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2019 Shelter Playgroup Alliance Summit Speaker Bios

Lisa Clifton-Bumpass is a certified dog behavior consultant and multi-species animal behavior expert who is an influential and award-winning dog trainer and behavior consultant.  Lisa has a long history in animal training, starting off with dogs and shelter animals. Over the course of the last twenty years, Lisa has expanded her expertise and added credentials in human learning, dog behavior and training, and the behavior and training of a long list of exotics.  Lisa credits an aggressive bat as one of her first and best animal teachers. Currently, Lisa Clifton-Bumpass provides professional coaching, training lectures, behavior analysis, organizational animal training program review, and physical skills development to animal trainers of both domestic and exotic species. Lisa provides demonstrations, presentations and topic focused discussions for high schools and universities on the real life application of applied behavior analysis in zoo settings.  Lisa is devoted to consistent reward-based training and a quest for additional education to pass on to her clients and colleagues. Her special interests include cooperative husbandry, aggression, team-based animal training, and giraffes.

Dr. Lisa Gunter is a Maddie's Research Fellow at Arizona State University in the Department of Psychology, a certified behavior consultant, and conducts her research in the Canine Science Collaboratory. Before beginning her graduate studies, she worked for nearly a decade with dogs in animal shelters and with dogs and their owners. Her interest in canine behavior began in 2002 as an animal shelter volunteer, training dogs in basic skills and assisting in shelter dog playgroups. That interest grew into a career where she managed the behavior programs of several shelters throughout the West.  Since entering, and completing, graduate school in pursuit of her Masters and Doctorate, Lisa has been engaged in ground-breaking research in shelters. Lisa has investigated the breed labeling of shelter dogs, their breed heritage, post-adoption interventions focused on owner retention, temporary fostering, and behavioral indicators of welfare for kenneled dogs. Among other ventures, Lisa co-founded the Institute for Shelter Dogs with Dr. Erica Feuerbacher, where they combine the latest in shelter research with the current best practices in workshops and consultations for staff and volunteers.

Dr. Lindsay Mehrkam is an applied animal behaviorist, animal welfare scientist, and doctoral-level Board-Certified Behavior Analyst. Her primary areas of interest include animal behavior, behavior analysis, and human-animal interactions with an emphasis on how the environment influences play, aggression, and stereotypic behavior in companion and exotic animals, how to promote behavioral choices and welfare of captive animals, and how to best conduct formal evaluations of training and enrichment practices in a variety of animal settings, as well as the assessment of human-animal interactions in therapeutic applications and in broader society. Dr. Mehrkam’s research has published widely in peer-reviewed scientific journals and presented at national and international conferences. She has been recognized through popular media outlets, grants, and scholarly and industry awards, including the Association for Professional Dog Trainers, Maddie’s Fund, and the Animal Behavior Management Alliance. In addition to teaching and research, Dr. Mehrkam serves as the Vice President for the Applied Animal Behavior Special Interest Group for the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) and as an advisory board member for Big Oak Wolf Sanctuary.