Mike McCarthy

President & Founder

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Founder, Mike McCarthy, a retired software entrepreneur who has been working with rescue groups to save the lives of homeless animals for over 20 years, established his rescue transport nonprofit February 14, 2015. Rescue Express has transported and saved over 15,000 lives since then. Mr. McCarthy recently relocated headquarters of Rescue Express to Rancho Santa Fe, California from Eugene, Oregon, where buses leave every weekend, transporting up to 150 animals per trip, from overpopulated high-kill shelters, along the I-5 corridor as far north as Canada, in collaboration with 300 rescue groups who find the pets forever homes.

Karen Moy

Executive Director

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Karen is a native of Southern California from Rancho Palos Verdes, and a lifelong animal lover who grew up in a home filled with pets of every species. Pets bring a tremendous amount of joy to our lives and providing individuals and families with the experience of loving a pet is the best feeling in the world. She's a Fulbright Scholar with a PhD in Public Health from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. Karen transitioned from academic research into the nonprofit sector, and has a successful grant writing and fundraising track record.

Vanna Sumontha

Administrative & Operations Coordinator

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Born and raised in San Diego, California, Vanna has a passion for making a lasting difference in the lives of others and the community. She has 3+ years of experience working in the nonprofit sector and has helped many different populations including, children with autism and special needs, at-risk youth, low-income families, and individuals with severe mental illnesses. Outside of work, you can find Vanna cooking, shopping, volunteering, spending time with loved ones, doing yoga, or trying a new fitness activity. She has a love for Hawaii and anything that has to do with a tropical paradise. Although she does not have a dog of her own and spends 80% of her time daydreaming of what life would be like if she had one, Vanna has a huge admiration for dogs and is thankful to work for an organization that saves the lives of thousands of animals each year.

Karen Tinajero

Marketing and Social Media Coordinator

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As a marketing graduate of the University of California, Riverside, Karen has devoted herself to organizations and causes that exist to serve underrepresented communities. In her time she has worked in the civil rights and education industries and has also developed a passion for travel. Karen has also led discussions on self empowerment in schools across Japan and provided humanitarian disaster relief abroad. She hopes to continue using her skills to engage communities and bring awareness to resources and important causes. Most importantly, she’s mother to a kitty named Maru and hopes to adopt a shiba inu in the near future.

Linda Drews

Communications Outreach Coordinator

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Linda is an avid volunteer with several non-profits in San Diego. For years she has been an active volunteer with many organizations. She was an involved in launching a successful 5K run/walk in Memorial for Fallen Soldiers that is now hosted in several cities in the USA. She has lived in San Diego for the past five years and prior to that called Hawaii her home for many years.  Linda is an animal lover! Since she was a child she would actively try to rescue every stray cat that crossed her path. However, now she refers to herself as the Crazy Cat Lady with NO Cats. You will usually find Linda out and about at local events or on a quest to find a cup of coffee. Although she is not a fur parent, she will soon adopt a dog that she has helped care for the past three years.

Elizabeth Dodson

Grant Writer

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As a child, Elizabeth and her brother and sister were always taking in stray animals and finding them homes – despite their parents’ insistence on “no more animals!”  From a young age, Elizabeth loved all animals, especially dogs. Elizabeth lived and worked in several developing countries – studying traditional cultures, teaching, and working in non-profit management.  Her own experiences internationally moved her to pursue working for animal welfare and improving animals’ lives.  Her most recent “rescue” is a mystery mutt, Cubby, from the island of Yap- where she lived and worked for several years.  Elizabeth’s young daughter shares her love for animals, especially dogs, and Cubby has proven to be the best big brother!  They all love going to the beach, hiking, or just cuddling on the couch.  Cubby seems to think he’s a lap dog, despite his 60 pound size, and nobody wants to correct him.

Drivers and Animal Coordinators


Courtney Guthridge

Animal Coordinator

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Courtney has been involved with the Houston animal rescue community for 2 years, but has been an avid animal lover her whole life. She started her journey as a kennel technician for an animal hospital & worked her way into the veterinary medicine world. She loves working with Rescue Express and is excited to be a part a life-saving operation!