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August 14, 2014

Faces of Fauquier: SPCA dogs have loyal companion

Photo/Cassandra Brown
“The dogs are always so happy to get out of the kennel and go for a walk,” Sandra Alm says. “They love the companionship. Dogs have emotions.”
I hope people who grew up here appreciate and know how beautiful it is. Because once it’s gone, you can’t get that back. Fauquier County should look different than other places in the way of development.
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
She spends a lot of at the Fauquier Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Sandra Alm has served five years as a dedicated dog walker at the animal shelter near Casanova.

“The dogs are always so happy to get out of the kennel and go for a walk. They love the companionship. Dogs have emotions,” Mrs. Alm says of her behind-the-scenes work.

Sweet and quiet, she loves animals, especially the canine variety.

After moving 12 years ago from Fairfax to Warrenton, she fell in love with Fauquier’s bucolic qualities and hopes the county will retain them.

“Hopefully, it will be just like this. I hope people who grew up here appreciate and know how beautiful it is. Because once it’s gone, you can’t get that back.”

The Fauquier County SPCA has approximately 2,500 animals available for adoption each year. Last year, the shelter took in 809 dogs and 1,042 cats.

Dog adoptions cost $135 and include spay/neuter surgery, microchip identification, rabies vaccinations, a veterinarian review and a heartworm test.
Cats older than 1 cost $35 to adopt in August.

• Age

• Home
Town of Warrenton

• Work

Volunteer dog walker two days a week at the Fauquier County SPCA for 5 years.

• Why do you do the job?

I’ve always loved animals since I was young. When I was looking for a dog I would always come here to the SPCA and one day asked if I could volunteer. The dogs are always so happy to get out of the kennel and go for a walk. They love the companionship. Dogs have emotions.

• Family
Husband, Ken; daughter, Kelly who lives in Baltimore; two dogs, adopted from the Fauquier County SPCA: Cricket, a bluetick coonhound mix, and Maddie, a beagle, and three cats.

• Education
Bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from George Washington University, 1981.

• How long have you lived in Fauquier?
Since 2002 — twelve years.

• Why do you live here?
Originally my husband fell in love with an old house and we moved here from Fairfax. The countryside is so beautiful; that’s the biggest reason.

• How do you describe this county?
When you walk down a country lane, the scenery captivates me. There’s the small-town community in Old Town (Warrenton).

• What would you change about Fauquier?
Maybe add more to the Warrenton Branch Greenway trail. I’ll be happy when the new section is finished.

• What do you do for fun?
I love to go for walks in the country. I like to travel a lot to Europe — Belgium, France, England. Half my family is English and the other half is from New Mexico.

• What’s your favorite place in Fauquier?
Holtzclaw Road, off Springs Road.

• What will Fauquier be like in 10 years?
Hopefully it will be just like this. I hope people who grew up here appreciate and know how beautiful it is. Because once it’s gone, you can’t get that back. Fauquier County should look different than other places in the way of development.

• Favorite TV show?
“Endeavour” on PBS.

• Favorite movie?
“Sense and Sensibility” (1995) with Kate Winslet and Emma Thompson.

• Favorite book?
“Prodigal Summer” by Barbara Kingsolver.

• Favorite vacation spot?
Northern Europe

• Favorite food?
Italian and Mexican food

• What is the best advice you have ever received? From whom?
My mother would always say “Treat everyone kindly.”

• Who’s your hero and why?

Rachel Carson, because she was concerned with environmental things before a lot of other people.

• What would you do if you won $1 million in the lottery?
I would do things with it locally. Donate to the SPCA, the Fauquier Free Clinic, Lord Fairfax Community College and other places. If you do things locally, it will branch out. “Think globally, act locally.”

>> Suggest a “Faces of Fauquier” profile subject

Do you know someone who lives in Fauquier County you would like to see in Faces of Fauquier? E-mail Cassandra Brown at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or Editor Lou Emerson at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Previous Faces of Fauquier:

• St. James’ Episcopal new Rector Ben Maas appreciates community’s embrace

• Bicycles dominate work and play for Brian Larson.

• Teaching music therapy combines Abigail Newman’s passions.

• Brenda Rich leads volunteers who organize and run the Fauquier County Fair.

• 1st Sgt. Greg Harris stresses empathy in his job as a supervisor at the county detention center.

• Chuck Tippett challenges the “rich guy” stereotype about pilots.

• County government employee Surja Tamang previously worked as a Mt. Everest sherpa.

• Woody Isaac found his calling as a chef at age 16.

• Horses take Tommy Lee Jones all over the county.

• Retired nurse Angela Neal continues to volunteer in hospital ER.

• Gilmer Lee really knows high school sports in Fauquier.

• Stage remains central to Tim Bambara’s life journey.

• Bus driver Melissa Strain’s weekend job all about “fun.”

• Bartender Taylor Edgar has a pretty good standup routine.

• A nomad childhood led Paul Schmeling to start a moving company.

• Adam Lynch’s family owns café with local food focus and a special name.

• Patricia McMahon Rice turns passion for art into her livelihood.

• Cindy D’Ambro works as “director of first impressions” at LFCC.

• Ginger Hilleary leads local literacy organization.

• Farmers with groundhog problems call Rod Kirkpatrick.

• Horses “retire” to work with Jeanne Blackwell.

• Remington cattle farmer Doug Linton loves his home and work.

• Sports central to Robert Glascock’s life’s work.

• For Richard Mast, company ownership started with his summer work as a teenager.

• Bernice Simpson knows northern Fauquier back roads and the people who live along them.

• Eddie Payne has logged 38 years as a volunteer firefighter in Marshall.

• Stephanie Layton turns her lifelong passion for dance into her livelihood.

• Shawn LaRue matches children and adoptive families.

• Biker and psychology major Clif Stroud makes music in a big way.

• Becky Crouch greets lots of visitors.

• She helped blaze trail to equality for black teachers.

• Family and food come first for Marshall pizzeria employee.

• Rural “closeness” of Fauquier appeals to Kansas native

• A “spoke” in the wheel of preservation.

• His job dovetails with passion for hunting

• Veteran educator sees the potential in every child.

• His passions: Fixing cars and helping people

• Habitat ReStore volunteer appreciates Fauquier’s diversity.

• Dad’s example led to new career at Fauquier Hospital.

• He lives and works in a beautiful place.

• The Goldvein firehouse ranks as his favorite place.

• Pretty things everywhere she looks.

• Through scouting, he encourages girls to explore.

• One day, he might run the company.

• FISH volunteer likes to help others.

• She sees the community’s generosity.

• Cop patrols while most people sleep.

• Pastor a constant in Calverton.

• She keeps the courthouse spotless.

• He loves working working outdoors at the park.

• She sees “everyone” at Carousel

• Library assistant works in a “fun place"

• Hat lady sets up shop in Old Town Warrenton

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