Stephanie started volunteering at animal shelters as a dog walker along with her parents when she was just a child and has been working in animal welfare since college. While attending the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, she began working part-time at a municipal shelter and when she saw the number of adoptable animals being euthanized just due to a lack of space and resources to house and care for them, she knew that pursuing a career in animal rescue and helping shelters become no-kill was what she needed to do. It was at this time that she chose to stop pursuing her education in veterinary medicine and began working full-time in animal sheltering.
Over the last 15 years, Stephanie has been working and volunteering at both traditional and no-kill animal shelters throughout Illinois, advocating for all those in need with a particular focus on the health and well-being of the animals under each organization's care. In 2017, she was appointed as Executive Director at Heartland Animal Shelter in Northbrook, Illinois where she brought a fresh perspective and new, progressive ideas which resulted in a significant decrease in animal illness and length of stay for the cats and dogs under the shelter's care, as well as a notable increase in adoption numbers, revenue and both the organization's reach and local impact. She also developed the shelter's foster care program and established and led a TNR program to help address the issue of cat overpopulation in the surrounding communities.
In her spare time, Stephanie enjoys playing video games, doing yoga, fostering special-needs animals and spending time with her husband and adopted cats.