The Animals & Society Institute, an independent human-animal relationship think tank dedicated to improving the lives of animals and people through research and analysis, is excited to announce the election of our new members of the Board of Directors who will help us accomplish our vision of a compassionate world where animals flourish.

Thomas Aiello, PhD, is a professor of history and African American studies at Valdosta State University, Valdosta, GA, and the author of 16 books and dozens of peer-reviewed journal articles. He is currently defending his second PhD dissertation, one in anthrozoology, at the University of Exeter. He has a long publishing record in the discipline of history and African American studies and served on the board of the Louisiana Historical Association. He is currently president-elect of the board of the Georgia Association of Historians. Aiello is also the loving companion of three pigs (Sooie, Hank, and Backpack), five cats (Pumpkin, Funny Feet, Prince Puma, Grey, and Buckley), two dogs (Ollie and Bug), and one human (Pickle). He also supports two additional pigs (Lola and Wilbur) at Rooterville Animal Sanctuary in Melrose, FL.

Kimberly Spanjol, Ph.D., is a researcher and professor of Criminal Justice and Sociology at Iona College in New Rochelle, New York, as well as a licensed mental health counselor and behavior analyst with nearly 30 years of clinical and teaching experience. She specializes in Green/Non-Speciesist Criminology, Humane Education, and Individual/Systemic Behavior Change and has developed and teaches courses such as Animals and Criminal Justice, Animal and Human Health, Species Justice, Environmental Crime, and Environmental Justice.  She is currently developing an Ethical Animal Assisted Intervention Clinical Training Program and Critical Animal Studies minor program that examine the intersections between Human Rights, Animal Protection, and Environmental Preservation. Kimberly and her husband Jim are the guardians of three dogs, Django, Lucy, and Ella. Django was found tied to a pole in New York City, Lucy was rescued from a North Carolina puppy mill, and Ella was found severely injured in a box left on the side of a Texas road.  Although Ella lost a leg, she happily zooms around and loves humans so much that she is now Kimberly’s canine therapy partner. The whole family are advocates for all animals and a vegan, cruelty-free  lifestyle.

The Animals & Society Institute, a 501(c)(3) organization, advances human knowledge to improve animal lives. We are the leader in translating research on human-animal interaction into practice and promoting evidence-based approaches that get results. We also promote the study of human-animal relationships through education and public policy while striving to end animal abuse. ASI has worked to advance academic and professional projects and partnerships for more than 30 years, including the publication of two academic journals, Society and Animals, and the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science.

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