Our Team


Natalie Ahwesh

Natalie Ahwesh, M. Ed.

Executive Director, Founding Member

Natalie monitors and evaluates pending policy, regulatory, and legal action at the federal, state, and local levels that may impact animal protection. She works with local stakeholders, including policymakers, law enforcement, and community members, to ensure current laws and policies are being enforced.  As Executive Director, she directs and supervises all campaigns, programs, and personnel at HAP, while also spearheading educational initiatives.
Natalie has several awards and accolades, including the 2024 City & State Above and Beyond, 2023 City & State PA Power 100, 2019 Incline’s “Who’s Next” Animal Advocates and PUMP’s and Pittsburgh Magazine’s 40 Under 40 honorees, 2017 Humane Society District Leader of the Year, and is a founding member of The Humane League’s Animal Policy Alliance. She was also awarded a Rotary International Paul Harris Fellowship in 2023.  She has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master’s Degree from George Washington University.
Shannon Dickerson

Shannon Dickerson, MA

Director of Operations

Shannon started with HAP in the fall of 2018 and moved from enthusiastic tabler, to Director of Marketing, to Vice President, and now is the organization’s first full-time paid employee in her Director of Operations role. Shannon is extremely proud of not only the work HAP does, but the way they get it done. She believes in resolving conflicts and coming together to solve animal and environmental issues humanely. She also founded Pittsburgh Ploggers in 2018 in honor of her father, and is proud to now have the fitness/litter clean-up program under the HAP umbrella. Shannon is a Pitt alum and holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Colorado in communication and rhetoric. She has worked as a marketing strategist since 2009 and is an adjunct instructor at Chatham University. She lives in Pittsburgh with her husband, Ryan, two cats, and flock of fluffy chickens.

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Independent Contractors

Laura Jellum

Marketing Manager

Laura is HAP’s Marketing Manager, overseeing the organization’s marketing strategies and campaign management. With two decades of marketing experience, she has collaborated with numerous nonprofits nationwide, lending her expertise to initiatives in public health, community outreach, and human services. Laura is deeply committed to building capacity within mission-based organizations, empowering them to broaden support networks, deepen community engagement, and refine brand identity through compelling communication strategies. She is particularly passionate about causes promoting health equity, environmental justice, and animal advocacy. When not behind a computer, she explores Pittsburgh’s hills, rivers, tunnels, and bridges with her husband, Ken, and dog, Tater Tot.

Kayla Seifert

Moses Wamalwa

Plastics Collaborative Program Manager

Moses Wamalwa leads the Plastics Collaborative, focusing on program implementation, recruitment, relationship building, and research/implementation. With extensive experience in community mobilization, youth empowerment, and engaging with diverse stakeholders, Moses excels in using strategic planning to drive impactful changes. Formerly a Lead Organizer for One PA and a Program Manager for Action for the Climate Emergency, he has a strong background in advocating for social justice and environmental sustainability. Moses is pursuing Master’s degrees in Food Studies and Business, enhancing his expertise in sustainable development. Residing in Pittsburgh, he is a food enthusiast and a new father, and he enjoys connecting with people through humor and shared culinary experiences.

Volunteer Leadership

Janice Bahary

Mahima Amin

Administrative Assistant

Mahima is an undergraduate student on the pre-law track at the University of Pittsburgh. She loves to read and research and so after graduation, she wants to work in the field of international law. Besides international law, she is also interested in exploring sustainable beauty and fashion. She is passionate about animal rights, which drew her to volunteering with Humane Action Pittsburgh. She is eager to bring her experience in legal studies and use it for the work of HAP. In her free time, she loves to read fiction, visit cozy coffee shops, and go on walks around the city.

Janice Bahary

Janice Bahary, MPPM

Director of Grant Writing

Janice works with our grant writing team, raising funds to support HAP’s initiatives. She is a nonprofit management professional with a background in fundraising, grant writing, policy, and advocacy. She has a bachelor’s from Binghamton University in NY and a Master of Public Policy and Management from the University of Pittsburgh. Janice and her family foster dogs from local animal shelters to help them rehabilitate and become adoptable.

