IPATA Board of Directors

Simon Jackson Dogtainers AustraliaSimon Jackson
IPATA Past President (2018-2021)
Company: Dogtainers Australia

Simon was raised on a farm with cattle, sheep and wheat farming in the Sunshine State of Queensland, Australia. At a young age, he grew to love and nurture animals. He decided to set the ‘Gold’ standard in superior pet care/boarding services and pet transportation as a life goal.

Pet Care and Boarding Facilities: As part of a variety of animal-related businesses, Simon owns and runs four pet care/boarding facilities in Queensland, Australia with facilities on hundreds of acres of land, capable of caring for 900+ dogs and 400+ cats on a daily basis.

Pet Transport Companies: Simon owns and runs the largest franchise operation in pet transport in Australia and New Zealand, transporting over 1,000 animals each week, both interstate and internationally, through its 15 offices. Currently, CEO responsibilities for the 15 Dogtainers offices finds Simon mixing pet transportation with the management of the business and the team of 70 staff Australia/New Zealand wide. Dogtainers Pet Transport is a 47-year-old company that is a market leader and one of the most experienced companies in Australia in the safe global relocation of pets.

Livestock Logistics: Stockair - Simon’s livestock logistics business - created in 2003 to achieve the same focus of “GOLD STANDARD” care and relocation, Stockair has become Australia’s largest facilitator of export of livestock by air, currently exporting approximately 50,000 goats, 20,000 sheep, 9,000 dairy and beef cattle, 250 equines (horses/donkeys), 2000 alpaca and 50 camels annually.

Pet Crate Manufacturing: JSJ Group, a plastic pet crate production/manufacturing business based in Queensland has been making quality commercial grade pet crates for pet transport for 15 years and supports many pet transport companies around the world to relocate animals safely.

Simon’s passion and commitment to the safe relocation of animals is how his businesses have risen to well-respected industry leaders globally.

Hazel Imrie PETportHazel Imrie
IPATA President (2022-2024)
Company: PETport

What started out as a school holiday job in 1995, helping out at her mom's pet transportation business in Durban, turned into the discovery of a lifelong passion and dedication toward growth and development within the pet relocation industry. It was here Hazel began learning how to deal with clients, working out quotes and truly discovering the foundations of the building blocks of pet relocation and all it encompasses.

Armed with a wealth of knowledge passed down through generations, as well as her strong corporate background established while living in London for nine years, the creation of PETport and its vision to ensure pets and owners are reunited through the course of their relocation, was born.

Hazel has a deeply ingrained commitment to growth and development. She strongly believes in the goals and vision that started her on this journey and continues to share with and educate her staff members on excellence in delivery and certified experience within the industry, thereby guaranteeing the best experience to both humans and pets alike. As her slogan says... “It’s Not Just Business, It’s Personal!”

She has always been involved in pet rescue and has been a "failed foster mom" to many a needy animal, always welcoming a new soul into her home. This passion and care are also shown in her company PETport. Their constant work with assisting various rescue centers to place pets in their new forever homes throughout South Africa is one of the ways Hazel gives back to the community whilst setting PETport apart.

PETport has branches in Johannesburg, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Cape Town and many strongholds within the African Continent; PETport continues to be a provider of excellence in pet relocation through-out Africa and the globe.

Dr Gerry Pahl PetexportvetDr. Gerry Pahl
IPATA President Elect (2025-2027)
Company: PetExportVet

Dr. Gerry Pahl is a professional veterinarian with over 25 years of experience and is also the Managing Director of one of Hong Kong's leading veterinary clinic chains. Raised on a farm in rural Victoria, Australia and surrounded by animals and family pets from a young age, his love of animals naturally influenced his career choice.

Dr. Pahl graduated from the University of Sydney in 1986 and has since worked as a veterinary surgeon in Australia and the United Kingdom, and has lived and worked in Hong Kong since 1997.

After more than a decade of providing Hong Kong pet relocation companies with professional veterinary services as an integral part of pet relocation, the time came for Dr. Pahl’s own family pet to temporarily relocate to Australia. Naturally, he handled the relocation of his pet Dalmatian “Speckles” personally and with minimal impact on his family’s beloved pet. Very soon friends and acquaintances of friends began to use his services for pet relocation to and from Hong Kong. Buoyed by the wonderful feedback, Dr. Pahl began PetExportVet in 2010 and has been offering pet relocation services ever since.

