Everyday thousands of pets are killed in Southern and Central California shelters. START was formed in order to address the issues of overpopulation by providing two very important components:

Transport - Spay/Neuter

Transport - Spay/Neuter

SHELTER TRANSPORT ANIMAL RESUE TEAM (START) was founded by three compassionate people
who set out to make a difference in the lives of animals in need.

Steve Spiro


President and Co-Founder

Steve’s originally from London, England and resides in LA. Before forming START in May 2011 with Adam Tarshis and Rene Ruston, Steve and his wife, Suzanna, did individual rescue helping as many dogs as they could bring home or find fosters for. The goal of START was to help more animals in need on a bigger level and bring national awareness to our major animal issues. Steve is an Actor/Writer and is pictured with his beloved MOY MOY.


Treasurer and Co-Founder

Rene has been an L.A. based Realtor for the past 27 years. She balances her successful career with advocacy protests, rescuing animals from hoarding conditions and high kill shelters, going nose to nose with animal abusers and city officials alike. “It is not unusual for me to show up at a home inspection with a recently rescued pitbull in my car.” laughs Rene. In addition to co-founding START, she is on the board of The Santa Paula Animal Rescue Center (SPARC), which is the only no-kill open admission shelter in Ventura County, California. She also sits on the board of directors of Brittany Foundation, and her latest project: Rock and Rescue.



Director of Transports

While visiting her home town of Springfield, OR, Candace took her niece and nephew to visit a Humane Society and noticed they didn’t have many small dogs. She inquired with them about the possibility of transporting in dogs from California, and they said yes! The transports were born. Since then Candace has built relationships with many Humane Socieities and rescues in the Pacific Northwest and joined forces with START to continue the work of getting dogs out of high kill shelters and into groups where they are well cared for and have a new chance at life.