About Us

Raising Aid for Dogs At Risk was founded on January 19, 2012, and is recognized as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) public charitable organization by the IRS.

Board of Directors
RADAR Co-Founder, Rick Thompson
Rick with his dogs,
Elsie and Finn

Rick Thompson

Co-Founder, President and Treasurer

Rick has long been an advocate for all animals. He served on the board of directors of his local animal shelter, the Humane League of Lancaster County. He also volunteered as development co-coordinator for the shelter. He was co-advisor to an animal advocacy organization for college students. In addition, Rick has volunteered with several dog rescue groups. Prior to starting RADAR, he handled donor relations for Reach Out Rescue & Resources. He is an active member of Farm Sanctuary.

Rick spends his time handling shelter & rescue communication, donor relations, bookkeeping, and helps with writing dog stories.

RADAR Co-Founder, Ken Siegert
Ken with his dogs,
Elsie and Finn

Ken Siegert

Co-Founder, Vice President and Secretary

Ken is an avid animal advocate. He has volunteered with several dog rescue groups. Prior to starting RADAR, he served as webmaster for Reach Out Rescue & Resources, where he devised, launched and managed a highly successful fundraising campaign. Ken also volunteered as development co-coordinator for the Humane League of Lancaster County. He was a co-advisor to Franklin & Marshall College’s Students for Animal Advocacy organization. He is an active member of Farm Sanctuary.

Ken spends his time handling shelter & rescue communication, fundraising, all aspects of the website, videos, graphic editing, and posts to newly assisted dogs and other content to social media.

Steffi with her foster, Killian

Steffi Ridgel


Steffi has been working in animal rescue for over a decade. She has fostered many dogs for three formal rescues and in addition has personally rescued uncountable dogs from ditches, under porches, the middle of highways. Steffi has done extensive work in animal assisted therapy, including research on the relationship between a therapy dog and older, isolated individuals on a medical level as well as psychologically calibrated testing situations.


Shelter Liaisons
Stephanie Garrett (Blount County, TN)
Susan with Scotch
Susan with her dog, Scotch

Susan Blakeney (Darlington County, SC)

Susan, an animal lover her whole life, became involved with the high-kill Darlington County Humane Society shelter in South Carolina when she adopted a discarded ten-year-old cat, Oscar, from that facility in 2005. She went on to spearhead their Petfinder page, create and administer their first website, fundraise for them online, and started reaching out to rescues to help rehome pets. Susan’s photography skills have been put to great use to help promote the pets to potential rescues and adopters. Although she now lives in Connecticut, Susan continues her original work for that shelter, plus she works tirelessly for Caring for Creatures, an animal sanctuary in Virginia.

Gretchen Kozen (Duplin County, NC)
Mary Lou Seymour (Aiken County, Allendale County, Greenwood County, SC)
Brandi Sowell (Lee County, SC)


Maddie volunteer
Zelda with Maddie’s foot

Maddie Carreiro (Cartoonist) 

Maddie is a lover of and advocate for all animals (dogs having a special place in her heart ) and loves getting to make cartoons for RADAR’s social media/events. She is so happy and grateful she got to become a part of such an amazing organization! She is currently studying animation at CCAD in Ohio and loves going back home to Massachusetts where she gets to spend time with her family’s dog Zelda, a crazy love-bug!

Jasper volunteer
Jasper & Toni

Jasper Chan (Grant Writer) 

Jasper currently resides in New York City. He first became interested in animal advocacy when his girlfriend convinced him to adopt a retired greyhound three years ago in Chicago. He learned about RADAR when looking for an opportunity to volunteer as a grant writer.

Dorian Edwin (Volunteer, raises funds via Creations for Castaway Canines
Melissa volunteer
Melissa’s niece Olive

Melissa Farr (RADAR Dog Follow-up Researcher) 

Some of Melissa’s earliest childhood memories are of playing “animal rescue” with neighborhood friends and writing animal rights advocacy letters in crayon (which may not have been actually posted by her empathetic but exhausted parents). She founded an animal rights group in high school, and then felt very fortunate to meet RADAR’s co-founders when she moved to Lancaster for college. Melissa has worked in several public and academic libraries and is pleased to be able to contribute her research and organizational skills to RADAR’s mission.

Laura Jones 
Sarah Lizee (Writer) 

After her Golden Retriever, Kokomo, crossed over the Rainbow Bridge, Sarah was in search of a way to pay tribute to his life by supporting animal advocacy. When she found RADAR, she fell in love with the process of making sure each dog’s story is told.

Kelly with her dog
Kelly with her dog, Sammy

Kelly Matthews (Financial Auditor) 

Kelly is a licensed CPA in the state of Pennsylvania. She learned about RADAR through a posting on Volunteer Match. As a lifelong dog lover, she approached RADAR about the opportunity to assist their wonderful mission.

Karen Roth (Administrative Assistant, Writer) 
Linda volunteer
Linda, with her dog,
Dollie in the background

Linda Siegert (Volunteer)

Linda wanted to help RADAR, and so she started Collars of Hope Creations. She makes handcrafted collars, dog-related items, and many different gift items to raise funds for RADAR. She also posts to the RADAR Facebook page and calls in many of the payments for RADAR grants.

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