The StubbyDog team is made up of people from many walks of life who love dogs and share a concern for what is happening to pit bulls. We were all brought together out of seeing, from our different perspectives, that existing approaches were missing the key element to making life better for these dogs: changing public perceptions.


Mitzi Bolanos:  Executive Director  – Animal rights attorney and advocate. Growing up in Miami-Dade County where pit bull type dogs have been banned since the 1980s, Mitzi initially knew very little about these dogs.  After graduating from law school at Florida International University, Mitzi moved to Washington, D.C. to work with the Department of Justice.  This is where she encountered her first pit bull type dog, Summer.  Summer was a sweet “pocket pittie” up for adoption at the Washington Humane Society, where Mitzi was volunteering.  Mitzi later moved to New Orleans, LA to continue working with the Department of Justice, as well as with local shelters.  While volunteering at the Louisiana SPCA, Mitzi met Bubba, a pit bull type dog who wanted nothing more than affection (and maybe a treat or two).  She knew right away that he was meant for her.  Bubba started Mitzi on a path working for breed equality, and eventually led her to Portland, OR to pursue an advanced degree in Animal Law at Lewis & Clark Law School.  Now, they are ready to take on breed discrimination together and show the world that pit bull type dogs are loving family companions.  Bubba is the proud big brother to two other rescued pups, Clyde and Grace, and he’s been asking for a baby sister.

Russ Mead: President and Chairperson, Board of Directors – Animal rights attorney and advocate, Visiting Professor, Lewis and Clark University Law School’s Center for Animal Law Studies. Russ’ experience includes serving as general counsel for Best Friends Animal Society and Farm Sanctuary. He has worked with local communities to avoid pit bull bans and advocated in a friend of the court brief for the rights of Michael Vick’s dogs used for fighting to restitution from their abuser. He is currently completing a textbook for use in his class on animal nonprofit law. Russ also has a Master’s in Business Administration with substantial experience in management, market analysis, strategic partnerships, subscriber acquisition and revenue strategies.

Laura Allen: Board of Directors member – An animal rights attorney and founder and director of Animal Law Coalition. Laura has worked with local communities to avoid or repeal pit bull bans. She has also worked on legislation to protect dogs as well as people, including anti-tethering, humane care and confinement, and owner responsibility laws.

Michael Mountain:  Founder and currently a close advisor of StubbyDog. Michael is past president and a founder of Best Friends Animal Society and currently is the founder and editor of


Karen Overall: Veterinarian Issues Liaison – World-renowned veterinary behaviorist. Former head of the Behavior Clinic at the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and faculty member of the Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania.

Jane Hoffman: Animal Issues Liaison – President of the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals and a Founding Member of Animal Law Committee at the NYC Bar Association.


We are deeply grateful for the ongoing assistance from scores of people critical to the success of StubbyDog. There are too many to list here completely, but some include:

Art Aron: Professor of psychology at Stony Brook University, specializing in social influence, prejudice and stereotyping.

Gary Bonilla: Former SVP of creative strategy, Nickelodeon/MTVN Kids and Family Group.

Harold Burson: Founder and chairman of Burson-Marsteller, the largest public relations agency in the world. Named by PRWeek as “the century’s most influential PR figure.

Ian Dunbar: Veterinarian with a Ph.D. in animal behavior. Researcher with U.C. Berkeley on olfactory communication, social behavior and aggression in domestic dogs.

Jocelyn Elders: Former surgeon general of the United States. Professor of pediatrics at the University of Arkansas.

Alan Goodman: MTV Networks consultant for 30 years. Launched MTV, Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, Comedy Central; and advised Neopets, Shockwave and Nicktoons Network.

Anthony Greenwald: Professor of psychology at University of Washington. Inventor of the Implicit Association Test (IAT; published in 1998, now having over 1,000 scholarly citations).

Craig Kanarick: Co-founder of Razorfish.

Frank Luntz: Political consultant, pollster, and president of The Word Doctors. Considered the go-to person for politicians and companies looking to reframe issues and influence public opinion through the use of language.

Bill Lynn: Visiting assistant professor in environmental studies at Williams College, and ethicist in human animal relations.

Allan Mayer: Principal partner at 42West, LLC. Former publisher of Buzz Magazine; senior editor, Newsweek.

Dawn McCall: Former president, Discovery Networks International.

Brigitte McCray: Former programming executive, BET. Former SVP of programming and scheduling, Oxygen Media.

Ty Montague: Former chief creative officer and co-president of JWT New York. Former co-creative director of Wieden + Kennedy New York.

Mary Beth Oliver: Specialist in media and psychology, focusing on both the psychological effects of media and on viewers’ attraction to media content.

Linda Ong: President of Truth Consulting, which specializes in brand strategy, with clients ranging from Animal Planet to Bravo to NPR. Former SVP of marketing for Oxygen.

Betsy Saul: Founder of Petfinder, the largest online adoption, foster and assistance service for shelters and pet guardians.

James Serpell: Professor of humane ethics and animal welfare; director, Center for the Interaction of Animals & Society, Department of Clinical Studies, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania.

Chris Shipley: Former executive producer of the DEMO Conferences for IDG Executive Forums, helped technology companies bring more than a 1,000 new products to market since 1996. Placed on Fortune Small Business Magazine’s ”Top 10 Minds in Small Business.”

Bruce Stein: Former CEO of Mandalay Media. Former COO of Mattel. Former CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment.

Tia Maria Torres: Founder, Villa Lobos Rescue Center, featured on Animal Planet’s “Pit Bulls & Parolees.”

Dave Tutin: Former executive creative director of darkGrey (Grey Worldwide) and global creative director/technology. Former executive creative director McCann San Francisco.

Chase and Jennifer Utley: Chase plays for the Philadelphia Phillies and is one of the most popular players in baseball today. Jennifer is a board member of the Pennsylvania SPCA board. Together, they started The Utley Foundation to bring awareness to the increasing epidemic of animal cruelty. Mostly, they speak up for pit bulls, or, more correctly, pit bulls and pit bull mixes. Jen Utley calls them “my pits.”

Bob Vetere: President of American Pet Products Association, the largest pet products related association in the U.S.

Larry Winokur: The “W” in BWR Public Relations with 25 years matchmaking stars and causes. His Beverly Hills-based firm represents numerous A-listers (e.g., Brad Pitt, Adam Sandler, Reese Witherspoon) and has helped garner attention for issues from breast cancer to global warming.

Lester Wunderman: Advertising executive widely considered the creator of modern day direct marketing. His innovations include the magazine subscription card, the toll-free 1-800 number and loyalty rewards programs. Named one of 20 “Advertising Legends and Leaders” by AdWeek in 1998. Currently serves as chairman emeritus of Wunderman.