Service Dog Leader Makes Change to Help More Veterans/children with Special Needs

Service Dog Leader Makes Change to Help More Veterans/children with Special Needs

Project2Heal CEO and Founder Charlie Petrizzo announced today that Director of Canine Operations, Colene DeTullio, will be promoted to Chief Operations Officer, effective February 1, 2017. Prior to joining Project2Heal, DeTullio spent 16 years in the property management industry in positions of increasing importance including the management of a $5 million budget.

The North Carolina based non-profit’s mission is to increase the availability of service dogs to people in need. They accomplish this by breeding Labrador retrievers from the country’s best pedigrees. Dogs in the breeding program undergo a battery of genetic tests prior to becoming part of the breeding program. Pups born at Project2Heal undergo a systematic process of nurturing, imprinting and conditioning during the first 8 to 12 weeks of their life. They are donated to service dog organizations that have undergone a thorough due diligence process.

“In her short time with us, Colene has displayed a keen ability to improve processes, a desire to learn, a passion for our animals and those they serve. She is the right person for this role.”

CHARLIE PETRIZZO, CEO

The industry’s estimated pass rate for pups placed in service dog training is about 50 percent.  Based on feedback from its partners, Project2Heal pups experience a pass rate closer to 75-80%.

“Research proves that an adult dog is a combination of their genetics and the nurturing they receive during the critical phase (first twelve weeks) of their lives,” Petrizzo said. “The increased success of our pups is the result of Project2Heal’s process of pedigree research and a nurturing process that starts when a pup is 2 days of age with Early Neurological Stimulation (ENS) and then continues with imprinting and operant conditioning.”

DeTullio will be responsible for overseeing the breeding and nurturing program that is the foundation of Project2Heal’s work and responsible for the success of its pups. Her additional responsibilities will include staffing, the creation and implementation of operational processes and procedures and maintaining the extremely high standards of facility maintenance and animal husbandry for which Project2Heal is known.

“In her short time with us, Colene has displayed a keen ability to improve processes, a desire to learn, a passion for our animals and those they serve, said Petrizzo. “She is the right person for this role. The creation of this new role will allow me to focus more closely on board development as a means to generate the donations we count on as a nonprofit to fund the very important work that Project2Heal does to serve our veterans and others with special challenges.”

Media Contact:

Charlie Petrizzo, 704-256-4056, charlie@project2heal.org

Source: Project2Heal

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