The Humane Society of Washington County exists to promote the welfare of companion and domestic animals through educational programs and initiatives that reduce pet overpopulation, endorse fostering, enrich adoptions, and encourage responsible pet guardianship.
The Humane Society of Washington County’s vision is to be the area’s leading resource for animal related issues. Through strong community partnerships, we enhance and protect the lives of all animals by advocating responsible, compassionate relationships between people and animals while providing shelter, humane education, spay/neuter programs and adoptions (2006).
Our goal is to make "The Dream" a reality for animals of Washington County and beyond. Learn more about HSWC's focused vision and our plans for the future.
The Humane Society of Washington County was established in November 1921 by Ms. Daisy Derby Whipple. She operated in a one-room building on South Boulevard (now Wilson Boulevard) and began with twelve animals in her care. In April 1938, the HSWC moved to its current location on Maugansville Road. The organization grew and moved into a 13,200 square foot building in December 2001, and in 2015, the HSWC expanded its facility to include a 6,800 square foot Adoption Center and Spay/Neuter Clinic. What started in a one-room building in 1921 has grown into a progressive animal welfare organization that offers a plethora of services to the community.
Colin A. Berry, M.S., Development Director, Interim Co-Executive Director
Ms. Berry has been in the animal welfare field for more than 15 years and the Development Director for the Humane Society of Washington County since March 2016.
Prior to this, she spent the last 12 years working for The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), where she gained valuable experience in project development and management, communications and marketing, fundraising, and policy/legislation.
Colin started as program coordinator of the Northern Rockies Regional Office and then as Colorado state coordinator. She also served in multiple leadership roles at HSUS’s headquarters, including Director of Innovations, Deputy Director of Wildlife Innovations and Response, Humane Wildlife Services’ Communications and Commercial Service Manager, and Wild Neighbors Program Manager.
In addition, Colin worked in the field and responded to Hurricane Ivan, Hurricane Katrina, puppy mill seizures, and a high profile dog fighting seizure, and also participated in high-volume spay/neuter clinics and humane education programs on Native American reservations throughout the west. Trained in the remote delivery of wildlife immunocontraception, she co-managed a season of the white-tailed deer PZP program at the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Colin attributes her intense commitment to animal welfare and love of animal sheltering to her time spent working at the Memphis Humane Society, where she worked as a kennel technician, adoption counselor and then foster coordinator. She also worked at a veterinary clinic and interned for an animal assistance and therapy group.
Colin earned her Bachelor of Arts in English and Anthropology from the Honors Program at Guilford College and her Master of Science in Animals and Public Policy from Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine. Her Master’s Thesis, Long-Term Outcomes in Animal Hoarding Cases, was published by the peer-reviewed journal, Animal Law Review.
Passionate about the importance of integrated fundraising and communications programs, Colin believes deeply in the power of organizational storytelling.
Officer Crystal Mowery, Field Services Director, Interim Co-Executive Director
Crystal Mowery has a combined experience of 12 years in law enforcement and animal welfare.
Crystal began employment with Little Wonders Animal Rescue in 2005 as the Adoption and Foster Coordinator, where she personally guided several hundred animals into their forever homes.
Her love of the law and respect for law enforcement led Crystal to serve as a Police Communications Operator with the Maryland State Police in 2008. She continued to work with Little Wonders during this time and became a certified Master Wildlife Rehabilitator and a Federally Licensed Rehabilitator through US Fish and Wildlife for Waterfowl.
Crystal’s passion for both the law and animals came together as she joined the Humane Society of Washington County in 2013 as a Field Services Officer. She founded and currently runs the Large Animal Program that helps to provide veterinary care, food, housing and successful adoption placements to farm animals coming from cruelty situations. Crystal helps to successfully prosecute animal cruelty cases. She also assists with the Helping Hands Program to provide valuable education to pet owners in the community. Crystal is a strong advocate for animals with special needs and is eager to help with the most vulnerable animals in the shelter.
