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Board of Directors

  • Richard Headley, DVM

    Dr. Headley graduated from Purdue University in 1967. Upon graduation he went on active duty with the US Army and was stationed at Ft. Irwin CA, functioning as Post Veterinarian, Public Health Officer and Wildlife Management Officer. Being in a remote area, he was granted permission to operate an emergency large animal practice in the vicinity. Following military service he moved to private practice in Detroit, MI where he stayed for 1 1/2 years. In January 1971 he leased and eventually bought the Lincolnway Veterinary Clinic in Mishawaka, IN where he still operates a small animal practice.

    Dr. Headley was named Mishawaka man of the year,1985 for teaching CPR to the general public under the guidance of the American Heart Association with the help of the Mishawaka Kiwanis Club. He has served as President of the Michiana Veterinary Medical Association. Is a member of that group, the Indiana Veterinary Medical Association, AVMA, and IAVPM. He has been a member of VIN since 1993 and is currently an associate editor of the VIN Anesthesia/Analgesia folder.

  • Joseph A. D'Abbraccio, DVM

    Dr. D'Abbraccio grew up in Sullivan County, New York and is a graduate of Monticello High School. Following graduation Dr. Joe attended the State University of New York at Delhi where he earned a degree in Veterinary Science Technology. Dr. Joe attended veterinary school at St. Matthew's University School of Veterinary Medicine, located in the Cayman Islands, BWI. While attending St. Matthew's University, Dr. Joe was very active in a number of student organizations, particularly the Emergency and Critical Care Society. Given his strong interest and achievements Dr. Joe was awarded the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society Clinical Proficiency Award (two time recipient), an international achievement. Due to his strong involvement level and high ranked veterinary studies Dr. Joe was awarded the Dean's Award from St. Matthew's University. Following his pre-clinical training Dr. Joe finished his final year of veterinary school at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC. Dr. D'Abbraccio interests include emergency and critical care as well as cardiovascular disease. Dr. D'Abbraccio is working toward board certification with the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (Canine and Feline) and certification by the International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management. Given his wide interests he is happy to care for dogs, cats, exotics, as well as livestock.

    Dr. D'Abbraccio also holds an adjunct professor position at SUNY Ulster, teaching veterinary technician students. However, when he is not at the hospital or teaching Dr. D'Abbraccio enjoys traveling and spending time with his family and friends.

  • Elizabeth Stoltz, JD

    Elizabeth Stoltz is a 1969 graduate of Cornell University, with a BA degree in Government, and holds a JD degree from the McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific, She spent thirty years in the Yolo County Counsel's Office in Woodland, California, where her primary assignment was handling child abuse and neglect cases in the Juvenile Court. She retired in 2007, and moved to Washington State, to be close to her daughter, son-in-law, and grandson. She lives with two horses, three dogs, and seven cats, and enjoys gardening, photography, and traveling. Her connection with VIN is through her late cat, Cecil, who in 1986 was the first cat treated with taurine for cardiomyopathy, by Paul Pion.

  • VIN Foundation Staff
    Rick Baum, DVM, MBA

    Dr. Baum is the director of the Arlington Animal in Arlington, Vermont and per diem emergency veterinarian at the Animal Emergency Clinic in Latham, New York. He received a BA from Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York and DVM from Cornell University. He practiced in Manhattan and Maine before settling in Vermont. He is the past president of the Vermont VMA and current HOD Representative from Vermont to the AVMA. He lives in Vermont with his wife, Catherine, and daughter, Sarah, four dogs, two cats, and a number of horses.

  • Carl Darby, MA, VETMB

    Dr. Darby was born in Manchester England. He attended Cambridge University School of Veterinary Medicine and graduated with honors in 1991. In 1992 he moved to Long Island, New York. He worked at 2 small animal hospitals. In 2003 Dr. Darby passed the ABVP boards and became a board certified specialist in avian medicine. He is one of only approximately 100 veterinarians worldwide who have advanced knowledge and expertise in avian (bird) medicine. In 2005 Dr. Darby began work at a specialty hospital on Long Island (The Center for Specialized Veterinary Care) as head of avian and exotic animal medicine.

    In 2006 Dr. Darby purchased Seneca Falls Veterinary Hospital in Seneca Falls. Since then he has worked hard to make Seneca Falls Veterinary Hospital a modern, state of the art Veterinary Hospital. He lives in Seneca Falls with his wife Denise, sons Christopher and Nicholas,3 dogs (Dibley, Daisy and Sophie), 2 cats (Oliver and Paddy) and 5 birds (Tony, Baby bird, Lilly, Scrooge and Marley).

  • Donna Harris, DVM, MBA

    Dr. Donna Harris received her veterinary degree from Michigan State University and her MBA from Grand Valley State University. She practiced small animal and exotics medicine for many years before starting Veterinary Special Services, a financial and strategic planning consulting firm.

    Today she teaches business and career development topics at Michigan State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and St. Matthew's School of Veterinary Medicine in Grand Cayman as well as consulting for private practice veterinary businesses.

