Leadership team

In addition to our partners in Petco stores across the country, the Petco Foundation is comprised of a mighty team of animal lovers dedicated to making a difference.

senior leadership team

Susanne Kogut

Susanne Kogut

Executive Director

Susanne Kogut has been the Petco Foundation Executive Director since June 2013. Before joining the Foundation, she served as the Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA Executive Director, where she transformed the open-admission SPCA into an award-winning, nationally recognized lifesaving model. Prior to that, Susanne held several positions at Capital One Financial Corporation and was an attorney with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and Brown & Wood. Susanne shares her home her with five dogs and a variety of different foster pets.

Caroline Childress

Caroline Childress

Manager, Financial Planning & Analysis

Caroline Childress has been the Financial Planning Manager at the Petco Foundation since August 2014. She came to the Foundation from Dell, where she held many different finance roles. Prior to receiving her Masters of Business Administration from Texas A&M University, Caroline worked as an accountant for New York Life Insurance Company in New York City. A Texas native, she shares her San Antonio home with her two favorite dogs – Elfie and Ally.

Susan Cosby-Jennings

Susan Cosby-Jennings

Director of Lifesaving – Business Programs & Partnerships

Susan serves as the Petco Foundation’s Director of Lifesaving, Programs and Partnerships, overseeing the alignment and forward progress of both the adoption and investment (grants) programs. Prior to joining the Foundation, her experience included CEO, Executive Director and other leadership roles at both open and limited admission, public animal control and private shelters. Throughout her career she has utilized customer-focused, data-driven strategies and a sense of urgency to improve organizational performance and increase lives saved.

Lisa Lane

Lisa Lane

Manager, Press Relations and Communications

As an animal-loving nonprofit professional dedicated to creating a better, happier world, Lisa Lane was thrilled to join the Petco Foundation team as Manager of Communications and Public Relations in 2016. She oversees the Foundation’s communication strategy and public relations efforts. Most recently, she served as a consultant with Humane Network where she helped animal welfare organizations save more lives by improving their marketing, fundraising and outreach efforts. Previously, she was the Marketing and Development Director for the Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA where she helped lead an open-admission shelter handling nearly 4,000 animals annually, producing a 94% community-wide save rate. Her background also includes more than 15 years of nonprofit marketing and fundraising experience.

board of directors

Dan Cohen

Dan Cohen

Dan Cohen is a three-time Emmy Award winning morning news anchor at the #1 TV station in San Diego. When he's not delivering the days' top stories, he loves helping give nonprofits a louder voice. Dan joined the Petco Foundation Board of Directors in 2012. He and his wife are proud of their “first born,” and Icelandic Sheepdog Mix named Gracie Bear. Dan also serves as an honorary board member for The Seany Foundation, The Angels Depot and San Diego Youth Services.

David W. Down

David W. Down

David W. Down has recently retired as the Managing Partner of KPMG LLP’s San Diego office after 38 years, Dave joined KPMG in 1976 and was admitted to the partnership in 1987. He became Office Managing Partner in the San Diego in 1994 and served in that role until he retired in September of 2014.  He served as the Pacific Southwest Area Audit Partner in Charge from 1998 through 2009.   In addition to his local and area leadership responsibilities, as Managing Partner for the past 20 years, he has had full P & L responsibilities, client service, acceptance and retention responsibilities,  been responsible for the leadership, development and growth of the Audit, Tax and Advisory functions, lead all major business development initiatives, had responsibility for all HR, technology and real estate decisions, and represented the Firm in the community from a professional reputation and civic leadership standpoint. Dave has extensive experience with Risk Management, Financing Alternatives, dealing with the SEC and other Regulatory bodies, Compensation Strategies, and HR matters.  Dave’s experience has built a skill set with practical experience with SEC filings, dealing directly with the SEC staff, M&A Transactions, financing transactions, corporate reorganizations, business expansion plans, management restructurings and corporate governance. Dave’s experience includes start-up to Fortune 1000 companies,  public and private companies, domestic and international, and includes experience in consumer and industrial markets, life science, pharmaceuticals and medical device companies, technology, real estate and banking and finance.   In addition, Dave has a broad based experience in corporate governance, including attendance at numerous board meetings and audit committee meetings.  Dave has used his years of experience in both serving audit committees as well as serving on audit committees to develop and instruct courses on Audit committee and general board structure, responsibilities and governance.  He also served as a national moderator for the KPMG Audit Committee Institute Roundtables and participates in trade association presentations on corporate governance.  Dave currently serves on the Audit Committees for the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Research Institute, San Diego Civic Theatres, Rancho Santa Fe Foundation and CONNECT. He is Chair of the audit committee for the later three.ed experience in corporate governance, including attendance at numerous board meetings and audit committee meetings.  Dave has used his years of experience in both serving audit committees as well as serving on audit committees to develop and instruct courses on Audit committee and general board structure, responsibilities and governance.  He also served as a national moderator for the KPMG Audit Committee Institute Roundtables and participates in trade association presentations on corporate governance.  Dave currently serves on the Audit Committees for the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Research Institute, San Diego Civic Theatres, Rancho Santa Fe Foundation and CONNECT. He is Chair of the audit committee for the later three.   Dave has been active in the San Diego marketplace for over 35 years and currently serves on several civic and charitable organizations’ Board of Directors, including Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute, Corporate Directors Forum, CONNECT, SDSU’s College of Business Advisory Council, the San Diego Civic Theatres and the Rancho Santa Fe Foundation.  In 2008, Dave was named the Greater San Diego Boys & Girls Club “Man of the Year” (Golden Achievement Award). Dave has also previously served on the Boards of the Old Globe, the San Diego County YMCA, the United Way, the Greater San Diego Boys and Girls Club, the San Diego Hall of Champions, the Jr. SEAU Foundation and was a Founding member of the Board of California State University –San Marcos.   Dave is a licensed CPA in California (inactive) and received his BS in Accounting from San Diego State University. He married Patricia Ann (Graybill) Down in 1976, (also a graduate of SDSU) and they reside in Escondido.  Patti and Dave have four children, Patrick, William, Mary (married to Nick Lara) and Megan (married to Vincent Grippo).

