Coleen Kennedy – Chief Coordinator

Coleen is the head coordinator of this chaotic little thing we do. She got into local animal rescue after adopting her first dog, Apollo. She sat on the board of that organization for a few years but experienced burnout and took some time off. Once she was ready to get back in the game, she decided her talents were best put to use by raising money for some of the greatest local and regional rescues she follows! She asked some of her most trusted animal-loving friends to pitch in and Whiskeys for Whiskers was set in motion!


Coleen has lived in upstate South Carolina since 2001, moving here from Pittsburgh, PA.

She is currently dog mom to Ava Jean.

Jenny Waller – Social Media and Website Coordinator

Jenny started her foray into local rescue work as a volunteer and later as a board member for a local animal rescue. It was the same one that Coleen worked with and the two of them became fast friends! Jenny has many talents and has leant them to many organizations in various capacities. As a photographer, she has taken many event photos free of charge to help organizations garner attention from the public. In addition, she has a knack for the technical. Currently, she is responsible for all of the social media content for Whiskeys for Whiskers as well as keeping the website up to date.


Jenny has lived in upstate South Carolina since 2008, moving here from the gulf coast of Florida.

She is currently dog mom to Baxter, Bailey, and Paulie.

Kelly Redding – Decor and Registration Coordinator

Kelly has been involved in rescue since around 2008, becoming involved in the same organization as Coleen after seeing all the good work that was being done by them. During her volunteer and board days, she served as a Financial Director as well as helping out with event coordination. While Coleen does the majority of the bookkeeping, Kelly is there as an advisor and reviewer. (Both of them are accountants in “real life”.) Most notably though, Kelly keeps our events looking dynamite. She takes our theme for the year and runs with it, coming up with fun, inexpensive ways to decorate our venues. In upcoming events, she’ll also be tackling registration.


Kelly has lived in upstate South Carolina since middle school, moving here from just outside of Charlotte, NC.

She is currently dog mom to Luke.


Debbie Elliott – Silent Auction and raffle procurement coordinator

Debbie joined a local organization that helped to build fences for dogs living on chains as a way to make new friends with like-minded people. From there, she made many rescue friends and started

volunteering with another small organization. It was through that tenure that she met Coleen, Jenny, and Kelly. They worked on a joint event for the various organizations with which they each volunteered and “clicked” as a group. Her role in Whiskeys for Whiskers naturally morphed into that of auction and raffle coordinator because of her ability to accurately value and properly stage items.


Debbie has lived in upstate South Carolina since 1999, moving here from New Jersey.

She is currently dog mom to Sunflower and Spanky.

Shane Elliott – Tech and logistic coordinator

Shane is married to Debbie and started volunteering with local rescues alongside her. In our first year, he volunteered to help with setup. He made sure all our electronics were working and made sure all the equipment was properly placed and spaced. Working with all women is a challenge, but Shane takes it in stride, barely breaking a sweat. As we started planning our second year, Shane became an official part of the team. His technical and practical mind balances out some of our crazy ideas! He is responsible for planning our layouts as well as making sure our slideshow and other technological gadgets are functioning properly.


Shane has lived in upstate South Carolina since 1997, moving here from New York.

He is currently dog dad to Sunflower and Spanky.

Heather Harris – Volunteer Coordinator (and girl friday)

Heather is an old friend of Coleen’s from her time in Pittsburgh. When Heather was living in the south, and after she adopted dogs from one of our rescue partners, she reached out to Coleen and said she’d like to help with Whiskeys for Whiskers. She was eagerly accepted into the team! Heather helps with a little bit of everything – hence her “Girl Friday” status. She makes phone calls and sends emails to distillers, auction donators, sponsors, and anyone else we ask her to contact. She’s also the go-to when we need forms completed. During our next event, Heather will be taking on the responsibility of coordinating the volunteers.


Heather recently moved back to Pittsburgh, PA.

She is currently dog mom to Faith.

Melinda Hoover – Advisory Board, Business

The Whiskers Team befriended Melinda during their previous fundraising efforts when she was the sole owner/operator of our local Camp Bow Wow facility, which she sold in 2016. Melinda brings with her extensive knowledge in corporate and small business operations, including impeccable communication skills and problem-solving abilities. In addition to her vast business knowledge, Melinda has spent many years involved in the world of animal rescue, having rescued many dogs and cats throughout the years. She has volunteered with the Alliance of Therapy Dogs as an observer/tester since 2008 and all three of her current dogs are therapy dogs. The combination of her business knowledge and her love of animals make Melinda a wonderful addition to our advisory board.

Melinda, along with her husband Bob, moved to the upstate from Pennsylvania in 1996.

They are currently dog parents to Jazzi, Rosie, and Gabby.



In 2010, Coleen put together a fundraiser for which she needed a caterer and was introduced to Peter Collins of CHEF360 Catering. CHEF360 catered that event as well as some others and Peter and Coleen became fast friends. CHEF360 Catering was founded by Peter in 2005 when he took a risk by leaving behind an impressive litany of culinary jobs to open his own business. Since then, he’s grown CHEF360 into a catering dynasty, providing extraordinary food and vision. He doesn’t just offer a menu; he offers an experience. His gregarious personality coupled with his calming presence makes for a force unlike any other. Upon developing a board, Peter was a natural choice given his head for business, excellent working relationship with the Whiskers team, and overwhelming love of animals.

Chef Peter Collins is currently pet dad to Ethel, Chef Larousse, and Chef Roux.