Our Team

Board of Directors

Thomas Goodman
Thomas has been a lifelong admirer of animals, was raised meat-free and later became a professional advocate in 2014. He has since worked in various initiatives such as corporate outreach, federal state and regulatory advocacy, promotion of Meatless Mondays, leafleting across North America, public speaking, campaigning, community organizing, and more for the animal protection movement.

Richa Mishra
Richa studied electrical engineering at George Mason University and currently works as an electrical engineer. Richa has devoted much of her time to help make the world a better place for animals. Multiple animal protection organizations have awarded Richa with the distinct honor of volunteer of the year. Richa's nine year old daughter also urges everyone to enjoy more plant-based options.
Alexandra Deckert
Alexandra graduated from the Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland. Determined to help animals with her financial background, Alexandra worked as an international accounting manager for animal advocacy organizations. Alexandra most recently was the Executive Director and Treasurer of a local rabbit rescue. Alex works at Great Sage vegan restaurant.


Aashish Bhimani

Aashish is a leader in the transformational and leadership movement and uses those skills to fulfill his commitment to increasing the scope of the animal protection movement by bringing in new people into it. He has created a partnership with a parent group that's bringing a plant based menu to over 400,000 students. Additionally, he creates "win, win" partnerships between restaurants and organizations that allow the restaurants to access the growing demand of plant based meals. His passion is bringing fun and effectiveness to the movement by training activists to create big partnerships.

Carrie LeBlanc

As the Founder and Executive Director of CompassionWorks International, Carrie works diligently to improve and enhance the techniques and strategies in the animal advocacy movement. Prior to founding CWI, Carrie worked alongside many notable organizations. As a recognized expert in the fields of nonprofit management and fundraising, Carrie has successfully raised millions of dollars for charity work, helped to restructure and stabilize numerous nonprofit organizations, and has consulted for or advised over a dozen nonprofits focused on animal protection.

Ciarra Smith

Ciarra Smith is a Program Design and Community Outreach Specialist with nearly 15 years’ experience in the public and private sector. Ciarra took her professional experience to the non-profit world, bringing business strategy and a strength for programmatic design and pairing it with her passion for supporting local indigent, family, and student populations. She currently works for InVEST, a national non-profit organization that develops industry-specific workforce development programs for high school and college students. And as a strong educational advocate, she represents this organization and her own community interests on several educational and non-profit boards.

Danni McGhee

Danni is a vegan chef, plant-based nutrition coach, author, and educator. Her brand, DAM Good Vegan is an educational platform dedicated to inspiring and encouraging individuals to choose a plant-based vegan diet for optimal health & overall well-being. She is passionate about making vegan food simple, affordable, and DAM Good! She serves on the board as the Director of Talent, Professionals, and Experts with Preciously Organic Coop, and is the chapter leader of Hip Hop is Green, an international organization that promotes health & wellness by infusing it into hip hop.

David Yastremsky

David Yastremsky worked with three government agencies before becoming CEO of VeganWear, a luxury men’s professional brand. Through his powerful brand imaging and support of animal rights non-profits, David looks to maximize the reduction in animal suffering in his personal advocacy. Prior to animal advocacy, his activism focused on human advocacy, particularly in education. With an eye on the future, David is looking to blend both passions with a focus on artificial intelligence, with potential to reduce suffering in areas as diverse as animal testing and developing world health interventions.

Gavin Palmore

Gavin aka "Hannibal The Boss" is the host of The Shop on Ryze95.com Radio. Gavin has been a vegan for over 17 years and the reason for choosing plant-based eating was based solely on the documented diseases associated with the consumption of meat, and reading a book, “Why Humans Shouldn’t Eat Meat." Upon embarking on his journey, Hannibal encountered the harsh economics, as a single parent, of eating healthy and the cost associated with eating healthy. Owing to his profession as an Accountant, he started analyzing the cost of not eating healthy, from prescriptions, to co-pays, and high insurance premiums, and concluded that it cost more to not eat healthy than to eat healthy.

John Oberg

John Oberg is a social media professional, influencer and animal advocate dedicated to making the world a kinder place for animals by utilizing the power of social media. He recently launched his own independent project for animals through Patreon. Prior to that, John served as Director of New Media and Director of Communications for various organizations in the animal advocacy movement. In both of these roles, John oversaw social media for the organizations which led to a tenfold increase in following in both; as well as over 1 billion views of content posted to these pages respectively.

