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Tawny Hammond

National Director of Learning Advancement

Best Friends Animal Society

Tawny Hammond is the national director for learning advancement for Best Friends Animal Society. The learning advancement team creates professional development certificate courses that can matriculate toward university credit in bachelors and master’s degrees in contemporary animal services. A graduate of the master’s in interdisciplinary studies program at Southern Utah University, Tawny has more than 30 years of experience in the public service arena, creating and implementing programs and services, working effectively with appointed and elected officials, and creating and leading teams focused on professional excellence. Tawny has a proven track record of success, serving for more than 25 years in municipal government in Fairfax County, Virginia. She brought the Fairfax County Animal Shelter to a 90% percent save rate in less than two years by removing ineffective breed restrictions, growing a robust volunteer program, establishing a cutting-edge foster program for the dogs losing their lives, strengthening community cat programs and establishing the animal shelter as a community center for residents of Fairfax. Tawny is the former chief of animal services for the city of Austin, Texas. Under her leadership, Austin and Travis County, Texas, reached a new milestone in 2017, achieving a save rate of 98% of the more than 17,000 animals coming through the doors. She is devoted to ending the killing of pets in shelters and believes that how we treat pets and their people is connected to social justice, community wellness and our compassion as a society.