Who Are We?
Greyhound Adopters for Racing is a grass roots, global community of Greyhound advocates who support the continuation of professional Greyhound racing. Our members came to the Greyhound breed as ex-racer adopters and adoption volunteers. Our members don't make their livings from Greyhound racing or from opposing Greyhound racing.
Our organization is a non-profit corporation chartered by the State of Florida in the United States. We are self-funded by our membership. All of our officers and directors are unpaid volunteers. Our mission is to educate the public about Greyhound racing, to oppose the banning of Greyhound racing, and to advocate for the reform of racing when we believe it is necessary for the benefit of racing Greyhounds and the Greyhound breed.
Our officers, any of whom may be contacted at our e-mail address, firstname.lastname@example.org, are:
President: Jennifer Ng, DVM
Columbia, South Carolina
Jennifer Ng is a veterinarian working full time in general practice in South Carolina. She adopted her first Greyhound from Greyhound Crossroads in 2007 and initially had a negative opinion of the racing industry. That changed as she got more involved in volunteering with her adoption group, getting to know people in the racing community, and seeing the dogs behind the scenes.
Over the past 11 years, Jennifer has adopted three more retired racing Greyhounds and fostered close to 50 dogs for Greyhound Crossroads, with a particular interest in the shy and special needs dogs. She has also assisted in a number of transports, driving newly retired Greyhounds from the track to her group as well as others. Jennifer is one of the group's local reps, doing home visits and adoptions, helping with meet and greet events, and providing veterinary care for fosters in the area.
After completely falling in love with the breed, and seeing how racing Greyhounds are well cared for and loved, Jennifer also realized how important it was to have a venue that supports a healthy population of functional, athletic Greyhounds. To support the industry and gain more experience with the inner workings, Jennifer purchased half interest in an actively racing Greyhound named Just Saying (JS) in 2013. JS is now happily retired and living with her co-owner. Since then, Jennifer has also co-owned another racer named Just Alice, who retired in early 2018 and joined Jennifer's pack of Greyhounds and Whippets at home.
Vice-President: John Parker
John Parker adopted his first Greyhound in 1994 and became an adoption volunteer shortly thereafter. In his early experience in Greyhound adoption, John was anti-racing; in those days before the Internet and social media, anti-racing propaganda dominated the information available to adopters. As he researched the Greyhound breed and Greyhound racing further, John discovered that much of the information he had read in the anti-racing literature was incomplete, misleading and, at times, completely false.
In the course of investigating the lives of racing Greyhounds for himself, John visited a Greyhound breeding and training farm in Florida. While there he fell in love with a four-month-old all-white puppy. He decided that purchasing a puppy and following it through its rearing, training and racing experience would be a great way to see all aspects of racing up close. That Greyhound, Susie, had a successful racing career and then came home to live for the rest of her life with the Parkers, where she enjoyed participation in amateur dog sports. John donated his owner’s share of Susie’s track winnings to his Greyhound adoption group.
As a result of all his study of and personal experiences in Greyhound racing, John changed his views about racing and decided that racing should continue, in the best longterm interests of the Greyhound breed.
In 1998, John and some of his fellow adoption volunteers formed Southeastern Greyhound Adoption. It grew to become one of the most successful Greyhound adoption groups in the country, and has rehomed over 2,500 racing Greyhounds in its 20-year existence. He continues to lead the group as the Chairman of its Advisory Board. John met his wife Laura through their work as adoption volunteers, and over the years they have adopted 12 former racing Greyhounds. They live on a small farm in Coweta County, Georgia, with 12 Greyhounds, 2 Whippets and 3 horses.
John has been a practicing attorney for 40 years, with a concentration in civil litigation. He provides pro bono legal services to Greyhound adoption groups around the country, and has made presentations on the legal aspects of Greyhound adoption at several Greyhound adoption conferences.
John has immersed himself in the Greyhound breed, traveling extensively to England, Ireland and the western United States to study the breed and its rich history. He has written a variety of articles on Greyhounds for Celebrating Greyhounds magazine, Field Advisory News and Performance Sighthound Journal.
Secretary: Jennifer Pease
South Pasadena, California
Jennifer Pease started in teaching and taught her way through Europe and graduate school in France. She finished another degree in the US while teaching undergraduates, then shifted to magazine publishing to work at a computer magazine as the reviews editor. Years later, she was part of a founding team at a production and media startup during the dotcom boom, a features editor at computer and tech site CNET, and a busy volunteer coordinator, board member, and manager of an education nonprofit and docent qualifying program at a national art museum.
