A Message From IAABC’s New Executive Director, Kathrine Christ

Written by Kathrine Christ MIA CTC CDBC

I am deeply honored to have been offered the role of Executive Director of the IAABC. Thanks to the dedicated service of our prior directors, the IAABC has grown into an organization that has global influence in the animal behavior community. I can’t express how thankful I am to have been handed an organization with a strong membership, reputation, and vision.

I’m also grateful to our sister organization, the IAABC Foundation, for its commitment to education and for continuing to work closely with the IAABC to support animal behavior professionals,.As the IAABC matures as an organization, we will maintain our vital role as a certifying body of animal behavior consultants worldwide. But we don’t seek just self-perpetuation.

My goals as director are threefold. First, we owe everything to our members. Along with the Board, I will seek to create deeper engagement with our membership and strengthen our duty as a trade association to provide unparalleled professional support of members and their businesses.Second, animal caretakers in the general public deserve to know and understand who we are and benefit from our expertise. I intend to expand public awareness of our organization and grow our membership internationally in order to better connect animal caretakers with professionals able and willing to offer critical assistance. Finally, the IAABC intends to develop active policy stances to influence international conversations on the professionalization of our industry.

We are committed to continuing to pursue an active public role regarding hot topics like ethics, methodologies, and regulation. I will soon begin opening up forums to discuss the above topics with IAABC members both in group settings and directly. We will form an action plan to aggressively pursue these goals, cementing the role of the IAABC as a world class association that will make a difference for years to come. I appreciate each of our members for their choice to be a part of this exciting journey


Kathrine is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant and owner of Hands Full Dog Training, LLC in Wichita, Kansas. As a 2011 graduate of Texas A&M’s Bush School of Government and Public Service with a Master of International Affairs degree, Kathrine has had an ongoing interest in public policy and nonprofit work.

Prior to starting her own business, Kathrine worked as a research compliance officer for Texas A&M University, reviewing research protocols and working with the Institutional Review Board to ensure ethical treatment of the human subjects involved in research at the university. Her experience in regulatory affairs also included service in a U.S. Embassy as an intern in the consulate, investigating treaty trader visas and performing initial intake of visa applicants. She has also made inroads with local policy, serving on the Dangerous Dog Subcommittee of the Wichita Animal Control Advisory Board and successfully promoting changes to city codes that provide finer-tuned assessment of and consequences for dogs involved in bite or aggression incidents.

In her free time, Kathrine enjoys playing the Irish whistle, powerlifting, clicker training her horse, mountain biking, and taking care of her 4 children, 2 dogs, and 1 husband.