Board of Directors
Stacey Barsema, Board
Stacey Barsema is the President of the Barsema Family Foundation. The foundation supports a number of organizations worldwide, primarily focused on education, poverty, and animal rights.
Stacey is the current Board Chair of Farm Sanctuary – an organization in Watkins Glen, New York and California. Farm Sanctuary protects farm animals from cruelty, inspiring change in the way society views and treats farm animals, and promotes compassionate vegan living through rescue, education, and advocacy efforts.
Stacey serves as a Board of Director of the Northern Illinois University Foundation. The Foundation develops, supports, and encourages a culture of giving throughout the NIU community and alumni that will allow it to flourish and accomplish NIU’s goal of becoming the most student-centered public research university in the Midwest.
Stacey serves as a Board of Director of the Northern Illinois Food Bank which leads the northern Illinois community in solving hunger by providing nutritious meals to those in need through innovative programs and partnerships.
Stacey is a founding Board Member of Carpenter’s Place, a non-profit in Rockford, IL. Carpenter’s Place provides the tools necessary for rebuilding the lives of homeless adults. The organization depends on strong community relationships and detailed programs which provides their clients the skills and tools to be successful and independent members of society.
Stacey is a former Board of Director of Opportunity International, a world-wide organization headquartered in Chicago, IL. This organization annually distributes over $250M of micro-loans to the poorest of poor around the world. These loans allow the poor to become self-supporting entrepreneurs. She was also co-chairperson of Opportunity International’s Lending Hope to Africa Campaign; which raised over $25M to fight AIDS in Africa.
Stacey is a former Board of Director of Family and Children Services located in Silicon Valley, CA. Their mission is to build strong, safe, and self-sufficient individuals with their families and communities.
Stacey is also a former Board of Director of the Oakland Zoo and served as a member of the zoo’s fund development committee. The Oakland Zoo has become one of the most progressive zoos in the country; they are a leader in elephant welfare where Stacey focused all of her time.
Stacey resides in Barrington Hills, IL with her husband, Dennis Barsema.
Yonaton Aronoff, Governance Committee Chair
Yonaton Aronoff is a partner at Foley & Lardner LLP, specializing in general commercial litigation, social media law, employment law, privacy and information security, and e-commerce matters. In addition to his general commercial practice, Yonaton has spent a considerable amount of time focusing on animal welfare and animal law issues. Among other things, he has represented Animal Care & Control of New York City (AC&C), the exclusive public animal shelter system for the City of New York, on a pro bono basis for the past six years. In connection with his work for AC&C, Yonaton has assisted the organization with a variety of legal matters, including animal welfare issues, intake procedures, and cruelty-related cases and investigations.
Yonaton received his J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law and B.A., magna cum laude, from Brown University. He is admitted to the New York State Bar Association; U.S. District Court, Southern and Eastern Districts of New York; and U.S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit.
Dorr Begnal, Member
Dorr Begnal is a Managing Director at Park Street Capital L.L.C., an independent, employee-owned investment management firm dedicated exclusively to investing in private market asset classes. Prior to joining Park Street Capital, Dorr worked as a Research Consultant for Cambridge Associates and was responsible for due diligence and manager selection for non-marketable alternative assets.
A vegetarian for many years, Dorr decided to visit our Watkins Glen shelter, where he received a special tour from National Shelter Director Susie Coston. The experience opened his eyes about the cruelty of conventional farming practices, and he was inspired to go vegan shortly thereafter. He has since been a consistent supporter and revered friend to the animals across our three sanctuary locations.
Dorr lives in the Boston area and shares his life with four rescued labs and two rescued zebra finches. He loves introducing people to vegan food and sharing how fulfilling and accessible a vegan lifestyle can be.
Dorr holds a B.S. degree from Clarkson University, where he also served as a Trustee and is a Member of its Investment Committee.
James Costa, Board Vice Chair and Development Committee Co-Chair
James is a board member of the International Documentary Association, a member of the British Academy of Film and Television (BAFTA), and founder of the film company Birdstreet Productions. His documentary “Lunch Hour” (2014) examines the National School Lunch Program, childhood obesity, and our addiction to unhealthy foods.
James is the chairman of the board for the Hunts Point Alliance for Children, which works with families to support the educational progress of the children of Hunts Point, in the South Bronx. He is also a board member of the California Wildlife Center and serves on the Advisory Board of Sea Shepherd and on the President’s Council of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). James has served as planning chair for Farm Sanctuary’s black-tie Galas at the Beverly Hills Hotel and Cipriani, hosted benefits at his homes, and served on Farm Sanctuary’s Advisory Council.
James holds a B.A. in English and American Lit from Boston University.
Emily Deschanel, Member
Emily is an actress and television producer who is best known for her role as Dr. Temperance Brennan in the FOX police comedy-drama series “Bones.” A vegan since reading “Diet for a New America” in high school and member of Farm Sanctuary since 2006, Emily has served as Honorary Chair and Host of our black-tie Galas, National Spokesperson for the 2011 Walk for Farm Animals, and host of our Celebration for the Turkeys Thanksgiving event and has also recorded educational videos for Farm Sanctuary.
