Our Team

Paws for Hope is a small team passionate about animals and their ongoing care and protection. We’re even more passionate about finding a way to make animal welfare more sustainable in B.C. so we’re not stuck heads-down in emergency response mode unable to plan and build for the long term, especially important in a region that receives no government funding and sometimes limited corporate support for these animals.

Kathy Powelson, Executive Director | kathy@pawsforhope.org | 604-396-9297

Melissa Stephens, Clinic Director | melissa@pawsforhope.org

Dawna Faulds, SpayAid Coordinator | spayaid@pawsforhope.org | 778-991-SPAY (7729)

Marshall Watson, Communications Coordinator | marshall@pawsforhope.org


Board of Directors

Shawn Llewellyn, President | shawn@pawsforhope.org

Shawn Llewellyn is a practicing veterinarian and managing partner at Scottsdale Veterinary Hospital in Surrey, BC, and is a member of the Animal Welfare Committee of the Society of British Columbia Veterinarians. He received a Bachelors degree in Animal Sciences from Dalhousie University and his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the Atlantic Veterinary College.

Shawn has been a Board member with Paws for Hope since its founding year and has been integral in the development and implementation of the veterinary related programs and services. In addition to being Board President, and working with the Foundation’s Executive Director on community engagement and partnership building, he leads Paws for Hope’s involvement in a collaborative one health initiative for homeless and at-risk individuals in Vancouver.

Shawn has received the Christopher Award in Animal Welfare and the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association’s Humane Award for his involvement and work on animal welfare matters over the past 15 years.

Shawn lives in North Vancouver with his cats, Kyla and Casey.

Breanna Laubach, Vice President | breanna@pawsforhope.org

Breanna was born and raised in North Vancouver, BC and has always shared her life with pets. Her life-long love of animals inspired her to become involved with Paws For Hope. With a background in communication, her goals are to bring her resourcefulness and creativity to benefit the growth and longevity of the Foundation. Although Breanna’s main focus is for the welfare of companion animals within British Columbia, her love and support reaches a number of wildlife organizations from Oregon to Australia, where facilities focus on the research and preservation of unique and endangered animals such as koalas and sloths.

Renata Hale, Treasurer | renata@pawsforhope.org

Renata Hale, CPA, CGA, is the Manager of IT & Strategy with the Municipal Finance Authority of BC in Victoria, BC.  Her specialty is in big-picture thinking, seeing connections, and challenging assumptions.

She has done amateur animal rescue and fundraising for animals throughout her life, and has volunteered as a board member and in a fundraising capacity with several rescue organizations over the past 15 years.  During a stint of living in Saskatoon, she personally rescued 43 cats from a feral colony on her property (and beyond), ensuring they were inoculated, spayed or neutered, and adopted to great indoor and/or barn homes.

Renata is thrilled to join this remarkable organization, that recognizes animal problems are people problems and works to create a synergistic approach to both.  Paws For Hope provides the opportunity to collaborate and problem-solve with greater scope than any one of us could accomplish individually, and supports the world of animal rescue through the Animal Welfare Advisory Network.  This cause requires a sharing of purpose and cooperation on this scale to truly make a difference for all animals.

Renata and her husband are guardians of two Great Danes, Kindle and Echo, and seven formerly feral cats, Wicked, Mojo, Voodoo, Jack, Spike, Lark, and Mr. Boo.

Jeanette Hill, Secretary | jeanette@pawsforhope.org

Hi Kathy, see updates in bold – thank you!

Jeanette has a passion for animal welfare and has always had animals in her life. She has volunteered with both mental health and animal rescue organizations in the lower mainland and is very excited to expand her involvement with animal welfare through Paws for Hope. Jeanette is currently a Lead Principal with Chartered Professional Accountants (CPA) of Canada. In this role she concentrates on program development for members in industry, including the not-for-profit and charity sector. She received her business degree from SFU, holds a CPA, CMA designation and a certification in Adult Learning from the University of Toronto.

Jeanette currently lives in North Vancouver with her partner and their dog Cookie

Wendy Riley, Director | wendy@pawsforhope.org

Wendy has long been an animal lover, ask anyone who knew her as a child and they can attest to Wendy arranging for them to take in one of the many stray, and or injured animals that she continually was bringing in off the streets of Montreal, Quebec in the 1970’s. Fast forward to many years later and Wendy is still bringing animals home, this time to live out their life, on her and her husband’s 22 acre patch of heaven know as the R&R Ranch, where senior and special needs animals of all kinds find their happy ending. Wendy has served as a board of director, volunteer, and community development  coordinator for various rescues and shelters in the province of B.C. since 2010. Wendy stays busy as an entrepreneur, volunteer, and caregiver for the over 20 animals at the R&R Ranch, and hopes to make a positive impact on the many lives of animals that cross her path.

Wendy is honoured and excited to be part of the “Paws for Hope ” organization, and believes working together, we can make a difference to animal’s lives in British Columbia, and across Canada.

Tanya Valois, Director | tanya@pawsforhope.org

Tanya is the Associate Director for Westcoast Family Centres Society, and much of her career has focussed on family preservation and reunification along with many other child and family focused services. Tanya’s current role provides program and organizational leadership.

Tanya looks forward to sharing her organizational development skills and experience with Paws for Hope as the organizational grows to service the diverse needs of communities and their pets.

Jessica Maiorino, Director | jessica@pawsforhope.org

Jessica Maiorino is the Operations Leader of the Centre for Gender and Sexual Health Equity (CGSHE). She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Life Sciences and Psychology from the University of Ottawa, a Master’s degree in Health Administration from the University of British Columbia, and is a Certified Health Executive through the Canadian College of Health Leaders. She has a passion for lean operations management within the non-profit sector and is an IASSC Certified Green Belt™.

Jessica brings years of experience in non-profit management and is honoured to work alongside the Paws for Hope Directors to help ensure that the Foundation fulfills its mission to bring about much needed change in the realm of animal welfare.

In her spare time, Jessica volunteers with Big Sisters of BC Lower Mainland and is part of the St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog Program Leadership Team. She enjoys spending time with her rescue/office dog Mia, visiting family in Ottawa, and singing the occasional Disney tune.