Volunteer and Database Coordinator
Sam Long joined our team at the beginning of February. Her dedication for volunteering, outgoing personality, and passion for animal welfare have made her a perfect fit for our team. We want you to get to know her so you can love her just as much as we do!
Why did you decide to join the PAWS Atlanta team?
Whatever I do, I want to feel like it has meaning and makes a difference. PAWS Atlanta really embodies that with our mission statement and the work we do every single day. I actually started as a volunteer at PAWS Atlanta about five years ago, and then got into fostering. I spent most of my weekends at the shelter walking dogs and helping wherever needed, whether that be at off-site events or vaccine clinics. When I heard about this position, I knew I wanted to get others involved and excited about volunteering – the same way I felt when I started. I joked with the team that they couldn’t get rid of me, and now they’re really stuck with me! I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s truly a dream to be working at PAWS Atlanta.
Where did you work before PAWS Atlanta?
I previously spent a few months with LifeLine Animal Project at DeKalb County Animal Services as a Dog Foster Coordinator and about four years with The Carter Center working in Educational Programs. With both jobs, I loved being a resource for people and empowering them to get involved with something they find meaningful. This has definitely carried over into my work at PAWS Atlanta!
What do you like to do outside of work?
During my time off, I can be found working on my vegetable and flower gardens at home. When I’m having a lazy day, I like to put on a true crime podcast and cross stitch. If you know me, you know that I’m terrible at relaxing and being idle, so I’m usually finding different ways to keep my hands and mind busy. I love taking my dogs on hikes at Arabia Mountain when it’s nice outside. I’m also very much into UGA football and New York Rangers hockey. If you can talk to me about college football or ice hockey, we’ll probably be fast friends.
Who’s your favorite shelter pets at PAWS Atlanta right now?
At the moment, it has to be my foster Annie P. – and her four sisters. I have a soft spot for black dogs (I have two that I've adopted!). Annie P.'s litter came to PAWS Atlanta after being found in a cardboard box at a local shipping facility a few weeks ago. Studies have shown that black dogs (and cats) typically spend a longer amount of time in the shelter, so I like to advocate for them.
Anything else you want to share about you?
I have a menagerie of animals at home. I have two dogs and two cats. The dogs are named Ronnie (after Veronica Mars) and Phoebe (after Phoebe Buffay from Friends). When my boyfriend joined our household, he brought his cat Evie. We then added another cat companion (who is a proud PAWS alumni) named Jimmy, formerly Shimie, and he’s named after Jimmy Carter. It’s a full household but I wouldn’t have it any other way!
The house is extra full when I’m fostering a dog (like Annie P., currently). She’s my seventh foster. My previous fosters include Penny T., Grateful Dawg, Sami, Sensi, Palmer, and Thunder. I stay connected with pretty much all of their adopters and I love seeing them live their best lives!