Board of Directors

Laurie Anderson

Laurie Anderson is a partner with Kundinger, Corder & Engle, P.C, a certified public accounting firm that provides audit, tax and consulting services exclusively to not-for-profit organizations. Laurie received her Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the University of Denver. In addition to serving on the board of the African Network for Animal Welfare, Laurie currently serves as board chair of the Colorado Nonprofit Development Center and is past chair of the Colorado Society of CPAs Not-for-Profit Conference. Prior to her public accounting career, she was employed by the U.S. Fish & Game and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Departments.

Sarah Bexell

Dr. Sarah M. Bexell has been engaged in wildlife conservation, conservation education and humane education for over 20 years. Currently the Director of Conservation Education at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, Research Scholar in Residence in the Institute for Human-Animal Connection at the University of Denver, and adjunct professor at Humane Society University and the University of Northern Colorado, she has developed programs, curricula and program evaluations related to conservation, animal behavior and education. She was instrumental in helping the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding and Chengdu Zoo establish their conservation and education departments. She has authored several publications to increase awareness of threats to other animals and co-authored the popular science book: Giant Pandas: Born Survivors with her colleague Dr. Zhang Zhihe.

Guillaume Bonn

Third generation of a French Family born in Madagascar, studied Politics and Economics in Montreal University and graduated from the International Centre of Photography in New York. Award winning Photographer and filmmaker who has for the last 20 years reported on conflict, social issues and the environment in Darfur, Congo, Burundi, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, Somalia, Mauritania and other countries. Author of three books and currently working on two new books, he is a Vanity Fair magazine contributor.

Rhea Dodd

Dr. Rhea Dodd has enjoyed a lifetime affinity for animals and nature. She earned her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from Colorado State University in 1992, and also holds a Master’s Degree in inter-species relationships from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She became certified in Veterinary Acupuncture in 2001 and in Veterinary Chiropractic in 2008. She owns, Gentle Vet, PC, a practice focused on behavior solutions and pain management in pets. Dr. Dodd lectures, teaches and writes about pet behavior and pain management topics. She has been featured on 9News, WB2, Channel 4, in the Denver Post, the Rocky Mountain News, the Denver Daily News and Colorado Parent. She is a popular speaker for such organizations as the Denver Dumb Friends League, the Cat Care Society, the Denver Veterinary Medical Association and Freedom Service Dogs. She serves as the Vice-President of the board of Africa Network for Animal Welfare-USA and on the Dog Protection Task Force.

Arielle Giddens

Arielle Giddens earned her MSW and Animal-Assisted Social Work Certificate from the University of Denver's Graduate School of Social Work in 2013. She has over seven years of experience working with children with special needs, ranging from oncology camps to equine-assisted therapy. She also has experience in advocacy, program development, and nonprofit management. While on a trip to Kenya during graduate school, Arielle began studying animal welfare and the impact it has on local communities. Her main focus shifted then to the relationship between animal welfare and community welfare. Humane education and Link violence are specific areas of interest to her within this field. Arielle currently works full-time for Foothills Animal Shelter, a local animal shelter in Golden, Colorado, as the volunteer coordinator and community event coordinator. In addition, she also works as the program assistant for the Animals and Human Health certificate program at the Institute for Human-Animal Connection (IHAC). Arielle has a love for all animals and especially enjoys spending time with her cat and two dogs.

David Gies (advisor to the ANAW-USA board)

David L. Gies works between Denver Colorado, U.S.A. and Nairobi Kenya to help establish the relationship and mechanism for people in the United States to work effectively in Africa. He is active in wildlife protection, human security and conflict resolution in Africa. He works to promote understanding for the value of the human animal connection, the welfare needs and humane treatment of food animals, building capacity for animal assisted therapy and ending the use of animals in medical research and testing. He has an undergraduate degree in Social Sciences is from Colorado State University, a M.S. Management of Rehabilitation Facilities from De Paul University, Chicago Illinois, and Masters in Public Administration (M.P.S.) from the University of Colorado at Denver.

Kristen Nelson

Kristen Nelson is originally from Salt Lake City, UT. She graduated with a bachelor’s in Music Therapy from Utah State Univeristy; however, her love for both social justice and animals, (including humans), led her to pursue a different career path. She obtained a Master’s in Social Work from University of Denver’s Graduate School of Social Work (GSSW) with a concentration on Animal Assisted Social Work. During her time at GSSW, she traveled to Kenya and China, and in both countries, looked at human-animal connection on an individual, community, and global level. Her life’s ambitions include animal rescue; addressing the social injustices that impact humans and other animals; and helping to combat environmental degradation. She currently works at the Humane Society of the United States’ Prairie Dog Coalition as a field technician.

Josphat Ngonyo

Currently; Chief Executive Officer for ANAW, member of the Ministerial Task Force tasked to Develop the National Animal Welfare Policy and to Review CAP 360 legislation, Advisor to Kenya’s Vision 2030 on Environmental issues, Board member for Pan African Animal Welfare Alliance, Honorary Warden of the Kenya Wildlife Service, member of the Global Task Force for Farm Animal Welfare and Trade, member of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organizations (FA0) Gateway to Farm Animal Welfare Editorial Board, Founder and Past Executive Director for Youth for Conservation; Founder, Africa Network for Animal Welfare; appointed and in Kenya National Steering Committee to spearhead wildlife conservation and management policy and legislation review.