Paula Fasseas

Paula Fasseas

Paula Fasseas founded PAWS Chicago in 1997, helping to build a No Kill national model for animal welfare. With her business background, Paula developed a solutions-based plan to address the plight of homeless pets in Chicago and raise public awareness to the staggering number of pets that were being killed in silence at traditional shelters. Paula was the Vice Chairman of the Metropolitan Bank Group, the largest privately held bank group in Illinois, which she co-founded with her husband in 1978. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Chicago.

Bruce Hall

Bruce Hall

Bruce Hall has served on the Board of Directors for the Petco Foundation since its inception in 1999. Previously, he served as the President and COO of Petco until his retirement in 2008. Prior to his position at Petco, Bruce was an Executive Vice President at Toys R Us where he worked and had fun for 34 years. He and his wife, Susan, currently have two wonderful rescue dogs at home: Stella and Sierra.

Peggy Hillier

Peggy Hillier

Peggy has been a member of the Petco Foundation Board of Directors since 2007. Over the years, she has been an instrumental member of the Fundraising Committee in addition to helping plan and improve the Thanks for Giving Golf event and Hope Gala. She shares her home with her husband, Craig, and Amber, a rescued golden retriever, as well as two cats, Jake and Zeke. Until a few years ago, Peggy was Director of Merchandising at Petco and has since become an advisor to new and emerging vendors in the pet industry.

Daymond John

Daymond John

An entrepreneur in every sense of the word, Daymond John has come a long way from taking out a $100,000 mortgage on his mother’s house and moving his operation into the basement. John is CEO and Founder of FUBU, a much-celebrated global lifestyle brand, and a pioneer in the fashion industry with over $6 billion in product sales. He is an award-winning entrepreneur, and he has received over 35 awards including the Brandweek Marketer of the Year, Advertising Age Marketing 1000 Award for Outstanding Ad Campaign, and Ernst & Young’s New York Entrepreneur of the Year Award His marketing strategies and ability to build successful brands has made him a highly influential consultant and motivational speaker today. Obviously, all of you known him as one of the Sharks on the Emmy Award winning TV show Shark Tank, where millions of weekly viewers tune into the show as John demonstrates his marketing prowess and entrepreneurial insights. Daymond has always loved animals and from an early age learned about nurturing them since as his step father ran and continues to run a no kill shelter in New York. He currently has two Dachshunds named Blake and Spartan, and on his property in upstate New York he raises guinea hens and shelters over 1,000,000 bees. His commitment to entrepreneurship goes beyond his work with FUBU and television and has been celebrated on a global level.  In 2015, he was named by President Obama as a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship. This year he also added the title of New York Times Bestseller to his growing list of accolades with the release of his book The Power of Broke.

Susanne Kogut

Susanne Kogut

Executive Director

Susanne Kogut has been the Petco Foundation Executive Director since June 2013. Before joining the Foundation, she served as the Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA Executive Director, where she transformed the open-admission SPCA into an award-winning, nationally recognized lifesaving model. Prior to that, Susanne held several positions at Capital One Financial Corporation and was an attorney with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and Brown & Wood. Susanne shares her home her with five dogs and a variety of different foster pets.

