Board of Directors

WE ARE AN ALL VOLUNTEER ORGANIZATION

Board of Directors

President: Barbara CusickLetter from the President
A Danville, NH resident who grew up in Lawrence, Barbara is one of the original pioneers of TNR (trap, neuter, return) in Massachusetts. In addition to serving on the Board of Directors of Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society (MRFRS) and numerous committees, Barbara has been a foster home for MRFRS and now ARMV for over 15 years, specializing in the sick and injured. Barbara has trapped thousands of cats in the Merrimack Valley and Southern NH. Many of these were feral cats that were TNR (trap, neuter, returned), the rest were kittens or friendly strays that she fostered and then found homes for. Barbara was instrumental in setting up low cost, no cost spay/neuter programs for the Merrimack Valley area. These programs helped to spay/neuter thousands of low income family cats and led to the formation of ARMV’s No Excuse Monday Spay/Neuter Clinic. Barbara also helped to found the Danville Feral Cat Sanctuary.
Trapping Coordinator: Laurin A Downey
Laurin has taken an active role helping the stray, feral, sick and injured cat population. She volunteers at free spay/neuter clinics and manages and assists feral cat colonies. She looks to involve more community members to address the needs of our furry community members who by no fault of their own find themselves homeless. Laurin has been a long term resident of Methuen and now lives in Lawrence. At the Nevins Nursing and Rehabilitation Center she works with the elderly through the therapeutic activities program.
Treasurer: Christen Harrison
Christen has been spay/neutering and caring for stray and feral cats for move than ten years. She has worked as a tax accountant in Boston and Metro North for the past twelve years in the investment management industry. She received a B.S. from Merrimack College and a MSA from Bentley College. She has a passion for gardening, ballet dancing and the welfare of animals.
Bookkeeper: Joanne Peardon
Joanne, a recently retired Catholic School Secretary, grew up in Lawrence but now resides in Merrimac, MA. She is a previous MRFRS adopter and foster home for kittens. ARMV fundraising activities have greatly benefitted from her years of previous experience in school fundraising.
Susan Querze
A Lawrence, MA resident who also lived in Somerville and then Woburn for many years, Sue’s involvement in cat rescue started with feeding one hungry stray that she eventually took in many years ago. This of course let to feeding, vetting and taking in many more strays through the years. Sue became very active in Trap, Neuter, Release (TNR) while living in Woburn and she also volunteers at the monthly MRFRS Feral Spay/Neuter clinic. She helped to found The Woburn Feral Cat Coalition, the group that she formerly volunteered for. She has been a foster home for MRFRS, WFCC and ARMV for many years. Realizing the need for volunteers in the Lawrence area, Sue joined Animal Rescue Merrimack Valley but continues to feed her feral colonies that she TNR’d in Woburn. Sue also made two trips to New Orleans to help with the animal rescue efforts after Katrina.
Advisors
Sharon Lynn DuBois
Sharon is founder and president of Billerica Cat Care Coalition of Billerica, MA, a non-profit cat rescue founded in 2004, dedicated to TNR and care for feral cats, as well as foster and adoption of abandoned cats. She is currently an economic development specialist for the City of Lawrence, MA. Sharon holds a Master’s degree Fordham University in N.Y., and a B.A. Manhattanville College in Purchase, N.Y.
Michelle Hamel
Michelle is Haverhill’s first Certified Animal Control Officer. She works closely with MRFRS and the MSPCA, MSPCA Law Enforcement. Michelle educates the public the regarding spay/neuter of all pets, helps low income families care for their pets by distributing cat and dog food and arranging spay/neuter and medical care. Michelle believes that all God’s creatures should be respected. Michelle grew up in Haverhill and attended the NECC Criminal Justice program.

Founder and former President

Cathy Ahern
A former Haverhill resident, Ahern served on the Board of Directors of Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society (MRFRS) for several years before founding ARMV with several other volunteers. Cathy has trapped and neutered well over three thousand cats and set up low cost, no cost spay neuter programs for the Merrimack Valley area, most recently the No Excuse Monday Spay/Neuter Clinic. These programs have helped to spay /neuter thousands of low income family cats. Cathy helped to found the Danville Feral Cat Sanctuary. Cathy also spent several weeks in New Orleans to help with the animal rescue efforts after Katrina. Ahern now resides in Florida actively working with the local rescues to help promote aggressive spay/neuter in hopes of bringing the pet over-population in Florida under control.
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