While the story of RESPET is not about me, a resume might help others understand how it got here. I taught special education & reading for 31 years. Quite often I individualized lessons for my "special" students in nontraditional ways. One nontraditional approach included a furry "lab assistant" named Rosie, my first therapy dog. Reportedly she was the first & quite possibly only therapy dog working full time in a classroom in the Reno-Sparks area. My principal made an exception for her, it was magic & resulted in "Teacher of the Year for Special Education in 2004", I believe due to her help.
"MOM" DIXIE WINDI
19??- 2007- 2017 -
After retirement in 2004, I volunteered at large facilities, but I continued to be most moved by the needs of individuals, choosing to have a relationship with them, to call them by name. From our first home visit with a Hospice patient, a one on one summer class with a traumatic brain injured teen, to Janice at Monaco Ridge, my dogs & I fit those visits into our already busy schedules. The memories of Gus singing with a veteran at the VA and reading to 3yr olds for 15 minutes had the biggest impact on me. RESPET puts a name on that service & provides an opportunity for those of like minds to gather in friendship & experience the same big impact while meeting small needs.
With a renewed purpose, I've returned to evaluating & practicing pet therapy while adding training and consulting. When not out making the world a better place with wagging tails, I quilt & travel with my fly fisherman, Ron, a little wienie dog & a lab pup, who keeps me humble as I train her to take over Dixie's therapy work.
Order of Eastern Star - 50 yr member
Pet Therapy - (16 yrs)
P4L - Paws2Read, Crisis Response, Justice Dogs
Reno Rodeo - (14 yrs) Rodeo Pet Therapy Dogs
Special Kids Rodeo & Kids Day
LifeCare Center (12 yrs)
Renown (6 yrs) VA Hospital (6 yrs) St Mary's Hospital (2 yrs)
Reno Air Races - (4 years)
Kid's Kottage (2 yrs)
B/S Southern Illinois University (Elementary Education)
GRAD Texas A & M University (Language & Learning Disabilities)
M/ED University of VA (Reading)
GRAD University of WI (Special Education)
UN-R (Special Education/Reading)