Our Team

Leslie Ann Weiss

Executive Director

Leslie has been a cat lover all of her life. Her dream as a little girl was to have a place where she could save animals… specifically cats. Leslie has been a vet tech assistant for a cats only veterinary hospital and a volunteer for several local cat rescues including Ventura County Animal Services. Leslie is a Certified Feline Behavior and Training Specialist skilled in assessing cat behavior, rehabilitation from stress induced behavioral problems, Tiny Lion kitten socialization and cat wrangling. On the rare occasion Leslie is not at Surfcat you can find her with a feather wand on her Catio at home with her own clowder. Walking, kayaking and boating fill up the spaces.

Debbie McKenzie


Debbie has always loved animals. Growing up, each person had their own unique pet…dogs, cats, hamsters, snakes, rabbits and more.

Being an administrative assistant for upper management most of her career, as well as being a travel agent, she needed something to relieve the stress of everyday work, so she became a volunteer at the Agoura Animal Shelter, which of course, led to fostering. This led to owning her first rescue kitty…Tiger, an orange tabby. Which than led to Missy…another rescue.  And then her big tuxedo boy…Squeakers (15 pounds of pure muscle).

Debbie now has two Surfcats (Rocky and Target) and loves to spoil them rotten!

Her dream is to have her own sanctuary filled with kitties.

Shana Mullin


Shana began fostering kittens for the Santa Clara Humane Society 16 years ago. As each kitten became old enough for adoption, she’d take another. After a dozen or so, one captured her heart and became a “foster fail” named Bear. He’s now 16 and has shared his home with at least 10 cats and kittens over the years. Shana now has 4 cats, 2 of them Surfcat rescues. She has a degree in Accounting, which helps her keep track of all your generous donations!

Roxanne Vettese

Board Member-At-Large

Roxanne (“Rox”) puts the “surf” in Surfcat Cafe & Adoptions. A diehard surfer and animal lover, Rox has been graced with the company of cats all of her life. When she is not shredding waves at the local breaks, Rox teaches U.S. History, World History, and physical education, at the middle school level. Rox got involved with cat rescue, fostering, and adoptions, through her BFF and roomie Leslie. Rox has sometimes been called the “cat whisperer”, as even the most frightened feline eventually warms up to her. Rox is also Surfcat Cafe & Adoption’s artist in residence, chief writer, and reality checker.

Joy Connell

With over twenty years in the accounting and finance industries, Joy brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to Surfcat Café & Adoptions. During her career, Joy has provided accounting services to both public clients and private industry. From small start-ups to billion dollar corporations, Joy has always met and exceeded expectations.

Joy is a Southern California native who moved to Ventura County after growing up in the San Fernando Valley. Always a cat lover, Joy has owned cats her entire life.

When not working with Surfcat, Joy devotes her time as the President of JC Accounting & Tax Services, aka JCATS, providing accounting, business and tax services to small and medium businesses in the LA-Ventura-Santa Barbara county metro areas. As part of her business model, Joy made a decision to provide pro bono accounting services to a few nonprofit organizations; Surfcat Café & Adoptions is among them.

Joy has found that providing accounting services to Surfcat Café & Adoptions has been one of the most rewarding experiences of her career. This organization represents a cause that Joy truly believes in and provides the amazing benefit of being surrounded by the grateful and loving rescued kitties who help to participate in the board meetings.

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