Indra Lahiri, President
Indra Lahiri, PhD is the founder of Indraloka Animal Sanctuary as well as a speaker, author, consultant, and executive coach. She has over twenty years of experience rescuing thousands of animals of a wide variety of species, in countries around the world. In addition, she has taught, mentored, coached and keynote addressed more than 10,000 people on a range of topics that are always, at their core, based on ethical leadership and compassion for all. Her award-winning blog is followed by nearly 20,000 subscribers on every continent.. Indra has been a featured speaker at both the National and International Animal Rights Conferences for the last several years. Indra is co-founder and co-organizer of the newly formed Global Coalition of Farm Sanctuaries, which creates a safety net for animals in sanctuaries, a support system for those running sanctuaries, and a simpler means for sanctuaries to communicate and coordinate with one another.
In addition to her work with rescue animals, as the founder of Global Inclusion Strategies, Indra provides expert coaching and support on communicating across differences. She is the author of an academic book chapter, a critically acclaimed manager’s guidebook, several research reports, and numerous articles on cultural competence and leadership. Having experienced firsthand the benefits of close friendships with animals, Indra has expanded her focus to helping other humans reap the same rewards. Indra is now combining her two loves by offering inspirational keynote talks, one-on-one coaching, workshops, and retreats to help humans and other animals communicate.
The sanctuary is not named after Indra, but rather she is named after the Hindu God Indra who created Indraloka (Sanskrit name for the heaven for the Gods). She has dedicated her life to helping traumatized animals rediscover joy, love, and trust.
Johnny Braz, Vice President
Johnny is a documentary filmmaker, environmentalist, and yogi. He began his filmmaking career in 1996 working as a camera operator with Clint Eastwood on “The Monterrey Jazz Festival: 40 Legendary Years.” Most recently, he has released “Play it Again,” a film about a legendary basketball tournament, “Peace, Love & Animals,” a documentary film that has been called “a lyrical message of hope” that premiered to rave reviews in Scranton and at the International Animal Rights Conference 2013 in Luxembourg, and “Truckin’”, an uplifting glimpse into the lives of animals rescued moments before their demise. Truckin’ premiered this year at both the National and International Animal Rights Conferences and is currently being translated into three languages. In 2016, “Truckin’” was awarded an Impact DOC Award of Recognition. Additionally, he has produced several short animal rescue films that have garnered a worldwide audience and has also directed a number of episodes of “Yoga Journeys,” a children’s program on PBS TV station WVIA.
Johnny holds a deep reverence for the earth. His years of experience designing and installing alternative energy systems for homes and businesses culminated in touring twice with Bonnie Raitt as her environmental spokesperson.
For the past five years, he has brought these gifts together, creating film and still portraits that reveal his reverence for all life and the earth herself, telling the story of Indraloka’s many rescues through his art. Braz is a teacher at heart. All of his work, whether it be mucking stalls, filming a rescue, feeding a once-traumatized chicken by hand, or teaching others how to meditate, is mindful, kind, and filled with lessons through example. Johnny is honored to put his skills to work raising awareness about animal sentience worldwide.
Sheila N. Cutler, Executive Founding Board Member
Originally from Columbus, Ohio, Sheila studied Respiratory Therapy at Columbus State University and has been employed by numerous veterinarians. She has served on the Board of The Montessori School of Scranton and is founding Vice President of The Calligraphers Guild of Northeastern Pennsylvania. She currently sits on the board of The Jewish Family Service and was chosen volunteer of the year for 2012.
Lisa Starr, Executive Founding Board Member
Lisa Starr, a licensed psychologist and devoted animal activist, earned a Bachelor of Social Work degree from Pennsylvania State University and Master’s degree in Psychology from Marywood University. Her family, longtime residents of northeast Pennsylvania, established a tradition of philanthropic and civic responsibility. Lisa’s father served as a county commissioner for 16 years.
Her husband, Sam, is a prominent local businessperson. Lisa formerly served on the boards of the Scranton Counseling Center, United Cerebral Palsy of Lackawanna County, Alcohol and Drug Abuse Council, Temple Israel and Temple Israel Sisterhood.
Lucia Kubik, Animal Rescue and Outreach
Lucia Kubik MSN, RN earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Eastern University and a Master’s Degree from Duquesne University. Lucia is a nurse-educator, who has been published in various journals and magazines, and also worked as a clinical editor for Wolters Kluwer.
An avid animal lover, Lucia has been rescuing animals from a young age. Her first rescue came after she fell in love with 4 rabbits she and her family were caring for. One morning while sitting with her furry friends, she was told to “pick one.” Confused, she asked why and was told they would be having one for supper the following evening. She was shocked, and before sunrise, she loaded them onto her bike and headed to a friend’s house who would keep them safe forever.
Originally from Montreal, she loves to travel and learn about other cultures and lifestyles. Lucia discovered Indraloka Animal Sanctuary at a GreenFest in Philadelphia in 2015, and has been a very active volunteer ever since. She has served as a District Leader for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), mentored those new to the vegan lifestyle with the Peace Advocacy Network (PAN), and is on the planning committees for various conferences and festivals which promote kindness to animals and the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle.