Program Advisory Committee

AR2019 Program Advisory Committee

We are excited to announce a new structure to the process of organizing the Animal Rights National Conference program. This year's Conference Chair and Program Manager will consult with a Program Advisory Committee comprised of longtime dedicated activists with knowledge of the animal rights movement and the conference, as well as offer expertise in a variety of areas.

The committee will be asked for feedback throughout various stages of program planning including speaker selection, workshop & plenary topics, and program structure. Please note that individual committee members do not have final decision-making authority, therefore not all speakers and sessions are necessarily endorsed or approved by each member.

The mission of the AR2019 Program Advisory Committee is as follows:

  • To ensure that speakers and program topics maintain the vision that animals have the right to be free from all forms of human exploitation. As such, all committee members must be in alignment with this vision.
  • To ensure that the program is being crafted to include variety, diversity, and proper representation of all sectors of the movement as best as possible within the AR2019 program.
Even as we regularly consult with the Advisory Committee, we strive to be transparent in general and welcome feedback from anyone who has experience within the animal rights movement or who has previously attended the conference.

pattrice jones

pattrice jones coordinates VINE Sanctuary, an LGBTQ-led farmed animal sanctuary caring for more than 600 animals while working for social and environmental justice as well as animal liberation. Prior to co-founding the sanctuary in 2000, pattrice participated in a variety of social change movements dating back to the 1970s and also taught college and university courses on the theory and practice of effective activism. As an internationally recognized ecofeminist scholar, pattrice lectures widely on the linkages between animal exploitation and social problems. pattrice’s publications include two books — The Oxen at the Intersection (Lantern, 2014) and Aftershock: Confronting Trauma in a Violent World (Lantern, 2007) — as well as numerous contributions to edited collections, including Animaladies  (Bloomsbury, 2018); Animal Oppression and Capitalism (Praeger, 2017); Ecofeminism (Bloomsbury, 2014); Sister Species (University of Illinois Press, 2011); Minding the Animal Psyche (Spring Journal, 2010); Contemporary Anarchist Studies (Routledge, 2009); Igniting a Revolution (AK Press, 2006); and Terrorists or Freedom Fighters?  (Lantern, 2004).


Indra Lahiri

Indra Lahiri founded Indraloka Animal Sanctuary in 2005 after decades of traveling around the world rescuing thousands of animals from dire circumstances and sharing their stories. Since 2014 she has volunteered her time as a consultant, helping other sanctuaries to succeed. She has also taught, mentored, coached and keynote addressed tens of thousands of people on a range of topics that are always, at their core, based on ethical leadership and compassion for all. Her award-winning blog, which chronicles sacred moments with rescued animals, is followed by tens of thousands of readers on every continent.

Prior to devoting herself full-time to animal rescue, as the founder of Global Inclusion Strategies, Indra provided expert coaching and consulting on communicating across differences. She is the author of several academic and industry publications on cultural competence, diversity and inclusion, and leadership.


Erica Meier

Erica Meier is the executive director of Compassion Over Killing (COK), a non-profit animal protection organization based in Washington, DC.

Since 1995, COK has worked to expose farmed animal abuse and promote veg-friendly eating by employing a variety of strategies, including hard-hitting undercover investigations, groundbreaking pro-active litigation, successful corporate campaigns, and empowering public outreach programs.

In addition to ending the egg industry’s misleading “Animal Care Certified” claim, under Erica’s leadership, COK has persuaded food giants including Subway, Dunkin Donuts, BOCA Foods and Morningstar Farms to add vegan options to their menus. Erica has also appeared in several major news stories on CNN, ABC’s Nightline News, the Washington Post, LA Times, and more.

These accomplishments along with many more earned her the coveted National Animal Rights Hall of Fame award in 2013.


Unny Nambudiripad

Unny Nambudiripad facilitates events to strengthen the animal advocacy movement including meditations, wellness retreats, and a gender justice event. His aim is to develop a more compassionate, loving, and just animal advocacy movement. Formerly, he co-founded and served as the Executive Director of Compassionate Action for Animals of Minneapolis, Minnesota. He has conducted investigations on factory farms, co-founded Twin Cities Veg Fest, fostered leadership with hundreds of activists, and was awarded the Henry Spira Grassroots Animal Rights Activist award in 2013.