About the Foundation
It all started with Buddy…
In 2011, Jay Dackman founded The Buddy Foundation of Maryland, providing resources and solutions to help families struggling to save their beloved dogs. Believing that canine companions are an integral part of a family’s overall health and wellbeing, Jay created TBFMD in support of both owner and dog.
View our 2018 Annual Report
Meet Our Team
We are passionate about pets…
Jay Dackman, Founder
Jay Dackman is the founder of The Buddy Foundation of Maryland and the father of Buddy, who walked the rainbow bridge in November 2016 after a full and happy life. Jay and Buddy would enjoy long walks along the harbor, naps, and eating pizza together. Buddy’s bellowing bark endeared the neighborhood to him–he was quite a character, and not a day goes by that Jay doesn’t think of him. In honor of that relationship and wanting to give families as much time as possible with their own canine loved ones, Jay created The Buddy Foundation of Maryland.
Melinda Cianos, Executive Director
Melinda Cianos is the foundation’s Executive Director; she’s a Baltimore native, and the mother of three humans, one dog, and one cat. She loves ’em all to distraction. Ari is her canine kid, a Cocker Spaniel blend. Just when it seemed possible that all the love was taken, she met Buddy. In August, 2015, after several years teaching, her love for all things furry won out, and Melinda took a position at The Buddy Foundation of Maryland.
Renee von Gonten, Director of Development
Renee von Gonten is the foundation’s Director of Development. She has been in Baltimore since 2009 and is mom to Loki, a 2.5 year old rescued Desi dog from India. As a passionate dog lover and seasoned development professional, Renee will utilize her knowledge and love of dogs to grow the resources of The Buddy Foundation of Maryland’s to provide urgent veterinary care for pups in Baltimore.