~~Alphabetical order~~

Laura Allen, Esq
Laura is the founder and Executive Director of Animal Law Coalition, www.animallawcoalition.com, She is a trial attorney with more than 20 years of experience trying cases and arguing appeals in the state and federal courts in Washington, Illinois, Missouri and Arizona. Laura is also a member of the Board of Directors and the vice president and general counsel for Equine Welfare Alliance, an executive advisory board member for Saving America's Horses, and a member of theBoard of Directors for Animal World USA. She is a liaison for advisors to StubbyDog, a project to restore the image of pit bull dog image of the pit bull dog and also serves as an advisory board member for Miami Coalition Against Breed Specification.  Laura is on the advisory board for Animal Advocate Television. She is a frequent speaker and a regular guest on Big Blend Radio's Nature Connection, Animals Today Radio and Wild For Life Endangered Talk Radio. Animal Law Coalition is a 501c4 non-profit, which brings the latest animal legal news to attorneys, law students and the public and offers legal analysis of the issues affecting animals. Animal Law Coalition takes the fight to stop animal cruelty to Congress, state legislatures, local governments and the courts. Animal Law Coalition educates the public on how they can participate to stop cruelty and promote animal welfare. Animal Law Coalition is actively involved in drafting and lobbying for legislation relating to horse welfare, horse slaughter, wild horses and burros, breed discrimination, puppy and cat mills, animal euthanasia, and animal cruelty. 

Silvana Andrade, Journalist
Silvana has been a journalist for the last 27 years, working primarily as a reporter, production coordinator, and chief editor of TV networks, and video production.  A vegan and animal rights activist, she is the founder of ANDA, an animal rights news  agency, the first and only agency of its kind in Brazil.  Among other accomplishments, ANDA brought about a bill in the state of Sao Paulo that would pass a law to build free veterinarian hospitals in the State of Sao Paulo. Silvana is also a founding  member of the Vegan Society in Brazil, and lectures on communication and Animal Rights.  Silvana’s ideal is to form a worldwide network of journalists to help develop a strong international network of animal rights media, including radio, TV and other means of communication. More >>> http://www.anda.jor.br/

Edita Birnkrant
Edita Birnkrant is the NY Director of Friends of Animals (FoA), www.friendsofanimals.org an international animal advocacy organization founded in 1957 which works to cultivate a respectful view of nonhuman animals, free-living and domestic. FoA's goal is to free animals from cruelty and institutionalized exploitation around the world.  Edita runs the New York City office and has organized, led and spoken at high-profile demonstrations, rallies, press conferences, media interviews and outreach events for over six years in New York City and beyond on a range of diverse issues affecting animals.  Edita has led the opposition and efforts to change New York City’s policy on killing Canada geese and other urban wildlife, has recently organized a high-profile demonstration and press conference at the State House in Trenton to stop New Jersey’s black bear hunt, has held ongoing rallies and outreach events at the Canadian Consulate office in NYC and in Newfoundland, Canada to oppose the seal slaughter--in addition to numerous fur protests and public education events--defended deer and other free-living animals by holding protests of planned deer hunts in New York State, and educated the public about hunting, circuses, bull-riding events, and the importance of adopting and spaying & neutering cats and dogs.  Edita also plays a key role in the campaign to enact historic legislation ban horse-drawn carriages in NYC through FoA’s ongoing efforts to work closely with politicians, educate the public and engage the media on this important NYC issue. Edita also speaks with children in schools and youth programs about treating animals with respect, promotes veganism and widely distributes FoA’s NYC Vegan Restaurant Guides, Vegan Starter Guides and other literature published by FoA to help others live a more ethical, healthy and environmentally conscious life.

