Patty Hegwood, director of animal connections
Patty Hegwood, Best Friends’ director of animal connections, is responsible for the creation of an enhanced visitor experience through interactions with animals. Visitors to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary and the town of Kanab benefit from getting to know animals up close and personal, creating an opportunity for increased adoptions and a key learning opportunity about a variety of species and their needs. Patty’s love of Best Friends’ call to action to Save Them All extends to animals, staff and all who visit the amazing sanctuary and beautiful Angel Canyon.
Patty joined Best Friends in 2006 after meeting staff from the organization in New Orleans, where she was deeply entrenched in the rescue efforts during and following Hurricane Katrina. At that time, she was the lay business owner of a veterinary practice that catered to more than 20 animal welfare organizations in the greater New Orleans area. She and her veterinary partner were both passionate about aiding those who were saving animals directly from local shelters, and Katrina only intensified the need to help save homeless pets.
Since joining Best Friends, Patty’s areas of responsibility have included the Best Friends Animal Clinic, animal care, volunteers and visitors, and merchandise. Her current role as director of animal connections is a culmination of that vast array of experiences.
Patty is a graduate of Louisiana State University, a former member of the Junior League of New Orleans and a former board member of the New Orleans World Trade Center. Patty lives in Kanab, Utah, and works alongside her husband, Jason, and their daughter, Hannah. This happy family includes three dogs (Cooper, Grace and Zia), three horses and many happy, sassy cats.