Organization: PetSmart Charities

Location: Location Flexible, U.S.

Express Interest

About PetSmart Charities:

PetSmart Charities is the $75 million nonprofit organization associated with international pet retailer PetSmart, Inc.  An independent entity, PetSmart Charities is funded almost entirely through the ‘pin pad’ donations of shoppers via PetSmart retail stores and the company’s website.

The organization has served communities and their pets since its founding in 1994. Since that time, PetSmart Charities has focused on eliminating pet homelessness by connecting people and pets through adoptions and supporting the hard work of animal welfare organizations through grant-making.

To date, PetSmart Charities has facilitated over 7.5 million pet adoptions, accounting for nearly 20% of all adoptions in the United States.

As the largest funder in animal welfare, PetSmart Charities will deploy over $42 million to its grantees in 2017.  Strategic grant-making categories such as spay and neuter services, shelter operations, animal transport and adoption-event funding have been a long-time focus for the organization and its partnerships with over 3,500 animal welfare organizations.

The recent hurricanes have highlighted PetSmart Charities’ continued commitment.  In the communities and for the pets and their families who were devastated by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, PetSmart Charities has committed over $3 million to relief efforts, sent over 500,000 pounds of dog and cat food to impacted areas and shipped over 8,000 pet crates to responders.

PetSmart Charities is entering an important new chapter.  Driven by its Board of Directors and executive staff, it is broadening the focus of its work to the connection points between human and animal welfare.

As the relationship between people and pets has evolved over the last decade, PetSmart Charities intends to expand its stewardship to include communities of pet ownership and underserved populations. In addition, given its resources and know how, PetSmart Charities is uniquely qualified to become a thought leader and a catalyst for solving the larger animal welfare issues that cannot be reasonably undertaken by more regional or smaller players.

PetSmart Charities’ strategic growth and the expansion of its work to enhance and lift up the important role of human-animal bond is what distinguishes it from other funders and organizations.

Additional areas of influence through funding now include pet therapy programs, service dogs for veterans’ programs, pet retention for families and individuals, and programs that allow for broader access to veterinary care: all with the goals of keeping pets and families together and enhancing their quality of life.

For more information about PetSmart Charities, please click here.

The Opportunity:

At this inflection point, PetSmart Charities is seeking new independent Board members.  The Board of Directors of PetSmart Charities is comprised of a majority of independent board members as well as board members from senior leadership at PetSmart, Inc.

New Board members will have the opportunity to actively influence and shape the new chapter of PetSmart Charities.  Candidates who value the growth phase of an organization’s life cycle and desire to influence effectiveness through strategy, leadership and governance will be particularly attractive.  Board members are reimbursed for reasonable travel expenses to attend 3-4 Board meetings annually.

Board members can direct up to $10,000 in grant funding annually to organizations that further the mission of PetSmart Charities and meet grant making eligibility standards.

Candidate Profile:

Ideal candidates will have the following professional and personal qualities, characteristics and skills:


Candidates with experience leading private sector or nonprofit organizations through growth phases either as a C-level executive and/or as a Board member would be attractive. In addition, with the reinvention of PetSmart Charities, candidates who are seasoned leaders in large, national/global nonprofit organizations in human services fields such as transitional housing, serving the homeless community and victims of domestic violence and/or human welfare would be particularly attractive. Other areas of expertise that would be applicable are strategic planning, innovation, government affairs, management consulting and financial acumen.

Emotionally Astute Leadership

The Board member will embody wisdom, humility and good judgment.  An effective listener, s/he will bring high intellect and a wide-ranging curiosity to the work of a Board member.  S/he will embrace a culture where bold decisions are not shied away from, but debated healthily and evaluated in a collegial atmosphere. S/he will have an appreciation for partnering effectively with, and learning from, other highly experienced and professional Board members and senior staff for the collective benefit of the organization’s mission.

Leading Through Influence

Collaborative in nature, the Board member will exhibit a thoughtful approach to working with fellow Board members and PetSmart Charities’ senior staff.  S/he will develop strong relationships and partner with Board members and senior staff and enjoy serving and working with persons with different professional and personal backgrounds in furtherance of the mission. S/he will demonstrate savvy diplomatic skills and a natural affinity for building consensus for solutions, while respectfully and boldly pushing the boundaries of PetSmart Charities’ work and challenging the perspective of others to encourage mindful risk-taking, entrepreneurialism and proactivity.

Passion for the Mission

The Board member will be energized by the mission and the new chapter of PetSmart Charities. S/he will demonstrate a deep appreciation of, and respect for, the privilege of serving as a steward of resources for the greater good. S/he will bring a commitment to building a strong link between human and animal welfare.  S/he will approach the work with strong values of open-mindedness and service. S/he will find inspiration in PetSmart Charities’ dedication to learning and will actively seek opportunities to increase his or her knowledge as well as contribute to the knowledge of others. Fully committed to serving PetSmart Charities, s/he will be an active Board member and engage fully in all Board meetings.


Koya Leadership Partners, a national retained executive search firm that works exclusively with mission-driven clients, has been retained for this search.

To make recommendations on candidates or express interest in the opportunity, please contact Alison P. Ranney and Anny K. Chou at  All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.