Gene Blalock
Founder of Seraph Films and the Los Angeles-based rock band, The Faded, is an outspoken animal rights activist award-winning producer, director, and editor. Gene's extensive knowledge of audio and video production has been honed over the course of editing, directing, and producing dozens of albums, movies and videos, from EP's to full-length albums and from documentaries to music videos. Gene's efforts, for a wide range of clients, including Last Chance for Animals advertising agency, Leo Burnett, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and the U.S. DOD, have helped him earn a reputation as a smart,in-touch artist who expertly helps craft a compelling message. Most recently, Having recently been engaged in the production, editing, and scoring of the award winning documentary "SKIN TRADE," Gene is now co-producing, shooting and editing a new film, "Sanctuary," which documents the plight of primates, an animal group which often suffers greatest from neglect & crueltywww.geneblalock.com

Jenny Brown
Jenny Brown is the co-founder and director  of Woodstock Farm Sanctuary, a not-for-profit organization and farm animal shelter located in the Catskill Mountains in New York.  Jenny is an outspoken vegan animal rights activist who previously worked as a Television Producer until 2002 when she went undercover in Texas to film farmed animal abuse.  That experience led her to dedicate her life to helping farm animals and raising awareness of their plight. Jenny's story and the work of her sanctuary has been featured in the New York Times, Cosmopolitan Magazine, New York Magazine, New York Daily News, NPR's Weekend  America and more. http://www.woodstocksanctuary.org 

Stuart Chaifetz
Stu has fought against animal cruelty for more than 20 years. He has appeared on many television and radio debates on animal protection issues, uncovered political corruption related to animal abuse and created and ran a political organization that worked against hunting. He is currently an Investigator working for Showing Animals Respect and Kindness - SHARK-www.sharkonline.org/

Tracy Coppola
Tracy is a program associate at  Born Free USA, where she focuses much of her work on state legislation and policy regarding protecting wildlife from captivity, the international wildlife parts trade, and trapping. Tracy spent four years as a policy associate at the American Humane Association, primarily focusing on companion animal protection campaigns. She earned her J.D. and her Masters in Environmental Law at Vermont Law School,  and her B.A. at Yale University. While in law school, Tracy interned at Defenders of Wildlife and the law firm of Meyer, Glitzenstein, & Crystal, as well as the Environmental Unit of the Vermont Attorney General’s Office.  She now lives in Alexandria with her husband and their beautiful dog named Iggy. http://www.bornfreeusa.org/

Elizabeth Forel
Elizabeth has been a dedicated and outspoken animal rights activist and abolitionist for over 25 years – all on an independent and volunteer basis.  She works in the design field in the private sector but her free time is devoted to grass roots animal issues.  She is the president and co-founder of the Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages http://banhdc.org/ , dedicated to the ban of horse-drawn carriages in New York City.  She is also the co-founder of Horses Without Carriages International, http://www.horseswithoutcarriages.org/ whose goal is to globally expose the injustice, cruelty, and inhumanity in the horse-drawn carriage industry.  She helped to draft the first ever historic bill on banning the carriage industry in NYC.  Having worked on this issue since 2006, she believes that in order to bring about change to entrenched, institutionalized cruelty, a campaign must be multi faceted, have an intense focus and a consistent commitment.

Joy Gao
Joy's work to help Chinese animal rescue groups in China has been a "shining star" to help save countless animals in desperate need. Not only she acts as a "bridge" between her Chinese counterparts to communicate with people outside China, breaking language barriers, she is also very active in communicating with officers in China to raise animal issue awareness to bring about changes in that country.  Joy lives in Auckland, New Zealand where she works as an accountant at a local college, and spends all her spare time, helping animals in China.  http://blog.wenxuecity.com/myindex.php?u=cheerfulcats

John Holland
John Holland is a freelance writer, the author of three books and an industrial consultant in the field of intelligent automation and knowledge engineering. He frequently writes on the subject of horse slaughter from his small farm in the mountains of Virginia, where he lives with his wife, Sheilah, and their 11 equines. Holland is the president of the Equine Welfare Alliance and serves as senior analyst for Americans Against Horse Slaughter, an organization composed entirely of volunteers. http://www.equinewelfarealliance.org

