Baja Dogs La Paz, Inc. has a three-person Board of Directors and key volunteers on the ground in La Paz and in targeted cities in the US and Canada. This means no member of our team is paid a salary – in fact – many of our team members reach into their own pockets to buy food, veterinary care, and otherwise help fund the needs of the rescued dogs in La Paz.

Let’s meet the team.

The Board of Directors

The Baja Dogs La Paz Board of Directors is a “hands-on” group and each member wears many hats. Our board members often serve as Pet Escorts transporting our rescued dogs to their forever homes, foster homes, liaisons to forge new relationships with rescue groups in the US and Canada, and in countless other ways to help the rescued dogs of La Paz.

Michelle Gaylord, President

In 2002 when I first visited La Paz in Baja, Mexico I was enchanted by the warm, friendly people and the unsurpassed beauty of the setting on the Bay of La Paz. But one thing I couldn’t ignore was the unbelievable number of street dogs. Most female street dogs were pregnant, some dogs were starving, and many were infested with ticks and mange. In some sad cases, dogs with owners who barely had enough to feed their own families had very little funds left over to care for the family pet.

When my husband and I bought our La Paz home in 2003 we did what we could for many of the street dogs. We always carried a huge bag of food in our back seat to share with any dog that looked hungry. We kept a tub of water outside our front gate. Many times we took dogs that were beyond help to the local veterinarian – most times to be put down. We donated money to our vet to use to spay stray female dogs – which were again returned to the streets where it was survival of the fittest. We started Baja Dogs La Paz, Inc. and became a registered 501(c)(3) in 2008 to help more of these dogs.

To contact Michelle via email: USCharity@BajaDogsLaPaz.org

Michele Miller, Secretary

When vacationing in La Paz, I started volunteering at a local refuge by walking dogs and doing anything else I could to help out. One thing led to another and I could not resist the opportunity to do something really significant to help the overpopulation of dogs in the area. It seemed the more I got involved, the more I wanted to help.

In addition to working at some of the refuges when I am in La Paz, I help transport dogs which involves providing overnight foster care when a dog is being flown through LAX and has a connecting flight for the next day. My team of volunteers and I often go to airport to help walk the dogs, give them food and water, and prepare them for the next leg of their journey. We have helped over 60 dogs get transported through LAX. In fact, during one year, we were at LAX so many times we convinced the airport to up-grade and provide a small, secured and fenced relief station for animals traveling through one of the terminals.

I have often taken dogs home with me from La Paz where I foster them until they are adopted. Of course, I always make sure that the prospective home is the right one for the dog. I am also in contact with no-kill shelters and organizations in the US that take dogs from Mexico and help find them good homes. We advocate working within the local La Paz community to find suitable homes for the dogs, educating new dog owners along the way. But there are so many strays in the area, there are just not enough homes for them all. So working with other organizations means we can rescue more. In fact, our family has adopted 3 rescued dogs from La Paz and they, are of course, loved members of our family now.

To contact Michele via email: MM@BajaDogsLaPaz.org

Michelle McCormick, Treasurer

Looking for a second home in the area, my family and I discovered La Paz. I read about a local dog refuge in one of the English language newspapers and started volunteering. Like many others who love animals, I become heavily involved in helping with transportation whenever dogs need to come to or through the Seattle area on their way to a new adoptive family.

I am in my 25th year of employment with Microsoft and made sure Baja Dogs La Paz has been appropriately registered as a charity my company supports. This means any of the employees at Microsoft who volunteer or donate receive a corporate match and, as an animal lover, that makes my work with both organizations all the more worthwhile.

I work to champion this great cause so that visitors and part- and full-time residents of La Paz bring plenty of crates, blankets, leashes, and other supplies with them on their trips south of the border to help many of the rescatistas (Spanish word for rescuers) out.

I am also involved in fundraisers and events to promote our work and to raise awareness. I am also the primary interface with our team of volunteers in La Paz who rely on Baja Dogs to continue their projects.

To contact Michelle via email:  MichMcC@BajaDogsLaPaz.org

The Volunteer Team

Our volunteer team members, similar to the Board of Directors, has a vital, primary role or function but often step in a serve in other areas as the needs arise. Our volunteers reside in La Paz, as well as select cities in the US and Canada. So if you love dogs and would like to help us out, don’t let your geographic location stop you. Send us an email at volunteer@bajadogslapaz.org and we will probably have a job you can do for us.

