Meet Our Team
Susan G. R. Myers
Founder and CEO
Member of the Board

Susan G. R. Myers is a business owner, former JPMorgan investment banker, former high school football coach, published author and motivational speaker. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Dallas Zoological Society and the Zoo’s Wildlife Committee. She speaks German, French and Spanish. Susan has traveled to 108 countries on six continents. She has a Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School and graduated summa cum laude from Wellesley College.

David O’Connor


David’s love for giraffe and wildlife came from growing up in the Irish countryside. He has worked across Europe, Asia, Australia, S.E. Asia and Africa on numerous conservation programs with San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research, National Geographic, and others. He is also a Research Associate with the Smithsonian Institute and has formerly served on the Board of Directors of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation. He is a member of the IUCN Giraffe and Okapi Specialist Group and the IUCN Bear Specialist Group. David earned his bachelor’s degree in Zoology and Earth Science from University College Cork, Ireland, his graduate diploma in Business Studies from the Smurfit Graduate School of Business at University College, Dublin, and his master’s degree in Conservation Biology from the University of Michigan. He is currently pursuing his doctorate at Senckenberg Biodiversity & Climate Research Centre and Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany.
Wanjofu Aggrey Chemwa

Research Associate

Wanjofu Aggrey Chemwa is a conservation biologist who is currently working on digitalising giraffe data across the Athi-Kapiti Conservancies in Kenya. He believes that every animal has a right to live and live in its natural habitat. Giraffes coexisting peacefully with humans in their natural habitats is critical for him, as the continued existence of wildlife and wilderness is important to the quality of life of humans. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resources Management, Wildlife Major, Karatina University.

Aggrey is an experienced researcher, who has exceptional knowledge of wildlife law and enforcement, with passion for GIS and remote sensing, behavioral ecology and human-wildlife conflict.

In 2016, Aggrey was part of the team monitoring the Rothschild giraffes at Soysambu, this inspired him to study “Diet Selection of the Rothschild Giraffes in Soysambu” for his undergraduate degree, giving more insights about their preferred forage materials, which is critical for their existence.

Kayla Walisch

Director of Advancement

Kayla Walisch joined Save Giraffes Now as a Research Associate and quickly moved to our Director of Advancement. Having loved these iconic giants from a very young age, she is excited for the opportunity to support and contribute to various giraffe conservation initiatives across Africa.

Originally from northeast Ohio, Kayla holds a degree in Applied Science and studied abroad in Spain and Argentina. Kayla currently resides in Dallas with her husband and their dogs. 

Lanielle de Roubaix

Director of South Africa Operations

Born and raised in South Africa, Lanielle has always had a passion for caring for wildlife. From a young age she rehabilitated injured or orphaned animals as well as took part in wildlife fieldwork which led her to study Wildlife Health and Management at Nelson Mandela University, where she graduated with Honors. Lanielle now works in a variety of capacities in wildlife conservation and care throughout Africa.
In addition to her regular assignments, for the last few years Lanielle has been working with Safari4u, giving pre-vet students, vet students and wildlife enthusiasts from around the world hands-on experience in wild animal welfare. Aside from treating animals, she took students on translocations all around the East coast of South Africa, teaching them the different methods used for relocating and reintroducing wildlife.
Lanielle believes strongly that sharing her experiences and knowledge with people from all walks of life — while at the same time learning other people’s beliefs and perspectives on wildlife — helps people to be involved with wildlife conservation. She is at home when outdoors and hands-on with animals, knowing that any impact, whether big or small, can make a huge difference in saving giraffe and other wildlife
Edward Ndiritu

Member of the Advisory Board

Edward Ndiritu is the Head of the Anti-Poaching unit at the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in Kenya, a sanctuary for endangered species and home to other iconic African wildlife. Edward is also county head of National Police Reservists, a department within the Kenya National Police Service, and a member of county and regional Court Users’ Committee. Edward has been a part of security operations at Lewa for over two decades. He rose through the ranks from a field ranger responsible for daily patrols to a team commander in charge of armed security units. As head of the Lewa Anti-Poaching Unit since 2012, Edward oversees the deployment of armed teams, gathering intelligence and responding to wildlife crimes. He and his team are often called upon to respond to other security issues extending beyond Lewa into neighbouring conservancies/communities in the northern rangelands of Kenya. Edward strongly believes in the spirit of advancing wildlife conservation through community engagement and involvement. In this effort, he has helped make the communities around Lewa Wildlife Conservancy a major source of information and the first line of defense in protecting the future of wildlife in the area.

