The Animal Rescue League of Iowa depends on its small, dedicated staff to care for the thousands of pets that come through the ARL's doors each year. The ARL also relies on the hundreds of dedicated volunteers who help operate the shelter and care for the animals daily. The ARL is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.
Board of Directors
- Carol Griglione, Chair
- Phil Akason
- Matt Jacobson
- Chris Costa
- Joan Fletcher
- James Langeness
- Bernard Lettington
- Dean Peyton
- Chad Rasmussen
- Adam Shaikh
- Carey Wimer
- Kathleen Worth
- Mark Zimmerman
The following staff oversee the organization, animal veterinary care, animal behavior, operations, and communications.
Tom Colvin, Chief Executive Officer
Tom Colvin has been instrumental in the state of Iowa for animal protection work since 1974. He began his work as a Certified Veterinary Technician in Waterloo, Iowa. He went onto become the director of the Black Hawk Humane Society (now called Cedar Bend).
Tom moved to Des Moines in 1993 to become the shelter director of the Animal Rescue League of Iowa (ARL). In 1995, he was appointed the ARL’s Executive Director, a position he has held since. Tom led the initiative to build a new 43,000 square foot shelter, which was completed in October 2008.
Tom has served as the President of the Iowa Federation of Humane Societies since 1981 and also currently serves on the Iowa State University External Stakeholders Advisory Group, on the boards of the Iowa Wildlife Center and Better Business Bureau, and previously on the Iowa Board of Veterinary Medicine. He is also a member of The Association of Animal Welfare Advancement (formerly Society of Animal Welfare Administrators) and the Association of Fundraising Professionals, which promotes ethical fundraising practices. He has also been a wildlife rehabilitator and has served on Iowa deer taskforce committees.
Tom has worked tirelessly on legislation to strengthen Iowa’s laws for animal protection, including extensive work to address animal cruelty and puppy mills in Iowa. He has received awards for his efforts in legislation, including his work to enact the animal shelter mandatory spay/neuter law in 1992 and the felony animal abuse law in 2000. Recent successes in legislation have resulted in prohibiting giving pets as prizes, felony animal fighting laws, and in 2010, the passing of the Puppy Mill Bill.
Under Tom’s leadership and direction, the Animal Rescue of Iowa has repeatedly been honored with local “Best Non-Profit” awards, has been named a "Top-Rated Non-Profit" by Great NonProfits since 2013, and in 2015 was recognized nationally as the “Shelter of the Year”.
Dr. Dan Campbell, Medical Director
Dr. Dan Campbell is the Chief Staff Veterinarian at the ARL, overseeing the medical program at the ARL. Dr. Campbell has been a practicing veterinarian since 1987. After graduating from Iowa State University, he began his veterinary career in private practice at Village Veterinary Hospital in Johnston where he worked as one of the clinic veterinarians for 12 years. With the support of his former boss and friend Dr. Randy Mertens he began his relationship with the ARL by providing pro bono assistance to pets in need, from spay/neuter surgeries to emergency service.
In 2000 Dr. Campbell was approached by the Animal Rescue League of Iowa (ARL) and asked to be the first on-staff veterinarian at the ARL and he accepted the position of Chief Staff Veterinarian. In 2011, Dr. Campbell celebrated a milestone by performing his 50,000th spay/neuter surgery of animals at the ARL. As an extremely skilled surgeon, Dr. Campbell has performed countless other surgeries to give animals of many species a chance for a healthy life. Additionally, Dr. Campbell went to Mississippi to help animals during Hurricane Katrina, and has been to hoarding and puppy mill cases all over Iowa.
He is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Iowa Veterinary Medical Association, the Association of Shelter Veterinarians, Iowa Veterinary Rapid Response Team, and the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association and is on the Board of the Iowa Federation of Humane Societies.
Mick McAuliffe, Director of Animal Services
Mick McAuliffe has worked in animal training and behavior since 1987. Before coming to the United States, Mick served as the Director of Animal Behavior and Training for the RSPCA Queensland, Australia, where he developed assessment, modification and training programs for multiple species. In addition to his extensive work in canine training, Mick has applied his training skills to a variety of animals, from Sea World Australia’s large marine mammals to serving as head avian keeper and trainer for a collection of 130 native and exotic birds, including developing free-flight shows for visitors. Mick has lectured on animal behavior across five continents, working extensively in Australia, Japan, China, England, Saudi Arabia, and the United States. In Afghanistan, his experiences handling and training bomb-detecting dogs changed him forever, crediting a couple of the dogs he worked with for his career today.
Mick joined the Animal Rescue League of Iowa in 2009, and oversees the daily operations at the ARL Main facility, using his background to ensure a culture of positive animal handling, enrichment, and the overall care and well-being of the animals.
The pet behavior, enrichment, and training team, under Mick’s supervision, only uses positive reinforcement training techniques, eliminating the need for physical or verbal correction or training equipment that can cause pain or injury. He has co-authored two books for the ARL that are in stores nationwide: For Love of Dogs and For Love of Cats.
Stephanie Filer, Director of Development
Stephanie Filer has served in professional non-profit development roles since 2005. Prior to relocating to Des Moines, Stephanie lead the development team for Junior Achievement of Eastern Iowa with offices in Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, and Waterloo and served on the Board of Directors, Finance Committee, and Marketing Committee for the Cedar Valley Humane Society.
In 2010 Stephanie joined the Animal Rescue League of Iowa and now oversees the development staff who are responsible for fundraising and marketing for the organization. She has presented locally and nationally on social media marketing and fundraising as well as on breed-neutral marketing and advocacy. Stephanie has been instrumental in removing breed regulations from city ordinances and other corporate policies to help them become more pet-friendly while also enhancing public safety.
She is a graduate of both the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute and Leadership for 5 Seasons and was recognized as the Corridor Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 in 2008. Stephanie serves on the Board of Directors for Des Moines Neighbors and is a member of the Society of Animal Welfare Administrators, the Des Moines Leadership Network, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals, which promotes ethical fundraising practices.