President: Helen Laughlin: Helen has been rehabilitating since 2006 and is licensed for wildlife rehabilitation by both the State of Texas and U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife. She specializes in songbirds but also rehabilitates small mammals such as squirrels, opossums, and skunks. Helen holds degrees in English, accounting, and business administration. She retired from the Federal Government as a supervisory auditor for the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Labor. She is a member of the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council and National Wildlife Rehabilitation Association. Her favorite bird is the blue jay.
Vice President: Roger Rucker: Roger joined ATW in 2017 after moving to Georgetown from Eastern Kansas. He has been a Wildlife Rehabilitator for 10 years. He specializes in Raptors and Wildlife education. He holds a Masters degree in Zoology.
Treasurer: Ruth Rucker: Ruth moved to Texas almost three years ago after retiring from a career in accounting management with a well known Animal Health Care manufacturing company in Kansas City. Both she and Roger were volunteering at a wildlife rehab center in the Kansas City area before they moved so they were naturally drawn to look for opportunities in the Georgetown area.
Secretary: Becky Vietz: Animals have been a passion of Becky’s since she was very young, always taking in strays and nursing them to health. As pets she has had dogs, cats, ferrets, birds, lizards, rabbits and guinea pigs. At times growing up her mother had to put her foot down about Becky’s obsession! Becky obtained a BS in Nursing in 1985, worked 5 years, then proceeded to get her Masters in Science, Nurse Anesthesia in 1993. She currently works full time as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) in Austin. She has one son and, as a single mom, has kept very busy. For the last two years she has made time to volunteer with ATW. She is following her passion for animal welfare (she loves them all) to one day be a full-time licensed wildlife rehabber.
Director: Kim Fross: Kim joined ATW in August 2015 when she brought a fledgling dove who seemed to have lost her mom to Helen. Kim has always felt that all animals are God’s creatures and, like humans, have a special place in this world. Her older brother always teased her when she was younger by calling her Dr. Doolittle. Deep down inside she felt honored to be called Dr. Doolittle, but never let him know that. Kim has a degree in Biology with a Minor in Chemistry. She has worked as a project manager for the state environmental agency for 20 years and is looking forward to retirement so that she can spend more time helping out these animals. Her favorite animals to work with are opossums, skunks, raccoons, and she hopes to gain experience with bigger carnivores one day.
Director: Garth Hillman: As an engineer, Garth is, in his own words, under the delusion that he can fix anything, leading to his nickname-Mr. Fix-It. He worked for Motorola Semiconductor for 19.5 years, Dell for 1.5 years, and AMD for 8 years. Garth consulted for the last 6 years and he is now semi-retired. After years of focusing on his family (a single-parent of two) and his career, he wants to give back through his fulfilling work with ATW.
Director: Vicki O’Connor: Vicki and her family (husband, Brian, and daughter, Veda) were lead to Helen and ATW through Veda’s interest in wildlife. While living in Chicago in 2014, they drove Veda to her interview at the Brookfield Zoo, where she was then invited to become a member of the Chicago Zoological Society and volunteer at animal exhibits within the zoo. Upon moving back to Austin in 2015, a gem of an opportunity was found to help Veda continue her wildlife passion at ATW. Vicki and her family have been volunteering their time and talents ever since. Vicki is currently a Project Analyst at LCRA. She and her husband are both certified Texas Master Gardeners within Williamson County, which they understand is a great complement to the goal of ATW
of keeping our wildlife healthy – and, well, wild! Vicki will be responsible for the landscaping of the rehabilitation facility, and her part in this role will help beautify the facility while enhancing the natural habitats of our local wildlife.
Director: LM Sharron: Although LM has had a corporate job of 21 years, she is anxious to retire and live her passion of serving animals full-time. LM serves ATW as a grant writer and is an animal chaplain at Unity Church of the Hills. LM is working on her ordainment for her ministry, Paws for Prayer. She has loved animals all her life and is looking forward to continuing her service to animals with ATW.
Director: Lisa Donau: Lisa grew up in Colorado where her family was involved in the banking industry as well as construction. They were always a part of various animal and pet organizations from the Humane Society to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. As an adult, Lisa moved to Arizona to begin raising a family and continued to be part of various animal organizations as well as the zoo. Now Texas is Lisa’s home where she and Steve have five wonderful grown children between them. Lisa’s daughter Shan, who is autistic, lives with Lisa and Steve. Finding All Things Wild was a great moment for the family. Animals have always been a huge part of Shan’s therapy, and the team at ATW has made her feel special. Lisa and her family couldn’t be prouder of sharing with people everything the ATW Rehabilitation Center stands for.