Chair: Barbara Gislason
Chair Elect: Kristina Hancock
Public Service Work
Both Barbara Gislason and Kristina Hancock received leadership training from TIPS in New Orleans months before Hurricane Katrina and then Hurricane Rita made landfall in the Gulf Coast. Gislason began the TIPS Animal Disaster Network and hosted teleconferences with representatives from more than 80 nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, government entities and businesses. At the first Network meeting, Joyce Tischler of ALDF proposed collaboration between ALDF and the Animal Law Committee to prepare pertinent FAQs and post them on the ALDF website. Contacts were built between diverse groups such as Representatives of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the Humane Society of the United States, the American Red Cross, the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Center for Disease Control, and Maddie’s Fund.
The ABA/TIPS Legislative Committee was established by Chair-Elect Kristina Hancock. Hancock prepared a proposal concerning the passage of H.R. 3858, the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act (PETS Act) federal legislation, as well as its companion bill in the Senate. Gislason and Hancock secured a unanimous vote from the TIPS Council to pursue “blanket authority” for the support of this bill from other Sections and Divisions of the ABA. Later, with the help of Jim Carr, Legislative Vice Chair and a TIPS representative to the ABA House of Delegates, and Leo Jordan, former TIPS Chair, Hancock spearheaded the ABA’s passage of this historic resolution.
Gislason became the TIPS Advisor to the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (NCCUSL), on an advisory panel for the U.S. Department of Justice, and in a work group for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. She also became the TIPS Liaison to the ABA Special Committee on Disaster Response and Preparedness.
Gislason also created the ABA/TIPS Select Legal Panel on Emergency Management Regarding Animals, for which David Favre created a model act related to holding periods for animals, now called “The Model Act: Standards for the Care and Disposition of Disaster Animals”.
Gilda Mariani chaired and moderated the Committee’s first CLE teleconference entitled “The New Stewardship: Nonprofits Under Scrutiny Brace for Reform” on December 9, 2005, co-sponsored by the ABA Taxation Section’s Exempt Organization Committee.
Mariani also moderated the Committee’s program entitled “When ‘No Pets Allowed’ No Longer Applies: Laws Impacting Senior Citizens and Their Companion and Service Animals” at the ABA Annual Meeting in Hawaii, co-sponsored by the ABA Health Law Section and the Commission on Law and Aging. Former TIPS Chair Richard Turbin was the keynote speaker and panelists were: Jill Buckley, Emily Gardner, Rebecca Huss, and The Honorable Coleen Hannabusa. One of the features of the program was a DVD about Koko the Gorilla, co-produced by Mariani and Hancock. Hancock interviewed Penny Patterson of the Gorilla Foundation. This production can be viewed on the ALC website.
Gislason and Julie Fershtman collaborated to write “Recent Developments in Animal Tort and Insurance Law” for The Tort Trial & Insurance Law Journal. Gislason was featured in “Pet Project: New ABA Committee on Animal Law Focuses on Post-Katrina Rescue Efforts” for the ABA Journal, December 2005.
Gislason continued as ALC newsletter Editor-in-Chief along with Associate Editor Rebecca Silverstein. Joan Schaffner replaced Angela Caputo Griswald, advancing to Editor-in-Chief on January 1, 2006. A full-blown 28-page Spring ALC newsletter with eleven comprehensive articles and calendar for the coming year was published.
Committee Structure and Meetings
The Committee established the following subcommittees: Companion Animals, Disaster Relief, Equine Law, Great Apes, Humane Education, Insurance, Legislative, Litigation, Wildlife, Long-Range Planning, Membership, Publications, and Veterinary Malpractice.
Twenty Vice-Chairs of ALC were appointed as well as a Membership Coordinator and Website Co-Coordinators. Eighteen ALC leaders attended a four-hour ALC Strategic Planning Meeting in May 2006 at the TIPS Spring Meeting in Miami, Florida.
Barbara Gislason sent an e-mail invitation to join ALC to those lawyers on the Animal Legal Defense Fund animal law committee list-serve.
For the second year in a row, the Animal Law Committee was recognized as the “Most Innovative” by TIPS at the ABA Annual Meeting in Hawaii.