ICAN is operated by a small full time staff and supported by a dedicated volunteer base that ensures the quality and strength of the program.
Jillian Ashton became president of ICAN in the summer of 2013 after being involved as a volunteer and board member for over 10 years with the organization. ICAN commenced its operations on February 14, 2002 when three service dogs in training were delivered to the Rockville Woman’s Prison for their training. ICAN trains and places assistance dogs with individuals with disabilities and provides foundational like skills to the inmate through their experiences as trainers. ICAN is the only accredited service dog program based in Indiana.
Jillian has a heart for mission; and a mind for business. She has developed a strong dedication to the non-profit sector serving in various fundraising and management roles at organizations like the American Heart Association, Community Health Network, and the Indy Chamber. She even owned her own small business for a time; gaining confidence in financial planning and business acumen.
Jillian grew up in the Pittsburgh area, moving to Indianapolis in 1996 to work for Alpha Gamma Delta International Headquarters. She decided to stay in the community after being a member of the Stanley K. Lacy leadership class in 2004 realizing Indy had a lot to offer a young professional desiring to make a difference in her community.
Jillian currently contributes to the service dog community as Chairman of Assistance Dog International (ADI) Education Committee and locally through her work on the board of directors for Indy Concerts for a Cause, and being an active member of Northview Church in Carmel, IN.
For questions regarding board relations, risk management, ICAN staff, donor relations, or strategy, and culture, please contact Jillian.
Email | Phone: (317) 672-3861
Dino has a bachelor’s degree in social work, over 40 years of event management and fundraising, and began as a volunteer with ICAN in 2007. She began a paid role with the organization in 2012 to help plan and coordinate the 10th Anniversary Decade of Dogs Celebration in November of 2012. Dino is the ‘master juggler’ ICAN needs to develop supporters, events and the organization’s communications. She loves dogs, all shapes, sizes, and colors but her black golden-lab named Marj, has a huge piece of her heart!
For questions regarding marketing, donor relations, outreach/speaking requests, dog sponsorships, ICAN special events (e.g. Puppy Love, Wine and Wags, Bingo), media inquiries, please contact Dino.
Email | Phone: (317) 672-3864
Sean was introduced to dog training in November 2004 with Indiana Canine Assistant Network. He went on to graduate from the Karen Pryor Training Academy (dog training) in 2009. During that time, he was also working towards his Social Work degree and received his Bachelors’s in Social Work (BSW) from Purdue University.
Sean has been involved with Indiana Canine Assistant Network (ICAN) since 2004 in a variety of roles: a handler, volunteer, client, and staff member. While employed as Director of Rehabilitation Services for The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center in Gary, Indiana, he was blessed with an ICAN Facility Dog named Cubby.
In 2011 he left The Salvation Army, moved to Indianapolis, and worked in the Behavior Department of IndyHumane. He has also been a staff member of the Indy Mega Adoption Event for the past eight years overseeing the handling, behavior, and management of the dogs during these events.
In 2013, he was hired as Director of Training for ICAN and has been in that role since then. ‘’I have a job that is difficult not to love on a daily basis,’’ said Sean. ‘’There are so many fulfilling moments in ICAN and working with dogs. The daily tasks of working with and enjoying the company of man’s best friend, seeing the sense of accomplishment in the offender handlers eyes as the dogs’ progress, and they learn, not only skills but that they can succeed as individuals; and seeing the clients life change with the assistance of a service dog. What’s not to love?’’
Sean brings a unique and valuable perspective on ICAN’s mission to unleash abilities on both ends of the leash.
For questions regarding the prison program and training, please contact Sean.
Email | Phone (317) 672-3862
Sandi has worked in the medical field for several years. She has been a long time volunteer for many different non-profit organizations. Her initial involvement with ICAN was in 2010 as a Breeder Caretaker for an ICAN dog named Willow. She has a strong belief in the mission of ICAN and is eager to apply her skills from patient care to client needs through service dogs. Sandi loves dogs, the bigger the better! She enjoys spending time with her teenage daughters, Carley and Maddie, and their two yellow labs Willow and Eli.
For questions regarding client applications, public access re-certification, client/dog pairings and refresher classes, please contact Sandi.
Email | Phone: (317) 672-3865
Amanda joins the ICAN team with a passion for changing lives on both ends of the leash. She first began working with ICAN on the 2019 Puppy Love Valentine Program. She has a bachelor’s degree in Law and Society, with a focus on psychology and offender reentry and 5 years experience in fundraising. As a parent of a child with special needs who was matched with a service dog, she sees firsthand the incredible impact dogs can have on someone’s life. Amanda looks forward to working with ICAN donors and volunteers to support the ICAN mission.
For questions about donor relations, Tails to Tell, and sponsorships, please contact Amanda.
Email | Phone: (317) 672-3863
Brynne has a bachelor’s degree in social work. She was first introduced to ICAN when she joined them for her internship senior year. It was then that she fell in love with the organization and its mission. She began working for them one year later in 2017. She has a passion for serving people and is excited to see more lives changed through these magnificent dogs.
For questions regarding payables/receivables, donations/pledges, office management, If These Dogs Could Talk presentations (and the place to go when you don’t know who to ask), please contact Brynne.
Email | Phone: (317) 672-3860
Julie has dual bachelor’s degrees in animal behavior and neuroscience from Indiana University – Bloomington. During her junior year at IU, she heard a presentation on ICAN and instantly wanted to be a part of the organization. Julie and a fellow classmate subsequently founded a student organization, ICAN at IU, which focuses on assistance dog education, fundraising, and volunteer efforts in support of ICAN. Now as a member of the staff, Julie looks forward to working directly with the organization as their Volunteer and Canine Coordinator.
For information on becoming a volunteer with ICAN, please contact Julie.
Email | Phone: (317) 672-3866
In 2011, after watching a small puppy walk down the halls of Eli Lilly, Moe became interested in how to get involved with ICAN. She first joined as a Furlougher and then as a Puppy Raiser. Moe deepened her commitment to ICAN by becoming the volunteer Furlough Coordinator. Once she retired, she was able to devote more time to ICAN’s Breeding and Puppy Raising programs. In 2020 she joined the staff as the Breeding and Puppy Development Coordinator. “There is nothing like helping bring a puppy into this world and two years later watch it walk across the graduation stage with its person. Changing the life of that person forever.”
For questions regarding ICAN’s breeding program, the ABC Breeding Cooperative, or becoming a Whelping Host or Puppy Starter, please contact Moe.
Email | Phone (317) 771-9313