Joshua Katcher, Fashion Journalist
Joshua Katcher launched The Discerning Brute in 2008 as a resource for “Fashion, Food & Etiquette for the Ethically Handsome Man”. With a focus on sustainability, social justice and animal rights, Katcher deconstructs the mainstream understanding of masculinity and offers a vision of men that are protectors, defenders, and heroes for animals and the environment. His lecture “Fashion & Animals: Decoding and Harnessing the Dialect of Fashion Culture to Help Animals” has taken Katcher to Paris, Boston, Parsons University in New York, and in June, Washington DC. He will be teaching a course on the subject in NYC this spring with Guilded, and at the American University of Paris in Spring of 2012.  Joshua is on the verge of launching his online men’s lifestyle store, Brave GentleMan, that will feature a highly curated selection of “Principled Attire & Smart Supplies”, including exclusive items and exciting collaborations with some of the most sought-after, high-quality artists and designers. His own line of sustainable, vegan menswear is in development and production. Katcher also launched the initiative, PINNACLE: Reinvent The Icon last year which provides a platform for fashion industry professionals to creatively express their opposition to the fur industry. Joshua lives in New York city where he is a video producer, artist, self-taught chef and a rescued Chihuahua named Enzo’s dad. More>>> http://www.thediscerningbrute.com

Shannon Keith, Esq
Shannon Keith has been an animal rights attorney advocating and fighting for the rights of animals for over twelve years. She is also the president of her own non-profit organization called, ARME-Animal Rescue, Media & Education. ARME was formed to save animals from abuse and homelessness and to produce films educating the public about the plight of animals in our world, and how people can make a difference for the animals. She is also the president of Uncaged Films, a production company that   works hand in hand with ARME to produce these films. her first film, "Behind the Mask," garnered several awards and world-wide notoriety for it's brave depiction of people who break the law to save animals. Her  second film, "Skin Trade," exposes the fur industries lies and deceit and has won many festival awards for Best Documentary. For more information, go to: http://www.arme.tv

Lana Lehr, MSW
Founder of RabbitWise, Inc, an all volunteer 501( c) (3 ) organization that advocates for and educates about domestic rabbits. It includes the “Bunderground Railroad,” a nationwide network of rabbit rescuers that make placement and transportation plans for endangered rabbits.  Founded in 2004, RabbitWise, working both locally and nationally, it is headquartered in Washington, DC with a branch in Memphis, TN.  A practicing psychotherapist, she now includes patients’ relationship to their animal companions. She was taught about the importance of animals in human psychological lives by Muggins, her now deceased rescued “meat” rabbit, the founding rabbit of RabbitWise.  A topic much overlooked by the psychotherapeutic community, Lana organized a psycho-education group for therapists and presented a workshop on this topic at an American Psychological  Association Conference in Washington, DC.  www.RabbitWise.org

Erica Meier 
Erica has served as COK's Executive Director since 2005, after having been actively involved as a volunteer since 2000. Since taking the helm, Erica has taken the organization to new heights with continued growth and accomplishments for animals that include ending the egg industry's use of the misleading claim “Animal Care Certified” and successfully working with BOCA foods to stop using eggs.  Vegan for nearly 20 years, Erica has been working in the animal protection field since college. Before working at COK, Erica spent several years as an animal control officer in Washington, DC where she rescued sick, stray, and homeless animals as well as enforced anti-cruelty laws. Compassion Over Killing - www.cok.net

Marina Mercado
Marina Mercado is currently the spokesperson and one of the founders of APASDEM (Asociaciones Protectoras de Mexico, AC) www.apasdem.org.mx  (website is under construction).  Prior to ASPADEM, she was the VP of the Active Organization for the Animal Cruelty Suppression in Mexico.  Her involvement with animal rights in Mexico has included countless investigations of animal cruelty, following prosecution.  She has been a liaison between the organizations she has represented and local authorities  to enforce current animal protection laws as well as speaking with the media.  Marina is also responsible for organizing educational  campaigns as well as recruiting and training animal rights activists.  Marina has also devoted herself these past 3 years to campaigning against the San Barnabe market to close it down As part of the team of  the Commission against the San Bernabe Market,  she has devoted the last three years to the closing of the this market, which is located in Almoloya de Juarez, State of Mexico, as this is a typical  example of animal cruelty especially towards equines.

Anne Muller
Anne is the President of Wildlife Watch www.wildwatch.org which, in addition to its own work, is an umbrella organization that includes: C.A.S.H. – Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting, www.abolishsporthunting.org and the Coalition to Prevent the Destruction of Canada Geese www.canadageese.org  Wildlife Watch facilitates the humane and non-lethal resolution of human-animal conflicts, and operates a national hotline for the rehabilitation of orphaned and injured wild animals. C.A.S.H. brings awareness about the government’s role in promoting sport hunting.  She is managing editor of the quarterlies: Wildlife Watch Binocular and the C.A.S.H. Courier, and one of the founders of LOHV- League of Humane Voters www.lohv.org which is a PAC – Political Action Committee - for animal protection. 

