Gabby Hillygus grew up in a small town in central Florida. She always had an interest in law enforcement and a love for animals. She grew up with a special connection to cats. As a child, Gabby would constantly bring home sick or injured cats and foster them back to health with the aid of her family vet. She uncovered the best of both worlds when she stumbled across Lewis and Clark’s Animal Law program.
Gabby went on to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of North Florida in 2020. Shortly after graduating she became a certified animal control officer in the state of Florida. Gabby investigated several animal cruelty cases, filed charges, and testified in court. Gabby later became a certified animal cruelty investigator who specialized in canines and felines. Gabby helped train newer officers on the state statutes regarding animals and educated the public on the laws. Gabby also held trainings on following chain of evidence and researching potential animal owners. Gabby’s supervisors describe her as being “a rare individual” as well as having a “high degree of integrity and a cheerful personality.”
Gabby is thrilled to be enhancing her knowledge on animal welfare. Her goals are to give a voice to the voiceless by altering how animals are perceived by the public and to strengthen state and national laws pertaining to animals.