Board of Directors 2018-19

Gretchen DeWitt, Director

A full-time resident of Puerto Vallarta, Gretchen formerly owned a San Francisco public relations/special events business for 25 years.


After moving to Puerto Vallarta in 2006, Gretchen co-founded the SPCA-PV and served as its first president.  In 2009, she joined the board of directors of PEACEMexico for a three-year term, focusing her fundraising efforts primarily on the free spay/neuter clinics.  Presently, Gretchen focuses her attention on free spay/neuter clinics as president and director of PEACEAnimals.


Gretchen and her husband Ned live in Puerto Vallarta's Centro, and between them have four children, ten grandchildren, three dogs and eight cats, all rescues except for the children and grandchildren.



David Hibbard, Director

David hails from Connecticut, lived his work years in Wisconsin, and now resides primarily in La Cruz and summers in New Hampshire. A graduate of Univ of Connecticut, he holds patents dealing with the processing, ultrafiltration and holding of dairy products.  The Hibbard family farm in Connecticut celebrated its 100-year anniversary in summer of 2015. David serves as President of the La Puntilla (La Cruz) homeowners association, serves as a producer for local thespian and talent endeavors in La Cruz, as well as serving as President of the local charity Amigos de la Cruz de Huanacaxtle.

Amy Welch, Secretary & Treasurer and Director

Amy hails from Portland, Oregon; she and her husband Bill have owned a home in La Cruz since 1996.  They co-founded Children’s Shelter of Hope Foundation, which primarily supports two children's shelters in Puerto Vallarta. Amy holds a Masters from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, and has recently retired after 37 years in education as a Portland Public Schools’ administrator working primarily with gifted youth Kindergarten through Grade 12.  Bill is a practicing tax attorney and formerly a partner with CPA firm Coopers & Lybrand (now PWC).  Bill provides legal services pro bono to Banderas Bay Charities, Inc.  Presently, Amy volunteers as treasurer to PEACEAnimals and Amigos, serves on several boards in Portland and Mexico, and owns a property rental business for Puerto Vallarta-area condos and houses.  She and her husband enjoy boating and traveling.

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Edd Bissell, Director

A resident of La Cruz (Puerto Vallarta), Edd is a retired pharmacist and gentleman farmer transplanted from Knoxville, Tennessee. He became involved with the villagers and school at San Quintin (located between La Cruz and Sayulita off Hwy 200), when his housekeeper Patricia lost track of time and missed her bus home.  As they drove along, Patricia was lamenting the poor condition of the community school. Edd stopped and peeped through a window. "Sad shape." 


Marvin West, Bissell's friend and retired Scripps-Howard writer: "He made a list of needed repairs.  He saw no teaching materials and concluded that there were none. He counted 12 desks and later discovered there were 15 students.  


"Bissell has gathered others to the cause.  Years of devotion and just a few pesos have made a wonderful difference in this little school.  Young lives have been changed. The community will never be what it was.  Mexico is the beneficiary."


Anne-Marie Haynes, Director

Since 1995, Anne-Marie has been vacationing in Puerto Vallarta and working with various charities - from the Puerto Vallarta children's shelter RISE (Refugio Infantil Santa Esperanza) to the Vallarta Botanical Gardens and the free daycare for severely-handicapped children at Pasitos de Luz.  She is also president and co-founder of Canadian Children's Shelter of Hope Foundation, a donor advised community fund.  Anne-Marie comes with a vast experience in nonprofit boards and fundraising.  Presently, she also coordinates donations for the Peace Punta de Mita Foundation and the Punta de Mita Foundation.


In her other life, Anne-Marie is a recently-retired registered nurse in Toronto, Canada.  Her goal is to contribute time and donations to assist needy children living within the Bay of Banderas to have healthy and happier lives.

Shelly Yogev, Director

Upon completion of medical school, Shelly was challenged with a choice: continue with medical care (treating disease) or health care (treating the human and preventing disease). With an MD, she earned a joint Masters in Public Health and along with her lifelong love of fitness and athletics, healthcare and prevention was the clear choice.  


Shelly is a full-time resident in the Punta Mita area, and owns a fitness business, Mexifit.  Shelly is also involved with SayulitAnimals in providing free spay/neuter clinics in the north bay area, along with animal adoption and care.


Shelly has a BS from Johns Hopkins, MD and MPH from Northwestern University Medical School, Certified Personal Fitness Trainer.  Her interests include Swimming, Dogs & Animal Rescue, Sunset Walks, and Child Welfare/Education.