PAWS Board Members
Susan Braun, President
Prior to her retirement Susan Braun held positions as Manager of Research Services and Electronic Resources Manager for the Information Resources Directorate of The Aerospace Corporation, a federally funded research and development corporation supporting national security space programs (NSS) for the U.S. Government. Her areas of expertise included program planning, website management, research support in the areas of engineering and aerospace sciences, research instructional media, instruction in methods of online research, and collection development of print and electronic information resources. Prior to joining The Aerospace Corporation, Susan was manager of libraries for Hughes Aircraft Company. She has served in leadership positions for Special Libraries Association. Her board expertise focuses on program planning, fund raising, and communications.
In addition to serving PAWS, Susan is a volunteer for Helpline House and the Bainbridge Public Library. She works part time at Eagle Harbor Books where she facilitates two monthly book groups. She is also a regular contributor of book reviews for Library Journal.
Susan lives on Bainbridge Island with her husband John Murray and three rescue cats, two of which are PAWS adoptees.
Becca Hanson, Vice President
Becca Hanson is a Landscape Architect with an international practice, Studio Hanson|Roberts, that assists zoos, wildlife reserves and conservation groups to create the best homes and habitats for the domesticated and wild animals in their care. When considering welfare outcomes, her focus encompasses not only the physical setting for the animals, but the learning environment for the children, adults and communities around them, recognizing that one of humanity’s greatest attributes is their ability to continue to learn and change their behaviors for the better over their entire lifetime.
She is a Fellow in the American Society of Landscape Architects and has a background in plant community ecology. In addition to her work as a member of the PAWS Board, she is a past member of the BILT Projects Committee and a current Board member of Bainbridge Island Friends of the Farms where she satisfies her urge to dig in the dirt and harvest things with protecting farmland and open spaces for future generations.
Becca and her husband and partner, David, have lived on the Island since 1983 where they have raised their two sons and now welcome back their Burien-based Grandsons. They share their home and office with Freckles, their 11-year old English Springer Spaniel who is still learning to lie down and wait, but does a great job of off-lead walking.
Janine Hanson, Secretary
Suzanne Keel-Eckmann, Treasurer
Suzanne Keel-Eckmann is an executive coach who works primarily with women leaders in financial and professional services firms. She is dedicated to helping accomplished women achieve professional as well as personal goals and navigate career transitions such as promotions, organizational realignments, industry changes and retirement. Prior to her move to private practice, she spent 16 years at Deloitte where, as a firm director, she led the national women’s initiative and served as U.S. director of corporate responsibility. Before joining Deloitte, she held positions as a non-profit executive, law firm administrator at several multi-location law firms, and owner / founder of two businesses.
Suzanne also serves her community. She is currently on the Ethics Board for the City of Bainbridge Island, actively volunteers for North Kitsap Fishline, has served on the boards of UW’s Women’s Center as well as the Center for Women & Democracy, and mentors second year MBA students through UW’s Foster School of Business.
Ariel Birtley, Director
Ariel Birtley is currently serving as the Interim Vice President for Administration and Capital Projects Manager at Olympic College. She lives on Bainbridge Island with her husband Trevor Ross and their five children, two rescue dogs (Moon and Evie) and two cats (Mr. Tibs and Francis). She holds a degree in Architecture from the University of Oregon and a Master’s in Business and Engineering from Oregon State University. She is passionate about the built environment, green building technologies, sustainability and climate change. Over the last nearly 20 years, she has honed her experience related to oversight of operations, capital project management, financial management, and implementation of institutional policies and procedures. Her experience in budgets and financial oversite ranges from the identification of revenue sources, risk analysis, expenditure oversite, fiscal health analysis, financial planning, budget development, and tracking. Her work experience includes overseeing large construction projects up to $235M, these projects have included managing direct reports, leading large complex budgets, coordinating with engineers, architects, contractors, state agencies, and clients. She also has experience researching and implementing public policy; at the County of Marin she worked on a variety of plans, procedures and policies; the completed Countywide plan won national awards for sustainability and green planning. At Oregon State, she completed research on STEM majors and determining why there were so few women and minorities that follow and maintain this career path.
Ms. Birtley is also passionate about animals and the power they have to transform individual lives through providing companionship and emotional support. She is interested in identifying funding for assisting seniors with support for their animals, providing emotional support dogs for youth and teens and military vets. As well, she is interested in general animal welfare and treatment. She is extremely enthused and excited about serving on the Board of Directors of PAWS and looks forward to having a meaningful impact in the future of PAWS, the lives of the animals that are served and their adoptive families.
Virginia Carosso, Director
Ginny Carosso is a lifelong retail executive and currently owns and operates the Port Gamble General Store & Cafe. Prior to her that, she held senior executive merchant positions with Macy’s and most recently as Chief Merchandising Officer at Payless Shoesource. She has lived in many cities across the U.S. as she was often tapped as the Transformational Architect for the business, assortment fundamentals, team and processes. Her areas of expertise include strategic building and execution, team development and vendor negotiations. She specializes in getting to know her customers and purchasing and/or developing the right product for their needs.
Ginny volunteers as a PAWS adoption counselor in the Kingston Branch. She also serves on the Kingston Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.
Ginny and her husband Juan live in Kingston with their three rescue kitties – two of which are PAWS adoptees – and one very large puppy who is still learning his manners.