Laura O'Kane / Founder and Executive Director
Laura O’Kane founded Paws and Affection in August 2013. Laura is the Executive Director of the organization and spends her time raising funds to care for and train the P&A team of dogs as well as managing the day to day activity of the organization. She plans events, works with volunteers, interviews applicants, and helps with the training of dog/recipient teams. Laura is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA) and spent time in the classroom assisting in the training of in-home pets in basic obedience and manners prior to starting Paws and Affection. Laura was a manager at two different major retailers in the Philadelphia area over the course of 10 years and has a B.S. from Virginia Tech in Management with a minor in Business Administration. In September 2011, Laura completed the Teach the Teacher Course at Canine Assistants in Atlanta, GA under the direction of Jennifer Arnold. Laura and her husband Chad live outside of Philadelphia with their 2 children.
Angie Greenway / Director of Training and Education
Angie Greenway has been helping dogs and their people since 2005. She is dedicated to helping dogs by strengthening the relationship with their people and teaching them to communicate with one another. She is passionate about canine behavior and keeps her education current by attending national conferences, seminars, and workshops. She is a graduate of the Karen Pryor Professional Animal Training Program (KPA-CTP), a member of APDT (Association of Professional Dog Trainers), and is an Associate Certified Animal Behavior Consultant with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Angie has trained and competed in stock dog trials through the USBCHA (United States Border Collie Association) all over the country with her border collies. She also enjoys Canine Agility, FreeStyle Canine Dance, and Trick Training. Angie is a certified AKC Evaluator for Canine Good Citizen Testing, the AKC STAR Puppy Program Certification, and also for the AKC Trick Dog Program. Angie lives in Maryland and shares her home with 4 border collies, Moss, Ben, Liz, and Kassie, and her Shih Tzu, Sammy.
Jessica Gwiszcz / Marketing Coordinator
Jessica Gwiszcz is the Marketing Coordinator at Paws and Affection. Jess graduated from La Salle University in 2018 with a B.A. in Psychology. While in school, she volunteered at P&A starting in early 2017 and completed the P&A Internship Program that summer. She then returned as an experienced volunteer for the rest of the 2017/2018 school year. In May 2018, Jess was hired as our Marketing Coordinator. She works closely with Laura and Angie to facilitate day to day tasks as well as help with events and outreach to increase awareness of the mission of Paws and Affection. Jess also helps run the P&A social media accounts so as to keep the community up to date on the great work being done at Paws and Affection.
Jen Flood / Recipient Liaison and Exercise Coordinator
Jen Flood joined Paws and Affection in March 2019. She spends her time helping our recipients stay connected, answering their questions, keeping up on the progress and status of their dogs, and exercising the team at HQ. Her compassion, communication skills, energy, and lifelong adoration and devotion to dogs makes Jen the perfect Paws and Affection team member. All the pups love Jen's enthusiasm and appreciate the praise she lavishes on them. When she is not with our pups, she works as a local realtor. Jen graduated from the University of Hartford with a degree in Sociology and lives with her husband Dan and two children, Emma and Sam, in Wynnewood. Her home is filled with animals to dote on too. Three cats - Eleanor, Kevin, and Edwin, and a Newfoundland puppy, Caroline.
Julia Hopkins / Trainer
Julia joined the team in January 2021 as a trainer working with our pups to teach them the skills they need to succeed as future service dogs. She began with us as a volunteer and before that, volunteered at Providence Animal Shelter in Media. Julia is a Temple University graduate and also earned her certification in dog obedience training from Animal Behavior College. Julia has loved dogs all her life. She grew up with two labs and now has a blue heeler for a best friend!