Who We Are

Chappy & Friends has a vision of igniting thousands of grassroots groups that rise up to respond to the abuse and suffering of animals of all stripes and colors across the US. Think of us as an “incubator” for animal welfare projects! We help those on the front lines of animal welfare to come into existence, to grow, and to sustain themselves.

Chappy & Friends is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization benefiting the animal kingdom by letting you focus on your animal welfare project. As an umbrella organization, we will assist you or your organization to qualify under Section 501(c)(3) to solicit and receive deductible contributions from donors. If your project is selected to become part of the Chappy & Friends family, we’ll also assist you with the ins-and-outs of qualifying with grant makers and, if you desire, assist you with grant writing services at no cost. We encourage all of our Chappy & Friends projects to dream big. We are confident that we can provide the road map for achieving your goals on behalf of animals across the United States.

Our Mission

Chappy & Friends believes in empowering those helping the voiceless across the animal kingdom. We believe that all animals should have a safe environment in which to fulfill their varied purposes in this world. Too often, animals are treated as soulless creatures with no regard for their ability to feel pain, rejection, and suffering. Too often, they are left open to physical or mental abuse or are unable to receive the care or treatment they so desperately need.

Chappy & Friends seeks to free those on the front lines of animal welfare activities from the mundane, everyday administrative and time-consuming tasks of running their own 501(c)(3) (tasks such as paperwork, IRS reporting, and board management). Thereby, we allow them to focus on their respective lifesaving, life-protecting, and life-enhancing activities.


Robert Bills

Founder & President

Robert Bills is a finance, arts, and entertainment professional who is now realizing his life’s mission of impacting the welfare of animals. His muse for the creation of this entity was his puppy-mill breeding dog, Chappy. This 11-pound Havanese Poodle was captive as a breeding dog in a Tennessee puppy mill for the first 5 1/2 years of his life. Chappy, now 18 1/2, enjoys life largely due to his own courage and determination to demonstrate love for his family and friends.

Robert has studied Humane Education at The Humane Society Academy, has been a constant presence networking animals on Facebook for the past 15 years, and has volunteered for 3 years at The Anti-Cruelty Society of Chicago. He is an active student of various schools of thought for solving animal overpopulation, animal abuse and torture, and animal profiteering.

He is a former actor/director, has lead-produced Off-Broadway theater, was a gallerist in Chicago’s West Loop, and was a Lecturer in Finance for 20 Years. Teaching gigs included University of Illinois at Chicago, Northwestern University School of Professional Studies, and DePaul University.

Mr. Bills holds an MBA in Finance from the University of Chicago Booth School and is an IRS Enrolled Agent. He has studied Philanthropy at Northwestern University’s School of Professional Studies. Robert also holds a Certificate in Child Life from University of California, Santa Barbara and a Certificate in Drawing & Sculpture from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago, School of Continuing Studies.


Erin Miller

Board of Directors

Erin’s passion for rescue came from her love of animals since she was a small child growing up outside of New York City. That interest originally took her to a career in Anthropology studying Primates at Emory University. While a PhD student at the University of Chicago she co-founded her first rescue group called S.A.B.R.E. – one of the first nation-wide feline breed-specific groups, after she and her boyfriend adopted a Somali cat named Zeke from The Anti-Cruelty Society in Chicago. Over the years her many rescue animals came with her as she moved from city to city and after changing careers from Anthropology to Business. She incorporated primates again when she backpacked solo around Africa after getting her MBA from UCLA. In addition to Chappy & Friends, she currently works with an organization called Paws Fur Hope in Los Angeles, where she lives with her current menagerie consisting of two rescue dogs, Fredo and Rocket, and a rescue tortoise named Fezzik.

David Anastos

Board of Directors

David Anastos is the President of Bayshore Partners. Since 1990, David has exclusively represented tenants, guiding them in their commercial real estate decisions. He has helped clients in 350 markets across the US and Canada. Prior to Bayshore, David worked in commercial real estate in Chicago representing both tenants and landlords, and also spent seven years with JP Morgan Chase. Today, David teams up with companies, many with a significant presence in Orange County, helping them make the right decisions with regard to their commercial real estate, personally managing every step in the process, and providing ongoing lease management.

David was raised in the Chicago area but for 25 years has been a dedicated resident of Orange County, California, raising his two sons and daughter in Newport Beach. He has been an active supporter of the Boy Scouts of America, and as an Eagle Scout himself, served as both a Scoutmaster and a mentor for other young men in the scouting program. His commitment to the community also included support of the YMCA Indian Princess program, the Girl Scouts of Orange County, AYSO, and school boards and committees. He is currently on the Board of Leadership Tomorrow, a multi-city collaborative to build leaders within the community. When not with clients, Dave can often be found on a stand up paddleboard in the Back Bay.

David is a member of CoreNet Global, the world’s leading association for corporate real estate professionals; is a member of Octane, an association that connects people and ideas with capital and resources to fuel technology growth in Orange County. He has an MBA from DePaul University and a BA from Western Michigan University. David is a volunteer Board Member.

Jeff Jarmuth

Board of Directors

Jeffrey J. Jarmuth is a Chicago-based business consultant and attorney who’s been concentrating for over thirty years on corporate matters, finance and tax issues for small- and medium-sized firms ranging from older, more established companies to start-ups. In addition to his business activities, he devotes time to pro bono activities related to his neighborhood. Mr. Jarmuth is active with Fourth Presbyterian Church and the Chicago History Museum. He holds a BA in philosophy, as well as a J.D. and M.B.A with a concentration in analytical finance.”  Jeff is a volunteer Board Member.

Karen Horvath

Board of Directors

Karen Horvath has been a Licensed Pharmacist for 23 years. She holds a PharmD from Midwestern University, a BS in Pharmacy from University of Wisconsin –Madison and a BA in Biology from University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee. She has been the proud owner of a puppy mill surviving Havanese Poodle for 7 years. Hint: His name is Chappy. Karen is a volunteer Board Member.

Travissa Short Hoffman

Board of Directors

Travissa Hoffman is a wife, mother, grandmother and animal advocate. In her professional life I she worked in the Financial industry for brokerage firms.

She was also an Assistant Finance Manager for a performing arts theater and assisted with a Capital Campaign to raise funds for renovations for a cherished Tacoma, WA theater chaired by Bill Weyerhauser. She has given many hours of volunteer service working for her local shelter and also in rescuing felines for the past 20 years. Travissa attended University of Washington. Travissa is a volunteer Board Member.