FALMOUTH, MA ‒ In early January Dogs for Better Lives’ (DBL) Young Professionals Board (YPB) – Northeast launched, securing its first two members, Blake Joh and Janelle Suckley. Blake is a Vice President on the Healthcare Investment Banking team with SVB Leerink (NY), while Janelle owns It’s Catnip Wishes & Cookie Dreams: Professional Pet Sitting and Care (MA).
“We’re thrilled to see the Young Professionals Boards continuing to grow and expand across the country,” stated YPB – PNW chair, Stacie Bianco. “With the PNW chapter launching nearly two years ago, it’s exciting to now see the Northeast chapter launch with it’s first two members. Blake and Janelle will play instrumental roles in working to support DBL’s critical outreach work in the Northeast region.”
DBL continues to grow and expand on its mission to better the lives of those with disabilities, pairing them with an Assistance Dog. Through the launch of the YPB – NE, DBL is cultivating the next generation of leaders in Northeast region. These young professionals will be further engaging in and championing DBL’s advocacy and outreach efforts.
“We’re ecstatic to have Janelle and Blake join the YPB – NE and know with their respective backgrounds, community building experience, and passion for the mission, both will help to elevate DBL’s presence in the region to the next level,” stated CEO, Bryan Williams.
The DBL Young Professionals Boards (YPB) are comprised of like-minded individuals in their 20s, 30s, and 40s that have a passion for dogs and giving back to people with disabilities in their communities. Members are engaged in helping to market the mission of DBL, participating in outreach events, as well as planning and fundraising through a variety of initiatives.
With the support and guidance of the regional Young Professionals Board in both the Pacific Northwest and Northeast, DBL will host a yet-to-be-determined signature event that engages volunteers and community partners. Eventually, we will have Young Professionals Boards across the country, working to support each of our planned five regions. Currently we have satellite offices in Washington, California, Arizona, and New Hampshire.
Blake Joh was born and raised in Metro Detroit and after graduating from college moved to New York City.
Blake is Vice President on the Healthcare Investment Banking team at SVB Leerink where he serves as an advisor to several animal health companies. Prior to joining SVB Leerink, Blake worked in Corporate Strategy and Business Development at Zoetis. Blake has a B.A. in Finance from Michigan State University.
“The joy my dogs bring is immense and I hope to help harness that power to assist others in need,” stated Blake.
Blake resides in New Jersey with his wife, son and two dogs, Panda and Kaya. Blake joined the Young Professionals Board – NE in February 2022.
We all dream of becoming veterinarians when we were children…or was that just Janelle? Since she was a young child, Janelle had a variety of animals in her home, including cats, dogs, chickens, hamsters, gerbils, rats, among others. It was only natural to her that she would follow the footsteps of other animal lovers.
Janelle attended Salem State University (MA) where she focused on entrepreneurship in their School of Business. It was only after attending university that Janelle realized what career would truly fulfill her life. As she was exploring multiple ideas and sorting out thoughts of where to go next, Janelle felt a head-butt press against her leg, and as she looked down to her beautiful cat, Topanga, an epiphany of sorts came over her. It was in that moment, Janelle realized what would make her feel most successful; Veterinary Technology.
After hard work and determination, and many challenges along the road, Janelle completed the Veterinary Technology program at North Shore Community College (MA) in 2020. Today, with her business and veterinary technology background, Janelle is rewarded with the opportunity to work with animals while operating her successful and growing pet sitting business.
“As a part of the Young Professionals Board, I look forward to the opportunity to support Dogs for Better Lives and their efforts in providing enrichment to animals’ lives, while helping to establish a trusted, professional bond between dogs and humans,” stated Janelle.
Janelle joined the Young Professionals Board – NE in February 2022.
In addition to further growing the Northeast chapter, DBL is actively looking to grow the Pacific Northwest chapter and has plans to launch its California chapter. To learn more about the Young Professionals Board and/or to submit your application for consideration, please visit https://dogsforbetterlives.org/young-professionals-board/.