Institute Staff


Erica ElvoveErica Elvove, MSW

IHAC Education Coordinator
Institute for Human Animal Connections

Erica has over eleven years of social work experience working with diverse clients, developing programs and supporting human animal bond education. She earned her MSW and Animal-Assisted Social Work certificate from University of Denver’s Graduate School of Social Work. A lifelong animal lover, Erica draws from knowledge of dogs, horses, and backyard chickens.

Erica has experience working as an equine groom, creating animal-assisted educational programming for high-risk youth, coordinating large-scale volunteer operations for a premier therapeutic riding center, developing and implementing a miniature horse visitation program and has acted as the Assistant Instructor and Program Administrator for the Animals and Human Health certificate program since 2008. As a returned Peace Corps volunteer in a subsistence farming community of Nepal and as co-owner of an environmentally conscious landscaping company, Erica also fosters great interest in our environment as a key element of holistic social work.


Jim Pyle, MSW, LCSWJim Pyle, MSW, LCSW

Colorado LINK Project Manager

Jim Pyle, MSW, LCSW is the Project Manager for the Colorado LINK Project and also currently is an adjunct faculty and field liaison at the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Denver.    With over 30 years of experience in the social work field with extensive experience in child welfare with “high-risk” youth and working with sexual and criminal offenders, he is well versed in patterns of violence and abuse. He has provided therapy services to both juveniles and adults in outpatient settings, residential treatment centers, in-patient psychiatric facilities and home based programs. Additionally, Jim has collaborated extensively with human service agencies, behavioral health providers, law enforcement agencies, judicial services and correctional agencies as a program manager, trainer and consultant with various state and local agencies.   Jim is also a founding board member of a small non-profit promoting self-sufficiency for young single parents.