Janice Bahary

Alexa Bradley

Administrative Assistant

Alexa is originally from Buffalo, NY, and is loving getting to know more about her new home city, Pittsburgh. She is a 2020 graduate from the University of Notre Dame and currently works in the healthcare industry as an analyst. In her free time, she loves indulging in her love for nature and animals by getting outside. Some of her favorite activities include hiking, amateur mycology, skiing, competing in triathlons, and hanging out in the park with a good book. She is excited to use her analytical, organizational, and detail-oriented skills to help contribute to HAP’s mission of protecting animals.

Nicole Toney

Emma Cannon

Grant Writer 

Emma graduated from Saint Michael’s College in 2017 with a BA in Anthropology and has experience working in human services and nonprofit development. She is excited to support HAP’s mission and fundraising efforts as a Grant Writer. Originally from Massachusetts, she has lived in Pittsburgh for five years and still regularly finds new hiking trails, restaurants, and bakeries to explore.

Aimee Douglass

Aimee Douglass

Director of Outreach

Aimee authors the HAP blog and has been a volunteer with HAP since 2018. She is an active participant in the Compassionate Living campaign and in 2019 tabled at her first event for HAP. Aimee works in the healthcare industry and has a bachelors degree in Creative Writing from the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown and a masters degree in Communications with a health care focus from Southern New Hampshire University. She lives in Monroeville with her husband and their three dogs.



Aimee Douglass

Thomas Detillion

Grants Administrator

Thomas is a Technology Analyst at Accenture Consulting, where he works in tech advisory and business strategy. He grew up in Spokane, Washington, and graduated from Gonzaga University with a degree in Engineering Management. 

Thomas joined HAP to support a more equitable world for animals and work with incredible people. He lives in the East Liberty area of Pittsburgh and enjoys traveling, outdoor recreation, professional sports, and reading.

Akanksha Satyarthy

Jared Feldman

Strategic Analyst

Jared is currently pursuing his Master of Information and Data Science degree from University of California, Berkeley, and holds his Bachelor’s degree from Penn State. He is excited about having the opportunity to use data and analytics to help protect animals and promote a more compassionate lifestyle. Jared lives in Pittsburgh with his wife, Emmy, and their two dogs, Kozzie and Winnie.
Akanksha Satyarthy

Carol Fryday

Newsletter Editor

Carol is pleased to support HAP’s mission through her role as Newsletter Editor. Since graduating with an M.A. in Professional Writing from Carnegie Mellon University, she has worked primarily in the business sector. However, she is proudest of her four-year stint as editor of The Sylvanian, a quarterly publication of the PA Sierra Club, which won two national awards during her tenure.

She and her husband, David, live along the Ohio River in Beaver PA, and like many in their community are concerned about the health of our region’s waterways and the wildlife that depend on them.

In 2021, Carol and her intrepid dog, Mr. Ned, hiked 100 miles to complete the North Country Trail Association’s Hundred Mile Challenge. They were each awarded a certificate and numerous ticks for their efforts.

Akanksha Satyarthy

Dominique Green, MS

Website Manager

Dominique is happy to manage the HAP website while working as an Associate Research Analyst in research marketing. She has received her Master’s in Human-Computer Interaction at DePaul University. She has received her bachelor’s in Psychology and Cognitive Science from Marquette University.

Akanksha Satyarthy

Annelie Gustafsson

Administrative Assistant

Annelie is a passionate student that loves learning and trying new things. She is excited about joining the HAP team to cultivate her research and outreach skills while working on one of her greatest passions – encouraging others to help animals and the environment. Annelie has been a nature-lover her whole life and enjoys spending time in the great outdoors, exercising, and reading with her cat, Chester.

Tasnim Hedw

CRM Administrator

is pleased to administer the CRM tool of the HAP. She is French-Tunisian recently moved to Pittsburgh. She was working as clinical applications manager at a hospital in Paris. She is happy to put her skills to work helping animal and environmental issues with the HAP.

Jason Hinkledire

Humane Action Pittsburgh Podcast Host

Born and raised in Claysburg, PA, Jason has loved popular music since he was a kid. After DJing in high school and throughout his 20s, Jason entered the world of trivia hosting in 2010, and in 2014, he broke the Guiness World Record for Longest Marathon as a Quiz Master with 33 hours and 8 minutes of nonstop trivia action! Jason has dabbled in internet radio a few times in the past decade and is now hosting the Humane Action Pittsburgh Podcast. He lives in Virginia with his wife, Janice, and four very fun, very beautiful, and very funny dachshunds.

