Animal Law Program
Pamela Hart oversees ALDF’s programs dedicated to the development of animal law in academia and legal practice. These programs include supporting over 184 Student Animal Legal Defense Fund (SALDF) chapters, managing ALDF’s extensive Attorney Volunteer Network, and partnering with firms and attorneys interested in developing animal law opportunities with ALDF. Additionally, she was a Lecturer of Animal Law at the University of Chicago Law School for three years. Pam also helped launch the collaboration between ALDF and Lewis & Clark Law School to produce the first-of-its-kind Center for Animal Law Studies (CALS). As a world-class animal law program, the Center for Animal Law Studies provides essential programs and services for law students under the guidance of experienced animal law professors and ALDF attorneys.
Prior to joining ALDF, Pam was in private practice and co-taught the first animal law course at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. While in law school, she cofounded Sheltering Animals of Abuse Victims (SAAV), a nonprofit animal protection organization dedicated to recognizing the role of animals in family violence. Pam is a frequent writer and speaker on animal law related issues, and has testified on a congressional panel regarding a federal Farm Animals Anti-Cruelty Act. She is frequently invited to be a guest judge at the National Animal Law Competition- most recently held at UCLA and Harvard Law Schools. Pam is currently co-authoring a book about animal law with Joyce Tischler and Kathy Hessler.
Kelly Levenda is a Staff Attorney and a 2013 graduate of Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon. During law school, she completed a research project on federal and state laws for Minnesota Voters for Animal Protection and participated as a Source Checker and Associate Editor on Animal Law Review. She served as Co-Director of the school’s Student Animal Legal Defense Fund Chapter, where she organized MeatOut, an annual vegan barbeque, and compiled the group’s bi-weekly Action Alerts that include animal related news, events, jobs, and volunteer opportunities. Kelly also worked with Farm Sanctuary on the Someone Project, where she compiled a scientific survey of cognitive abilities of animals through Lewis and Clark’s Animal Law Clinic.
Kelly completed her Bachelor’s Degree at University of Illinois where she studied Animal Science. She has been active in the animal protection movement her entire adult life, and is dedicated to helping animals through her career. She completed an animal behavior research project at the Champaign County Humane Society, was an active member of the University of Illinois Campus Vegetarian Society, and volunteered for Mercy for Animals. Her paper, “Legislation to Protect the Welfare of Fish,” which addresses the capacity of fish to feel pain, was published in Animal Law Review. She hopes to continue using her scientific background to improve conditions on farms for farmed animals.
Tom Linney collaborates with ALDF’s Litigation and Criminal Justice Programs to assign appropriate pro bono counsel to ALDF projects and cases and is responsible for marketing ALDF’s Animal Law Pro Bono Program to interested attorneys and law firms. Tom also provides support to professors interested in teaching animal law and helps law students transitioning into the legal profession get involved in animal law. In addition, Tom has been a speaker at the national Taking Action for Animals conference and the Animal Law Conference at Lewis & Clark Law School. He has served as a judge at the National Animal Law Competitions and presented to state bar sections, law firms, and SALDF chapters throughout the country about ALDF and the growing field of animal law.
Tom is a graduate of The University of Texas School of Law. Inspired by ALDF staff members he met at an Equal Justice Works conference in Washington D.C. in 2005, Tom returned to UT Law where he established a Student Animal Legal Defense Fund (SALDF) chapter, successfully petitioned the school to add an animal law course, and coordinated several successful projects as SALDF President. While Tom was in law school, he gained experience working for Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid and an animal law practitioner. Tom also became the first student to receive a Baron & Budd Fellowship from UT Law to pursue animal protection work, and served as legislative intern for the Texas Humane Legislation Network. He is currently co-host of the radio show Animal Concerns of Texas.
Liberty Mulkani coordinates events for ALDF, particularly ALDF’s Animal Law Conferences in conjunction with the Center for Animal Law Studies (CALS) at Lewis & Clark Law School. She is responsible for planning and organizing budgets, venues, lodging, on-site event logistics such as registration, catering, and awards, and coordinating with speakers. She also organizes Animal Law Receptions for ALDF at the Association of American Law Schools Annual Meeting and Taking Action for Animals. Liberty has worked with ALDF for more than a decade, first as a volunteer and then as the Student Liaison for the Animal Law Program. Her work organizing ALDF’s 2004 Future of Animal Law Conference at Yale Law School was the impetus for her position as ALDF event coordinator. In 2005, Liberty was also a key assistant for ALDF in the care of hundreds of dogs rescued from the notorious North Carolina hoarders in the landmark ALDF v. Woodley case.
Liberty received her M.Ed. in humane education from the Institute for Humane Education (IHE) and Cambridge College. Her thesis was titled “Men and Vegetarianism: Motivations and Barriers to Becoming Vegetarian.” She draws upon this education to harmonize with issues in animal protection, environmental protection, and human rights topics. Liberty is also the President of the Board of Directors for the Vancouver Humane Society. She coordinated a symposium on alternatives to animal testing for the Environmental Law Institute and the Johns Hopkins University Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing. This issue, testing upon animals in laboratories, was what led Liberty to become vegetarian at age 11. Liberty has been a vegan for over a decade, and continues to care deeply about the fight against animal testing, farmed animal issues, and animals in entertainment. She and her husband live with two rescued cats, Quetico and Amelie.
Nicole Pallotta is the Student Programs Coordinator for ALDF’s Animal Law Program. In this capacity, she works with law students who share ALDF’s mission to protect the lives and advance the interests of animals through the legal system, including members of over 190 Student Animal Legal Defense Fund (SALDF) chapters. Nicole helps law students form and maintain chapters and assists them with projects like getting animal law courses added to the curriculum at their schools. She also oversees ALDF’s animal law clerkship, scholarship, and project grant programs.
Prior to joining ALDF, Nicole completed her Ph.D. in sociology at the University of Georgia, where she developed and taught the school’s first Animals and Society course. Her dissertation explored the process of becoming an animal rights activist, including key social factors and biographical experiences that led movement participants to resist the dominant cultural narrative regarding human-animal relations. Her writing has appeared in Sociological Perspectives, Society and Animals, The Journal for Critical Animal Studies, The Portland Tribune, and Animal Wellness Magazine. Nicole lives in the extremely vegan-friendly city of Portland, OR, with her friend Teagan, a sweet little one-eyed German shepherd. She blogs at www.alec-story.com.