Adrian Nelson
Adrian Nelson is the Director of Communications for the Association for the Protection of Fur-Bearing Animals.  Founded in1944, The Association has specialized in bringing an end to the cruel fur trade, focusing on the issue of trapping, fur farms, and more recently the trade in dog and cat fur.  Adrian has a rich history in the environmental sector, specializing in marketing and social media for non-profits.  His environmental background proved to be a strong backbone for his involvement in wildlife management and co-existence campaigns. Adrian continues to advocate for animals and the environment and has spoken throughout Canada the United States and Brazil. www.FurBearerDefenders.com

Julie O'Connor
Julie is the founder and leader of the group  "Caring Activists Against Fur' in NYC and NJ www.caafgroup.com  where for the last seven years, she has been taking the message to the streets, informing massive crowds about the horrors  of the fur industry. CAAF is a group of self-supported activists genuinely dedicated to helping end the fur industry by educating the public in their areas. Their work is based on the belief that outreach and taking the message to the public are most essential for all in order to help animals. By using large video screens to show fur footage, distributing educational materials in high-trafficked areas, and targetting large shopping districts on weekends, their presence is deeply felt by both retailers and shoppers alike.  Julie is now dedicated to helping empower other activists by sharing her experience and determination as she feels that it is not complicated to be an anti-fur activist. All it takes is being sympathetic to the demise of fur bearing animals used by in the fur industry, and take on a leadership role.  The tools to accomplish this role is what Julie is prepared to show you. 

Zelda Penzel
Zelda has been an animal activist, national/international networker, a prolific writer and tireless crusader for animals for more than 20 years.  An educator by profession and at heart, she believes that the only hope for significant change lies in the evolution of society through education: by raising awareness, consciousness and compassion and through legislation: by enacting laws to protect the inherent rights of all living beings, including non-human animals, and outlawing the most egregious acts of cruelty and exploitation that are commonplace, accepted practices. Zelda is founder and president of PEOPLE FOR THE END OF ANIMAL CRUELTY AND EXPLOITATION~PEACE, a grassroots organization that success pursued to fruition, a ban on the display of exotic animals in the Town of Southampton, Long Island and has fought against expanding hunting areas, canned hunts, rodeos, shark tournaments and leghold traps.  She is also co-founder of a new organization called SOS:SAVE OUR SHELTER ANIMALS, whose primary goal is to bring the No Kill Advocacy to New York City shelters and to change the pervasive paradigm that views the killing of shelter animals as an acceptable solution to the crisis of homeless and abandoned animals.

Becky Robinson
Becky is president and co-founder of Alley Cat Allies, the nation’s only advocacy organization devoted to the protection and humane treatment of cats.  Based in Bethesda, Maryland, the mission of Alley Cat Allies is to transform and develop communities to protect and improve the lives of cats.  Alley Cat Allies works with animal control agencies, shelters, veterinarians, communities and local governments to help them move away from failed shelter system approaches and toward positive community-based approaches, including Trap-Neuter-Return, a program in which outdoor cats are humanely trapped, altered, vaccinated and returned to their outdoor homes.  It also promotes and advises on affordable spay and neuter as well as humane education. Today, with more than 250,000 supporters all over the world, Alley Cat Allies is the recognized authority on feral cats and their care.  More >>> http://www.AlleyCat.org

Matt Rossell
Matt Rossell's undercover work began by accident when he responded to the pathetic cries of days-old kittens whose brains were being experimented on at Boys Town Hospital. Since then, his unlikely career investigating animal cruelty has taken him behind the locked laboratory doors of OHSU's Oregon National Primate Research Center, under the big top at Walker Brothers Circus, and inside almost every type of factory farm. While secretly collecting evidence to report the abuses, he has seen and done it all, from processing parts on the kill floor of an Omaha slaughterhouse to rescuing fox pups from an Illinois fur farmer after a four-month investigation.  Rossell has spent the past decade speaking up for the animals he met during his undercover work, and has lead many successful campaigns including an 18-month protest that led to the historic shuttering of Schumacher Furs, a fourth-generation fur salon in Portland, Oregon. Matt is the new Campaigns Director of Animal Defenders International, (ADI), working from their U.S. office in Los Angeles, California. http://www.adiusa.org/ mattrossell@ad-international.org

