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PB Team

At Precision Behavior (PB), we have spent our careers living the positive reinforcement based principles that we teach while working with and learning from some of the world's most amazing animals. We have found that positive relationships yield profound results. Precision Behavior represents years of executive management, diverse experience in zoos and aquariums, professional education programs for domestic and wild animals as well as leadership programs for executives.
PB frequently assists their clients with every aspect of running successful animal management programs including staff evaluations, job descriptions, employment criteria, employee retention programs, exhibit and show design and direction, safety protocols, area S.O.P.s, record-keeping systems, full behavior management oversight and much more. We teach both basic and advanced animal training seminars and workshops to animal professionals, college students and aspiring trainers. We also specialize in positive behavior modification for school systems, parents and corporations. We have authored numerous publications/presentations and Thad is the co-author of three Whale Done books.
Thad Lacinak
Founder and Principal

Thad is a founder of Precision Behavior. In this role, he manages project development and consulting and works to advance animal behavior modification techniques and trainer safety within the zoological community. Thad is also integral to the instructional products of the Company, teaching positive reinforcement based courses to both zoological and corporate clients. He currently consults at zoological and domestic animal facilities world-wide.


In 2008, Thad retired from a 35-year career at Busch Entertainment Corporation (BEC), as Vice President and Corporate Curator of Animal Training where he directed animal training and enrichment efforts at all U.S. SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Theme Parks. Thad oversaw and coordinated the efforts of over 450 animal trainers and keepers at these parks. In short, he had the world’s largest animal training staff as well as the world’s largest collection of trained animals under his purview.


Lacinak was instrumental in developing Sea World’s and Busch Gardens’ industry-leading behavior and training techniques, husbandry procedures, and spectacular killer whale shows. Thad led the team that won the prestigious Thea Award from the Themed Entertainment Association in 2007 for the Believe killer whale show. In addition, he has won numerous awards for presentations and workshops at professional conferences.


Lacinak is a member of the International Marine Animal Trainers Association where he was Vice President in 1986 and he was co-founder and president of the Animal Behavior Management Alliance. He is frequently sought by the media for his expert opinion on a wide variety of animal-related issues and has been featured on CNN's Larry King Live, Fox News, and Good Morning America, among other shows.


Since the publication of the New York Time’s best-seller, Whale Done! in 2001, which sold over a million copies in eighteen languages, Thad continues to present keynote speeches, seminars and workshops globally to major corporations and US Government agencies explaining the Whale Done process, vastly improving working relationships. Whale Done Parenting was released in the Fall of 2009. Thad recently collaborated on a third book in the Whale Done series, The Whale Done School, which was released in the Spring of 2012.

Angi Millwood Lacinak
Founder and Principal

Angi is a founder of Precision Behavior. She manages daily operations and project development of the Company focused on corporate leadership training and zoological consulting. In this role, Angi also writes, designs and instructs positive reinforcement based seminars and workshops directed at improving the lives of people and animals. In addition to her skills as an instructor, she has an extensive background in exotic animal training and theatrical show production. She currently consults at zoological and domestic animal facilities worldwide.


Previously, Angi held positions at several top-ranked animal facilities. She served as Manager of Marine Mammals at the Atlantis Resort, The Palm, in Dubai where she was responsible for the care and training of Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphins as well as staff development. She was also the Director of Behavior Programs at Natural Encounters, Inc. (NEI), responsible for behavioral husbandry consulting in zoological facilities worldwide including training staff, training animals, and show development as well as coordinating all of NEI’s animal training workshops. Prior to work at NEI, Angi was the Animal Training Coordinator at the Fort Worth Zoo, responsible for the Zoo’s animal training programs for more than 350 animal species. She was also a member of the Disney’s Animal Kingdom opening team, working with a wide variety of species and assisting with the implementation of a variety of behavioral husbandry initiatives.


Angi is currently a professional member of the Animal Behavior Management Alliance (ABMA), where she served for years on the Board of Directors. She is also a professional member of the International Marine Animal Trainers Association (IMATA) and the International Society of Anthrozoologists. Angi has conducted numerous workshops and papers nationally and internationally at conferences, for zoo staff, college students and business professionals. In 2005 she received the prestigious Animal Welfare Advancement Award from the ABMA.


She has served as a Course Instructor for the AZA professional courses: Animal Training Applications in Zoo and Aquarium Settings and Meeting Your Institutional Goals through Program Animals. She is a graduate of Jacksonville State University with a double major in Theater and English. She holds an MA in Anthrozoology from the University of Exeter in the U.K. and is currently pursuing a PhD.

Otto Fad
Partner, Behavior & Welfare Specialist

Before joining the Precision Behavior team in 2017, Otto led a team of talented behaviorists at Busch Gardens Tampa, where he guided the 2004 transformation of the elephant program from its traditional roots to choice-, trust-, and relationship-based Positive Reinforcement Training. Outside of “Pachyderm Palace,” Otto also worked with the orangutan and gibbon teams.