Edward’s career objective is to contribute to wildlife protection and conservation in Kenya; to continually stay ahead of the ever-evolving threat to Africa’s wildlife. His years of service in conservation, park management training at Colorado State University (USA), and continuous special forces training with the Kenya police and the Company commanders training Kenya Wildlife Service paramilitary units, have earned him valuable insight into successful strategies for the protection of endangered wildlife. Edward’s leadership has marked a significant decline in poaching with zero incidents recorded for over 6 years (2013-2019). This success has earned him accolades such as the Inaugural Prince William’s Tusk Wildlife Ranger Award (2015). When he is not protecting Africa’s wildlife from human threats, Edward enjoys playing football, listening to African traditional music, going on game drives and nature walks, and mentoring youth from local communities.

Benjamin Jones

Member of the Advisory Board

Ben is currently the Executive Director of the Texas Conservation Alliance. Before that he worked for the Dallas Zoo for 15 years in a variety of positions, most recently as Senior Director of Conservation. He has also served as the State Director of Education for the National Audubon Society and as Director of the Trinity River Audubon Center. 

In addition to his work in the sciences, Ben was a business analyst for Arthur Andersen. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science and a Master of Science in Reproductive Physiology from Texas A&M University and is pursuing a PhD in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies from the University of Texas, Arlington.

Rebecca Kochulem

Member of the Advisory Board

Rebecca Kochulem is a Kenyan zoologist and conservationist from Baringo in the Great Rift Valley.  When she was just 25 years old, Rebecca became one of the first women to manage a community conservancy in Kenya; drawn to the challenge of trying to balance urgent wildlife protection needs with building peace between the warring ethnic groups of her homeland.  Over nine years, Rebecca spearheaded dialogue between the ILChamus and Pokot Communities.  She ensured both communities were represented in the Ruko Community Conservancy ranger team and that there was fair representation in the conservancy leadership.

As peace developed, it made way for community-led development projects and wildlife conservation programs.  In 2011, Rebecca led an initiative to bring back giraffes to Ruko; years after they had been wiped out of the area.  Eight of the endangered Rothschild giraffe were moved to the conservancy to start a breeding program and repopulate the surrounding area.  Not only is this move important for species reintroduction, but the giraffe have become a source of unified pride for conservancy members and bring in valuable tourism revenue.  This effort has also been supported by the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT) and the Kenya Wildlife Service.

Rebecca now serves as NRT’s West Pokot EU Program Director and is vice chairperson of the Baringo County Conservancies Association (BCCA).  She provides guidance and expertise to the community conservancies in the area and builds support for the community-led conservation movement in both the national and county governments.

Rebecca is also currently pursuing a CI (Conservation International) 2019 – Fellow Masters at Kenyatta University, Kenya.

Photo Credit:  Northern Rangelands Trust

Arthur Muneza

Member of the Advisory Board

Based in Nairobi, Arthur is the East Africa Coordinator for the Giraffe Conservation Foundation. Through this role, he brings together research efforts and partnerships to secure the future of the three giraffe species that occur in the east African region: Masai, Nubian (Rothschild’s) and Reticulated giraffe.

Originally from Rwanda, Arthur spent his formative years living and learning in Kenya, where he nurtured an interest in wildlife ecology and conservation.

Arthur hold’s a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa in Nairobi, and was awarded the prestigious MasterCard Foundation scholarship to complete his master’s degree at Michigan State University. Arthur is pursuing his PhD at Michigan State University on the multiple factors affecting the survival of giraffe populations across various ecosystems in East Africa, and brings a wealth of field experience in conservation to Save Giraffes Now.

