Julie has worked with animals her entire life. She grew up around domestic animals and has raised horses, dogs, cats, rabbits, snakes, rodents, birds, and frogs. Julie has been involved in the zoological profession for more than 15 years. She has a broad background in both marine and terrestrial animals, working with some of the nation’s leading organizations, including the John G. Shedd Aquarium, Chicago Zoological Society's Brookfield Zoo, the Washington National Zoo, the Virginia Aquarium, and the Virginia Zoo.
Julie's animal care and management experiences are unique and diverse. These experiences include extensive husbandry and behavioral training with exotic cats, wolves, elephants, seals and sea lions, birds of prey, rhinos, giraffes, otters, hippos, and many other species.
As the Curator of Exhibit Development for the Virginia Aquarium and the Director of Education for the Virginia Zoo, Julie has held senior leadership positions. She has worked at the international level with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums as part of their Conservation Education Committee, a committee that develops and institutes numerous conservation initiatives throughout the zoological community. Julie is a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT).
Julie's sidekick is her golden retriever, Gibson. Gibson has been Julie's inspiration for creating positive relationships between owners and their dogs. It is this strong desire to help form positive relationships that led Julie to Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training & Behavior (KPA). Since receiving her certification from KPA, Julie has spent her days training others how to communicate positively with their dogs. She volunteers for the Golden Retriever Rescue Society, helping newly adopted goldens adapt to their new homes. Julie also visits local retirement homes and hospitals, with Gibson by her side as a therapeutic dog.
Julie also has a few two-legged animals: her three kids, Daniel, Roman, and Grace, and her husband, Chip! Visit Julie's website Positive Animal Training and her Facebook page.