Sara Manetti, Adoption Coordinator and Post-Adoption Support for Seattle, WA

Sara lives in Seattle, WA and came on board with Baja Dogs when she adopted a beloved 5 year old Shepherd Mix from us. She works to advertise the dogs, writes the profiles for each dog’s web page, interviews adopters, and performs home checks. She holds degrees in Wildlife Biology and Resource Management. She spent 15 years as a full-time Senior Zookeeper and Lead Zookeeper at various Zoos including the San Diego Zoo and Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, WA. As a lifelong animal person she has horses, chickens, dogs, a rabbit and a kid! She is fascinated with animal behavior both wild and domestic. She especially enjoys a post-adoption role she has taken on helping owners integrate their new rescues to their family, current pets, and homes. She is your go-to person to bounce off any questions that arise as you are transitioning your dog to our complex urban environments.

If you have any post-adoption questions you can contact Sara via email at sara@bajadogslapaz.org

Cindy Crane, Volunteer Coordinator

Cindy and her husband Bernie came to La Paz in 2007 from Nanaimo, BC, Canada for a visit and decided this city was home. True to Cindy’s generous nature and her organizational skills, she immediately got involved in local charities, including Baja Dogs.With her unique style of flare and grace and her organizational skills, Cindy helps keep the wheels turning by recruiting new volunteers and assisting with photography of dogs and events.

Cindy is one of the first people you will encounter as a new volunteer of Baja Dogs La Paz.

Interested in helping us out? You can contact Cindy via email: Cindy@BajaDogsLaPaz.org

Caroline Hyatt, Foster Care Coordinator
Caroline lives in Vancouver, BC and works to recruit local area foster homes that can receive our Baja Dogs and help with their adoptions. As a fosterer herself, Caroline’s role is key in that whenever a transport opportunity exists for a dog to go to Vancouver, we can send the dog and know that Caroline’s team will find it the perfect forever home.

If you live in the Vancouver, BC area and are interested in helping us out by fostering a dog, you can contact Caroline via email: Caroline@BajaDogsLaPaz.org

Warren and Lori Paulin, Transportation Outreach
Warren and Lori Paulin live in La Paz full time and like all volunteers, they are often involved in rescuing a stray or abandoned dog in need of help. Both help forge new relationships with airlines and transportation organizations so we have lots of alternatives in getting our rescued and ready dogs to their new adoptive homes in the US and Canada. They are also very willing, when traveling, to act as a Pet Escort themselves. Both animal lovers, our dogs are always in good hands with these two!

If you happen to be traveling from La Paz to a city in the US or Canada and would be willing to act as a Pet Escort, please contact Warren or Lori via email: Warren-and-Lori@bajadogslapaz.org

Linda DiMeglio, Intake/Photography
Linda and her husband moved to La Paz in 2014 and she immediately began her involvement with dog rescues. She volunteered at a local shelter (since closed) where she created a successful dog walking campaign in which visitors walked each and every dog on leash, twice a week. She also worked diligently with dogs that had extreme fear issues, helping them to trust again and become adoptable, family dogs – each one ultimately found a loving home. Since then, Linda has devoted her time with Baja Dogs by initially photographing and assessing dogs as they come into the program. Linda acts as a liaison between the fosters and the adoptions team to help make sure that each dog is properly described on the website. She acts as a liaison between the foster and the adoption team to help facilitate the adoption of each dog into the right home. Before moving to La Paz, Linda spent over 20 years in the hospitality field.

Sandra Bicego, Social Media/Volunteer Recruiting
Sandra works in environment and sustainability and on her free time she loves to kitesurf and surf in Baja and above all, working with her team helping to find loving forever homes for the amazing Baja dogs. Sandra is one of our volunteers in Vancouver, BC and has long been a dog lover and supporter of Baja Dogs. She helps publicize stories of our dogs needing homes and also helps recruit other volunteers for us in the Vancouver area.

If you live in the Vancouver area of British Columbia and are interested in helping out, you can contact Sandra by email at: Sandra@bajadogslapaz.org

Irene Phillips, Public Relations
Irene and her husband spend winters in beautiful La Paz and are only too willing to get involved in many efforts to make life better for the residents here. Irene volunteers with Amigos de Navidad which involves a Christmas dinner and gifts for local children and families. For Baja Dogs, Irene’s communication skills are key in helping us craft newsletters, website verbiage, press releases, and many other publications. And like all volunteers, Irene rescues dogs in her neighborhood and cares for them until loving homes can be found.

If you are interested in helping us with our publications, you can contact Irene by email at: Irene@bajadogslapaz.org

Charlene Angelo, Web Design
After 25 years as a serial entrepreneur, Charlene came to La Paz with her husband to retire. Always a dog lover and having an I/T background, she became the Baja Dog La Paz web designer. Charlene also manages the domain including the email boxes and answers inquiries. Like the other volunteers, however, Charlene wears many hats including that of dog rescuer.

If you have some experience with web design and would like to help, contact Charlene by email at: Charlene@bajadogslapaz.org .