Tanya Smith serves as the President and is one of the Founders of Turpentine Creek Foundation, Inc., DBA Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, which was formed in 1992. Tanya purchased 459 acres of land 7 miles south of Eureka Springs to save and care for unwanted, abused, and neglected Big Cats and a variety of other animals. Tanya continues to make strides in improving and developing the non-profit organization.
Tanya is married to Scott Smith who shares her passion for animals. Together they implemented an educational program in 1996 as a way to gain quality help to care for the animals. To date, TCWR has trained hundreds of biologists and zoologists how to care for large cats. Most of these people now work at zoos, sanctuaries, and as veterinarians around the world.
Tanya and Scott have raised five children, Victor, Britney, Haleigh, Miranda, and Dillon.
Tanya serves on the Turpentine Creek Foundation, Inc. Board of Trustees and on the Arvest Bank Board. She believes that high tides raise the level of all boats and has taken an active role in her community. Tanya has served on the Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors (Chairman 2010), Founding Member of the Court of Cavilers, Krewe of Krazo (Duchess 2010), Eureka Springs Attractions Committee, Eureka Springs Co-op Advertising Committee, Eureka Springs Economic Development Committee, and is a member of the Eureka Springs Rotary Club.
Tanya and her family have been caring for Big Cats since 1978.