About Mercy For Animals
Together we will end factory farming.
Inspiring Compassion. Ending Cruelty.
Mercy For Animals is dedicated to preventing cruelty to farmed animals and promoting compassionate food choices and policies.
Imagine a world free of cruelty, a world in which we nurture our bodies, minds, and spirits with wholesome, healthy food that is kind to animals and sustainable for our planet. MFA believes that world is possible. In fact, it is inevitable if we work together to elevate humanity to its fullest potential.
We are on the frontlines fighting to protect farmed animals. From factory farms to corporate boardrooms, courts of justice to courts of public opinion, Mercy For Animals is there to speak up against cruelty and for compassion.
Your Money at Work
Nearly 79 cents of every dollar spent by Mercy For Animals goes directly to programs that save animals. The remainder is used to grow MFA’s size and capacity so we can help even more animals in the future.
Our Leadership Team
Changing Hearts. Changing Minds. Changing the World.
Leah Garcés serves as MFA's president. Leah has nearly 20 years of leadership experience in the animal protection movement. She oversaw international campaigns in 14 countries at the World Society for the Protection of Animals and launched Compassion in World Farming in the United States. Leah is also on the advisory boards of Encompass and Seattle Food Tech.
Leah lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with her husband, three kids, and two cats.
Lucas AlvarengaSenior Vice President, International
Lucas Alvarenga serves as MFA’s senior vice president of international programs. Born and raised in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Lucas has extensive marketing experience and co-founded an e-commerce company. When Lucas decided to dedicate his life to reducing suffering, he launched pro-vegan projects in Brazil, including a 21-Day Meatless Challenge in partnership with the Brazilian Vegetarian Society. Lucas joined MFA on his 15th anniversary as a vegetarian. He led MFA’s growth in South America’s largest country for three years. In his current role, Lucas uses this experience to build MFA’s work in other regions of the world.
LeAnn HarrisSenior Vice President, Support
LeAnn Harris serves as MFA’s senior vice president of support. Her role provides strategic leadership to our support areas of communications, creative, optimization, and administration. In various industries from broadcast media to financial services, she has gained years of experience driving organizational growth and efficiencies. She is grateful for the opportunity to give a voice to the voiceless and help further our mission. LeAnn lives in Southern California and loves vegan burgers, her morning coffee, and discovering new cruelty-free fashion brands.
Air CopelandSenior Vice President, Programs
Airrion Copeland aka Air serves as MFA’s senior vice president of programs. Air has over 12 years of experience in strategic program direction, primarily in the health and wellness sector. Air implemented a plant-based nutrition and yoga program developed by Dr. Dean Ornish at UCLA Health and has produced several award-winning documentaries, including the critically acclaimed film White Wash, a history of African American surfers, narrated by Ben Harper with an original score by The Roots.
Lindsay WolfVice President of Investigations
A former undercover investigator, Lindsay Wolf has gone behind the closed doors of factory farms, pet stores, vivisection labs, and other facilities to expose animal abuse. She is currently MFA's vice president of investigations.
Ari SolomonVice President of Social Impact
Ari Solomon is MFA's vice president of social impact, managing all things social media. He also serves as the liaison to celebrities involved in MFA’s campaigns. Ari is a prolific writer whose work appears regularly on The Huffington Post and has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, and The Advocate. Ari’s videos on veganism, including Sh*t Vegans Say, have become viral sensations, with nearly 2 million combined views.
Jake MortonVice President of Creative
Geetika SripathiVice President of Optimization
Geetika Sripathi is MFA's vice president of optimization. With a background in integrated marketing communications and digital media, Geetika applies best practices from the corporate sector to advocate for farmed animals. A lifelong vegetarian, Geetika felt compelled to go vegan after seeing shocking undercover footage of the dairy and egg industries. She lives in New York City with her rescued pup, Mookie.
Lena LudwigVice President of Administration
Lena Ludwig is our vice president of administration, spearheading efforts to maintain a strong infrastructure. Lena oversees the organization's policies, operations, and finances. She has been vegan for almost two decades. Although she flourished in the corporate sector, Lena's true calling is to be a career animal rights activist. With her experience and passion united, Lena becomes more inspired and dedicated every day as part of MFA's team.