Steve Lossing

Steve Lossing

Treasurer

Steve Lossing joined Petco in 2012 as SVP, Merchandising and recently assumed the role of SVP, Operations to lead Petco’s stores organization. Steve has more than 24 years of experience in merchandising leadership. Prior to joining Petco, Steve held a variety of leadership positions for J.C. Penney, including President of The Foundry Big & Tall Supply Co. – a specialty concept chain for J.C. Penney. Steve also led merchandising at a number of specialty, national chain and regional department stores. Steve shares his home with his border collie, Flash, and golden retriever, Lucky.

Judith Muñoz

Judith Muñoz

Vice President

Judith Munoz has served on the Petco Foundation Board of Directors since 2010 and currently serves as Vice President. She retired as Vice President from the Scripps Research Institute, and prior to that served as an administrator at the University of San Diego and the University of California, San Diego. She has been involved with the San Diego Humane Society for over 20 years, serving on its Board of Trustees and as interim president and CEO.  She currently serves on several nonprofit boards in San Diego and is the proud mother of adopted therapy dogs, Jackson and Spartan.

Michael Peterson

Michael Peterson

Secretary

Michael Peterson has been a member of the Petco Foundation Board of Directors since 2008 and currently serves as its Secretary. He actively works to improve the life of animals through volunteering and supporting several animal welfare organizations. Michael is the President of The Pet Group, Inc., a vendor representative company that has been in the pet industry for over 20 years. He and his family are the proud pet parents of two dogs, Buddy and Oscar.

Charlie Piscitello

Charlie Piscitello

President

In addition to serving as Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer at Petco, Charlie serves as president and chair of the board of directors for the Petco Foundation. Prior to joining Petco, Charlie held various leadership roles for Boston Scientific, First Data Corporation, Gateway, Coors Brewing Company and Abbott Laboratories. Charlie holds a bachelor’s degree in communication from Marquette University. He serves on the board of trustees for the HABRI foundation (Human Animal Bond Research Initiative) and is a Trustee for the Pet Industry Leaders Council. Charlie is also co-chair of the Chief Human Resource Officers Council for the Retail Industry Leaders Association; Chair Elect and Board Member for the North San Diego Business Chamber of Commerce; and a founding member of the i4cp Chief Human Resource Officers board.

Paul Ramaker

Paul Ramaker

Paul Ramaker has served on the Petco Foundation Board of Directors since 2014, in a number of volunteer roles with the Petco Foundation since 2009.  Paul has spent 10 years working in the pet industry, currently as Executive Vice President at Prairie Dog Pet Products, and, prior to that, as Merchandise Director at Petco. He was instrumental in Petco’s decision to eliminate consumable products manufactured in China. Paul and his wife, Susan, are active in animal rescue, especially in the San Diego area. In addition to supporting various rescue groups, they have fostered dogs in their home and live with two rescue cocker spaniels.

Kailas Rao

Kailas Rao

Kailas Rao has served on the Petco Foundation Board of Directors since 2008. After founding and selling his first computer systems company in the 1980s, Dr. Rao went on to found and lead organizations within the telecommunications and investment banking industries. He and his wife, Becky, founded Isle of Dogs Corporation in 2006, offering dog products tailored to various skin and coat conditions. Dr. Rao has served as a consultant for more than 100 companies, and has held teaching positions at the University of Oklahoma and the University of Wisconsin. He’s served as a board member or an advisory member for several organizations in the computer and pet industries, including IBM, Apple, the World Pet Association, and many others. Through the Kailas and Becky Rao Foundation, Dr. Rao and his wife have provided scholarships and grants to a great number of causes, including: American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, St. Luke’s Hospital, Whitefish Bay Library, American Diabetes Association, United Nations Children’s Fund, and many more.

Rich Segal

Rich Segal

Rich Segal has been a member of the Petco Foundation Board of Directors since 2009. He is the San Diego Office Managing Partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP, an international law firm, and focuses his practice on the defense of complex commercial litigation.  Rich is a life-long animal lover and has been a proud parent to several extremely lucky dogs.

Marcie Whichard

Marcie Whichard

Marcie Whichard has been in retail corporate management for over twenty years.  She is currently the Vice President, Industry and Public Affairs for Petco Animal Supplies, Inc.  A seasoned professional with broad U.S. and global experience, including internal and external corporate communications, community outreach, crisis management, message development, brand management, advocacy, ally development, and budget accountability. Specializing in the areas of industry and public affairs, branding, government affairs and issues management.

what we stand for

Our team works every day to help animals and people live better lives together.

the work we do

In partnership with more than 4,000 animal welfare organizations, we make a lifesaving impact nationwide.

Interested in partnering with us?

Learn more about how we partner with animal welfare organizations across the country to make a lifesaving impact for animals.