Founder and President
Melanie Joy, Ph.D., Ed.M. is a Harvard-educated psychologist, professor of psychology and sociology at the University of Massachusetts Boston, celebrated speaker, and author of the award-winning book Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows, soon to be published in nine languages and a top book pick by television host Ellen DeGeneres. Dr. Joy was the eighth recipient of the Institute of Jainology’s Ahimsa Award (past recipients include the Dalai Lama and Nelson Mandela), which she was presented with in the House of Commons in London. She also received the Empty Cages Prize, presented by Milan city councilors in Italy.
Dr. Joy’s work has been featured on stations and programs including National Public Radio, PBS, the BBC, Radio Canada, Germany’s ARD (the world’s second-largest public broadcaster), Luxembourg’s RTL (Europe’s second-largest media production company), ABC Australia, and Good Morning Croatia. Her work has also been highlighted in publications including The New York Times, Canada’s Le Soleil and The Huffington Post Quebec, Süddheutsche Zeitung (Germany’s largest national subscription daily newspaper), Spiegel Online, Luxembourg’s Tageblatt, Italy’s Di la Repubblica and Le Scienze, Austria’s renowned Der Standard, Belgium’s De Standaard, Sweden’s Svenska Dagbladet, and Jana (Slovenia’s leading women’s magazine).
Dr. Joy has given her critically acclaimed carnism presentation across the United States and in sixteen other countries. She is also the author of Strategic Action for Animals, and she has written a number of articles on psychology, animal protection, and social justice. Dr. Joy is the founder and president of the Carnism Awareness & Action Network.
Michelle Garbato, M.A., is the executive director of CAAN. She is an industrial/organizational psychologist and has conducted a variety of studies on psychology, healthful living, animal protection, and leadership and has published and presented her work in both academic and non-academic venues. Michelle also has extensive professional and volunteer experience working with charitable organizations; she is highly active within her community, advocating and fundraising for humans and nonhumans in need.
Carol Misseldine is the development director for CAAN. She has been professionally engaged in leading environmental and animal protection initiatives for over thirty years. Since 2007 she has served as Director of Green Cities California and currently serves on the Advisory Board of Green Sangha and Kinship Circle.
In 2010, Carol became the first recipient of a graduate certification in Animal Policy and Advocacy from the Humane Society University and in 2013 she was appointed to the California State Council of the Humane Society of the United States.
Jessi VanPelt is the presentations coordinator for CAAN. She works as a graphic designer and is also studying organizational communication at Rollins College in Orange County, Florida. Jessi is the co-editor of Peace to all Creatures magazine and blog, and she serves on the boards of the animal protection organizations Animal Activists of Central Florida, Take Your Blinders Off, and Buddies for Life. Jessi also co-organizes nationally recognized vegan festivals and hosts charitable events and fundraisers.
Beth Lily Redwood, M.A., is the publications manager for CAAN. She holds a master’s degree in arts administration and a B.A. in psychology from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. She has been a graphic designer for over 20 years, and is also a photographer, digital artist, writer and editor. Beth has worked for clients in both the nonprofit and corporate sectors, and has volunteered with animal advocacy groups. Beth’s art and photography is featured in the National Museum of Animals and Society’s online exhibit, “Uncooped: Deconstructing the Domesticated Chicken.” Her photography and digital art can be viewed online at bethlilyredwood.com.
Director of Task Forces
Jennifer Greene is the director of task forces for CAAN. Jennifer has worked for the New York Coalition for Healthy School Food, served on the board of the Unitarian Universalist Animal Ministry, and is a certified instructor for the Food for Life program of Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.
CAAN Europe Coordinator
Jeff Mannes is the coordinator of CAAN Euorope. Jeff studies studies sociology, education, and gender at the University of Trier in Germany, and his focus is on the intersection of human sexuality, critical animal studies, and social justice. Jeff is also the cofounder and spokesperson of the Vegan Society of Luxembourg and he gives talks and writes articles about human-animal relations and carnism in German.
Research and Development Specialist
Chris Monteiro is the research and development specialist for CAAN. Chris studies social psychology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston and works as a research scholar in the psychology department. He has been awarded several grants for his innovative research projects, and he is currently heading up and working on studies which examine carnism, affect displacement, and authoritarianism. His research aims to empower social justice advocates by illuminating the psychological underpinnings of power dynamics and prosocial behavior.
Social Media Coordinator
Ellie Yamane is the social media coordinator for CAAN. Ellie studies animal communication and holistic health, and actively advocates veganism and plant based diet on the social media. She also volunteers her time at animal rescue organizations.
Abigail Mahnke is the administrative assistant for CAAN. She is a graduate of Columbia University and is the owner of The Outsource Resource, a staffing agency providing administrative and bookkeeping assistance to small companies. Abigail is also the assistant director of the Nutritional Research Foundation, a non-profit organization performing clinical research on the effects of a nutrient-dense, whole foods, plant-based diet on the prevention and reversal of disease.
Staff Writer and Editor
Tim Terhaar is the staff writer and editor for CAAN. He is a graduate of Brown University and currently works as a games content writer at a tech ed company. His work has been published in the Journal for Critical Animal Studies, The Capilano Review, Tiny Mix Tapes, and others.
Rob Silva is CAAN’s webmaster. He is also the co-founder and president of Vectra Creative, a cutting-edge website design and development company. Rob has 12 years of experience designing and implementing some of the most creative, innovative, and strategic websites on the Internet and is the creative and technological genius behind CAAN.