The leadership team at Humane Society of Forsyth County (HSFC) shares an endless love for animals and works tirelessly to build a compassionate community that enriches thousands of lives. The leaders you will learn about are a mix of volunteers and employees. Learn about the people leading our mission to save and enhance lives!
Debbie Bertsch – Executive Director
Originally from Seattle Washington, Debbie moved to Georgia in 1986. She graduated from Kennesaw State University with a minor in accounting and a major in business management. In 1989, she married her husband Mike and has two daughters, Emilie and Hannah. She started with the Humane Society in 2010, helping to create the Thrift Store located in Cumming. After the success of the Thrift Store, she was asked to join the Shelter team in 2018 and promoted to the Shelters first Executive Director in 2019. She is thankful to work with such dedicated people, all with the same goal of caring for the counties animals. The Humane Society strives to help the community and surrounding areas, and promotes low-cost spay/neuter and vaccine clinics, as well as assisting people in providing their furry family members’ continued care.
Justine Daniel – Shelter Operations Director
Justine has 10 years experience in animal welfare and over 30 years of experience in customer service. She has served as Shelter Operations Director since 2017 and is responsible for ensuring that all areas of shelter operations run smoothly and efficiently.
Board of Directors
The Humane Society of Forsyth County, GA’s Board of Directors is a volunteer board comprised of local residents who help the Society fulfill its mission. The Board sets the organization’s road-map for the future and works at fundraising throughout the year. Our board members bring a wealth of experience in many different businesses, financial and global areas. If you are interested in becoming a Board Member you may contact Bea Wilson.
Scot Rucker, II – President
Scot Rucker, II has served as a board member of the Humane Society of Forsyth County since 2015. His love for all animals started at a young age. He then moved on to his true passion of owning his own business of training dogs. He initiated the HSFC “Friends of Nina Program” and also serves on the Forsyth County Bite Board. He lives in Gainesville with his wife Diane and their 3 black labs and Humane Hearts Therapy Golden Retriever.
Jamie Porter – Vice President
Jamie Porter has been associated with the Humane Society since 2013 in various capacities, including volunteering, fostering, and as a board member volunteering his time as Director of shelter operations. Jamie and his wife Pam are retired and reside on Lake Lanier with their seven dogs.
Ann Margaret Johnston – Treasurer
Ann-Margaret Johnston has had her CPA firm in Forsyth County for over 23 years. She is very involved with animals as she served 9 years as Treasurer for The Humane Society of Northeast GA, current HSUS GA State Council member, Pilot and Paws Rescue, and various other boards in and around the county. She and her husband David live on Lake Lanier with their CGC Westie named Olivia.
Bea Wilson – Secretary
A Board Member since 2017, Bea has been involved with the HSFC since 2012 as a dog walker, foster team coordinator, foster, and Humane Hearts Pet Therapy Director. As a retired AT&T Director, Bea brings a wealth of business experience to the group. At home, she and hubby Wayne have four ‘furry fluffies’ – Coco, Puff, Toby and foster fail Burney.
Other Board Members
Dr. Erin Doiron