Prior to BGT, Otto was a Senior Trainer and Research Coordinator at SeaWorld Orlando, where he worked with marine mammals beginning in 1987. When not training, performing or hugging several species – mostly killer whales -- he was also responsible for business and labor analyses. Additionally, Otto wrote several education shows and helped to develop multiple animal interaction programs.


Otto has always been heavily involved in research and animal welfare. He has written, spoken, and presented on topics including husbandry training, behavioral enrichment, desensitization, anthropomorphism, natural history, facility design, cognition and comparative psychology, safety, staff development, thermoregulation, elephant personality, positive reinforcement, and more in numerous venues including seven different college campuses. In addition to collaborating, conducting, and publishing research, Otto has been tapped to review manuscript submissions for two different peer-review journals.


While endeavoring to raise the professionalism and pride of those around him and to increase research output, Otto established or enhanced ties with institutions of higher learning, helping to develop programs for several graduate and hundreds of undergraduate students. 


Otto has consulted on elephant behavior issues both in the US and overseas. He has served as an Advisor to the AZA Animal Welfare Committee and is also a member of the Florida Association for Behavior Analysis (FABA) and The Animal Behavior Management Alliance (ABMA), for which he formerly served as a board member and chair of the Government Affairs Committee. He is also a past member of EMA, as well as the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) and the International Marine Animal Trainers Association (IMATA). 


His BGT Elephant Team featured an extraordinary group of creative, positive, and passionate trainers, and frequently hosted visiting behaviorists, scientists, conservationists, animal welfare experts, and elephant handlers from across the world, but also management and organizational behavior consultants eager to study the positive, productive, and fun culture of the team.


In a second career, Otto has also been a sportswriter and entrepreneur with clients throughout NCAA Division I athletic conferences, plus sports media professionals, bowl committees, marketing consultants, and sports law specialists. His analyses have been featured in national magazines, dozens of newspapers, numerous online venues, and radio at the national, regional, and local levels. 


Otto gratefully acknowledges that he has personally benefited from learning from some of the top animal behavior professionals in the world, and feels that the day that his learning stops is the day he’ll hang up his whistle. Strongly committed to the primacy of animal welfare, Otto enjoys working with smart, discerning animals, and passionate, professional people.

Christel Fleming
Behavior & Welfare Specialist

Christel Fleming was raised in Connecticut where she enlisted in the United States Air Force. After 14 years of dedicated service as a Radiologic Technologist, she was medically separated from the military and at that time made the decision to have a dramatic career change. Christel has always been passionate about helping animals and has always loved to teach so she merged her two passions when she selected dog training as her new career.  

In 2012 she graduated from her first dog training school and opened a business providing private in-home dog training lessons. In 2017 she furthered her education at Starmark Academy where she earned her Canine Training and Behavior Specialist certification. In late 2017 she moved to St. Augustine Florida to continue her passion and expand upon her knowledge by training service dogs for a local non-profit, K9s for Warriors. 


After only three years of training service dogs for veterans with PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), TBI (traumatic brain injury), and MST (military sexual trauma), Christel was presented with a leadership opportunity as Manager of K9 Training. She was a key player in evolving the organization from training methods using aversive tools to relationship-based training, with the assistance of PB, who were contracted to improve the staff's technical skills and to elevate canine welfare for the organization.  

Additionally, in her tenure as Training Manager, Christel developed a mentorship program for experienced trainers, a K9 Trainer Apprenticeship Program to teach new trainers, a Prison Program to give inmates a skill to use upon their release, a career progression path to decrease trainer attrition rates, and established training criteria and incremental testing to improve consistency.  While she enjoyed the ability to make positive change, she always missed the direct interaction with dogs.  


Mid-year 2022, Christel left her management position to pursue other opportunities that involved direct inter action with animals and coaching training professionals. She joined PB in 2023 to grow the domestic animal branch of the company's services. Christel is CPDT-KA and CBCC-KA certified.

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Julie Wendt
Behavior & Welfare Specialist

Julie earned her degree in Psychology and Biology at Kent State University, and then ventured to Sea Life Park of Hawaii to begin her career as a Marine Mammal Trainer with an enthusiasm to contribute to conservation efforts and to educate the public through experiences. Over the next fifteen years, she trained a variety of species including dolphins, sea lions, pelicans, otters, and canines.  


Julie is a creative leader and has extensive experience designing and restructuring internship programs, trainer mentoring programs, and streamlining teams to introduce systems and improve productivity and efficiency. She believes, however, that the highest priority of any animal care professional is continuous improvement to the lives of the individual animals within her care. 