Emily’s passion for animal rights has led her to produce and provide narration for animal welfare-related documentaries and to appear in PSAs encouraging veganism and compassion towards animals. A consistent voice for farm animals over the years, Emily has raised public awareness about the animal cruelty and environmental degradation perpetuated by factory farming, as well as the health benefits of adopting a vegan diet.
Emily holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in theater from Boston University.
Lyn Devon, Member
Lyn is an American luxury sportswear designer who has been hailed by W as the “the go-to designer for Manhattan’s best dressed.” Born and raised in New York City, she is known for her polished but playful designs.
Before launching her own line, Lyn studied at Parsons and designed women’s ready-to-wear for Ralph Lauren. Upon presenting her first full ready-to-wear collection in September 2005, she was quickly named Women’s Design ‘Rising Star’ by the Fashion Group International. Following the debut of Lyn’s Fall/Winter 2008 collection, Style.com called her one of “The Season’s 10 Most Promising Talents,” and soon after she was awarded the prestigious Ecco Domani Fashion Foundation Award for women’s wear. In October 2009, she was accepted as one of the 30 new members of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). Lyn’s work has been featured in numerous print and online publications, including Vogue, Elle, Instyle, the Financial Times, People, and NYMag.com.
Lyn is a graduate of Brown University.
Jane Hoffman, Board Secretary and Audit Committee Chair
Jane Hoffman has been president and chair of the board of the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals since its inception in 2002. The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals acts as a liaison between the government of the City of New York and the New York City animal care community. It is a coalition of more than 150 animal rescue groups and shelters working to reduce the euthanasia of cats and dogs in New York City shelters.
Jane is a founding and current member of the Animal Law Committee of the NYC Bar Association, one of the first animal law committees in the country. She received the Annual Excellence in the Advancement of Animal Law Award from the American Bar Association’s Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) the first year it was awarded in 2007.
Prior to creating the Alliance, Jane served as an associate at the law firm of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP and vice president and senior consultant at Handy Associates.
Jane holds a J.D. degree from Brooklyn Law School, an M.L.S. degree from Long Island University, and a B.A. degree from Boston College.
Tamar Huberman, Member
Tamar is a nonprofit consultant specializing in strategy, operations, and revenue generation for small and medium-sized nonprofit organizations. Tamar’s clients span the charitable sector: she has worked with arts, education, environmental, social entrepreneurship, and health organizations. Tamar provides expertise on corporate, government, and institutional fundraising; strategies for organizational development; and day-to-day operations. Tamar served on the development team at the Ontario College of Art & Design and the public affairs team at CHUM Television. She is also a founding member of the Park Slope Food Co-op’s Animal Welfare Committee.
Tamar earned an MBA from the Schulich School of Business, a master’s degree in art history and a certificate in curatorial studies from York University, and a B.A. in history from Queen’s University. She was born and raised in Vancouver, B.C., and she currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Anthony Milazzo, Board Treasurer and Finance Committee Chair
Anthony is a Senior Managing Director at FTI Consulting and has extensive experience in auditing, corporate finance, and forensic accounting. At FTI, Anthony is responsible for leading forensic accounting investigations and dispute matters, including well-publicized Ponzi scheme asset recovery matters. He also provides technical accounting advice services, including leading financial statement restatement projects, drafting technical accounting white-papers, and coordinating with attorneys, executives, directors, and government regulators.
Anthony started his career with KPMG in their audit practice. He also worked in private industry as the corporate controller of a software company that created applications for the commercial real estate market and as the CFO of a start-up dot-com. Anthony and his wife, Lisa, are long-time vegans. They have two children, Jack and Lucia, who have been vegans from birth and are proud to say that animals are their friends.
Anthony received his B.S. in Accounting from Fordham University. He is a Certified Public Accountant in New York and a Certified Fraud Examiner.
Tracey Stewart, Development Committee Co-Chair
Tracey Stewart is a passionate animal advocate and author. She graduated from Drexel University with B.S. in design. After volunteering at animal shelters she found her true calling was working with animals and returned to school to become a veterinary technician.
She is the author of Do Unto Animals: A Friendly Guide to How Animals Live, and How We Can Make Their Lives Better. She is also the founder of the website Moomah, which provides parents and kids with fun, easy, and effective ways to contribute to varying kinds of nonprofits as well as family-friendly ideas for incorporating humane education into quality time spent together.
She volunteers as a design consultant to various nonprofits. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, Jon Stewart; two kids; four dogs; four pigs; one hamster; three rabbits; two guinea pigs; one parrot; and two fish — all rescues except for the kids. Currently she is hard at work developing the New Jersey location for Farm Sanctuary.
Megan Watkins, Member
Megan Watkins is a senior vice president in the Philanthropic Solutions Group at U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management. In this role, Megan advises individual and family clients of U.S. Trust and Merrill Lynch on their personal charitable giving. This often includes helping clients articulate their philanthropic vision and mission, define their charitable giving objectives, and develop an implementation plan for their chosen giving strategy.
Prior to joining U.S. Trust, Megan was a vice president in the Philanthropic Services Group at J.P. Morgan Private Bank, where she facilitated philanthropic giving in the areas of animal welfare and protection, community development, and human services. Megan’s experience also includes international and domestic program development and policy work in the nonprofit sector.
Megan is a graduate of Barnard College and holds a Master of International Affairs degree, with a specialization in economic and political development, from Columbia University.