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American Veterinary Medical Association
Louisiana Veterinary Medical Association
Baton Rouge Area Veterinary Medical Association
doctorate of veterinary medicine
Louisiana State University
St. Joseph's Academy
Paula Bogan Drone â€™77
St. Joseph's Academy Paula Bogan Drone '77 From a very young age, Paula Bogan Drone had a great love for animals. This passion was nurtured and grew in Sister Jean Fryoux's biology class at St. Joseph's Academy. Paula would spend extra hours in Sr. Jean's lab discussing the beauty and wonder of God's creatures. During the summer months of her high school and college years, Paula worked in a veterinary clinic. After graduating from SJA in 1977, she pursued her dream of a life dedicated to helping animals, receiving her doctorate of veterinary medicine from Louisiana State University in 1985. After spending a few years working in Metairie, Paula married Don Drone and moved back to Baton Rouge, where she was offered the opportunity to take over Animal Ark Pet Clinic when the doctor who owned the practice retired. This was the same practice at which she had spent summers working as an assistant. Paula is known as a person who sees a need and quickly acts to meet it. She often takes home unwanted animals to care for and love. Her menagerie has included a blind horse, a three-legged dog and a cat who suffers seizures. Her office is typically filled with several animals looking for good homes. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the LSU Ag Center opened a shelter for animals evacuated or rescued after the storm. Paula put her private practice on hold and moved into the Ag Center to run the shelter. She spent more than six weeks, working 16 to 18 hours a day, caring for each pet and securing volunteers to assist in her efforts. She then embraced the monumental task of reuniting more than 3,000 animals with their owners, finding homes for abandoned pets and finally taking home some of the animals that could not be placed. This ministry of love lasted for more than 10 months. Paula is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Louisiana Veterinary Medical Association and Baton Rouge Area Veterinary Medical Association. She is part of the Louisiana State Animal Rescue Team, which sets up pet shelters during hurricanes and other disasters. She also works with local animal rescue groups and ChoctawRidge Farms Rescue, an animal rescue operation in southern Mississippi. She is a volunteer with the LSU Vet School's spay/neuter program. She is not only dedicated to her animal patients but to their owners, as well. She has a special affinity for the elderly and their pets. She frequently has long-term animal boarders who belong to elderly owners who are in nursing homes or in the hospital. Among her professional strengths is the way she handles animal euthanasia. She is extremely sensitive when the time comes for a beloved pet to be put to sleep, actually going to the family's home so the pet will not be frightened and the owners can be present if they desire. She intuitively knows what the owner can handle, and she allows them to grieve in their own time. Paula and her husband Don live in Denham Springs, attend weekly mass and are active in their local parish, Immaculate Conception. Paula participates in many events at her church, including the annual church fair. She is a former teacher's assistant for CCD and helps with the CCD Parade. She is a former RCIA sponsor and backup replacement for the Perpetual Adoration Chapel. She also supports her elementary school, St. Thomas More, by attending yearly fundraisers and donating items for the St. Thomas More Parish Auction. Paula actively serves her community in many private ways. She has served lunch at the St. Vincent de Paul kitchen, is active in the Baton Rouge Right to Life movement and has lent her talents to the CAAWS Crew of Mutts Dog Parade. Paula has a deep love and commitment to the Sisters of St. Joseph and to her alma mater. She volunteers as a speaker at Career Day, where she shares her love of animals with SJA sophomores and juniors. Over the years, she has cared for many a pet brought in by the Sisters. She has worked for the Alumnae Annual Giving campaign and supports the Sisters of St. Joseph's Gala. She and Don, an electrical engineer, have been married for 19 years. She is close to her two brothers and two sisters and enjoys attending the athletic, academic and musical events of nine nieces and nephews at SJA, St. Michael's and St. Thomas More. Paula is proud that sister Ellen Bogan Lee '75 and aunt Mary Dell Bogan Gerald are past Outstanding Alumnae honorees. "SJA is my family, too," Paula said.