Julie Walters, President
Julie Walters is an enthusiastic believer in the human-animal bond. “I am happiest with at least four rescued dogs sleeping on my couch.” In addition to work with the ASPCA, she is a supporter of the PAWS Sanctuary in California and the South Florida SPCA, which focuses on domestic horse rescue and rehabilitation. Julie has also been allied for many years with the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Everglades Foundation and 350.0rg to promote environmental protection and restoration of the natural world. She and her husband, Sam Rose, have established an annual prize for environmental activism at Dickinson College to expand public awareness of the pressing need to protect the world we inhabit and all of the creatures that share this world.
Earl Strimple, DVM, Vice President
Dr. Earl Strimple is a pioneer in the field of Animal Assisted Therapy. During his three decades of successful veterinary practice in Washington, D.C., he founded People Animals Love (PAL), an animal therapy foundation that brings the healing power of the human-animal bond to people at nursing homes, mental health facilities, hospitals, libraries and schools. In addition, PAL offers year-round, after-school and summer enrichment to lower-income children living in Southeast Washington, D.C.
Lawrence V. McBean, Treasurer
Larry McBean is the director of the Medical Technology Team at Peduzzi Associates, Ltd., where he utilizes a broad background in military medical operations, Federal logistics and procurement, medical device integration and legislative affairs on behalf of the firm’s clients. His experience with medical research and development, as well as Combat Casualty Care, spanned nearly three decades of Federal Government service. Larry completed military service as a Combat/Flight Medic/Cardiac Tech in 1998 with the U.S. Army Medical Department, and holds a B.S. in Health Care Administration and a M.S. in Health Care Management. Larry is an active member of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) and sits on the National Defense Industrial Association’s (NDIA) Homeland Security Executive Board. He is also a recipient of the Stockholm Challenge Medical award and Order of Military Medical Merit, Army Medical Department. He is a Lifetime member of the Dustoff Association (Army MEDEVAC association).
C. Madison “Brick” Brewer, Esq., Secretary
Brick Brewer graduated from The Pennsylvania State University and earned Juris Doctor and Master of Laws degrees from George Washington University Law School. After serving as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia and as a member of the Senior Staff of the Executive Office for United States Attorneys, he joined the firm Highsaw, Mahoney & Clarke, PC, where he represents individuals regarding employment and criminal matters and advises a number of not-for-profit entities concerning governance matters. He is President of the Board of People Animals Love, a District of Columbia-based not-for-profit using the human animal bond to make life better for the sick, elderly and at-risk children. He is married to Diane M. Brewer and has two grown daughters.
Steve Braesch brings more than 40 years of successful construction and real estate development experience to Warrior Canine Connection and the new Healing Quarters development project. During the past 30 years, Steve has overseen project management, design, and construction with the Washington, D.C.-based commercial real estate development firm Greenebaum & Rose Associates. His portfolio includes major projects for CNN, the Department of Education, and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Prior to that, he spent a decade with the Kiewit Companies of Omaha, Nebraska, where he worked on constructing underground highway, hydroelectric power, and environmental projects, including Colorado’s Eisenhower Tunnel.
Tora Fisher serves on the Board of Trustees for the Fisher House Foundation – a home away from home for the families of wounded Warriors. She helped dedicate the first international Fisher House at the age of 11 with her late father, M. Anthony Fisher. An emerging singer-songwriter, Ms Fisher was inspired to write “Man of Steel” – a song that donates 100 percent of its proceeds to the Fisher House Foundation. Tora is also an animal lover and has supported the World Wildlife Fund and ASPCA.
Karen Guenther is the President, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund. She is the spouse of a United States Marine Corps Colonel and registered nurse with more than two decades of experience. She was the inspiration behind the Semper Fi Fund, a nonprofit organization supporting the men and women of the United States Armed Forces and their families.
Debra Coleman Hyde
Debra Coleman Hyde is Executive Producer of the documentary “When War Comes Home,” which raises awareness of the struggles faced by Veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injuries, along with the secondary trauma that affects their families and loved ones. Previously, she was Director of Institutional Advancement at the Kingswood Oxford School in West Hartford, CT. Debra has held senior management positions at a university and a premier children’s hospital, and was instrumental in establishing the first Global Partners Initiative of the Paul Newman’s Hole in the Wall Camp for children with cancer in South America. Debra has served as a trustee of Our Companions Animal Rescue in Ashford, CT. She and her husband and two standard poodles reside in West Hartford, CT.
Kyle D. Richards, Ph.D
Kyle Richards currently works as a manager at Kearney & Company, where he provides workforce development and strategic initative support to the USAF and to the Department of Homeland Security. He is also the chairperson for Kearney & Company’s Community Service Committee, having led more than 50 unique charitable or service-based initatives over the past 2 years, including endeavors for Warrior Canine Connection, the American Red Cross, the American Cancer Society, Special Olympics, New Hope Housing, Food for the Poor, Northern Virginia Family Service, The Fishing School, Carpenter’s Shelter, and many more. Previously, while pursuing his doctorate in Organizational Communication from the University of Kansas, he worked at The University of Kansas Medical Center on the Kansas Telehospice Project, a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant-based study examining the efficacy of telemetry-based medical service delivery to the indigent and the rural poor.
Robert Rosenbaum, MD
Dr. Robert Rosenbaum specializes in neurosurgery at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and has recently returned from serving a nine-month tour at a military hospital in Afghanistan. His 19 years of military medical experience and expertise in treating combat wounds at home and in the field brings valuable insights to WCC’s mission. Rob is an ardent supporter of Animal Assisted Therapy in the treatment of mental and physical combat wounds and is a past board member for the nonprofit People Animals Love.
Michael L. Subin
Mike Subin serves as the Montgomery County, Maryland County Executive’s representative on the Commission on Veterans Affairs and Commission on Juvenile Justice. A former five-term County Councilmember, Mr. Subin is a retired Captain in the Naval Reserve where he commanded three separate units and was the executive officer of two others. He is also an adjunct professor who has taught government law, political science, and criminal justice. Mr. Subin has a BA in International Affairs, a Master’s degree in Public Administration, and a Master of Arts in Legislative Affairs all from The George Washington University; and a JD from American University’s Washington College of Law. He is a member of the Montgomery County and Maryland Bar Associations.
Rick Yount, Executive Director
Rick Yount has served in the field of social work for 25 years. He has involved Animal Assisted Therapy in his practice for the past 15 of those years. Rick holds a BA degree from West Virginia University and a MS degree in Assistance Dog Education. He combined his social work knowledge and experience with his service dog training background to develop a novel intervention to help service members with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Rick pioneered the first therapeutic service dog training program at the Palo Alto, CA Veterans Hospital in 2008. Rick’s new program concept, involving Veterans with PTSD in the training of mobility service dogs for fellow Veterans, yielded very positive results. He has presented the program concept at forums including the VA National Mental Health Conference and the International Society of Traumatic Stress Studies.