Through her tenacity and passion, DeeDe has grown Dog Tag Buddies from a kitchen table conversation to the organization it is today. She is the wife of a combat veteran with 21 years of service and founded Dog Tag Buddies after seeing the relief their own dogs brought her husband when he returned from Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2005. Her love of dogs and desire to help Montana veterans drives her passion for Dog Tag Buddies and has become her true calling in life.
In 2018, after three years splitting her time between Dog Tag Buddies and her career of over twenty-one years with the State of Montana, DeeDe now fully dedicates her time to the organization. She spent the bulk of her career at the Montana Department of Labor as an unemployment investigator and adjudicator, eventually retiring as a business and security analyst. She takes a hands-on approach to driving the growth of the organization and works directly with program participants, trainers, staff, volunteers, and our Board of Directors to achieve her goals. For her, being able to assist veterans and rescue dogs brings together the best of both worlds, especially knowing she is giving two lives a second chance.
- Certified Trauma Informed Care Trainer
- Certified Question Persuade Refer (QPR) Suicide Prevention Instructor
- Certified Council for Professional Dog Trainers – Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed
- American Kennel Club Canine Good Citizen Evaluator
- American Kennel Club Level 1 AKC Fit Dog Instructor
- International Association of Canine Professionals – Professional Member
- International Association of Canine Professionals – Dog Trainer Foundation certified
- Completed This Able Veteran PTSD Essentials Service Dog Trainer Academy 6/2019
- Completed This Able Veteran PTSD Service Dog Trainers Academy 10/2019
- Canine CPR Certified
- Human CPR Certified