Cathy Brooks

Raconteur and genetically-inclined connector who's gone to the dogs.

A “classically trained” Journalist, Cathy’s passion for communication began ripping wire copy at KYW Newsradio in Philadelphia, PA and evolved to encompass nearly every platform and aspect of media. Over two decades, Cathy curated content for leading technology conferences including LeWeb and events produced by Guidewire Group. In 2008 after engaging as an LGBT activist, Cathy began exploring how personal stories impact people’s professional lives. Four years later she turned that on herself, and everything changed. After a chance conversation with Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, Cathy found herself in Las Vegas, NV exploring The Downtown Project. While there, serendipity pointed her back to a career path she’d desired since childhood. Working with dogs. Six months later, Cathy closed her consulting practice and headed to Las Vegas to start The Hydrant Club, a membership club catering to the needs of an urban dog community. Equal parts off leash play space, educational facility and boarding/daycare, The Hydrant Club is embarking on a mission to change urban landscapes by changing the very nature of how people and dogs communicate. Eschewing the label of “dog whisperer” people seem to like to apply to her work, Cathy prefers to call herself a “canine conversationalist”. Put more simply, she teaches people how to talk with their dogs. She does this through leading seminars and classes on “canine linguistics” as well as one-on-one and group classes teaching everything from behavioral modification to basic and advanced obedience. Prior to leaping from Silicon Valley Cathy’s work focused helping companies and individuals navigate new technologies to tell stories. Through workshops and consulting services, Cathy walked clients through the story-telling process and towards the deep engagement that comes from authentic communication. She also provided general communications strategy counsel. Although now happy to be mostly analog, Cathy continues to wield several mobile devices, dabbles in social media, and sits on the advisory board for SXSW Interactive.