Richard Male

Richard Male is a recognized leader, trainer, and consultant, nationally and internationally, in the fields of leadership development, fundraising, community organizing, social justice and public policy for non-profit organizations, faith-based entities, private foundations, local municipalities and schools. Since 2000 he has served as president of a Colorado-based training, consulting and coaching company that bears his name, specializing in services for nonprofit and NGOs worldwide to survive and thrive in challenging times. For 40 years he has conducted training sessions, provided consultation, coached and mentored, and been a keynote speaker, teacher and facilitator to literally thousands of organizations. These include faith-based, indigenous, and grassroots community organizations as well as working with people at the neighborhood, statewide, national and international levels. Rich has an undergraduate degree in economics from New York University and a Masters in Social Work from Washington University in St. Louis.

Nehemiah Rotich

Born in 1954, Nehemiah Rotich has wide expertise and experience in Environment at national and international levels, in areas including International environmental conventions, wildlife management and conservation, access and benefit sharing of genetic resources, Post Conflict reconstruction and resolutions; derived from work undertaken at United Nations (UN), and worked in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Somalia, Sudan and D R Congo. Nehemiah Rotich has managed a number of organizations and processes at global, regional, and National levels, and units of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). He has served as Kenya’s Ambassador/Permanent Representative to UNEP; Director of Kenya Wildlife Service, Executive Director East Africa Wildlife Society. Nehemiah is a member of some local and international conservation organizations, Vice Chairman KWS in 1989 -1999. Hon. Vice Chairman, Assisi Animal Foundation USA. Chairman Board of Directors of African Network for Animal welfare and the Eastern Africa Environmental Network; Director Eco-Prime Seekers Limited, MEKAN (E.A) Ltd and Blue Bill Ltd. He has been involved in international and local negotiations in natural resource management and chaired local and international working groups. Engagements include: Chairman, Taskforce on Wildlife security in Kenya, 2014; Review of the Wildlife and conservation Act 2013; Chairman Programme on Judicial Exchange on Wildlife crimes 2013/14. Team Leader UNEP in the UN Joint Assessment process for Somalia 2006. Chairman Kenya National Environment Action Plan (NEAP) Task Force on Wildlife, Forestry and Biotechnology 1992, Co-Chair Human Wildlife Conflict Review Group-Kenya 1994. Awards: Presidential Award of the Order of Moran of the burning spear (MBS) for distinguished service in conservation in Kenya, United Nations Country Team Award for contribution to United Nations Development Assistance Framework for Kenya, Eastern Africa Environmental Network (EAEN) Leadership Award, and Wildlife life Clubs of Kenya Education Leadership Award. Amb. Rotich is author and coauthor of some publications and reports such as:

  • Wildlife security Task force Report- Lifting the Siege securing Kenya’s Wildlife 2014
  • Access to Genetic Resources in Africa 2009
  • Water Towers of eastern Africa, policy, issues and practice 2008
  • Sudan Post Conflict Environment Assessment 2007
  • Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources 2005, Traditional knowledge
  • Resettlement impacts on local communities 2005

Philip Tedeschi

Some of Philip Tedeschi’s best friends are animals. He has studied and teaches about the intricate relationship between people, domestic and wild animals and the natural world. Tedeschi is the Executive Director of The Institute for Human-Animal Connection and coordinates the University of Denver's Graduate School of Social Work's Animal-Assisted Social Work Certificate program for Master of Social Work (MSW) students, as well as the Animals and Human Health online professional development certificate program. He also teaches MSW courses with emphasis on global conservation, one -health and environmental social work. He has many years of experience in non–traditional service and adventure based experiential learning including focus on animal welfare and anti-cruelty intervention.

Roberto Uttaro

I graduated from St. John Fischer College with a BA in History and Political Science and then spent the next sixteen years finding out what I did not want to do with my life before returning to graduate school at the University of Florida in 1991 where I received a MA and PhD in International Development Policy and Administration. My research in Malawi investigated whether structural adjustment policies were influencing people's faith in democracy. I taught at the University of Florida as well as at Santa Fe Community College from 2003 to 2009. In 2009 I accepted a lecturer’s position at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver where I teach both introductory and upper division classes. My interests have expanded beyond African politics into subject areas that include migrants and refugees, global political economy and global environmental politics. In 2013, I initiated the formation of a student organization called “A World With..” with the purpose of raising awareness about the illegal ivory trade and the potential extinction of elephants. It is now one of the largest student organizations on the DU campus.

Ruth Wambua

Ruth is a professional possessing over 11 years work experience in Audit and Compliance, Finance, Administration, Strategic planning and Risk Management working both at tactical and management positions in public and private sector organizations. She is currently heading the Compliance unit at Oxford University Press East Africa. Her immediate former appointment was at CARE International and was tasked with duties of overseeing Risk management, Compliance and Auditing. She has a wealth of experience in carrying out independent appraisals for compliance to rules, regulations, policies, procedures and standards. She is also proficient in Balance score card Strategic plan Management and holds a Bachelor of commerce in Accounting and Business Administration and in addition she is a Certified Public Accountant (Kenya), Certified Information Systems Auditor and a Certified Internal Quality Assessor. She is a member of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya and a Licentiate member of the Institute of Management of Information Systems.


Who We Are

Africa Network for Animal Welfare (ANAW) is a Pan-African Organization based in Kenya that promotes humane treatment of all animals and the well being of communities living with them.

Our Vision

To promote sustainability of animals and communities in Africa.

Our Mission

To partner with ANAW, and others, promoting an all Africa agenda, sustained by communities for conservation, compassion, protection and responsible care of all animals.

Help us show compassion, protection, and care for all animals.