She currently uses her time to volunteer for organizations and schools. One of the organizations is a Greyhound adoption group where she serves as a placement rep. She has also fostered, dogsits for Greyhound owners, and does unpaid dog training—the whole family is involved. Before Greyhounds, she was active with the Bernese Mountain Dog breed club and raised pup Emma for a therapy organization. With her Greyhound, she has done sporting such as lure coursing, straight racing, nosework, trick dog title, and a bit of urban tracking. Canine studies and research are among her many interests.
Treasurer: Christopher Straka
Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin
Christopher Straka had his introduction to Greyhounds in the early 1990s, when he first made a trip to Dairyland Greyhound Park in Kenosha, Wisconsin near his hometown. He was instantly captivated by the pre-race post parade of Greyhounds, and was amazed at their grace and power during the race. It was during frequent trips to Dairyland that he first began to forge what would be long-lasting relationships with Greyhound owners, trainers and track patrons. An employment transfer north took Chris to the Saint Paul, Minnesota area, where he was able to continue taking in his love of Greyhound racing at the St. Croix Meadows track in Hudson, Wisconsin.
Fast forward to 2004, Chris and his then fiancée, Charlyne, purchased a home back in the Kenosha, Wisconsin area. Their frequent trips to Dairyland to see the Greyhounds running continued. It was at that time that he knew that a pet Greyhound was in his future. After adopting their first Greyhound, Kit, Chris and Charlyne were amazed at the attention that it drew when they walked their dog. They began attending events with Kit, and loved to answer questions about the unique Greyhound breed. Through his relationships with Greyhound people of all types and his own self-study, Chris was determined to learn as much as possible about the history of the breed and racing. He and his wife began volunteering with a local Greyhound adoption group, and it wasn’t long before Chris took a leadership role with the group.
At the same time, Chris entered in to racing Greyhound ownership at a small level. Chris' and Charlyne’s passion for Greyhounds grew as they began making visits to Abilene, Kansas, the Greyhound capital of the U.S., on a regular basis to visit farms and breeders and attend the semi-annual Greyhound meets. Chris has been to almost every track in the country, and as a result, is proud to have personal relationships with owners, trainers and kennel operators nationwide. During these trips, he has gained a wealth of real life, hands-on experience in breeding, kennel operation and the racing industry in general.
Chris handles all of the intake coordination for his Greyhound adoption group in Wisconsin, as well as several other adoption groups in the Midwest. On average, he makes the arrangements for moving about 25 Greyhounds per month to adoption groups in the Midwest. He loves being hands on with the Greyhounds when they arrive and then readying them for adoption. Chris’s efforts in Greyhound adoption have been chronicled by many media sources, including the Greyhound Review, Kenosha News, and CBS58 Milwaukee’s Sunday Morning Spotlight.
(See CBS 58’s coverage at: https://www.cbs58.com/news/sunday-morning-spotlight-greyhound-pets-of-america )
Chris spent 19 years as a District Manager for a financial services corporation before becoming an entrepreneur and starting his own home services business in 2012. He and Charlyne currently live in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin with their two children and have two Greyhounds at home, one of which he owned as an active racer in Palm Beach, Florida before his retirement from racing.
Director: Joee Kam
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Joee was introduced to Greyhounds through an acquaintance in the late 1990s and adopted her first in 2004. Soon after, she began fostering retired racers, making home visits and placing greyhounds, as well as helping with hauls. During this time, Joee held an anti-racing bias towards the Greyhound racing industry. Her views changed after getting in touch with Greyhound trainers, owners, and other adopters involved with Greyhound racing through Facebook. Many of the adopters were not opposed to Greyhound racing and she wanted to know why. She set out to learn every aspect about the dogs’ lives from the farm to retirement. Through her communications she developed friendships and took the opportunity to visit Florida Greyhound tracks and kennels for the first time in 2014. Joee saw firsthand the dedication and devotion these people had for their dogs and their well-being, and wanted to share her experience and knowledge with others.
By learning more about the Greyhound racing industry, she realized there was an information disconnect between many Greyhound adopters and the racing industry. To bridge the gap, Joee formed Greyhound Facts and had help from a few like-minded adopters in the US and Canada. The website provides factual and vetted information on the Greyhounds’ life from farm to track to retirement. She has created informational behind-the scenes videos on Greyhound racing and her articles have been published in Celebrating Greyhounds magazine. As of late she has been producing literature to aid in the education of Greyhound racing.
Joee currently dotes on two retired racers that are important and much loved members of her family.