Tamara Pool was born and raised in Sheboygan. She attended James Madison Elementary School until 4th grade because her parents wanted an immersive educational experience that focused on the inclusion of special needs children. As a result, Tamara grew up knowing that people with disabilities could do anything with the right tools.
Rebekah Hintzman started her career watching dogs at her family home in the summer. That started her passion for dogs and encouraged her mind for small business. She started as a kennel manager at a local shepherd breeding facility in her home town which she gained her love for German Shepherds and training. Then went on to apprentice under a local dog groomer her senior year where she eventually started her own dog grooming business.
Katie Shaw grew up in Hingham. While attending Oostburg High School she participated in Kool to be Kind (K2BK) where the students would go and help with various activities with in Sheboygan County. This sparked her interest in giving back to her community.
Currently she works for RUFF Academy Real Life Dog Training as their office manager, book keeper and is working towards becoming a dog trainer. When she’s not working she likes to spend her free time with her husband, three children and their three dogs.
Deb Trcka has always had a love for animals and more specifically dogs. Her love of dogs started when she was a young child and has grown over time. She believes dogs are our buddies and best friends, sensing our moods, cheering us up and bringing us pure joy.
Another passion of Deb’s is helping people with challenges/disabilities. She was very fortunate to work as a special education teacher with The Sheboygan Area School District for almost 40 years. She taught at James Madison for five years, then spent most of her time at North High. In addition, she taught in SAIL, a district community-based program for 18-21 year olds students.
Deb met Rebekah when she was the trainer for her puppy, Emma. She loved her style of training along the results she saw with Emma. Their relationship evolved into a friendship and the creation of Ruff Academy North, consisting of therapy dogs visiting North High once a week. Several years ago Deb helped establish Pawsitism in the Sheboygan Area to provide service dogs for children with Autism.
Deb is married to Frank and they have 2 adult children and one granddaughter. Their son Jim is married to Katie and daughter Ali, is married to Lucas. They are proud new grandparents to Ali and Lucas’s Vivian. In addition, they have 2 dogs, a Golden Retriever, Emma, and a Yellow Lab, Elsie.
Deb love spending time with her family, friends and dogs. She enjoys flower gardening, baking, wine-tasting excursions and volunteering at Holy Name Church. Through two other community efforts, Warm the World and The Mary McGuire Thanksgiving Food Box Outreach, Deb is involved in helping people in need throughout the community.
Deb considers it a privilege to serve on the Pawsitism Board. Her involvement allows her to combine her love of animals and make a difference in the lives of children with Autism and their families. She is excited for all of the possibilities and potential growth of our organization.