Board of Directors

The Toby Project was inspired by the personal and professional experience of Dr. Andrew Kaplan, whose compassion and integrity have earned him and his veterinary practice both critical acclaim and a loyal following.

Dr. Kaplan's adoption of Toby, a mixed-breed dog, changed the course of both of their lives.  Toby put a penetrating face on the animal overpopulation crisis that had been troubling Dr. Kaplan for years.

  • Toby Kaplan

    Inspiration-ary Board Member

    Toby has been Dr. Kaplan's #1 dog since 2001, after a chance encounter on an adoption van.  Clearly mis-labelled as "unadoptable," Dr. Kaplan advocated to have that death sentence removed and lobbied to take Toby home as his own.  The rest is a story about commitment to a cause and to each other.


  • Andrew Kaplan, DVM

    Founder & President

    Dr. Andrew Kaplan is an Internal Medicine specialist with a successful practice in New York City.  Known for his compassion and a consistent history of providing low-cost healthcare for “rescued” animals, Dr. Kaplan now dedicates his time to making a difference on a much larger scale. His purpose and mission of The Toby Project is to end pet overpopulation -- the number one killer of dogs and cats in this country.

    Dr. Kaplan received his Bachelor of Science degree from Albany State University in 1986, graduating Summa Cum Laude. He then attended Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine where he received his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 1990. Kaplan performed an internship and medical residency at the prestigious Animal Medical Center from 1990 through 1993. He then taught for 1 year at The University of Wisconsin’s School of Veterinary Medicine, after which time, in 1995, he became a board-certified Internal Medicine Specialist. In 2003, he started City Veterinary Care, a veterinary hospital now known as one of the finest in the city. 

    In 2006, Kaplan formed a plan that would in time come to be known as “The Toby Project” – named for his Wolfhound-Lab mix who he adopted from the city shelter on the day he was scheduled to be euthanized.

  • Nicole Rector

    Chief Financial Officer & Director

    Born and raised in NYC, Nicole combines her business skills and compassion for animals to work as the volunteer Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer for The Toby Project.

    Educated at New York University, Nicole runs several small businesses in the city and is honored to be able to offer herself in this capacity to help end pet overpopulation. Nicole has 2 dogs and 3 cats.

  • Emily Ford


    Emily brings extensive communications, strategy and marketing experience to The Toby Project. She is Chief Operating Officer at BASTA, a swim and resortwear company; and in addition has since been a Senior Advisor at Global Philanthropy Group (GPG). GPG advises some of the world’s leading philanthropists on pressing global issues. She spent the previous six years in luxury retail marketing, publicity and branding for PUIG Fashion, the holding company for the Carolina Herrera and Nina Ricci fashion houses. In addition to The Toby Project, Emily also serves on the board of ArtsConnectiona and The Actors Fund.

    Emily holds a BBA from University of Miami's School of Business Administration. She is a native Floridian and moved to New York City in 2003, where she currently resides with her husband, Harold.

  • Erik Gordon


    ErGo Ventures LLC

  • Brian Hargrove


    Brian Hargrove was a writer/producer on the television shows “Dave’s World”, “Caroline in the City”, “Holding The Baby”, and “Maggie” and “Wanda at Large”.   For three years, he co-created, executive produced and directed many episodes of the show “Titus” on Fox.  He created the sit-com “Nora” for TBS, wrote the book My Life as a Dog a mock-ography of Frasier’s Eddie, co-wrote a new narration for Camille Saint-Saëns’ “Carnivale of the Animals” performed at the Hollywood Bowl and wrote the book and lyrics for “It Shoulda Been You”,  a new musical headed to New York this fall.

  • Bernadette Peters


    Bernadette Peters is an actress and animal lover.

    Her acclaimed career encompasses a range of performances in musical theatre, film and television, and her work has received numerous nominations and awards including Tony Awards, Drama Desk Awards, Emmy and Golden Globe Awards.

    Along with Mary Tyler Moore, she started “Broadway Barks,” an annual event to promote adoptions of NYC’s homeless pets.  The event encourages rescue groups and city shelters to work together to find homes for dogs and cats.

    Bernadette is pleased to be able to serve on The Toby Project Board of Directors and to contribute to an organization whose singular mission is to address the pet overpopulation epidemic at its source.


To date, The Toby Project has spayed or neutered 91,229 animals.

Left to breed and multiply unchecked, 91,229 dogs and cats can yield as many as 1,121,021,952 offspring in only 5 years.

See How Spaying and Neutering Helps

The People Behind The Toby Project

Every member of The Toby Project team--from our board members to our committed staff and crew--plays a part in creating and furthering our reputation as a compassionate organization with a dedication to our mission.

Meet Our Leadership & Staff

Organizations We Admire

We, at The Toby Project, value the contributions that many organizations make in support of animal welfare and rights.


Contact Us

If you have comments, ideas, or questions about our mission, we'd like to hear from you! Contact Us