Li Tang (TangLi)
TangLi is a marketing and media director of a marketing company in Beijing.  In her spare time she rescue cats and dogs, and help the elderly rescuers by disseminating their work on the internet to attact help and support to them.  This work has helped them save hundreds of stray dogs or cats. Learn more about TangLi on her blog at Sina is called Rock Candy: http://blog.sina.com.cn/xiaofanzhuoer and the link to cats and dogs rescue: http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_5f9495160100l4le.html

Zoli Teglas
Zoli is a singer, songwriter and producer for the bands Ignite and Pennywise. He promotes political, environmental and social consciousness and support organizations including Doctors Without Borders, Habitat For Humanity, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, Project Blue Sea, and Earth First. Zoli is also the president of Pelican Rescue Team of Southern California, where he rescues and rehabilitates injured pelicans.

Odette Wilkens, Esq.
Odette is Executive Director of the Equal Justice Alliance, which is seeking legislative and judicial remedies to repeal or amend the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act. She is a member of the Committee of Legal Issues Pertaining to Animals of the New York City Bar Association.  As a corporate attorney, Odette was Assistant General Counsel for a major international recruiting firm. She holds a masters degree in business administration in Finance from Stern, New York University.  She has spoken at bar associations, law schools and legal conferences on the Act’s implications for civil liberties.  www.equaljusticealliance.org

Peter Young
Peter has been an animal rights activist for over 15 years, and a former animal liberation prisoner convicted of his role in releasing mink from several fur farms across the Midwest. He is a frequent lecturer on the animal  liberation  movement, activist, and passionate  advocate for animal liberation.  He is also the creator of www.voiceofthevoiceless.org and co-founder of the The Fur Farm Intelligence Project, an ongoing investigation into the U.S. fur industry."

Hong Mei Yu
Yu Hongmei is a director of Dalian Animal Love Protection Group in a northeast coast city of Dalian in China. Dalian Animal Love Protection Group was established in 2005, with their rescue philosophy being to educate people to be responsible pet owners and to raise awareness for the care of the lives of animals. During the last five years, “Pet 100” (the nickname for the DLALPG) went from about ten people to more than 18,000 members, with 3000 TNRs being done for the stray cats, and many homeless animals being rescued.  Pet 100 is organizing many educational activities at several Universities in Dalian, as well as in shopping centers and throughout several communities. Tens of thousands of educational fliers have been distributed every year from Pet 100 and from Animals Asia, ACTAsia, and the IF. Pet 100 is also in good terms with the Dalian government and police force. Pet 100 is allowed to send volunteers into Dalian’s dog pound to inspect whether the dogs are being taken care of sufficiently or not. DLALPG's website: http://bbs2.dl.net.cn/index.php

Michael Zhao, MA, Journalist
Michael Zhao (Yunfeng) received a Master's in Journalism from UC Berkeley in 2007, after working for Pulitzer Prize winning team of Joe Kahn and Jim Yardley out of Beijing Bureau of The New York Times.  His latest multimedia works at CHINA GREEN earned him prestigious awards. While at Berkeley he shifted his focus from print to multimedia journalism and completed an interactive thesis about electronic waste.  His mini documentary eDump has been featured in numerous film festivals around the world. He has published numerous articles and photos in the New York Times, Forbes, The Economist, Far Eastern Economic Review, Berkeley Science Review, World Policy Journal and other publications. As Managing Editor/Producer of CHINA GREEN with Asia Society Center on US-China Relations (2007~present), he runs and produces video and new media packages on China's environment, energy and climate issues.  Awards: China Green's "Clearing the Air: China's Environmental Challenge" project won the 2009 Asian American Journalists Association's Unlimited Subject Matter: Online National Journalism Award; The "Tibetan Plateau in Peril" project won the Society for News Design's Best of Multimedia Design Competition for the third quarter of 2008/09.  More on Zhao:http://www.people4chineseanimals.org