  • Carol S. Hillhouse, DVM, DABVP

    Dr. Hillhouse owns two mixed animal practices in the Texas Panhandle together with her husband Joe, who is also a veterinarian. Her practices host an almost continuous flow of student externs from across the USA and internationally. She is active in organized veterinary medicine at both the state and local level, and is also a VIN Rep. Dr. Hillhouse received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Texas A&M University in 1984, and is a diplomate of the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (canine/feline). She is the mother of two adult sons, and leads two local Girl Scout troops.

  • Paul D. Pion, DVM, DipACVIM (Cardiology)

    Dr. Pion, holds a B.S. and a D.V.M. from Cornell University. He is board certified as a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine.

    Dr. Pion interned at the Animal Medical Center, completed a residency in Cardiology at UC Davis, a post-doctorate in Pharmacology at Columbia University, and coursework and research toward his PhD at UC Davis. Dr. Pion founded Veterinary Information Network with Dr. Duncan Ferguson in 1991 after partnering with him on the Pet Care Forum on America Online in 1990. Dr. Pion has worked full-time at VIN since 1993 and is the Chief Executive Officer, President, and a director of VIN. Prior to that, he was a full-time instructor and researcher at the University of California, Davis where he also practiced veterinary medicine and was responsible for breakthrough veterinary medical research on heart disease in cats. Among many honors, Dr. Pion has received a Physician Scientist Award from the National Institutes of Health, a Ralston Purina Small Animal Research Award, a National Phi Zeta Award and a Special Recognition Award from the American Animal Hospital Association. Dr. Pion has published extensively, including a cover article for the journal Science announcing a finding that elucidated the cause, cure, and ultimate elimination of a common and fatal feline heart ailment via reformulation of commercial feline diets. Paul co-authored a book for cat owners, Cats for Dummies. He lives in Davis California with his wife, 2 sons, daughter, and numerous pets.

  • William Thomas, DVM, DACVIM (Neurology)

    Dr. Thomas is a 1985 graduate of Auburn University. He worked in a mixed-animal practice in Florida for several years before returning to Auburn to complete a residency in Neurosurgery and Neurology and an MS. After his residency, Dr. Thomas was a clinical instructor at North Carolina State University for two years before moving to the University of Tennessee where he is currently a Professor in Neurology and Neurosurgery and an ACVIM(Neurology) diplomate. Dr. Thomas lives on a horse farm with his wife, Sherri, two daughters, Emelie and Jenna, two dogs, a cat, two Guinea pigs, ducks, chickens and way too many Trakehners. Sherri is also a veterinarian and owns Lovell Animal Hospital.


  • VIN Foundation Staff
    Jordan benShea
    Executive Director

    Jordan benShea is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley where she studied Mass Communications with an emphasis in Business Administration and Journalism. After college she oversaw marketing departments in industries ranging from email marketing to biometrics and fitness equipment manufacturing. Jordan grew up with an avid appreciation for giving back, and began to tie her strategic marketing experience with her passion for engagement in the nonprofit world. Jordan serves as a lead on multiple nonprofit boards and has spearheaded several board initiatives. She has also completed a seven month Board Leadership Institute with the Santa Barbara Foundation covering topics including: board service, strategic planning, development and fundraising, board/CEO partnership, ethical legal/financial literacy, and governance oversight. Jordan lives in Santa Barbara, California with her dog and bee hives, enjoys a good book and loves exploring nature with friends and family.

  • Alejandro Garcia, DVM
    Veterinary Information Network Liaison

    Dr. Garcia was raised in Chile and obtained his veterinary degree at the Universidad Mayor in Santiago. He then worked internationally with several non-profits, spending time in Easter Island and the Middle East. In 2007, while doing shelter work and pursuing an interest in emergency medicine, Dr. Garcia changed vocational direction, deciding he could better serve the veterinary community through a job with the Veterinary Information Network. He has worked closely with the VIN Foundation ever since. He lives in a small town in California with two little dogs and spends his free time pursuing his passion for wildlife and photography.

VIN Foundation serves animal- and human-kind by ensuring veterinary professionals have the tools,
confidence and support to thrive. Empowering ONE empowers all. 

What is the need for the VIN Foundation?

Veterinary medicine spans areas including food animal and meat inspection, academia and research, international health and public awareness, as well as cutting edge surgery, diagnostic testing, and medical treatments for every animal species. The strength and health of our pets, agriculture, research, families, and communities depend upon a healthy, vibrant, and strong veterinary profession. Supporting and advocating for individuals within the profession is the heart and soul of the VIN Foundation. By helping veterinary professionals navigate the challenges of their careers, the VIN Foundation is helping to better serve animal- and human-kind.

Learn more.


The VIN Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, was created by members of the Veterinary Information Network (VIN) in 2005. VIN is an online community of veterinarians and veterinary students with over 50,000 members worldwide. The VIN Foundation is made possible through generous gifts by individual donors and grants, all gifts made to the VIN Foundation are tax deductible.

© 2005 - 2017 VIN Foundation. All Rights Reserved. VIN Foundation Phoenix House, 413 F Street, Davis, CA 95616,, (888) 616-6506. Photographs provided by Teresa (Teri) Zgoda.