Indra Lahiri, Founder
Indra Lahiri, Ph.D. was called “a storyteller, dreamer, and friend of the animals,” by the Anishinaabe Medicine Man who adopted her into the tribe of the White Earth Nation, naming her “Ishkudeikwe” (Woman of the Fire). She has rescued thousands of animals from dire circumstances around the world. She tells their stories in her writing and speaking and lives amongst them between her travels. In the course of her decades of learning from the animals, Indra founded Indraloka Animal Sanctuary (2005) and since 2014 has volunteered her time as a consultant, helping other sanctuaries to succeed. In addition, she has 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. Indra has spoken at the Animal Rights National Conference and International Animal Rights Conference annually for the past several years, in addition to keynote addressing audiences as varied as Asian scientists, bloggers, vegfests, and peace activists.
Her award-winning blog, which chronicles sacred moments with rescued animals, is followed by tens of thousands of readers on every continent. Indra is grateful to have the opportunity to dedicate her life to helping traumatized animals rediscover joy, love, and trust.
Before 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 an academic book chapter, a critically acclaimed manager’s guidebook, several research reports, and numerous articles on cultural competence and leadership.
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).
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Johnny Braz, Creative Director
Johnny is a farm animal artist, documentary filmmaker, and yoga teacher, as well as visionary and Creative Director for Indraloka Animal Sanctuary. He began his filmmaking career in 1996 working as a camera operator with Clint Eastwood on “The Monterey Jazz Festival: 40 Legendary Years.”
In early 2016, he completed “Truckin’; the Story of Eddie Traffic”, an uplifting glimpse into the unique bliss experienced by a pig named Eddie, who was rescued just hours from slaughter. Other recent films include “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. 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.
As Indraloka’s Creative Director, Johnny brings 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.
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Tish Cardonick, Chief Administrative Officer
Leticia Davis Cardonick (Tish) is currently the Chief Administrative Officer at Indraloka Animal Sanctuary. Her primary roles are strategic planning, financial management, and human resource management. Prior to working at Indraloka Animal Sanctuary, Tish spent over twenty years working for large institutional investment firms providing operational, accounting, and administrative services for alternative focused portfolio management teams. The last two years spent with Morgan Stanley, she focused on operational strategic transformation, responsible for analyzing and improving processes and procedures across Morgan Stanley Investment Management. Tish earned her Masters in Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Finance from Rutgers University in New Jersey, and a Bachelors of Science with a Major in Finance and a Minor in Accounting from West Chester University in Pennsylvania. Tish has respect for all beings, and is excited to be a part of the mission of Indraloka.
Robin Olson, Director of Development
Robin joined Indraloka in July of 2020. She has been raising funds professionally for 16 years. Prior to working at Indraloka, Robin has worked for several children’s charities including Junior Achievement and Make-A-Wish. She holds an Executive MBA from St. Joseph’s University, and two bachelor’s degrees from Saint Louis University as well as a certificate of Fundraising Management from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.
Robin is originally from St. Louis, Missouri where she met her husband of 15 years. They live in Hatfield, PA with their 4 children. Robin is passionate about taking care of the planet and all who dwell on it, finding ways we can thrive together in harmony.
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Sarah Thornton, Director of Education
Sarah has been an Indraloka volunteer since 2014 and has served as Director of Education since 2018. She previously served as a youth sports instructor, a basketball coach for elementary school-aged students and junior high school girls, youth and adult running club coach, and a camp counselor and counselor supervisor. She holds a BM in Music Education from Susquehanna University and an MM in Music Education from Ithaca College. Sarah is a free-spirit dedicated to instilling joy and kindness in those around her through mindful listening, energy healing, music, and the power of unconditional love.
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Leslie Interlandi, DVM, Veterinarian
Leslie joins Indraloka in June 2022 to spearhead the sanctuary’s new veterinary clinic. As a Shelter Medicine specialist, Leslie brings the ideal skillset to diagnose, treat and care for problems specific to shelter animals as well as experience in general veterinary medicine. Leslie also holds Fear Free Veterinary Certification, a methodology that enables vets to reduce fear, anxiety and stress in animal patients, making vet care safer and more enjoyable for all involved.
Leslie has performed a wide range of surgeries and procedures, including spays and neutering, hernia repairs, tooth extractions and limb amputations. She has experience in treating diverse pathologies and has worked with numerous species, including equines, cows, goats, sheep, fowl, pigs, dogs and cats. After more than 25 years in her first career as a health analytics and marketing consultant, Leslie is now in a position to pursue her passion. Through practicing Shelter Medicine, Leslie is treating animals who have been abused, abandoned, injured and neglected—the animals who need her most.
Sylvia Chabala, Events and Community Outreach Coordinator
Sylvia joined the Indraloka team in April of 2022 as the Events and Community Outreach Coordinator. She graduated in 2019 from Clarks Summit University with a degree in Communications, which laid a strong foundation for the work she does with the sanctuary. Before coming to Indraloka, Sylvia had experience working in wedding planning, as well as community outreach at a local Chamber of Commerce. Her experience with these previous jobs provided great preparation for her role at Indraloka. She loves working with people, serving their needs, and helping them celebrate the joyful parts of life, which she has so much opportunity to achieve at Indraloka through programs and events!
Sylvia is not only passionate about people but also loves animals, nature, writing, and planning gatherings with family and friends. When she’s not at the sanctuary, she’s probably spending time with loved ones, enjoying time at a park, or hanging out with her pets.
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Kaitlyn White, Development and Operations Assistant
Kaitlyn joined Indraloka in June of 2021. She is a 2018 Marywood University Alumna and holds a Master’s Degree in Social Media Marketing from Southern New Hampshire University, which helped to lay the groundwork for her many roles at Indraloka. Kaitlyn strives to make a positive impact in everything she does, often making sure everyone around her is happy and offering her help in any way she can. She enjoys observing, asking questions, and learning more about any given topic. Kaitlyn thoroughly enjoys getting to know new people and loves to share all of the fun happenings at Indraloka on our social media platforms.
In addition to her love of all beings at Indraloka, Kaitlyn is also passionate about mental health advocacy and marine life conservation. She particularly loves sea turtles. In her free time, Kaitlyn enjoys reading, journaling, walking, and going to concerts with her friends and family.
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