Board & Executive Team


We are an all-volunteer organization. Everyone here volunteers their time for free to support families in need and their beloved pets. Dog walkers, cat caretakers, and transporters are not listed here to protect their privacy.


A journalist with over 20 years of experience, Daniela has been volunteering for Phinney’s Friends since 2007 in several capacities. She runs  Taildom, a pet blog with product reviews, Daniela’s favorite photos and stories about her 4 cats and 2 dogs, and volunteers for several other Lincoln-based nonprofits. She has a master’s degree in Environmental Sciences from UFRJ, Brazil, and a master’s degree in Journalism from Harvard University, writing her final project on dogs and the U.S. military. Daniela is also the Communications Committee Co-Chair and Volunteer Committee Chair for Phinney’s Friends. She recruits new volunteers and Board Members and searches for the right opportunities for each volunteer. 


After 37 years at Blue Cross Blue Shield of MA, Judy joined Phinney’s Friends in October 2014. She is also involved with the Minuteman Senior Services’ Meals On Wheels program and previously assisted them in their Money Management and Protective Services programs. Besides being the Clerk on the Board of Directors, Judy is working on structuring Phinney’s Friends, and building a collection of job descriptions, manuals, guidelines and procedures for the nonprofit. She recently adopted a Quaker parrot from the MSPCA. After seeing how traumatic and stressful it was on the bird in that unfamiliar environment, Judy is looking forward to helping owners keep their pets at home during times of hardships.


Dr. Shannon Kircher, who attended Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, has experience as both a general practitioner and an emergency and critical care veterinarian, for small animals and exotic pets (including birds, reptiles, amphibians, and small mammals). Shannon is a certified emergency/disaster responder for SMART (State of MA Animal Response Team) and works occasionally with the ASPCA Field Investigations & Response Team. She lives with her two cats (Choo and Dinky), her dog (Phillip), and her leopard gecko (Blu). Shannon is a member of the Fundraising Committee, where she focuses on organizing events and programs to raise funds for the organization.


Jan has started volunteering with Phinney’s Friends in 2013. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) who works as a Tax Director at Fleetmatics in Waltham. In her spare time, she fosters animals, transports shelter dogs to their new loving homes, and rescues homeless cats to find them, good families. She owns a cat and a dog. Jan manages Phinney’s finances, coordinates bookkeeping activities and oversees our budget.



Laura became involved with Phinney’s Friends in January 2014. She is a Certified Public Accountant who works at Ernst & Young. Animals are Laura’s passion and besides her dedication to promoting the human-animal bond, she is a strong supporter of no-kill animal shelters and she advocates for spay and neuter organizations. Laura rescued a Persian cat and looks forward to rescuing another one in the near future. Laura is Phinney’s Friends Finance Coordinator, leading our Finance Committee, therefore responsible for the company’s day-to-day financial reporting.  Laura also works directly with clients to help care for their animals.


Mara has been a volunteer since 2012. She is an attorney who manages a program with the state public defender agency. Years prior, Mara worked as a social services advocate for people with chronic illnesses, and heard about Phinney’s from grateful clients. She is enthusiastic to support an organization that serves both people and animals. Mara brings a focus on program evaluation and risk reduction to her work with Phinney’s, and founded and coordinates our Pet Boost Program, based on our partnership with AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts. Mara’s family happily includes two extremely fuzzy and ridiculous rescue kitties, Vinnie and Hazel.


Starr Maxwell, a biology major, lifelong animal lover and skilled caregiver, started volunteering for Phinney’s Friends in 1998. She has done direct client care for dozens of pets and people in need, and has fostered Phinney’s pets for many years. When Phinney’s became an independent nonprofit, Starr became one of the founding directors. She added to her responsibilities client coordination and fundraising, later becoming vice president. She now co-chairs Phinney’s Client Committee, serving as an advisor and lending a hand when clients most need us.


Lauren K. Terry became a volunteer with Phinney’s in 2012 as a foster parent and media assistant. Soon after, she took on the role of Foster Manager, and now is Communications Co-Chair.  She brings 15 years of experience in nonprofit management, specializing in developing compelling communications strategies for high-growth organizations. In addition to having development and marketing expertise, Lauren also holds certifications in grant writing and editing. She has a Masters of Arts from Boston University; two Bachelor degrees, in English and Art History, from Mount Holyoke College; and she’s earning a graduate certification in strategic communications from Cornell University. She lives in Watertown with her husband, Eric, and a clowder of feline friends.