Founder and Executive Director
Rachel McPherson, a native Mississippian, is the Founder and Executive Director of The Good Dog Foundation (Good Dog). She brings her experience as an entrepreneur and community activist to Good Dog.
As the Executive Director, Rachel assures the organization's long-range strategy achieves its mission of increasing awareness of the healing properties of the human-animal bond through certified therapy dog visits. She leads the organization's program, organizational and financial plans with the Board of Directors and staff. In its fifteen years of existance, Rachel is responsible for Good Dog growing from a small start-up with 3 therapy dogs to a nationally-recognized leader in certified therapy dogs with more than 1,100 teams.
Prior to founding Good Dog, Rachel was an Academy Award-nominated producer for film and television.Rachel is also active in numerous professional and cultural associations, serving as a leader in fundraising, development, event planning, and production efforts. She is an active board member for the Prospect Park Alliance. Having been inducted into the Alumni Hall of Fame at the University of Mississippi, Rachel is the past chair of the Ole Miss Women’s Council. She is a founder and coordinator of the Way Up North in Mississippi Picnic, held annually in New York’s Central Park. Rachel previously served on the boards of New York Methodist Hospital and the Berkeley Carroll School
Originally having set out to produce a documentary on therapy dog services, Rachel fell in love with the work, stopped making the film, and founded Good Dog. Under her leadership, Good Dog helped change New York State law to allow therapy dogs into health care facilities. Good Dog now makes more than 330,000 annual visits to people in health care, social service, community organizations and schools in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Massachusetts.
Rachel lives with her husband, two children, and three dogs, including Yazhi, a Good Dog, in New York City.
Director of Strategic Growth, Communications, and Operations
Moschell “Mo” Coffey is the Director of Strategic Growth, Communications, and Operations at Good Dog. She brings her background in public administration to manage the long-term planning, development, communications, and operational activities of Good Dog.
Mo works in partnership with the Executive Director and Board of Directors to implement new processes and programs to achieve the goals of the strategic plan. She coordinates the annual operations plan and budget implementation, and leads the management process evaluate progress on Good Dog’s goals. Mo ensures the office is functioning smoothly and supports the overall development and growth of Good Dog, including planning and executing Good Dog’s major events and working with the media to secure different opportunities to promote the organization’s work.
Furthering her commitment to the development of the public service sector, Mo serves as the manager of the Fellowship for Emerging Leaders in Public Service, a seven-month fellowship at NYU's Wagner Graduate School of Public Service that focuses on the career development of young public service leaders.
Mo previously served as the program coordinator at the National Center on Philanthropy and the Law at NYU School of Law, a project associate with the United Nations Capital Development Fund, and a project assistant in the Office of the Dean at NYU Wagner.
A graduate of Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, Mo earned an honors BA summa cum laude in international relations with a minor in Spanish. Mo holds a Master of Public Administration in Public and Nonprofit Management and Policy with an International Policy and Management specialization from NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.
Mo lives in Manhattan with her husband and daughter and enjoys volunteering with their two Good Dogs.
Denise Wright-Scott is The Good Dog Foundation’s Finance Manager. She works with management to provide leadership and maintenance of general operations in compliance with GAAP. Denise serves as the liaison for the organization’s annual audit and financial reports provided for review by the Board of Directors. As a graduate of Pace University’s Lubin School of Business, she earned an MBA degree in Finance and provides insight to assist in strategic planning for future growth of The Good Dog Foundation. She is a passionate career humanitarian who comes to the organization with 20 years of experience in fund accounting, corporate governance, public policy and advocacy through leadership roles and affiliations with nonprofit organizations throughout New York City. Denise also works as the controller of the Trustees of the Masonic Hall and Asylum Fund in New York.
Denise is an active volunteer and community leader in Central Brooklyn, and she is involved with grassroots community organizing. Through strategic partnerships, she brings vital resources to the community for residents served by Erasmus Neighborhood Federation. Denise also volunteers in NYC public schools to raise funds to supplement limited resources.
In her spare time, she shares many joyous moments with her family including her husband, three children and darling little Milan– the family pet who is truly adored by all. Denise looks forward to opportunities for travel abroad, and family outings whenever time and scheduling permits.
Chris Anderson is the Volunteer Coordinator at The Good Dog Foundation. He is very excited to be working with the Good Dog team and its volunteers to promote the health and happiness of people and dogs alike.
Chris assists volunteers from their very first evaluation with a trainer to signing up for classes to annual re-certifications, and provides support through the entire volunteer experience.
Previously Chris worked as the Membership and Office Coordinator at The International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, which promotes excellence in international television through the annual International Emmy Awards and a professional network for over 500 international television executives. Before moving to New York City, Chris worked as a park ranger for The National Park Service in the Washington, DC area, primarily at the National Mall and Memorial Parks.
Graduating with honors from The College of William & Mary with a BA in Literary and Cultural Studies and Film Concentration, Chris spent his initial post-graduate years in Washington, DC before moving to New York. He currently lives in Brooklyn, and enjoys hiking, cycling, and painting.
Kathleen O’Reilly is the Visit Coordinator at Good Dog. She is excited to be a part of an organization that enhances the quality of life for so many people.
Once current volunteers have graduated and become fully certified, Kathleen guides each team in deciding what types of facilities to visit, and coordinates visits between the facilities and volunteer teams. She is the first point of contact for all of Good Dog’s facility partners, from creating partnerships to placing teams where they are needed most.
Prior to joining Good Dog, Kathleen interned at Right to Play, an international nonprofit that uses sport and play to promote child development. Kathleen attended the George Washington University in Washington, DC where she earned a BA in Political Science with a minor in Economics. While at GWU she was part of the student group International Alternative Spring Break that raised funds to complete a construction project on a school in Oaxaca, Mexico.
She is a native of Long Island, NY and enjoys spending as much time outdoors as she can.
Development and Communications Associate
Ali Fine is the Development and Communications Associate at Good Dog. She is thrilled to be with Good Dog, which allows her to combine her experiences with community outreach and her passion for animals.
Ali provides support in the areas of development and communications, including assisting with the planning and execution of fundraising events, maintaining the donor database and processing donations, managing Good Dog’s social media platforms and contributing to the creation and design of outreach materials.
Ali previously served as a campaign associate at Project Bread – The Walk for Hunger, an organization dedicated to alleviating, preventing, and ultimately ending hunger in Massachusetts and the host of the nation’s largest one-day fundraiser for hunger. Ali also worked with Dan Klores Communications in sports marketing to assist with 2010 U.S. Open and Citi Field events, as well as provided media and communications assistance to The World Society for the Protection of Animals, focusing on the Eat Humane campaign and writing for the Compassionate Travel blog.
An honors graduate of Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY, Ali earned a BA in sociology. Originally from Boston, Ali currently lives in Astoria, NY and enjoys volunteering as an Adoptions Counselor at the ASPCA.