Staff, Board of Directors and Advisory Committee

The People and the Paws of UnChained

Here are the paws and the people who help children and adults be the best they can be

Melissa Wolf

Founder/Executive Director
Melissa has more than 15 years in the Social Service sector, developing and managing programs that serve people with developmental disabilities. After years of chasing stray dogs on the rural roads of Texas and California and fostering multiple litters of kittens and adult dogs in need, she became a Certified Humane Educator and founded UnChained in 2011.

Michelle Mattson

Board Member
Michelle works with the Family Network, Inc. in Event Planning and Development. She has a great deal of experience with coordinating fundraisers and special events, helping to raise funds for the organizations she supports. Michelle has strong ties in the community and infinite love at home with her husband of 15 years and their three Golden Retriever/Labs; Goofy, Pluto and Dinah.

Catherine Hambley

Board Member
Catherine is a Consulting Psychologist who works with local nonprofits and businesses to help them manage growth sustainably. Catherine's expertise in Strategic Planning and Organizational Development will allow UnChained to reach more youths and dogs in our community. Catherine is a board member for the Big Sur Marathon and the Center for Photographic Art.

Debra Borden

Board Member
Debra Borden is retired from the Naval Air Warfare Center, after 30 years of Federal service. Debra comes with experience and expertise in strategic planning, data analysis and measuring effectiveness of projects and programs. As well, she's a former Math Teacher of middle and high school students. When Debra is not busy training her 2 dogs, she's acting as Board President for the International Wine and Food Society of Monterey Peninsula.

Megan Moon

Board Member
Megan Moon has a wealth of experience in nonprofit management including; program development & management, donor development, special event planning and coordination, fundraising and grant writing. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Humane Leadership and has worked for the Institute for Humane Education, The San Fransisco SPCA and the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, Ohio.

Kristen Fletcher

Deputy Director
Kristen is an enthusiastic photographer as well as an Environment Attorney with a special interest in Social Justice. Kristen is a graduate of Leadership Monterey Peninsula and board member of The Coastal Society, as well as a volunteer with Animal Friends Rescue Project. Kristen and her Therapy dog Lady, volunteer with Central Coast Hospice.

Bethany Wuerch

Staff- Program Manager
Bethany comes from the nonprofit sector and is experienced in coordinating events and programs, managing and supporting volunteers and working with people from diverse backgrounds. She's a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for children in foster care, in addition to being "mom" to Butters (in photo).

Katya Birken

Program Trainer - Santa Cruz County
Katya has an extensive background in the studies of Child Development, Psychology of Trauma and Human Development. She is pursuing her studies in dog behavior and training and has worked as a Volunteer Coach with UnChained

Josh Mendenhall

Program Trainer - Monterey County
Josh is a graduate of Trish King's Academy of Dog Behavior and CSUMB. As the former Adoption Manager of Animal Friends Rescue Project, and Lead Educator for youth of Science Adventures, Josh is the ideal person to help young people develop and mature through their relationships with dogs.

Janee Moore

Advisory Committee Member
Professional Dog Trainer specializing in dog behavior.

Jen Walker

Advisory Committee Member
Humane Educator and Founder of Growing Kinder, Inc..

Erin Link-Cabrera

Advisory Committee Member
Marriage Family Therapist who specializes working with at-risk youth.

Lori Kearney

Advisory Committee Member
Elementary School Teacher and former Board Member of UnChained

Canine Companion: Hobie

Debra Malkin

Advisory Committee Member
Attorney, specializing in estate planning, trusts and probate

Diane Linder

Advisory Committee Member
Professional Dog Trainer Specializing in Service Dog Training with Teens.

Nancy Scholink

Advisory Committee Member
Human Resource Manager and animal advocate.

Roy Verley

Advisory Committee Member
Professional communications experience in corporate, university and philanthropic settings. Former Director of Communications for Hewlett-Packard Company