Our People – Trustees

ABTC Board of Trustees

David Montgomery - President

Following a first career in the Army and a spell living in France I attended Oxford Brookes University as a mature student. After graduating with a Combined Studies degree in Psychology and Animal Behaviour I moved into adult education and taught in the Prison Service for a few years. I have now been involved in the delivery of education to students worldwide in Animal related topics such as behaviour, conservation and welfare for over 22 years. Since 2010 I have also been closely involved in the work of ABTC creating the standards and infrastructure needed to support a true profession.

Harold Burrows - Chairman

In 1966 Harold watched Search Dogs training and was so impressed by their skill – finding people under snow or hidden underground – that he decided to train his own dog and joined Search and Rescue Dog Association (SARDA) Wales.  He realised there were no national standards of training.  He was awarded a Churchill Travel Fellowship in 1992 and spent 3 months in USA where there were also no national standards.  Although he had worked with many good trainers, Harold felt it was important to formalise standards. In 1997 the National Search and Rescue Dog Association (NSARDA) was set up.   Standards were eventually agreed, but unfortunately some search dog associations decided that it wasn’t necessary and would not join. Internationally Harold has helped to train handlers and dogs in the USA, Ireland, Iceland, Malta, Australia and Guam and sharing NSARDA search dog standards.

Chris Laurence - Treasurer

Chris Laurence qualified as a veterinary surgeon from Bristol University in 1968 and went into mixed practice in Somerset.  A year later he moved to Chippenham and was subsequently Chief Veterinary Officer at the RSPCA and Veterinary Director of Dogs Trust.  He retired in August 2011.  He was awarded the MBE for services to animal welfare in 2007 and granted Fellowship of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2017. Chris is currently Chairman of the Canine and Feline Sector Group of the England Health and Welfare Board.  He is also involved in a number of charities including chairing the Animal Welfare Foundation and the British Veterinary Behaviour Association.

Jane Williams - Secretary

Jane Williams is an Animal Training Instructor and Clinical Animal Behaviourist working in the East of England and on-line. She has been ABTC registered since 2008, an ABTC Trustee since 2018 and was its Chair 2018-2020. Jane has been a full member of the APDT since 2008 and of the APBC since 2009 and was the APBC Chair 2017-2020. Since gaining her M.Sc. from the University of Southampton, Jane has delivered CPD to vet practice staff, developed resources to improve owner understanding of their pet’s behaviour and worked hard to promote animal welfare through the ABTC and APBC. Alongside a full and varied career as a behaviourist and trainer, Jane lives with a number of reptiles, 6 rescue dogs, Harry the rabbit and another equally animal-mad human.

Anne McBride

Dr Anne McBride is a Senior Lecturer, School of Psychology, University of Southampton.  A practising Clinical animal behaviour therapist since 1987, she ran puppy, adolescent and adult dog training classes 1989 to 1998. She was director of the Postgraduate Diploma / MSc in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling at Southampton University, the first British academically recognised qualification and drew students from Britain, Europe and beyond. It ran from 1994-2015. She is a Full member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors, and ABTC CAB. She writes about and lectures nationally and internationally, on various aspects of animal behaviour and human-animal interactions.

Justine Harrison

Justine is a Certified Horse Behaviour Consultant with the IAABC. She is also the organisation’s UK Co-Chair and a member of the Application Review Committee. She is registered as an Accredited Animal Behaviourist with the Animal Behaviour & Training Council. Justine lectures on the Equine Behavioural Science BSc degree course at Writtle University College and also acts as an expert consultant in legal disputes and court cases involving equine behaviour.  She holds lectures and workshops around the UK and regularly contributes to a wide variety of international publications including Your Horse, Horse & Rider (US), Horse & Hound and Bit (Netherlands) – either writing articles, commenting or answering specific questions about horse behaviour and training. For more information see www.equinebehaviourist.co.uk

Lucy Hoile

Lucy is a feline behaviourist and has over 10 years’ experience helping owners with their cat’s behaviour. She holds a master’s degree in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling from Southampton University. Lucy is a full member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors and a certificated member of the Fellowship of Animal Behaviour Clinicians. She also sits on International Cat Care’s Feline Well-being Panel and is involved with their fantastic online behaviour courses. Lucy features on ‘Ask the Expert’ on BBC Radio Solent and has contributed numerous articles for feline publications and websites.

Lynn Hewison

Lynn has been working in the field of animal behaviour seeing both dogs and cats through veterinary referral since 2012. She also has extensive practical experience for over 10 years through teaching classes and working in a variety of settings with both private clients and other professionals. She also takes active roles on various committees focussed on animal welfare and behaviour within the field.  Lynn currently teaches on both undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the field of Clinical Animal Behaviour and her research interest is mainly focussed in clinical animal behaviour but she also has a strong interest in problem prevention and kennel welfare and she has a wealth of practical experience in a variety of kennel environments, including private breeding and rescue. 

Marianne Freeman

Marianne is a lecturer in Animal Science and Zoo Biology at the University Centre Sparsholt, she coordinates the Animal Communication, Learning and Training module of the BSc Applied Animal Behaviour course.  She has supervised both undergraduate and postgraduate research on zoo and companion animal behaviour and has published work in academic journals and books on the subject of behaviour and cognition.   Marianne is a volunteer for Hearing Dogs for the Deaf and has two cats, two chinchillas, a uromastyx and a cocker spaniel named Phoebe.

Fiona Cooke

Fiona's PhD focused on the role of local government in the implementation and enforcement of animal welfare legislation. In addition to work in welfare law and policy, her welfare science research focuses on assessing and improving animal welfare, particularly in shelter environments, using innovative and practical tools. Fiona currently leads the Research (Europe) and Ecology teams at The Donkey Sanctuary, working globally to improve the welfare of donkeys and mules. She is a lecturer in law and runs an animal behaviour company working with complex behavioural issues of dogs and cats. Fiona is a full member of the APBC and an ABTC registered CAB.

Esme Wheeler

Esme Primrose Wheeler is a registered Animal Training Instructor, a full member of PACT KSA and is currently nearing completion of a master’s in clinical animal Behaviour from the University of Lincoln. Prior to animal behaviour, Esme worked in public health and has a BSc (hons) from the University of York and an MSc from UCL in Global health. Esme is a qualified teacher with a PGCE and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.