Message from the President
Happy New Year!
As we begin this new year, I would like to pause and reflect on 2014, our 75th anniversary, and all that we’ve accomplished together.
Last year was amazing and we have much to celebrate! Many clients were served through our programs and we held our first Deaf-Blind warm weather guide dog training. Our 75th anniversary included a very successful community open house with about 1,500 people in attendance and a business breakfast which honored three local business leaders; the late Roy Rewold, Russ Shelton and Bill Fox.
Leader Dog was frequently recognized for our programs as well as our leadership within the industry. We received recognition from Crain’s Detroit Business (page 9) and received the Mayor of Rochester Hills’ Business Council Champion award for outstanding accomplishments. We also received a Michigan AER award (page 11) and the GuideStar Gold Star and Charity Navigator 4-Star ratings (page 9).
The Mutual of America Community Partnership Award that we received in 2013 (see Issue 1-2014) helped us expand Prison Puppies into more Michigan prisons during 2014. We now have three facilities in Michigan participating and are in conversation with several others.
From a brick and mortar perspective, we finalized plans for our Canine Development Center in 2014 and we broke ground! We launched our capital campaign and have made significant progress toward our funding goal (the Canine Development Center will be highlighted in the next issue of Update).
I am excited to continue working with our Board and team as we move Leader Dog forward in our commitment to be a powerful and positive force in the lives of people who are blind or visually impaired. Thank you to all of you—donors, puppy raisers, Lions clubs, volunteers, corporations, breeding hosts and foundations—for supporting our mission. You are the continued key to our success for 2015 and for the many years ahead!
I hope you feel a sense of pride for all we have achieved together as you read this issue of Update. Have a safe and happy 2015!
Susan M. Daniels
President and CEO