Betsy Banks Saul
Betsy Banks Saul is the co-founder of Petfinder, one of the busiest web sites on the internet. With a vision to change the way the public views shelter pets, Betsy harnessed the infant technology of the internet in 1996 and molded it into one of the most successful e-businesses to date. Petfinder was acquired by Nestle Purina. Since then, her efforts to ensure that pet families have the community-based resources to stick together through thick and thin have resulted in the creation of 911fosterpets, the first foster-first platform; Heal House Call Veterinarian, which supports independent vets and access-to-care; and Petopia.org, a 501c3 that focuses on people and their connection to animals and the natural world. Betsy, who grew up in southwest Missouri where there is no shortage of stray animals, began her career fostering pets at age 12. She has a bachelor's degree in biology and a master's in forest ecology. Before dedicating her career to animal welfare, Betsy was an urban forester, an agriculture extension agent, a national park ranger and a field scientist. She serves on the board of advisors for North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Waggle Foundation, Petfinder Foundation, the Alliance for Contraception of Cats and Dogs and Petopia. She is an emeritus advisory board member of Tufts’ Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. Betsy shares her farm in North Carolina with her foster daughter, four dogs (two of which may or may not be foster dogs), Sydney the Box Turtle (a barn cat), her beloved flock of chickens and many rescued farm animals.