Changing Lanes: From PR to the Doghouse

A dog lover all his life, Oakes (COM’93, CAS’93) now works full-time as a pet adoption counselor at Northeast Animal Shelter in Salem, Mass., where he began as a volunteer and lobbied relentlessly for a job that pays a pittance compared to his former salary. He had worked long and hard to scale the corporate ladder, rising to vice president at a top-10 firm when he was just 29. “It was a great experience, but by the time I was 36, I became interested in pursuing something more meaningful,” says the blue-eyed, auburn-haired Oakes (right), who walks the kennels and consultation rooms of the sprawling shelter wearing the kind of smile no one could fake.

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