Ken Allen

Member of the Advisory Board

Ken currently works as an administrator in an independent school in Austin, Texas. As a lifelong educator with over 20+ years experience, Ken has served in many different capacities teaching and coaching throughout different schools throughout the United States. As a parent of two wonderful children, Ken is highly invested in children being educated from the whole child point of view. Additionally, he is very passionate about diversity, equity and inclusion within schools.
In his spare time, Ken enjoys spending time with his family, traveling and watching sports. Ken holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise and Sport Science with an emphasis in Teacher Education from Colorado State University and a Masters Degree in Educational Administration from Texas Christian University.

Adam Eyres

Member of the Advisory Board

Adam is the Director of Animal Care at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Texas, where the animals run free and the people are in captivity. He has worked with ungulates, and specifically giraffe, rhinos and desert antelope since 1989. He has traveled to Africa on numerous occasions and in 2010 visited the West African giraffe in Niger—one of the highlights of his career.

Adam is involved in many of the Association of Zoo and Aquarium programs in the United States, including as the white rhino Species Survival Plan Coordinator. He is on the executive committee of the Source Population Alliance and serves as a scientific advisor to the International Rhino Foundation.

Rick Barongi

Member of the Advisory Board

Rodrick (Rick) Barongi grew up on Long Island, New York and attended Cornell University for his B.S. and Rutgers University for his M.S. in Zoology. He retired from the Houston Zoo in June 2015, after 15 years as Zoo Director. He presently consults on zoological projects, serving on several wildlife conservation boards.  He has been both a keynote speaker, author and consultant for zoological projects.

Rick has been working in the wildlife management and conservation field for over 45 years. His level of experience ranges from zookeeper to senior executive positions at the Walt Disney Company and the San Diego and Houston Zoos.

He was the top animal executive for the creative development, planning and construction of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.  He led the efforts to create the Disney Conservation Fund, which since its inception in 1995 has generated more than $75 million for field conservation projects around the world. 

Annette Lentz

Member of the Advisory Board

Annette began her career in media, reporting for a small-town newspaper moving up to Director of International Media for Publicitas North America, representing The Financial Times, New York Times, Scientific American, among other business titles. She consulted with Fortune 100 companies in utilization of corporate communications and custom content publishing. She has also worked in various development and marketing capacities within consumer health care and has managed and promoted special events focused on wellness and science.

Having majored in Food Technology at Texas A&M University, she fulfilled a long family tradition of university loyalty.

Annette has been involved with other non-profit organizations serving as a board member or staff and is deeply committed to sustainability and conservation.

She is an enthusiastic backyard birdwatcher and the mother of two longhaired dachshunds. Living with animals who have the shortest legs and working with animals with the longest legs is a dream come true!

Board of Trustees

Mary Ellen Zellerbach

President of the Board

Mary Ellen is a managing director of Martin Investment Management, LLC. She has served on numerous boards of non-profit organizations. Mary Ellen was a member of the initial index strategy group at Wells Fargo Investment Advisors. Additionally, she was a founding principal of Mellon Capital Management. To pursue her interest in mindful investing, she helped found  which provides metrics on environmental sustainability. Mary Ellen holds an MBA from Stanford University and  graduated magna cum laude from Wellesley College.

Susan G. R. Myers
Founder and CEO
Member of the Board

Susan G. R. Myers is a business owner, former JPMorgan investment banker, former high school football coach, published author and motivational speaker. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Dallas Zoological Society and the Zoo’s Wildlife Committee. She speaks German, French and Spanish. Susan has traveled to 108 countries on six continents. She has a Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School and graduated summa cum laude from Wellesley College.

Richard A. Myers
Member of the Board

As the founder and a managing partner of Realty Capital Management, LLC, Richard acquires, develops, owns and manages investment-grade commercial and residential real estate projects. He is additionally the founder and CEO of Realty Capital Partners, LLC, and manages a total investment value of $1.5 billion in real estate projects. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School and graduated summa cum laude from the University of Illinois.


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