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Founder and Co-Director
Rob accidentally started running in 2004, and inadvertently started coaching a running group in 2007. In 2008, his running group, Team Spiridon, just happened to start raising money for animal charities. He unexpectedly adopted a dog, Neko, in 2009, which further amplified his awareness and concern for companion animals. In 2010, he and one of his runners, Chantelle Wallace, were caught unawares by an Austin Pets Alive! dog behaviorist, who asked if members of Team Spiridon might be interested in running with APA!’s higher-energy dogs. And, so, from a chain of unlikeliness, “Jog-a-Dog” was born, which later became Rufftail Runners.
Rob continues to coach Team Spiridon, works with the Austin Marathon and Half Marathon and other local races, pours beer at Austin Beerworks, and serves as Director of Community Donations for Goodwill Central Texas. He shares an apartment with Neko, and the most annoying animal in the world, Oliver, a cat.
Anna has been a volunteer with RuffTail Runners since March 2013. Since then, she has adopted two APA! dogs and has enjoyed taking several shelter dogs on walks and runs around the lake. She has a soft spot for the senior dogs who just like to sniff and mosey along the trail. Outside of the shelter, Anna works at a local nonprofit and enjoys gardening, cooking, and yoga in whatever spare time she has left.
Zack has been a volunteer with RuffTail Runners since Spring 2013. He has been a dog runner, desk volunteer, and adopter. He loves shy and scared dogs and has seen how running and walking gives these dogs confidence and helps make them more adoptable. Zack is currently working on a PhD in Finance at UT. His other interests include tennis (4.5 – 5.0) and woodworking.
Mary has been a volunteer with RuffTail Runners since June 2012. She starting running the pups while training for the Austin Half-Marathon and several triathlons around town…and soon realized that they were helping her gain a faster pace! Her favorite place to run is around Lady Bird Lake where she can show off the sweet and gentle pups to potential adopters. She has even taken a few dogs to the Annual Thanksgiving DayTurkey Trot in hopes of finding the pups their forever homes. When she’s not volunteering, Mary works as a Meteorologist for Time Warner Cable News and loves hanging out with her husband and three furbabies.
Kym fell in love with Austin when she moved here in the Fall of 2011, primarily due to how dog friendly and active the city is, so RuffTail was a perfect fit. She has been a volunteer with RuffTail and other local non-profit organizations such as Love-A-Bull since 2012. She currently has 2 rescue dogs, one she brought with her from CA and one she adopted from Austin Dog Rescue in 2015. Kym has a special place in her heart for pit bull type dogs, and is always looking for ways to help educate people on how sweet and loving they really are. Outside of volunteering, Kym works in Marketing and Event Planning. She also enjoys cycling, swimming and stand-up paddle boarding (preferably with her pup, but that still needs a little work).
Madeline began volunteering with RuffTail Runners in October 2014. Anytime she’s at the trail, she always has an RTR dog by her side. She’s even been known to foster her favorite running buddy. The shy ones are her favorite, and she loves to see them flourish on the trail. By day, Madeline works at a public relations agency, and enjoys relaxing in the outdoors as well as time spent recipe testing in the kitchen.
Social Media Coordinator
Erin has been a RuffTail Runner since October 2014. Always up for a challenge, she loves to take the high energy pups for runs around the lake. In her daily life, Erin is a graduate student studying health behavior and education. To relax, she likes to treat herself to Austin’s delicious restaurants and spend time with her dog and two cats, which are APA! alums.