Jesse MarksVice President of Corporate Engagement
Jesse Marks is MFA’s vice president of corporate engagement. He leads a team working with major food companies and government institutions to eliminate cruel practices from their supply chains and to increase the market share for plant-based food. Jesse has been in the animal protection movement since 2002 and has over a decade of professional experience in advocacy, campaigns, and communications for animals. Originally from Australia, Jesse was previously the director of farmed animal advocacy at Animals Australia, where he helped pioneer corporate engagement in the region, develop innovative new outreach tactics, and build cutting-edge digital advocacy tools. Having moved numerous times to be where he could best serve animals, Jesse now calls home wherever his wife, Karen, and their rescue dog, Nina, are.
Magnolia MartínezManaging Director, Latin America
Magnolia Martínez is MFA’s managing director for Latin America. She became vegan in 2004, thanks to Rita, a dog she rescued from the streets while living in Mexico. Before joining MFA as a volunteer in 2013, Magnolia focused her career on social services and research. She was born in Colombia and currently lives in Texas with her husband, Mike; five dogs (Juana, Pelusa, K.C., Olivia, and Pablo); and Julia the cat.
Liz QuickDirector of Development
Liz Quick serves as MFA's director of development and supervises all MFA fundraising efforts and development staff. Liz went vegan over five years ago, after becoming aware of the harsh realities of factory farming. She lives in sunny Los Angeles and is a proud pug mama to her very, very lazy pug, Penny.
Kenny TorrellaDirector of Communications
Kenny Torrella serves as MFA’s director of communications. He works with MFA’s team of writers and editors and has garnered media coverage for farmed animals in mainstream news outlets, such as the Associated Press, The Washington Post, and Fortune magazine. After watching undercover investigation footage from factory farms and slaughterhouses 10 years ago, Kenny became vegan and has been active for animals since. He lives in Washington, DC, with his partner and their rescue dog, Rihana.
Melanie HeymansDirector of People, Culture, and Diversity
Melanie Heymans serves as MFA’s director of people, culture, and diversity. Melanie and her team are responsible for overall administration of the people operations functions for all MFA offices. They drive initiatives that support and strengthen our organizational culture and ensure a diverse and inclusive work environment for all team members. Originally from Austria, Melanie moved to the U.S. in 2010 with her husband and has worked with several mission-driven and nonprofit organizations to build strong people operations functions and foster supportive, diverse, and inclusive cultures. Melanie lives in Washington state and enjoys travel, good food, exploring nature, and living an active and compassionate life.
Kelcey Meadows-LucasPhilanthropy Officer
Kelcey Meadows-Lucas is one of MFA's philanthropy officers, helping our donors fulfill their dreams of ending farmed animal cruelty. Adopting a feisty terrier 15 years ago opened her heart to all animals. Kelcey soon became vegan and dedicated her life to helping animals. She brings more than a decade of fundraising experience to her position. Kelcey shares her home with her husband and toddler son.
John KarasPhilanthropy Officer
John Karas is MFA's philanthropy officer for the East Coast and the South. He works with friends and supporters who wish to match their personal philanthropic goals with MFA strategic initiatives. John is a graduate student researcher of social change and brings more than a decade of development experience to his position. John and his wife are parents of three great kids and share their home with adopted cats Rico and Captain, and rescue labs Baylor and Lola.
Tracy KeysPhilanthropy Officer
Tracy Keys is one of MFA’s philanthropy officers, helping donors make the greatest impact for animals with their giving. Prior to joining the MFA team, Tracy was executive director at the Newport Beach Public Library Foundation. Tracy received her BA in comparative literature from the University of California at Irvine. Her passion for animal rights began after reading Peter Singer’s Animal Liberation and participating in campus vivisection protests. She lives in Laguna Beach with her husband, two mixed-breed cats, and a Shih-Tzu rescued from the local shelter where she volunteers every Sunday.