Director of Programs
Julie Lessard is the director of programs with Ruff Start Rescue®. She started volunteering with the Ruff Start® in February 2012 as a foster mom and soon became a placement coordinator to help other foster homes enjoy this opportunity as much as she did. A short time after that, Julie took on the placement coordinator manager role and was spending every free moment she had helping Ruff Start Rescue and all the animals. Julie’s passion did not go unnoticed and she was offered the director of programs position. She quit her job in the Cities and opened her own business, which allowed her more time to work with the rescue and make her dreams come true! Julie is also a board member for Ruff Start.
Julie has had a love for animals since she was a young girl. She has a special liking for the overlooked black animals, seniors and very special shy dogs and cats. Julie is also an active volunteer with a nonprofit lost dog team called The Retrievers where she helps families bring their missing dogs home and ensures the safety of stray dogs.
Julie has three four-legged kids! Meela her shepherd mix, Gary the black mini schnauzer/doxie mix, and Daisy, her black Lab mix. She plans her schedule and life around them. In the summer months, she enjoys garage sales and tubing down the river. She loves any outdoor activities such as golfing, fishing, and barbecues and secretly wishes she lived in a state where it is warm all year long.