Rick D. Gabrielson, Vice President of Development

One seemingly minor event can sometimes change the course of a life. In Rick Gabrielson’s case, it was his experience volunteering at the Animal Humane Society in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn., that fueled his interest in animal welfare and caused him to trade a career in dentistry for a career in nonprofit management and development.

Rick joined the staff of the Animal Humane Society in 1985 and worked there for 21 years, eventually becoming director of development for the organization. In 2006, Rick came to the Dumb Friends League, where he is responsible for leading, managing and growing the agency’s multi-channel fundraising programs. With nearly 30 years of experience in his second profession, Rick has created, implemented and enhanced numerous development, communications and marketing efforts, including transforming the organization’s Furry Scurry® dog walk into the largest walk for animals in the United States, grossing more than $1 million each year for the past four years and increasing participation to approximately 12,000 people and 5,000 dogs.

Rick holds a bachelor’s degree from Augustana College and a doctor of dental surgery degree from Loyola School of Dentistry and the Chicago College of Dental Surgery. He is a member of the Society of Animal Welfare Administrators, the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Colorado Planned Giving Roundtable.

Two adopted dogs have found their forever home with Rick: Dumb Friends League alums Elliott, an Affenpinscher, and Hunter, a short-haired dachshund.