Having held several positions in well-respected animal facilities, Julie is grateful for the hands-on education she has received. Her position at Dolphins Plus in Key Largo, Florida highlighted the beauty of a trusting relationship with the animals.  As a Senior Trainer at Clearwater Marine Aquarium, she was privileged to serve Winter the dolphin in her therapy program, led the training (and filming) with a rambunctious 3-year-old female dolphin in a major motion picture, and expand her skillset into training other species.  Marineland Dolphin Adventure helped her to grow in leadership as an Assistant Curator and built upon her ability to problem-solve in dynamics social scenarios in an interactive setting. As Manager of Training at K9s for Warriors, Julie learned the incredible value of human animal relationships in a Warrior’s life after serving our great country.  She also excelled at wearing many hats, prioritizing team culture, and improve canine welfare and training.  


Julie was coached and mentored by Precision Behavior throughout much of her career and states they have shaped her into the trainer, leader and professional that she is today. She joined the PB team in 2022. Above all, she doesn't take herself too seriously. She loves to have a silly/playful time with animals and find humor in most situations. It is precisely this focus on human-animal relationships that makes Julie an invaluable member of the PB team!


In addition, she is blessed with a beautiful family, for which she devotes her energy. Yet, she is always secretly training: a loving husband, two gorgeous children, a hound dog, and geriatric cat. Julie says if not for her husband grounding her, she’d have a menagerie of creatures! 

Brenda Morgado
Behavior & Welfare Specialist

Brenda is an animal behavior professional with more than two decades of experience who joined the PB team in 2016. Originally from Portugal, she began her career at the Lisbon Zoo. Brenda later worked as an animal trainer at the Brookfield Zoo's marine mammal facility in Chicago before taking a position in Cancun, Mexico, where she was a supervisor of animal training at Dolphin Discovery and Dolphinaris. 


She has worked with a variety of animals and specializes in working with maternity groups and all-male social groups. She successfully trained one of the earliest recorded voluntary blood collections on a dolphin calf.


A professional member of the International Marine Animal Trainers' Association, she has presented a number of papers, posters and presentations at annual conferences.


Brenda currently lives in Lisbon. Her ability to build strong trusting relationships with both humans and animals makes her an invaluable member of the PB team. 


Brenda is fluent in English, Spanish and Portuguese.


Our number one goal is to improve the lives of animals and the dedicated professionals who care for them. We are continuous learners, employing the most recent accomplishments of our dynamic field. We'd love to discuss how Precision Behavior can help you. 

~Thad Lacinak & Angi Millwood Lacinak, Principals


Learning and Sharing at the IMATA/ABMA Conference 2023

Our Clients

Precision Behavior is honored to have worked with over 60 facilities in more than 20 countries. Below is a partial list of facilities in which we have worked, consulted, or taught courses throughout our careers.

  • The Palm Beach Zoo and Conservation Society, Florida, USA

  • K9s For Warriors, Ponte Vedra, Florida, USA

  • Sarkanniemi Adventure Park, Finland

  • The Florida Aquarium, Florida, USA

  • The Memphis Zoo, Tennessee, USA

  • The Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Florida, USA

  • Gatorland, Florida, USA

  • Club Westside, Houston, Texas, USA

  • Bocalan Confiar (Assistance & Therapy Dogs), Chile

  • Dolphin Research Center, Florida, USA

  • Dolphins Plus, Florida, USA

  • Dolphin Cove, Florida, USA

  • Dolphinaris (6 Locations), Mexico & USA

  • Zoomarine, Portugal

  • Zoomarine, Italy

  • The Fresno Chaffee Zoo, California, USA

  • Parco Oltremare, Riccione, Italy

  • Santiago Zoo, Chile

  • Jungle Island, Florida, USA

  • Harderwijk Dolfinarium, the Netherlands

  • The Central Florida Zoo, Florida, USA

  • The Western Pennsylvania Humane Society (2 locations), Pennsylvania, USA

  • The Georgia Aquarium, Georgia, USA

  • SeaWorld, Florida, Texas, Ohio, California, USA

  • Busch Gardens, Florida, Virginia, USA

  • Disney's Animal Kingdom, Florida, USA

  • The Fort Worth Zoo, Texas, USA

  • The Lubee Foundation, Florida, USA

  • Discovery Cove , Florida, USA

  • Prague Zoo, Czech Republic

  • Singapore Zoo & Night Safari, Singapore

  • Windsor Safari Park, UK

  • Givskud Zoo, Denmark

  • Barcelona Zoo, Spain

  • Marineland, Canada​

  • Kamogawa Sea World, Japan

  • Zoo Miami, Florida, USA

  • ZooTampa at Lowry Park, Florida, USA

  • The North Carolina Aquariums (3 Locations)

  • ChangFeng Ocean World, Shanghai

  • The Atlantis Resort, Paradise Island, Bahamas

  • The John G. Shedd Aquarium & many, many more!

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