We are going to introduce you to more of the human faces of RAPS in coming months – volunteers, staff, supporters and friends!
This week, we feature one of our superb volunteers! Keith is a member of the RAPS Board of Directors and brings to the role his passion for animals and people!
What is your role at RAPS?
I currently sit on the Board of Directors, and serve as the Financial Chair on the Executive Committee.
Why did you choose to get involved in RAPS?
I have a love for animals and wanted to be part of the good RAPS provides to pets and their people. RAPS serves my passion for giving back to the community I have lived in for the past 20 years. I have governance experience and have served as a director on numerous not-for-profit boards, helping the organizations stay relevant and successful.
Tell us about your own companion animals (and, if you’d like, your human family, too!)
I am married to Elizabeth, for almost 20 years. Liz is a RN, working in the Leukemia Bone Marrow Transplant Program at VGH. Both Liz and I have always loved animals. Our family would not be complete without the love and joy provided by our two schnauzers. Stella is our sweet, salt-and-pepper schnauzer, who just celebrated her 15th birthday – we value every day we have with her. Ally Savannah, our mischievous 10-year-old liver tan schnauzer, loves to play and have her tummy rubbed, whenever we have a free hand. I have a grown son and two teenage granddaughters.
What would you like everyone to know about RAPS?
RAPS is constantly striving to be there for animals and their people. We have one of the most progressive and cutting-edge animal hospitals in Canada and we are constantly looking for ways to improve and expand our services at the hospital. We have the goal of having our hospital open seven days a week, 24 hours a day, and having a pet ambulance. We have the largest cat sanctuary in Canada, and aspire to have a dog sanctuary.
RAPS is there for all animals, regardless of the pet guardian’s income level, and we work closely with organizations that help the homeless, providing care for their pets.
We are proud of the innovation we put into RAPS – in addition to asking for and receiving donations and bequests from estates, we have developed a vibrant “social enterprise” with our expanding Thrift Stores, and our state-of-the-art animal hospital, which helps generate income to help serve animals and their people.
What does RAPS’ no-kill promise mean to you?
The RAPS “no-kill” policy means everything to me. This sets RAPS apart from most other animal organizations. All animals want is love and companionship and a feeling of being wanted by a loving family. RAPS endeavours to foster, and ultimately find homes with loving families for all animals that come into our care. But, if an animal cannot be adopted, we will provide shelter and medical care to the animal for life.
Tell us about yourself!
I was born in Montreal and raised in a small town just north of Toronto. I was a journalism major at Centennial College. I grew up in a family with a father who was a senior airline executive. This instilled my passion for travelling and exploring the world. (I owned a travel agency in the Toronto area for over 20 years.) After selling my travel Agency, I came West to manage a tour company, and later became a national accounts manager in the hotel industry. I left the travel tourism sector over 15 years ago, and joined REMAX to pursue a career as a Realtor. I love helping my Richmond and Lower Mainland clients fulfill their goal of finding their dream home. My spare time passions are spending time with family, cooking, reading, photography and travel.