Jessica Ho

Administrative Assistant

Jessica is a student at Penn State specializing in Macroeconomics.  She is bilingual in English and Chinese and also identifies French, German, and Japanese.  She loves animals and technology and has had pets such as rabbits.  She looks forward to reducing animal suffering by using her research skills.

Mark Hopkinson


Mark joined Humane Action Pittsburgh in early 2024 as the volunteer bookkeeper for the organization.  Mark was inspired by the mission of HAP and wanted to use his accounting background as a volunteer. Mark has volunteered for several different rescues including Kitty Queen Cat Rescue and is a foster and grant writer for Merlin’s Safe Haven Cat Rescue. Mark recently graduated from Pennsylvania Western University with a Masters degree in Business Administration.  He is also a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Fraud Examiner, and has worked for large local banks and retailers. Mark lives in the Beechview area with his partner, their two dogs and two cats.

Morgan Kohler

Web Designer

Morgan has her BA in English and writing from Westminster College and MA in Professional Writing and Web Content Development from Chatham University. She enjoys reading historical fiction, watching Studio Ghibli movies, and being outdoors. She’s looking to make a difference in animal and environmental welfare. She often browses animal rescue sites, wishing to adopt them all.

Morgan redesigned web pages for HAP during her graduate program at Chatham and enjoyed the experience so much that she joined the team. She hopes to implement design strategies she learned in her coursework.

Manvendra Kumar (MK)


Originally from India, MK completed his BA in Economics and History from Hansraj College, University of Delhi before moving to Pittsburgh to pursue his MS in Management Information Systems at the Katz School of Business, University of Pittsburgh.

During his graduate studies, he took courses in project management, database management systems, marketing, security systems, business system platforms, information system security, and more. He is passionate about using his skills in product management, data analysis, business analysis, and consulting to make a positive impact.

He’s a strong believer in HAP’s mission to advance the protection of all animals through education, policy, and community action. As an animal lover and aspiring philanthropist, MK is excited to contribute his diverse background and leadership experience to support HAP’s important work.

In his free time, he enjoys playing sports like football, soccer, badminton, and cricket, as well as watching web series, reading about entrepreneurship and business, and exploring the natural beauty around Pittsburgh. He looks forward to connecting with fellow volunteers and advocating for the humane treatment of animals in his new city.

Abhi Nadendl

Blog Contributor

Abhi is a student at the University of Pittsburgh pursuing a degree in molecular biology. She currently works as a blogger for HAP and is part of the Action Team. She joined HAP due to her love of animals, which she cultivated after working at an animal shelter for the past five years. Abhi is excited to join the HAP team and help prevent animal abuse while empowering individuals to take care of their environment. In her free time, she enjoys watching movies and spending time with her friends. 

Kaxandra Novales


Kaxandra recently moved to Pittsburgh after graduating from Miami University of Ohio with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She currently works as a clinical research specialist, but loves to fill her free time with artsy activities such as drawing, sewing, and collaging to name a few. As someone who has always been fascinated by animals, she is very excited to volunteer with HAP and exercise her creativity while doing so!

Bob McGrogan

Walter Orange, Ph.D.

Candidate Outreach Liaison

Walter is a retired mathematics professor, having taught for 25 years at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg. He holds B.S. and M.Ed. degrees in mathematics from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and an M.A. degree in Statistics and a Ph.D. in Mathematics Education from the University of Pittsburgh.

Currently, he teaches in the Pittsburgh area as an adjunct professor of mathematics. He has a longstanding interest in animal rights and animal welfare issues. Walter lives in the Shadyside section of Pittsburgh with his wife Anna and their schnoodle Sasha.

Elizabeth Ringler-Jayanthan

Emilio Posa

Companion Animal Project Manager

Emilio is volunteering as a Companion Animal Project Manager. He has a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration from Duquesne University and a Masters of Business Administration from Robert Morris University. Emilio is from the Glenshaw area. Emilio currently works as a Project Manager with a research and consulting firm. He enjoys spending time outdoors, playing basketball, hanging out with his dog, and spending time with his fiancé, family and friends.