He actively participates in vet panels at International IPATA conferences as well as contributes as a member of the Snub-nosed dog Taskforce. Gerry has served on IPATA’S Board of Directors and is actively involved in ongoing professional development and education.

Dr. Gerry has a unique perspective on the pet industry, particularly in the Asian region, and feels his experience and knowledge make a great contribution to IPATA’s future goals.

Dr. David Landers Airvets Pet RelocationDr. David Landers
IPATA Treasurer
Company: Airvets Pet Relocation

Dr. Landers knew from the young age of three that he had a passion for animals. His dream of working with animals was set in motion when he declared he was going to be a zoologist. This dream was a short-lived, only lasting one year, as he decided at the ripe old age of four to become a veterinarian. The rest is history, as David’s childhood was filled with many dogs, cats, reptiles, fish, sheep, goats, and pigs.

As a teenager, he worked for veterinary clinics in his small town with the plan to move back one day and set up his own shingle. This didn’t happen, however, and he found himself moving to Fort Worth, Texas where he worked in a seven-doctor practice, seeing all manner of animals from dogs and cats to monkeys, miniature pigs, and camels!

From the time he graduated from vet school he had an aptitude for doing international health certificates. Little did he know that there was an entire industry of moving pets around the world. Once he discovered the international pet shipping business, he was hooked.

Dr. Landers purchased his first clinic in July 2006 and then merged that clinic with his current one to create AirVets Pet Relocation in 2009.

Dr. David Landers is a 2003 graduate of Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine. His practice has a special interest in international import/export medicine, humanitarian medicine, feline medicine, and exotic animal medicine which includes a large number of species such as birds, small mammals, reptiles, primates, large cats, and occasionally hoofstock such as zebra and camels.

Dr. Landers currently lives in Dallas, Texas with his stunning, talented wife, Jenn (guess who edited this bio) and son Ethan. He serves in the state military, the Texas State Guard, and spends his spare time as the consulting veterinarian for Sea Life Aquariums in Grapevine, Texas as well as Air Canada.

In addition to his veterinary practice, Dr. Landers owns AirVets Pet Relocation, a Dallas, Texas-based company near DFW Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport that specializes in international relocation of pets and other animals.

Karoline Brewer

Karoline Brewer
IPATA Secretary (2022-2024)
Airpets International (Formerly known as Airpets America)

Born in Germany and raised as an Army Brat, Karoline has traveled all over the world and to most of the 50 United States. As a child she wanted to be a veterinarian and would bring home every manner of rescued or stray animal.

She was raised treating dogs and cats as part of the family and they always traveled to her next destination with her. As she grew, she realized she couldn’t stand seeing an injured or suffering animal, so the idea of vet school diminished. After High School in Northern Japan, she vowed to live in a warm climate and attended college in Arizona for her Bachelor’s degree, then moved to Florida after graduation. She spent the next 15 years building a career in the real estate industry, advancing her education and continuing to travel for work.

She never lost her passion for animals and has always owned rescued cats and dogs. In 2001, she discovered doggie daycare for her pooch Peanut and fell in love with the industry. After that, she had her goal. She saved money and made a plan.

In 2008, she married a wonderful man who supported and encouraged her dreams and they moved to Texas to be close to family and raise children. She met Past IPATA President Dr. Dale Hodgson in 2009 while looking to either buy or start a pet boarding facility that would fulfill her dream of working with animals. They soon became fast friends and she purchased the boarding and pet transportation business from him. He had opened the boarding facility in 1980 and started shipping pets in 2003, so he became her mentor and taught her so much about running a boarding facility and transporting pets. She joined IPATA in May of 2009 when she purchased Airpets America and found herself traveling to Dublin in September. So many people welcomed her with open arms and helped her understand the true value of IPATA. She was in awe of the organization and the amazing people involved then, and each year she is astounded by the growth and progress that she sees. She has a passion for knowledge and a good head for business and feels the experience and education acquired over her past years in the industry will help further the goals of IPATA .

IPATA Regional Directors

Joy Bell Llenado United RelocationsJoy Bell Llenado
IPATA Regional Director, Asia / Oceania (2022-2024)
Company: United Relocations

Joy came from a family of teachers and has always had a passion for interacting with people. However, she was unsure of what career to pursue that related closely with people apart from becoming a teacher like her mom.

