On February 4, Ben Cawley was promoted to Director of Training, reporting to the Vice President of Training Programs at Guiding Eyes for the Blind. He will be responsible for the management of the training area with a key focus on dog supply and growth, working with the organization’s talented Strategic Teams.
Prior to joining the Guiding Eyes team, Cawley started his career at Guide Dogs for the Blind in California in 1998, beginning in their Training Center Kennels as an Instructor Assistant. There, he learned to train guide dogs as an Apprentice Guide Dog Mobility Instructor, ultimately serving as a GDMI with a specialty in Apprentice GDMI instruction.
Cawley brings a breadth of experience to the Director of Training role from his prior roles at Guiding Eyes as well as from Guide Dogs for the Blind. Cawley has worked in the guide dog industry for over 20 years. He joined Guiding Eyes for the Blind’s Training Department as a Class Supervisor in 2012, and was promoted to Director of Admissions Department in 2015. His most recent role was Director of Admissions and Graduate Relations.
In these roles, Cawley has led several key initiatives that have had an organization and industry-wide impact, including the development of a new guide dog harness and technologies that have the potential to help guide dog users navigate overhead obstacles. Most recently, Cawley has taken on the management of the marketing and communications role, and has led workshops and plenary sessions at the International Guide Dog Federation conferences in Croatia and Australia.
The nonprofit is thrilled to have Cawley on board in this new role. “The Director of Training is essential in providing highly-skilled guide dogs to graduates of Guiding Eyes,” said Thomas Panek, President and CEO of Guiding Eyes for the Blind. “We are proud to have Ben Cawley in this new role, and look forward to putting his fresh perspective to use.”