NCRC constantly seeks the counsel of leaders in the fields of science, animal services, animal welfare, the law, and community relations.
Our current board of advisors includes:
Cynthia Bathurst, Ph.D., is co-founder and executive director of Safe Humane Chicago, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit registered in the state of Illinois. The Safe Humane concept that a humane community is safer grew out of her work with D.A.W.G.(Dog Advisory Work Group), which she co-founded as a nonprofit in 2000 and then started a court advocacy program for court cases involving animal abuse. In 2007, Safe Humane Chicago programs were piloted. In 2008, after more than twenty-five years in contract mathematical analysis, Ms. Bathurst joined Best Friends Animal Society as national director of Project Safe Humane, which was designed to fully implement the successful model, first in Chicago and then in other cities. In 2009 the American Veterinary Medical Association awarded her their Humane Award, an award given to a non-veterinarian who has advanced animal well-being, shown exemplary dedication to the care of animals, and contributed to the community and society. In 2010 a new program for Court Case Dogs was implemented. This successful program for victims of animal abuse and neglect showcases Safe Humane programming for at-risk youth and companion animals in communities challenged by crime and lack of needed resources. Ms. Bathurst has served on numerous public safety, community policing and animal welfare boards and task forces. Ms. Bathurst currently serves as president of the Chicago Animal Shelter Alliance and vice-chair of Chicago’s Commission on Animal Care and Control.
Bill Bruce recently retired from his position as Director of The City of Calgary's Animal & Bylaw Services, which he held from 2000 to 2012. During his tenure, Mr. Bruce was instrumental in the creation of a model “responsible pet ownership” community, which made Calgary one of the most companionable cities in North America for both people and their pets. Mr. Bruce addresses public officials, animal control conferences and humane associations throughout North America on the success of what has become known as “The Calgary Model of Responsible Pet Ownership.” He is currently completing a book on the subject.
Kristopher Irizarry received his Ph.D. from the department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UCLA where he developed computational methods to identify functionally relevant genetic variations in the human genome. After completing his doctoral work, he accepted a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Neuropsychiatric Institute in the College of Medicine at UCLA and focused his efforts on identifying specific genetic variants that were associated with susceptibility to depression, in an attempt to develop genetic diagnostics that could be used to predict patient response to antidepressant treatments. His work led to the identification of specific genomic regions that predicted clinical patterns of anxiety and depression. The results of that work were ultimately patented by the University. Afterwards, he accepted a genetics faculty position at the College of Veterinary Medicine at Western University of Health Sciences where he is the Director of The Applied Genomic Center, which studies comparative mammalian genomics with an emphasis on decoding the behavioral and anatomical information encoded in animal genomes. In 2009, his research expanded when Dr. Irizarry and a team of colleagues were awarded funding to sequence the genome of an endangered species, the Snow Leopard. The goal of the Snow Leopard Genome Project is to create genetic diagnostics that can be used to identify ideal breeding pairs, with a long term goal of improving the health and fitness of this endangered species through genetically informed captive breeding efforts within American zoos.