After she graduated from business school, she and her little brother dreamed of having a business together. They dreamt of him working as a vet in the animal hospital they planned to build when their resources allowed while she took care of the sales and marketing side of the business. But God welcomed her brother back to his loving arms just few months after he graduated from veterinary medicine and that dream was suddenly shut off. Humans can indeed plan as they wish but it's up to above how we live and fulfill our purpose in life.

She landed a job, 14 years ago in a logistics company in Bangkok, Thailand where she first started to do international pet shipping. At that time, pet shipping was not as popular as it is today. After three years with the company, it merged with another company which brought a huge change in the structure. Joy decided to leave.

She has now been doing pet shipping for more than a decade with the shipping company she co-owns. Today, United Pet Express - Division of United Relocations (Thailand) Co., Ltd is a respected and reliable pet shipping provider in Thailand. They work smoothly with all the stakeholders involved in the pet shipping industry while upholding their commitment to providing the best service to animals and their pet owners.

She may not be running an animal hospital which was her dream with her late brother but the pet shipping business she is leading has allowed the connection with it. Along with her team, it has been a fulfilling journey to evolve and grow in this business. The never-ending learning they obtain from working with airlines, animal hospitals, authorities, and overseas pet shipping partners, makes the daily work colorful. And oh . . . there’s a bonus! She's around awesome furries daily as she also runs the in-house dog kennel and cattery

Inge Michiels Inge Michiels
IPATA Regional Director, Middle East/Africa Region (2024-2026)
Company: Jetpet Global

Residing in Bahrain, Inge’s’ time is split between her passion for pet transport, the sea, and life with her fur family, including two dogs, one cat and a few thousand bees.

Inge’s story began in 2012, relocating back from Thailand to Bahrain with her family and then, only dog Belle. What you would hope to be as easy as relocating from Bahrain to Thailand, unfortunately proved to be the exact opposite. Strict rules preventing animal imports into Bahrain from Thailand were only the first hurdle. Seeking help from logistic and relocation professionals, even reaching out to legal advisors, ministers, sheiks, radio, and newspapers in desperation to seek a solution, did nothing to help ease a solid embargo. Eventually, Inge found a safe and legal way for her dog to come home via Dubai instead. Leaving Belle behind simply was not an option.

With a foundation for love of animals, over seven years logistics experience, a strong IT background and being an expat herself, it only made sense to create JetPet Global WLL. Inge’s focus is to have others not experience the same as she.

Her principles align with Jain's teachings, which emphasize nonviolence and minimizing harm to living beings as much as possible.

Today, Jetpet Global is recognized as a reputable pet relocation service provider, serving three major airports in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and UAE and is the first company that comes to mind for driving brachycephalic pets across the desert region.

Jetpet Global also oversees the Bahrain Airport AVI facility and trains airport ground handling staff with regards to AVI needs and LAR compliance.

A pillar of Inge’s’ work is to provide a personal and caring touch to every animal and their owner in the service they provide. Contributing to this is Inge’s’ interest to visit transit zones, quarantines and destination agents when possible to gain experience and feel how they operate, highlighting the attention to detail and compassion for what she and her team do.

She is known for her passion for traveling the world, facilitating pet relocations, prompting her friends to curiously ask her whereabouts instead of making concrete plans. But during her leisure time, you can find Inge unwinding on or near a boat, engaging in a game of basketball, or sweating it out on a paddle court.

Angela PassmanAngela Passman
IPATA Regional Director, North American Region (2022-2023)
Company: World Pet Travel

Angela has always had animals in her life, working in veterinary clinics and emergency hospitals in her free time, but never thought her love of furry creatures could become her dream career.

Adopting the strays was just the norm for her and a great learning experience for her children. They learned at an early age, pets are not to be disposed of because of inconvenience. She has had many pets over the years which proved challenging with the
number of moves she has made. Several cross-country moves over the years, then in 2002, her family relocated to Costa Rica from New York
where they lived for five years. At the time of the move, they had 4 dogs, 4 cats, 2 birds, and 3 children under the age of 8 and felt blessed to live in such a
beautiful country for 5 years before returning stateside.

Several years prior to the move to Costa Rica and just before her first son was born in 1998, her first pet move was an Akita and Great Dane to Haiti to serve as security for an orphanage which she still supports to this day.

