Team Members

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Joel Mohorter

President, CEO, Cofounder, Board Member

Joel cofounded Hounds for Hope with his wife Norah. He is a commercial litigation attorney who enjoys SCUBA diving, boating, and carpentry.  The holidays have always been important to Joel and he is happy to be able to provide memorable holiday moments to those in need.

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Norah Mohorter

Chief Strategy Officer,
Cofounder, Board Member

Norah cofounded Hounds for Hope with her husband Joel. She is a registered nurse who currently works as a Senior RVP of sales for Encompass Home Health. Norah’s family has always made Christmas and birthdays an event to look forward to, and she is thrilled to help bring some of that excitement to local deserving families for their own celebrations. When she isn’t working on Hounds for Hope projects, Norah enjoys traveling, SCUBA diving and taking her dogs to the dog beach.

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Chelsea Scheetz

Chief Operating Officer, Board Member

Chelsea is a Paralegal with a firm in downtown Tampa and has always enjoyed giving back to the communities she has lived in. She has prior outreach experience feeding the homeless, delivering presents to deserving children at Christmas time and working with other miscellaneous organizations to help her community. Chelsea also has a deep love for animals and enjoyed her time working with pets at a dog kennel during her college years. In her free time she enjoys snuggling her two fur babies, Gunner and Raza, going to the gym and listening to a good true crime podcast.

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Jessica Thomas

Chief Financial Officer, Board Member

Jessica Lorraine Thomas, CPA, is a Transaction Advisory Services Manager for LBMC. She has prior outreach experience with veteran and animal rescue groups in her community. She is incredibly grateful for the opportunity to utilize her accounting and finance knowledge to assist Hounds for Hope, an organization with a mission dear to her heart. Jessica's reason for existence is Brody, the 9 y/o Golden/Pit mix photographed to the left. When she isn't working or snuggling her fur baby, she enjoys discovering new music, crafting cocktails and playing darts/billiards.

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Jade Benningfield

Director of Event Outreach, Board Member

Jade was born and raised in St. Petersburg, FL.  She currently works for St. Petersburg Parks and Recreation Events Department.  She is a very enthusiastic, creative, and motivated person who enjoys helping whenever she can.  Jade has always had a love for all holidays and is thrilled to help spread the love to other families.  In her spare time, she enjoys fishing, taking her dog on adventures, and playing soccer.

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Jolene Smith

Director of Marketing

Jolene is a registered nurse currently working as a Regional Director of Operations for Encompass Health. Bringing the community together through creative outreach and awareness is what she is passionate about. She is using that passion to help create awareness about Hounds for Hope and their mission. 
When she isn’t working, she enjoys spending time with her husband traveling, boating and taking their mini Australian Sheppard, Codak, to local dog bars and beaches.

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Julia Knight

Director of Public Relations

Julia works in marketing and design for an engineering firm in Tampa. She has loved dogs her entire life and is even a part time sitter. She loves being able to give back to the community and also volunteers with the Children’s Cancer Center in Tampa and Dream on 3. 
In her spare time she loves traveling, attending sporting events and has the ambitious goal of visiting every stadium in the country. When she is not in a stadium, she is looking for her next favorite hand crafted fancy cocktail.