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From Writing to Animal Advocacy, She Lives Her Passions

Beauty makeup artist, animal welfare advocate and writer, CherylAnn Fernandes' website describes herself 'as diverse as they come.'

CherylAnn Fernandes says her life’s goal is to follow her passions for being an animal welfare advocate, a makeup artist and a writer.

"There’s the theme that we want to live the best that we can," Fernandes said. For her that means making women look great, protecting animals and communicating those passions to others, which is her life’s third passion.

"If you need to focus on one thing it’s difficult, because I’m not one thing," she said.

Fernandes said she started out as a makeup artist, something she still does, applying her beauty skills for bridal parties, commercial photographers and retail stores.

"I have a long history in beauty in cosmetics because I love to make women look beautiful," she said.

She also promotes "cruelty-free" cosmetics, developed without animal experimentation. "That’s my philosophy," she said.

Fernandes also has a background working for animal welfare causes. In the 1990s she worked as a part-time animal control officer (ACO) for Fairfield, then a full-time ACO for Bridgeport from 1998 to 2003. In 2004 she helped set up a new animal shelter in Branford.

"I was a boots on the ground, dog-chasing girl that arrested people for animal cruelty," she explained.

That led to a part-time career as a consultant for non-profit animal welfare organizations, such as the ASPCA in New York City and the Connecticut Humane Society in Westport.

Fernandes said part of her job is to run "compassion fatigue training," which ACOs and animal shelter volunteers get similar to nurses and social workers when the emotions from their jobs become overwhelming. Her training provides coping skills to keep people from bringing those job-related emotions home with them at the end of the day.

But most readers will know Fernandes as a writer. She has been a blog contributor to Milford Patch and is the author of "A Hip Chick’s Guide to Friendship," a collection of inspirational aphorisms and epigrams from her Facebook page.

"I love to write," she said.

Her book is self-published through Northshire Bookstore in Vermont, and is available at her web site, the Collected Stories Bookstore, Wild Expressions Florist and Gifts, and Given to Gauche Handcrafted Jewelry.

Pam Landry October 20, 2011 at 12:07 PM
I am honored to have CherylAnn as a friend.
Denise Buffa October 20, 2011 at 12:30 PM
CherylAnn is a unique individual -- with a trademark hairstyle :) -- who deserves this honor. Glad to feature her! She has become a fast friend!
James Givens (Shaw) October 20, 2011 at 12:35 PM
A wonderful person and a passionate advocate. Great feature.
Lorrie October 20, 2011 at 02:04 PM
Cheryl is a fantastic person who uses her knowledge to educate people on the subjects of animal abuse and how to help. The world would be a better place with more of her kind!! :)
CherylAnn Fernandes October 21, 2011 at 01:42 AM
The feeling is mutual... thanks for all that YOU do!
CherylAnn Fernandes October 21, 2011 at 01:43 AM
I appreciate the opportunities you have offered to me. I look forward to many more!
CherylAnn Fernandes October 21, 2011 at 01:44 AM
Thanks for always offering sound advice, mixed with that 'Susan' humor!
CherylAnn Fernandes October 21, 2011 at 01:45 AM
Lorrie, keep up all of your GREAT work too! Thank you for your kind words.
Dawn Sanders October 21, 2011 at 01:50 AM
CherylAnn is an AMAZING person. She does so much for everyone!
State Representative Kim Rose April 03, 2013 at 12:19 PM
I admire Cheryl Ann, she is a strong woman who does not sit back and wait for opportunity. She has goals and actively pursues them. A warm and wonderful person too!. Thank you for providing a voice to our furry (and sometimes feathery) friends.

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