Since starting as a Field Services Officer, Crystal has completed numerous trainings, including National Animal Control Academy Level 3, Missouri Law Institute Animal Cruelty Investigator Level 2, New England Academy of Animal Control (all levels), Days End Farm Equine Cruelty Investigator, and is currently completing NACHO National Animal Control Officer and Animal Cruelty Investigator Certification. She now serves as Field Services Director.
Kimberly Jones, Director of Operations
Kimberly Jones has been an animal rescuer her entire life. From wounded birds to stray cats, life growing up in Southern California was always interesting! However, other than a brief stint at a veterinary hospital, Kim has only been working in animal welfare for six years.
She started with the Humane Society of Washington County in March of 2011 as an administrative assistant. Kim’s tenaciousness paid off as she quickly worked her way up the ranks to become the Volunteer Coordinator, though the shelter only had about 60 volunteers at the time. After attending Animal Care Expo in New Orleans, Kim organized and strengthened the volunteer program which now averages 320 volunteers at any given time, doing everything from dog walking to animal enrichment and anything in between.
With a passion for dog training, behavior and canine communication, Kim began to learn more about training through a volunteer and Certified Dog Trainer. She is currently working toward a dog training certification. She has worked with shelter dogs in desperate need of behavior modification and the training has resulted in adoptions for these once unadoptable dogs.
Kim has advocated for years on the release of captive orcas in an unofficial capacity and in 2016, she was chosen to represent the HSWC in Annapolis for Lobby Day regarding animal rights.
Her willingness to assist wherever she is needed and her passion for animal advocacy and adoption earned Kim the title of Director of Operations. She now oversees Customer Service, Animal Care, Receiving Clinic, Volunteers and the Foster Care Program alongside her co-director.
Sonia Nicholson, Director of Operations
Sonia Nicholson, affectionately known by staff as Momma, began her career at HSWC as a volunteer with her daughter in 2011. Sonia loved helping at the shelter so much that she applied for a job with Customer Service and was hired as a perfect fit.
While serving as a Customer Service Representative, Sonia helped launch a weekend offsite adoption event at PetSmart that’s been running successfully for over 4 years.
In 2013, the HSWC recognized the need for better housing options for kittens and animals that require more time in care before being adopted. Sonia was asked to develop a Foster Care program in her new role as Foster Care Coordinator. With her guidance and insight, the Foster Care program now houses an average of 400 animals per month which more than doubles the shelter’s humane hold capacity.
To better connect foster animals with permanent homes, Sonia and her foster families collaborated to create the Traveling Fosters in 2015. The Traveling Fosters host their own adoption events so that animals in their care don’t have to return to the shelter. Now a nationally recognized initiative, the Traveling Fosters have been featured by the ASPCA® and awarded several grants to help further the program.
Sonia, along with former Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Ellen Taylor, created a webinar for the ASPCA® Adoption Ambassador program to help other shelters start their own foster/adoption program.
In 2016, Sonia received a scholarship from the ASPCA® to attend the HSUS® Expo in Las Vegas.
Sonia continues to excel in the field of animal welfare. She now oversees Customer Service, Animal Care, Receiving Clinic, Volunteers and the Foster Care Program as co-Director of Operations.
Amanda Bonetti, Director of Operations for the Veterinary Center
Amanda Bonetti has been in the Veterinary Medicine field for 9 years, and has been in love with shelter medicine for the last 4 years.
Amanda was raised in Norwalk, CT, and is a graduate of University of Maryland, where she studied Wildlife Ecology and Management. After graduating, she started her career in the veterinary field at Banfield Pet Hospital in Bethesda, MD as a receptionist. After less than a year, she began working in the back of the hospital as a Veterinary Assistant. She spent the next 3 years there honing her skills in diagnostic testing and surgery, and learning how to run a hospital from the Practice Manager.
