Who We Are


Michael Zarowitz    President

Born and raised in Lakewood/Long Beach, Michael has lived throughout the U.S. while attending college; graduating with degrees in Economics, Finance, and Genetics with a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology. His training is as a biomedical research scientist, and he holds a number of patents for his work. Today he lectures at Cal Poly in genetics and biotechnology. Since the late 80’s, Mike has been an "on-call" HART grunt and is also the official "standby" Santa Claus for HART holiday events. Always a “dog person”, Mike found himself side by side with his partner Mary Ann Zirretta, a “cat person,” responsible for HART's award-wining Pinedorado Parade floats. He lives in Cambria with his two Australian Shepherds - "Beethoven" (because he was born deaf) and "Topper" (because no other name fits). Mary Ann’s influence shows on Mike, who is also now a “cat person,” caring for seven of HART’s cats.

Terry Hanson         Vice President

Terry was born in San Diego where she became a hairdresser and stay-at-home mom. As her children were growing up, Terry studied interior design and drafting. Ultimately she became a licensed interior designer and started her own company, Design Cottage. In 2000, she and her husband moved to Cambria where Terry continued her work in design, focusing on kitchens and baths.

Terry began as a cleaner at HART. She loves the working parts of a shelter and enjoys the camaraderie of the volunteers, staff and the Board.  Of course, the cats, such special animals, are her main concern.  Terry’s goal is to make HART a successful functional place that is fun to be in, with volunteers that enjoy what they are doing, and where everyone finds ways to support the welfare of animals. She also volunteers long hours as HART’s Volunteer Coordinator.  

Susan Bargini       Secretary / Treasurer


Susan began volunteering at HART as a cleaner and a “pet pal” shortly after the organization moved into its “bricks and mortar” home in 2000. She joined the Board of Directors in 2006 and eventually became its President. Under her leadership, many things changed for the shelter including the setting of important policies and procedures and establishing transparent accounting protocols. Together with her husband, Gary Swauger, she orchestrated the purchase of HART’s current quarters giving the organization a new sense of mission. Among Susan’s many contributions has been to put the shelter into a more viable financial position.


Susan continues to lead the retail effort at the shelter, participates in planning many of the events, and has been instrumental in helping HART reinvent itself. She lives in Cambria with her husband and four cats of the many she has adopted from HART.

Carol Jean Attoe    Board Member

Born and raised in Wisconsin, I have lived most of my adult life in California. I received my BS at The University of Wisconsin, MS at the University of Oregon and taught Physical Education at Sacramento City College for many years. Sacramento was also the location where I was a volunteer with the Sacramento SPCA for 10 years. After retiring from teaching I have focused on being a ceramic artist for many years. (See my website at

As a HART volunteer since 2001 I have been a cleaner, transporter, Love Paws artist and event volunteer. I am currently mother to 2 precious HART kitties, Shadow and Silver. It is an honor and a joy to work with the kitties and all the dedicated volunteers at HART. It is my hope that we can raise awareness of the animal/human bond and bring love and peace to all livings things.


Cindee Noble        Office and Shelter Manager


Terry Hanson        Volunteer Coordinator