In 2002 she formed Guardian Angels de Costa Rica which helped families and their pets adjust to life in Costa Rica. Then in 2005, she joined IPATA when she learned what a great organization it was and has attended all but two international conferences since 2008. Her own Mini-Cooper has traveled to many of these conferences giving kisses and making friends everywhere he went.

When she returned to the USA, she changed the company name to World Pet Travel and began to focus solely on pet transportation rather than
the relocation of people.

World Pet Travel now operates in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Belize as well as many ports within the United States.

She is grateful every day to be a mother to three successful young adults, 4 dogs, 2 cats, and one Senegal (28yrs old), and proud to be called
Noni by 3 handsome grandsons. Her oldest daughter, TaraJon, is married to a Marine and currently stationed in Japan. Her two boys, Sladyn and Ronan, live in Lexington, Kentucky where she finds herself spending more and more time to be close to family.

After 23 years of transporting animals, she sometimes feels like she knows what she is doing only to find out something else had changed, usually unexpectedly, but thankfully she thrives on those challenges. There is never a dull day in pet shipping, and one must be resourceful and ready to flip on a dime with the constant fluctuations to travel plans.

IPATA has grown so much since her first conference in Newark. It has only gotten better and better over the years. She is excited and thankful to be a part of such a great organization!

Vedran GazicVedran Gazic
IPATA Regional Director, Europe (2023-2026)
Company: Pet Air GmbH

Vedran Gazic was born in 1978 in Offenbach Germany and is the current General Manager at Gradlyn G.K. Airfreight Services GmbH. He is the father of three beautiful girls (Zahra, Leyla & Carly) and has been married 22 years to his wife Taziri. Their cats Frida and Findus complete the family.

His first experience in shipping live animals was as a trainee in the cargo department at Aquarium Glaser, one of the biggest wholesalers of live tropical fish in the world. His interest was immediately captured and less than three years later he graduated and began as a cargo operations agent at Varig Airlines at FRA airport.

Here he learned the other side of the pet shipping process - not only AVI, but all kind of cargo accepting all types of live animals and their correct loading, flying with polo horses through Europe became a monthly experience.

In 2004, he returned to his roots of live animal shipping as the Cargo Manager of Aquarium Glaser, responsible for the global live tropical fish logistics of the company.

In 2012, he become part of the Gradlyn Family opening a Branch office in Munich.

His first IPATA conference was in 2012 in Madrid and as a “freshman” he was super excited at feeling accepted. IPATA become important for my personal work as he was in contact with other members daily.

He has over twenty-three years in the AVI air cargo business - more than half of his lifetime - working both as a forwarder and an airliner. He is positively addicted to the industry and can’t imagine doing anything else.

Luz Maria Farias Interfamily PetMoversEva Rechy-Munoz
IPATA Regional Director, Latin America (2023-2025)
Company: Cargo Rechy S.A. DE C.V​

Born and raised among boxes and crates, Eva belongs to the third generation of a family proudly dedicated to Foreign Trade. Her tender memories are dressed by wonderful creatures that she fed, washed and played with . . . as her pets - her best friends - that were waiting to join their families with the help of her dad.

As a playground, step by step she learned how to take care of her guests and make them feel at home. One day she discovered that this was her passion.

It was time to get prepared, so after years of hard study, she became a young and committed Customs Broker. In 2004, along with her mother and her brother Hiram, Cargo Rechy was founded - a company focused on animal transportation.

Later, she had the honor of serving as a vice president of the Customs Brokers Federation of Mexico and then chairing at its altruist foundation, CAAAREM which represents over eight hundred colleagues to Mexican and International authorities. During that challenging period training, law amendments, and revisions of domestic codes were made. As a result of this collective effort, customs brokers' work-frames were optimized.

In 2008 she attended her first IPATA conference, held in New York. There she had the honor of meeting some of its founding members and experts on animal transportation and was comforted to find she was in a place where the company not only had the same challenges but also the same passion for pet shipping. She has been able to work together in global solutions, by sharing expertise that allows us to achieve both personal and professional growth while making dear friends in this extraordinary profession.

In the future she sees herself working and I’m preparing the next generation of shippers, with the same enthusiasm as the little girl who was surrounded by her beloved pets.

