Registered Charity in England & Wales No.1165941

Advisors & Volunteers

Our advisors and volunteers are essential to the success of our global work


Dr Jake Veasey

Dr Jake Veasey is a zoologist specialising in animal welfare science and conservation biology. Jake has researched topics including ‘What do zoo animals miss (if anything) about habitats they have never experienced?’ and ‘solving behavioural-ecological enigmas first identified by Darwin’. Widely published on the welfare of wild animals in zoos, Jake has nearly two decades’ experience as a zoo director in Europe and North America. Jake is well-known for his work on large herbivore and carnivore welfare and conservation, having worked in the wild and captivity with bears, elephant, giraffe, rhino and antelope and he regularly advises government organisations and NGOs across the world, including as a ministerially-appointed advisor to the UK Government on zoo animal welfare.

Ayako Nagakura

Ayako Nagakura is a veterinarian working in Japan. For the past 13 years she has worked as a municipal officer at an animal care centre and within a city zoo. Ayako was inspired by an animal welfare seminar she attended at the RSPCA offices in London, coordinated by the Japan Animal Welfare Society (JAWS) UK, more than 11 years ago. As a veterinarian, Ayako is keenly aware of the necessity, importance and incorporation of animal welfare concepts when working with captive wild animals. Ayako is committed to learning more about animal welfare and contributing to the correct understanding and reflection of animal welfare in Japan.


Wild Welfare veterinary advisor, Dr. Julia Gräfin Maltzan
Dr Julia Gräfin Maltzan
Veterinary Advisor

Dr Julia Gräfin Maltzan is a zoo veterinarian who, among other achievements, is a specialist in carrying out courses on immobilization techniques, including dart gun and blowpipe. Julia is a director of the Foundation of the Clinic for Zoo Animals and Wildlife (,and of the ‘Academy for the Welfare of Zoo Animals and Wildlife e.V. ( Julia has partnered with Wild Welfare on a number of our global projects.

Margaret Whittaker
Elephant & Welfare Specialist Advisor

Margaret Whittaker is president of Creative Animal Behavioural Solutions, a company working to improve care and welfare of captive animals. She has a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Science and a Anthropology. Margaret has worked across the Americas, Europe, Southeast Asia and India, helping facilities develop welfare-minded behavioural management programs, teaching animal welfare, elephant care, training and enrichment workshops.
Margaret has been a director at a Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries-accredited sanctuary, Guenon SSP Coordinator and Diana monkey studbook keeper. She is a behavioural advisor to The Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA)’s Old World Monkey Advisory Group and serves on several sanctuary advisory boards for elephant and primate sanctuaries. Margaret works with design firms creating enclosures that encourage natural behaviour, she is behavioural management coordinator at Oakland Zoo, and Shape of Enrichment Workshop instructor.

Dr Samantha Ward
Research Advisor

Dr Samantha Ward is a senior lecturer at Nottingham Trent University and sits on the UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Zoo Executive Committee as a zoo animal welfare specialist. Sam worked as a zoo keeper for various hoofstock, primate and macropod species and then went on to complete an MSc and a PhD in Animal Behaviour and Welfare.
Sam’s research focusses on zoo animal behaviour and welfare and recent projects have investigated the impacts of human-animal interactions and human-animal relationships in zoos, and investigating the impacts of zoo animal husbandry and management techniques to improve captive animal welfare.


Wild Welfare is incredible grateful to the many volunteers that offer their time to help support our animal welfare projects. From lending a hand to our fundraising activities and initiatives, to translating our welfare resources into different languages, the help from our many volunteers – of which there are too many to feature all here –  is essential to the success of our ongoing work.
Yuki Otani
Volunteer Translator

Dr Yuki Otani is a veterinary researcher of Hokkaido University in Japan. She has worked in science and received her PhD whilst working as a clinical vet for small animals. Yuki is keen to be involved in education and public engagement of animal welfare hence her involvement with translation of the Wild About Welfare digital education programme into Japanese. Since she was a child she dreamed of being involved in conservation of animals which drove her to her career. Yuki is going to spend her time on investigating the attitude towards animal welfare of stakeholders in cooperating with the University of Edinburgh’s Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education.

Lorraine Miller
Fundraising Volunteer

Lorraine has worked in the zoological industry for over 16 years in zoos and wildlife parks both in the UK and overseas. Specialising in primates, and in particular great apes, she has consulted on a project to bring the first Gorillas into New Zealand.
Lorraine has worked in sanctuaries and conservation organisations in Southeast Asia, Africa and Central America. She has a keen interest in conservation and animal welfare and spent time as the welfare coordinator at an elephant park in Thailand. Lorraine now works as a zoological consultant specialising in great apes in Western Australia and has authored a children’s book about conservation.

Tunya Chinpilas
Volunteer Translator

Tunya is a zoologist researcher with over half a decade of zoo and wildlife park experience. Fostering a keen interest in wild animal behaviour since she was young, Tunya has grown a devotion to carnivores, and in particular tiger behaviour and cognition, and is now an active member of multiple tiger welfare organisations and projects, with supporting the translation of the Wild About Welfare digital education programme into Thai being one of them. Currently, Tunya is pursuing her master’s degree in Animal Behaviour and Welfare at the University of Edinburgh with a particular interest in the personality and cognitive ability of tigers.

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