Introducing Gail Bauhs – Lead Cat Socializer to the Furry Friends leadership team
By Gail Bauhs
What could be better than being owned by a cat! That’s been my feeling since I was 12 years old and was gifted a splendid Blue Point Siamese kitten. After caring for the kitten’s mom and siblings while my brother and his wife looked for a home in a new city, they granted my wish and Kitty Blue became my first cat. Throughout the years she was followed by 21 more fabulous felines. The latest is Leila, who I recently adopted from Furry Friends.
Before moving to Washington, I lived in a remote area of Monterey County, California, and became the valley’s “cat lady”. Whenever someone found an abandoned cat, it would somehow make it to my doorstep. I’d make sure it was fed, watered and neutered, and when possible find it a home. Most were feral and happy to live the wild life, but some turned into wonderful house pets. I had dreams of opening a cat boarding business, but life would instead bring me to Washington.
After moving to Vancouver, I began my career in the Non-Emergency Transportation (NEMT) industry. For 25 years I operated NEMT brokerages in Oregon and Washington State at both public transit and private non-profit agencies. In this capacity I procured and managed provider contracts, negotiated terms and rates, and conducted subcontractor service, safety and credentialing assessments. Most recently, I also traveled the country presenting the results of a research study on Examining the Effects of Separate NEMT Brokerages on Transportation Coordination.
I have served on numerous community boards, including the Taxi Boards of Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA, which I chaired. I also chaired the Citizens Advisory Committee for C-Tran and am a graduate of Leadership Clark County. Prior to working in NEMT I worked as a Data Analyst and Human Factors Specialist in the field of test and evaluation of advanced military weapons, equipment and communication systems. I graduated from CSU Chico with a degree in Psychology and have been interested in human and feline behavior ever since. I continued my education in the Master’s program of Public Affairs, as well as Accounting, Education and Business Applications.
I’m now very fortunate to take on what I know will become my favorite “job” of all – Lead Volunteer Cat Socializer. At long last I have returned to my lifelong love – cats. But don’t tell my husband!