IPATA Directors at Large

Jim ConnollyJim Connolly
IPATA Director at Large (2022-2024)
Company: Tailwings Pet Travel

Jim has always been passionate about all kinds of animals from a very early age, but his working life - believe it or not - began as an electrician, particularly enjoying the detail and specifications involved with that career.

Around 35 years ago, Jim joined KLM Royal Dutch Airlines within the cargo operations environment, where he developed a new set of skills, and many friends over the years he spent with them.

This is where Jim discovered the Pet Shipping industry and thought to himself “this is where I want to be”. Working for an airline was great, but there was not enough involvement directly with the pet shipping aspect and so, Jim decided to leave KLM in 2003 when customs declarations for exports became mandatory in the UK and set up a Customs Brokerage (JALSA UK Ltd) JALSA being Jim, Annette, Louis, Sarah, and Alex - a true family business.

Its purpose was to assist the Live animal industry of both imports and exports for those Pet shippers that had never had to complete customs declarations previously, which also enabled Jim to learn much more about how the industry works. Surprisingly, many pet agent customers suggested he should contact IPATA in view of becoming a member, to which he did just that. This enabled Jim and his excellent staff to enjoy new friends and working relationships from around the world, as well as the stories and humor members, have to offer.

Tailwings Pet Travel is the result of rebranding from JALSA UK Ltd purely to serve the pet travel arm of the business and is now seeing the benefits of that change. People ask Jim what he enjoys most about the business. Simply put, the answer is “It’s reuniting families". Jim has 6 dogs himself and loves every one of them wholeheartedly, so he understands the stress that owners face when separated from their pets for so long, especially during COVID times.

Jim and Tailwings Pet Travel hold “the pet comes first” as paramount at all times as we all do and will not accept anything less. Jim is dedicated to ensuring continued growth and education of our industry and whenever possible will share and take on board knowledge from all members of IPATA. He now feels it’s time to step up, share his expertise and help all members whenever and wherever he can in assisting us all to grow through a smile.

Les OakesLes Oakes
IPATA Director at Large (2024)
Company: Sevenoaks Animal Logistics

In the beginning, our Company, Sevenoaks Animal Logistics, was my wife Hilary’s idea, and I did not understand how big an industry Pet Relocation was. In fact, initially I tried to talk Hilary out of continuing in the business. Thankfully Hilary didn’t listen to me and as her business grew Hilary was kind enough to start to allow me to help when she needed an extra hand or animals had to be picked up and driven long distances.

After joining Hilary at the 2013 Conference in Las Vegas as a guest, I started to understand the industry and by the Dallas Conference in 2017 I fully understood the size of the industry and the role that IPATA played in the growth of Pet Relocation and the value of IPATA to all the IPATA members throughout the World.

Before my training period with Sevenoaks Animal Logistics officially started, I was heavily involved in the tax preparation business and most of my clients were farmers and ranchers and at the same time we were running a ranch of our own. On any ranch, moving animals, whether it be horses, cattle or sheep, is almost a daily occurrence. Working with animals, whether it be livestock or personal pets is very satisfying and is a big part of our lifestyle.

Our family was and still is heavily involved with dog shows and field trials. To compete in Canadian and United States shows we have traveled extensively by plane and by ground to shows and trials all over North America. When we tell clients we understand their anxiety about shipping their beloved pet, our understanding comes from over 35 years of shipping our own dogs around North America and the rest of the world.

While I was training to become a pet shipper, I was the President of the Alberta Equestrian Federation (AEF), for 5 years and sat on the Board of Directors of Equestrian Canada. By 2020 I resigned from the AEF Board of Directors to focus on the day to day responsibilities of being involved with a successful and growing pet relocation business. During the past four years Sevenoaks Animal Logistics has grown from a Team of two, to a Team of seven dedicated full-time employees. Everyone on our Team is a dog and/or horse owner. Moving Your Pets is Our Passion, is not only our slogan on our website, business cards and on our vehicles but it is what we all live by in our day to day lives.

Throughout the years of attending both Regional and World IPATA Conferences I have enjoyed working with many IPATA members throughout the World and fully understand the importance of belonging to a strong organization like IPATA. It is with pride I represent our company as an IPATA Member, and I acknowledge that the growth of Sevenoaks is closely linked to the great reputation that IPATA has built in this industry.