Lisa Franzetta leads ALDF’s communication team, spreading the word about the critical issues of animal abuse that drive ALDF’s lawsuits, casework, and outreach in the field of animal law to ALDF supporters, the general public, online communities, the media, and legal influencers and policy makers. She works with reporters and high profile supporters like Kristen Bauer van Straten, Willie Nelson, and Ashley Judd to promote ALDF’s lifesaving work.
Lisa helps design campaigns that will allow ALDF members to take action in support of the organization’s legal work to help animals–from dogs in puppy mills, to captive tigers and elephants, to the nameless millions suffering in laboratories and on factory farms. She also edits ALDF’s print newsletter (The Animals’ Advocate) and helps create new brochures and social media initiatives to reach friends of ALDF on their law school campuses, in their legal practices, and in their communities.
Before she came to ALDF, Lisa worked for PETA, coordinating their international anti-fur and anti-leather campaigns. In college and afterward, she volunteered at animal shelters, including the Providence Animal Rescue League and the San Francisco SPCA. She has held press conferences on animal issues in the U.S. and abroad and has been interviewed by CBS News, The New York Times, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The International Herald Tribune, and countless other national and international news outlets. An animal and nature lover at heart, Lisa was prompted to become a vegetarian in high school, when she refused to dissect a frog in her sophomore biology class, and she is proud to have earned her biology degree from Brown University without dissecting a single animal. Lisa has been vegan since 1999, and counts herself in the proud community of vegan marathoners. She is exceedingly fond of her cats, cats in general, cooking, scouting out new vegan hotspots, and “supporting” purveyors of fine vegan footwear.
Megan Backus spreads the word about ALDF’s work for animals through social media and other platforms, including Facebook, Causes.com, and Change.org, by creating pledges, petitions, and fundraising campaigns that allow supporters to directly engage with ALDF campaigns. Megan also provides resources for media outlets, individuals in need, and ALDF members. In addition to connecting with reporters and bloggers to publicize recent updates on the latest in animal law, Megan also oversees ALDF’s annual National Justice for Animals Week.
Prior to working for ALDF, Megan was a youth volunteer coordinator with the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County in California. She received a B.A. in communications with an emphasis in public relations from Sonoma State University and has always been an animal lover. Her passion for animal rights started in 2005 when she transitioned from vegetarian to vegan. As she researched, she learned about the horrors of the meat and dairy industries. When the volunteer program she worked for was terminated in 2007, she knew she wanted to steer her career path towards one that would help animals. Megan once volunteered for Noah’s B’Ark North Rescue, where she fostered and later adopted two Chihuahuas named Betty and Peanut. She shares her home with a third Chihuahua named Ruby and a fluffy orange kitty named Murray.
Ian Elwood works on ALDF’s online communications, including aldf.org, action alerts, and social networks, ensuring that ALDF is the go-to online source for animal law news, resources, and advocacy. Specializing in multimedia production, Ian’s talents include filmmaking with a focus on animal advocacy and social justice issues as well as graphic design, web design, and audio production projects.
Previously, Ian worked for International Rivers, CorpWatch, Media Alliance, and other nonprofit organizations, and is an expert at creating and managing tools used for social change. Ian holds a master’s degree in Media Studies and a bachelor’s degree in Arts & Social Change from New College of California. Ian is active in the animal protection movement and was a speaker at the first Conscious Eating Conference at UC Berkeley in 2012. He has been awarded several grants for his work, including a grant from the Farm Animal Rights Movement and A Well-Fed World for innovations in animal advocacy campaigning. Ian was also the winner of a Sunlight Foundation Grant for technological innovation. His writing and multimedia work have been published by the San Francisco Bay Guardian, the Oakland Tribune, VegNews, Vegansaurus and more.
Drawing upon a belief that “animals need people to be their voices,” Ian is a House Rabbit Society educator and volunteer with Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary. He helps rabbits find loving homes and teaches others how to care for domesticated rabbits as companions. His animal activism and vegan advocacy were initially sparked by adopting rabbits from a municipal shelter, and meeting a rescued pig named Wallace.
Jennifer Molidor writes in many genres to promote ALDF’s mission to various audiences and she works closely with the communications director and the executive director to do so. For example, she writes speeches as well as feature stories, opinion pieces for national newspapers, attorney profiles, press releases, action items, individual interviews, legislative appeals, grant proposals, blog entries, ALDF’s member newsletter (The Animals’ Advocate), and provides social media support.
As a college English professor, Jennifer has spent many years designing and teaching innovative courses in literature, film, writing, and critical thinking. She is an English instructor at San Francisco State University and has previously been a tenure-track professor at Kansas State University, and an instructor at Indiana University and the University of Notre Dame. She holds a Ph.D in English and Irish Studies from the University of Notre Dame and the Keough Institute for Irish Studies. Her academic work explores the arc of state-sponsored violence against women and recovers radical female activists and writers in Irish political history. Jennifer has been an invited guest speaker at many universities around the world, presented papers at international and domestic conferences, and her award-winning research has been published in peer-reviewed journals and books. Her humor essays and her articles about relationships between mothers and daughters have been published widely online.
Passionate about fighting abuse and injustice, Jennifer has volunteered rape-crisis assistance as a certified sexual assault victim’s advocate for Sexual Offense Services, led fundraising campaigns for no-kill animal shelters like Pet Refuge, and participated in pet-assisted therapy programs with the Sonoma County Humane Society for neglected elderly guests at convalescent hospitals. The issues that compel her most involve conservation and wildlife management. She is a martial arts enthusiast and shares her home with a beautiful Doberman-Lab puppy named Posy in the foothills of the Mayacamas.