Last year she received the Kansas City Business Journal’s CFO of the Year award, and this year she stepped into a new leadership role. Read on for our chat about the Certified Animal Welfare Administrator program with the newly minted President of Wayside Waifs.
The Association: First off, BIG congratulations on your new role as President of Wayside Waifs.
Kathryn Mahoney: Thank you! I think it’s still sinking in, but I’m grateful and thrilled for the opportunity to lead this great organization.
The Association: You have described yourself as a servant leader. Could you share a little more about that?
Kathryn Mahoney: Our people are our greatest asset. I listen more than I talk, and approach situations with empathy. It is important to stay tapped into employee well-being and grow the next generation to become our successors. If we aren’t focused on those things, an organization’s success will be negatively affected over time.
The Association: Did the knowledge gained from the CAWA program play a role in prepping you for this new position?
Kathryn Mahoney: The CAWA program was integral in preparing me for the position. Not only does the certification affirm that I have the experience and knowledge to successfully lead an animal welfare organization, it also indicates a deep commitment to our industry.
The Association: What was the most surprising or unexpected thing you learned as you prepared for the CAWA exam?
Kathryn Mahoney: The amount of ground the test covers. There is a lot of knowledge that can be gained by really diving into the materials.
The Association: Who is a current CAWA you look up to, and why?
Kathryn Mahoney: I look up to Patti Mercer, President of Houston SPCA, because she’s the person who brought me into this wild ride of an industry. She’s has taught me so much and has been part of my support system from the outset.
The Association: What’s your one piece of practical advice for those considering the CAWA program?
Kathryn Mahoney: Commit the time to it, reach out to others for help and don’t give up if it’s something you aspire to do.