Who We Are
We’re just like you, ordinary citizens who saw a need and wanted to make a difference. Four people meeting around a kitchen table have evolved into dozens who are actively helping more Shelter animals than ever before find loving homes.
Shelter Friends is an all-volunteer, private non-profit 501(c)3 organization.
Current Board Members
– Board President, Feline Foster Coordinator
Tana has always had a special place in her heart for animals, and now that her children are grown and grandchildren abound, she felt the pull to volunteer to help the animals she has loved her entire life.
Although partial to dogs, Tana has found her place helping with the kitties. After attending her first adoption event, she was quickly drawn in by the kitties and the wonderful people that stopped by to pet, hold, love and talk about their own animals, present and past.
She now oversees the care of 100s of kittens that make their way to the Josephine County Animal Shelter and into foster homes. From bottle babies to bouncing kitteens awaiting their spay/neuter appointment, the options for fostering are limitless! Interested in becoming a feline foster family? She’d love to talk with you!
Tana has two children and six grandchildren. Two little dogs, Lina and Shelby and one cat, Missy, who share her home.
– Board Vice President, Volunteer Coordinator
Tammy joined the Shelter Friends board in July 2014 after volunteering at the shelter and off-site adoption events for the six months prior. She saw the positive impact that Shelter Friends had on successful adoptions and helping save lives of many cats and dogs and wanted to be an integral part of that important mission and work in the community.
Currently, Tammy serves as the Board Vice-President and Volunteer Coordinator. If you have questions about the role Shelter Friends has in its partnership with the Josephine County Animal Shelter or Shelter Friends’ mission, purpose and organization, she invites you contact her.
If you want to volunteer, we have a huge variety of needs that range from
weekly commitments, to monthly commitments, to helping with a task just a
few times a year. You may be interested in helping at adoption events,
fostering dogs or cats, transporting animals to vet appointments, being
part of our cat care team or walking the dogs at the shelter. If you want
to volunteer, she will find an area to suit your interests and
– Board Treasurer
– Board Secretary, Newsletter Author
Leslie joined Shelter Friends after learning about the organization through a coworker in 2014. “Ruth asked me about the picture I have of my cats on my desk so I told her about my little fur family, which consists of three cats (Chip, Baby, and Missy) plus my pibble Emma. She then asked if I had heard of Shelter Friends and how they’re looking for people to help. I said I’d stop by the next adoption event to see how it went. I’ve been volunteering ever since.” Originally thinking she’d help with the cats, Leslie found her place assisting with the dogs and later joined the board at the end of 2016 to help coordinate newsletters and other writing projects.
– Dog Adoption Coordinator
Congratulations, Raleigh, for receiving the Raskin Award for 2019. Your dedication to all animals has a far-reaching impact. We thank you for your dedication.
Raleigh Smith has been an advocate for animal welfare all of her adult life and more specifically for displaced, neglected, abandoned and lost dogs. Since returning to Oregon in 2000 she was her own freelance dog rescuer in Josephine County. She could not pass up on a dog in distress- even being late to a Tax Audit as she passed a near starving dog on the way. She became a formal volunteer for the Josephine County Animal Shelter when she thought she could make more of an impact than on her own.
As a volunteer of the animal shelter, she launched the Josephine County Hero Train which promotes Adoption-Foster- and Volunteerism. Raleigh promotes the adoptable dogs through social media, various rescue sites and adoption events, and responds to all inquiries resulting from these promotions. She also follows up with the adopting families to be sure the transition has gone smoothly and if necessary to offer additional guidance or referral needs. Additionally, Raleigh facilitates transport of dogs to medical appointments, to new homes outside of Josephine County and has expanded the dog foster program when it becomes necessary for dogs that need short and long term care due to age, post medical care, or situations when the shelter is nearing capacity.
As Dog Adoption Coordinator Raleigh has successfully recruited and cultivated a dedicated team of volunteers who participate in Adoption events at various venues such as Petco, Grange Co-Op and Washington Federal Bank as well as participation in various community events such as the Boatnick Parade and The Pet and Dog Fairs at Riverside Park.
Raleigh works full time as a residential Loan Officer with Jefferson State Mortgage and credits her employer with accommodating her passion for the dogs,- when she has to leave her desk in order to transport a dog to the vet or has scheduled a “meet and greet” for a prospective adopter.
Raleigh has 3 grown children and her empty nest is now filled with Tripod- a 3 legged Yellow Lab, Sissy and Taz her 14 year old Shih-tzu mixes and frequent visiting dogs and intermittent foster dogs.
– Board Member at Large
Kate Hoffman has been with Shelter Friends from its inception. A retired teacher, she has lived in Josephine County most of her life. She and her husband, John, live outside of Grants Pass with Archer, their Australian Shepherd adopted from the Josephine County Animal Shelter; Merlin the cat who was rescued from a foreclosed house; and Arthur, an abandoned cat who used to wander through the property. Her hope for Shelter Friends is stable funding from the community and enthusiastic volunteers.
– Veterinary Liaison