 15,000 veterinary technicians/nurses around the country.
Legred was previously the veterinary technician specialist for Banfield the Pet Hospital.
Legred, who has appeared at most major veterinary meetings in America, is well known
throughout the veterinary community, and continues to serve on several Boards. She lives in Bricelyn, MN, just over the border from Iowa, with her family.

Alisa Salvaggio

Alisa_Salvaggio webDonor Care Specialist

Bergenfield, NJ

The Winn Feline Foundation welcomed Donor Care Specialist Lisa (Alisa) Salvaggio in April 2014.

Ms. Salvaggio brings a wealth of experience to her role at Winn. She began her career at AA World Class Embroidery, one of the largest manufacturers in the embroidery industry, as the manager of customer service. After 13 years, she joined the customer service team at Liz Claiborne, where she specialized in the international sales market, and worked on additional brands owned by the company.

Five years later, Ms. Salvaggio joined Clancy Twomey Marketing as a customer service specialist, and also served as the direct assistant to the CEO/President, working for both private and non-profit organizations.

Ms. Salvaggio lives in Bergenfield, NJ, with her husband of 19 years and two daughters. In her free time, she is a dedicated dance mom and a volunteer at her local school.