Elizabeth Ringler-Jayanthan

Christian Rangel

Web Developer

Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Christian is pursuing a degree in Applied Computer Science with a minor in Creative Writing at Point Park University while living downtown. He enjoys traveling, hiking, tennis, and meeting new people. Joining the website team in January of 2024, he hopes his contributions to the organization can make a positive impact on our local community.


Elizabeth Ringler-Jayanthan

Marianny Rosario

CRM Administrator

I’m Marianny, with a technical foundation in Salesforce and a current focus on advancing my skills in data analytics. I aspire to contribute my expertise in Salesforce to HAP and actively participate in crafting a durable CRM tool using Monkeypod.


Akanksha Satyarthy

Akanksha Satyarthy

Social Media Manager

Akanksha is a digital marketing strategist with over 9 years of experience in social media, advertising, graphic, and website designing. She loves creating content for HAP and No Plastic Please social media networks. It gives her the power to reach out to more people and spread the message. Akanksha is a fitness enthusiast and lives in Pittsburgh.

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Akanksha Satyarthy

Lizbeth Sherlock

Grant Assistant

Liz joined HAP as a Grant Assistant in May of 2024. She’s an alum of PULSE and AmeriCorps NCCC, and has experience working in the issue areas of environmental stewardship, youth development, active older adult communities, food insecurity, and affordable housing. Liz has a BFA in Illustration from Pennsylvania College of Art and Design and does freelance art in addition to her nonprofit work. In her free time, Liz crafts with reused and secondhand materials, including crochet and weaving.


Akanksha Satyarthy

Jisoo Shon

Graphic Designer

Jisoo has joined the HAP team as a Graphic Designer. She holds a Master’s degree in Design for Interactions from Carnegie Mellon University and has five years of experience in digital product design. Her diverse background also includes industrial design, which enriches her approach to creating impactful visuals. After moving back to Pittsburgh from London to reassess her life and career goals, Jisoo sought a new direction. Adopting her dog, Bunnie, from a rescue center became a turning point for her, deepening her commitment to animal and environmental protection. Now, she is eager to use her design skills and insights to champion these causes at HAP.

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Akanksha Satyarthy

Michael Steinfeld

Grant Assistant

Michael studied psychology at Rutgers University and the University of Vermont and is now looking to make a difference in the lives of animals. In his free time, he enjoys reading, hiking, and playing guitar.
Akanksha Satyarthy

Lakshmi Suseela


Lakshmi joined HAP in Feb 2024 as the volunteer bookkeeper. She graduated in accounting and did Masters in Business administration from India. She has been in the USA for 7 years living with her family. She loves to help non profit organizations and especially loves supporting causes reducing animal suffering.
Akanksha Satyarthy

Robel Tesfay

Website Developer

Robel is currently a student at Guilford Technical Community College, where he is honing his skills in the field of Web Development. Devoted to his craft, he is always eager to tackle new challenges and explore innovative solutions. He believes that learning is a lifelong journey, and he’s always on the lookout for opportunities to grow both personally and professionally.

Away from the academic and professional realm, Robel finds solace in the arts. Sketching has been a longtime passion of his, serving not only as a creative outlet but also as a form of meditation. The intricate lines and shapes he puts on paper often mirror the complex problems he solves in his digital projects.

Nicole Toney

Nicole Toney

Outreach Ambassador

Nicole has a BS in Microbiology, a BA in Anthropology, and a MPH in Epidemiology from the University of Pittsburgh. She is volunteering with HAP to support compassionate and healthy lifestyles, and to promote animal and environmental protections in our community. She loves to spend time outdoors in all seasons- biking, hiking, trail running, and camping. She lives in the North Side with her husband, their cat, and two pugs. 

Irina Zambrano

Web Developer

Irina is originally from Ecuador, a dedicated UX designer with a passion for making a positive impact. Currently volunteering at HAP, she channels her creativity and skills to enhance user experiences for a cause she deeply believes in. Beyond the digital aspect, Irina is an avid animal lover, actively supporting causes that aim to better the lives of our furry friends.

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