Bart Sherwood has the Best Job in the World

Funny how everyone who says that looks exhausted all the time

Bart Sherwood looks a little like a boulder: nothing can shake him, but get him rolling in the right direction and nothing’ll stop him either. A good thing too, because he’s one of these unfortunate people with the mixed luck of a job he can describe, without irony, as “the best job in the world.”

Funny how almost everyone who says that looks a few nights short on sleep. You ever noticed that? The best jobs in the world all look so tiring.

I usually believe people who say that about their jobs, though. I believe Mr. Sherwood. He has data to back up his claim, you see. He has data that directly correlates the work he does to the reduction of the suicide rate in the veteran population. That is no bad thing to say about your workday.

Bart runs a program called TADSAW (stands for “train a dog, save a warrior). TADSAW trains therapy dogs for vets coping with psychological trauma associated with military service. For eleven years, he’s run it as a small operation. The process is prohibited by numbers. Each dog takes a certain amount of time to train, and one of the ways that his program stands out is the vets are involved in the training of the dogs. Which means that the vets need to apply to the program, they need to be evaluated, and they need to get through the training with their dogs. Everything involved takes time, which means that, by himself, Bart can only bring so many vets and dogs through the program. In his first decade in business, he’s put 12,000 dogs and vets through the program, which isn’t bad. There’s some emerging science says that TADSAW may have reduced potential suicides by an appreciable percentage. The program definitely improved the quality of life of those 12,000 vets, and that’s no bad thing.

Thing is, to get that approximately thousand a year, he processed 3,000 applications.

3,000 applications!

That’s quite a few. I can’t think of anything I’ve done 3,000 times in a year—least of all potentially saved 3,000 lives.

3,000 is good. 3,000 is fine.

He’d like to do better.

Bart’s goal is to raise his operation. This year, his goal is to put 12,000 dogs and veterans through the training program. That’s 12,000 pushed all the way through, from application to a properly trained therapy dog and veteran duo.

To do it, he’ll need to process 36,000 applications—a literal or