Kahtia Howard

Kahtia Howard has over nine years of experience working with nonprofit organizations. She is currently an educator for a plant-based nonprofit and student at Southern New Hampshire University pursuing a Bachelor’s in Business Administration with a focus on Nonprofit Development. Her mission is to educate about the benefits of living a plant-based lifestyle while helping to provide organizations with the tools necessary to create systemic change. Kahtia spends her free time rescuing animals, volunteering, and guiding other’s on ways to make a difference.

Lana Weidgenant

Lana is the Co-President of a student organization at Johns Hopkins known as CARE, which works to raise awareness about the benefits of plant-based eating. As a Latina who grew up between South America and latino district of Florida, she also understands the cultural importance of food and the food justice implications of having access to culturally appropriate and healthy food options. As the Co-President of her cultural organization at Johns Hopkins, she has worked within the Multicultural Leadership Council and Latin American Studies department, encouraging the inclusion of plant-based dishes that are healthy and culturally appropriate.

Lauren Belyeu

Lauren is the Digital Outreach Manager for NutritionFacts.org, an NPO that strives to deliver unbiased, evidence-based information on optimal nutrition for health to the public. Her background is in digital advertising (with experience in SEO, email strategy and data analysis), and her passion lies in healing through plant-based nutrition. She currently resides in Cape Town, South Africa, where she earned her degree in Commerce, at the University of Cape Town.

Manny Rutinel

Manny Rutinel is a J.D. candidate at Yale Law School with a course load focused on Animal and Environmental Law. Manny has worked as an Economist for the US Army Corps of Engineers, which included a several month work detail at the Institute for Water Resources as well as a deployment to Puerto Rico as a First Responder after Hurricane Maria. In 2018, Manny interned in farm animal protection movement. Manny holds a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology, a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, and minors in Chemistry and Philosophy from the University of Florida. He also holds a Master of Science in Applied Economics from Johns Hopkins University.

Rachel Black

Rachel Black attended Temple University where she received BFA in painting. Rachel has worked for two animal welfare nonprofits advocating for healthier food options, enacting Meatless Mondays in four school districts, organized dozens of community events around compassionate living, and helped grow a thriving network of volunteer activists around the country, mentoring them to advocate for a healthier, more environmentally friendly and compassionate way of living through plant-based eating. Rachel is currently giving presentations on the devastating effect of modern animal agriculture in high schools and colleges and is also a teaching assistant at a Charter School in Philadelphia.

Sammy Fries

Sammy Fries has a background in digital marketing and is an experienced campaigner in animal welfare, plant-based foods, and digital content. He earned his degree in advertising from Florida State in three years. Sammy’s experience spans SEO, blogging, e-mail, mobile marketing, and paid ads. He has acted as a consultant and worked for various socially conscious organizations. Sammy also served as an Engagement Manager for Vox’s Future Perfect section which discussed about big issues through the lens of Effective Altruism. He's happy to bring these skills to help us more effectively reach more people.

Santerra Holler

Santerra Holler is a University of Washington graduate with a Bachelors in Business Administration, with a focus in Accounting and a minor in economics. She also holds a Master’s in Public Affairs from The Evans School of Public Policy and Governance. There she focused in Non-profit Management and Economic Analysis with a special focus in Project Management. She has maintained a presence in the movement for nine years and sanctuaries local to Seattle. She is passionate about combining her business development background with her drive to reduce animal suffering across all mediums.

Sophia Deluz

Sophia Deluz is an animal rights activist and a New York City Grassroots Coordinator building community for the voiceless. She plans events promoting plant-based eating in the United States as well as in Colombia by founding the Vegfest Bogota. Sophia delivers speeches about factory farming and how easily enjoy a compassionate diet. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Media from New York University and currently lives in Manhattan with her companion cat, Timoteo.

Vasu Abhiraman

Vasu Abhiraman is a communications professional, policy analyst, political strategist, and attorney who organizes at the intersection of law, policy, and technology. He currently serves as a voting rights advocacy consultant with Fair Fight Action, having recently served as chief writer for the Stacey Abrams for Governor campaign and as an expert advisor to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property. Vasu was raised in Georgia meat-free. He is passionate about bolstering the intersection between plant-based advocacy and broader social justice movements.