Dominic Whitmee

Dominic Whitmee

Chief Executive

Dominic joined OATA from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) where he was Senior International Biodiversity Policy Adviser. Dominic worked in the civil service for more than 20 years, latterly delivering CITES policy for the UK government. He therefore brings more than two decades of work at national, European and international levels in highly relevant areas such as biodiversity and wildlife trade. He also has good experience in the mechanisms of government and how to influence policy not just in the UK but also in Brussels and at global negotiations.

Since joining OATA he has become a Trustee of The Pet Charity (TPC) and Vice-President of the European Pet Organisation (EPO).

In his capacity as CEO he is also a member of the UK Lobbying Register.

Dr Tracey King

Dr Tracey King

Assistant Chief Executive

Tracey joined OATA from the charity sector having previously worked in university administration at the University of Oxford, in local government and the BBC.

She received her bachelor’s degree in zoology from Cardiff University, where her research projects focused on time budgets and dietary conservatism in birds, before being awarded her PhD from Cardiff University, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council, in fish parasitology. She then went on to undertake a Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Animal Behaviour at the University of Lincoln.

Her PhD research focused on the fish ectoparasite, Gyrodactylus spp., investigating host-parasite interactions among tropical freshwater ornamental fish and UK native fish species. She is considered a founder member of Cardiff University’s CRIPES parasitology group (Cardiff Research into Infection & Parasites in Ecological Systems) and has looked after a large number of ornamental fish, particularly guppies, platies, mollies, swordtails and zebrafish.

She has had scientific papers published on fish-gyrodactylid infections and has co-authored a scientific paper on the response of fish to novel prey. At home, she has previously kept coldwater fish and an Oscar.

Pauline Davey

Pauline Davey

PR and Parliamentary Officer

Pauline joined OATA in 2013 to help us to improve the way we shout about the great work we do. Originally she trained as a journalist before making the move into PR where she’s worked for more than a decade.

She’s responsible for seeking out our stories and making sure the trade and our members know about what OATA is doing to keep the industry alive and products on shelves. She also writes our monthly newsletters to members, our Annual Report and manages our Facebook page, our Twitter account and our LinkedIn page.

Ray Valovec

Ray Valovec

Office Manager

Ray joined OATA in March 2000 as the Office Manager. He is responsible for the monthly and end-of-year Accounts; arranging the audit; maintaining the Membership Database – liaising with all members as required; maintenance of the office computer network both hardware and software and all the normal day to day associated work within an office.

As the job has evolved new areas have been taken on, which include assisting in the planning of the OATA conferences, and becoming a Director of the AQUA trade show. Outside of working hours he coaches players at table tennis and is a qualified UKCC Class 2 coach, also playing competitive matches in two local leagues, and competitions around the country. Other interests include archery, walking, outdoor living, and trying to make drinkable wine and beer.