In spring of 2014, Amanda accepted a job as a Surgical Vet Technician for the Washington Humane Society in Washington, DC. Over the next 4½ years, Amanda moved through the ranks at WHS (now the Humane Rescue Alliance after a merger with the Washington Animal Rescue League), becoming the Vet Technician Supervisor, then Vet Technician Manager, before settling into an interim role as Director of Community Medicine. Amanda oversaw daily operations of HRA’s high-quality, high-volume Spay and Neuter Center, as well as operations for the low cost Medical Center. In spring of 2018, Amanda played a pivotal role in launching HRA’s Mobile Vet Center, a 30-foot mobile surgery suite where all of the shelter’s New York Avenue facility’s pets were spayed or neutered. She also helped develop HRA’s vet student partnership with VA Tech, in which she and the Clinical Assistant Professor oversaw 7 vet students every 3 weeks while they honed their skills in surgery and internal medicine as part of their curriculum. Amanda also spent part of the summer of 2018 in Puerto Rico, helping spay and neuter over 900 animals as part of HSUS’s Spayathon for Puerto Rico.
Amanda started with HSWC in February 2019, and is working to enhance and expand the services of our Vet Center. She is very happy to be a part of the team, and is excited to continue her work improving the health and care of shelter animals.
Amanda has just moved to Mechanicsburg, PA with her husband (Matt) and her one-eyed cat (One-Eyed Willy). In her spare time, Amanda is an avid baker and fan of all things science fiction.
Teressa Preston, Business Director
Teressa Preston has been in the administrative management field for 19 years and began working in animal welfare when she joined the HSWC in 2008. She is currently the Business Director, merging both her experience with administrative management and her passion for animal welfare.
Using her knowledge of Human Resources, Teressa maintains a firm but fair and compassionate approach to handling situations involving the shelter’s employees. Her experience has enabled the HSWC to review and revise its company policies to be up-to-date and equitable to both the agency and personnel. Her fantastic negotiation skills with vendors have helped to save thousands of dollars in operational costs. In turn, this has aided the HSWC in allocating more funds toward programs specifically geared to improving the lives of animals in its care. Finally, Teressa possesses both an aptitude for and interest in financial accounting and serves as an invaluable assistant to our staff CPA. Her diligence supports the HSWC’s goals of financial responsibility with regard to Board of Directors’ policies, government regulations, and stewardship of donor funds.
A long standing contributor to her community, Teressa is a certified EMT with the Volunteer Fire Department and serves on the committee that interviews applicants who would like to become volunteers. She is also an active member of her church. Teressa currently resides in Williamsport with her husband, daughter, and family pets.
Patti McCarthy, Accountant
Patti’s love of animals led her to HSWC in 2016 as a volunteer in the business office. In September 2017, when the current accountant announcement his retirement, Patti accepted the position.
Patti began her accounting career in 1981 after graduating from the University of Maryland University College. Her over 30 year career ended with her retirement in 2014 as a senior consultant with CGI Federal in Virginia.
In her spare time, Patti enjoys singing and tending to her dogs, cats and horses. She lives in Martinsburg, WV with her husband Pat.
Jeffrey Yingling, Advisory CPA
Jeff Yingling works as a Controller for the HSWC after developing a strong background in the accounting industry. He earned a degree from the University Of Maryland School Of Business and began his career with Price Waterhouse & Co. in Washington, D.C. where he became a Certified Public Accountant. Jeff was also employed by The Marriot Corp before returning to Hagerstown after he and his wife welcomed their first child.
After returning to Hagerstown, Jeff worked in public accounting and also served as the Accounting Manager for the City of Hagerstown. He started his own accounting firm in 1982. After more than two decades, he sold his firm in 2007 and began working as a contract controller. Jeff began employment with the Humane Society of Washington County in June of 2013.
When not working, Jeff enjoys playing golf and spending time with his children and grandchildren. He is also an avid Terp fan. Jeff resides in Hagerstown with his wife, Jamie and their two cats, Guinness and LaRue.
Board of Directors
President: Christopher Smith
Vice President: Kelly Tracey
Treasurer: Erin Clark
Secretary: Angie Riford
Directors: Cindy Helman, Julie Draper, Tawn Gregory, Mike Mason, Aaron Peteranecz, Phil Ulzheimer, AJ Smith, Jill Reddecliff, Paulie Ward, Steve Quantock