Passing the Baton – Animal Place

Passing the Baton - Animal Place


Dear Cherished Supporters of Animal Place, 

I’m excited to share some significant news from our beloved sanctuary. After a rewarding 35-year tenure as the Executive Director of Animal Place, a new chapter unfolds for me. I’m transitioning to the role of Board President! This change isn’t a farewell; rather, it’s an opportunity for me to engage in our shared mission from a fresh perspective. I’m eager to embrace this role, which promises to keep me intimately connected to our cause and, joyfully, allows for even more time with our cherished rescued animals. 

Living just a stone’s throw away from the sanctuary, I remain at the heart of our daily activities. You’ll often find me in my happiest moments amidst the flock of chickens and our playful piglets. 

Reflecting on our shared journey fills me with profound gratitude. It was my deep-seated passion for animal rights and advocating for a vegan lifestyle that sparked the birth of Animal Place in 1989. Your steadfast support and belief in our vision have been pivotal in nurturing this sanctuary into a refuge and a beacon of advocacy for farmed animals. 

The milestones we’ve achieved together are nothing short of extraordinary. My heart swells with pride, much like our pigs’ troughs at mealtime, as I recount our collective accomplishments. Your unwavering support has fueled our endeavors: creating a sprawling 600-acre sanctuary, rescuing over 30,000 hens from egg farms, influencing animal shelters to embrace vegan policies at their events, orchestrating farmed animal conferences, establishing the pioneering Museum of Animal Farming, producing groundbreaking films for PBS, and saving thousands of farmed animals and dogs over three and a half decades. These are but a few of our shared triumphs. 

As I step into this new role, my heart is brimming with gratitude for each of you. Your dedication and passion for the welfare of farmed animals have been the driving force behind our successes. I am invigorated by the prospect of continuing this extraordinary journey with you, united in our compassion and advocacy for all animals. 

Jess Carroll will be stepping into the role of Executive Director. I have every confidence that under Jess’s leadership, Animal Place will continue to make impactful strides in our cause. 

And, before signing off, I would be remiss without acknowledging three outstanding employees who have patiently worked by my side for a combination of 44 years – Marji Beach, Estelle Barber, and Hannah Beins. This work would not have been possible without them.  

With heartfelt thanks and eager anticipation for the future, 

Kim Sturla
President / Cofounder
[email protected] 

Dear Animal Place Supporters,

I am delighted to continue building this fantastic organization Kim started! My animal rights journey began two decades ago after seeing a documentary about the intelligence and sentience of farmed animals. Like most people, I grew up an omnivore and hadn’t made the connection between what was on my plate and those who had to suffer for it to get there. After learning about the lives of animals on farms, I went vegan and dedicated my life to speaking for those whose voices are kept hidden. 

My career started in animal rights non-profits, from cleaning barns to advocating for legislative change and grassroots education. My desire to help animals led me to pursue an MBA, where I gained a holistic understanding of organizational management. Upon graduating, I spent several years in food tech, working to remove animals from our food system. I’ve come full circle, returning to my roots advocating for animal rights.

I cannot wait to connect further with you and work towards our collective vision to make the world a kinder place for animals. As Kim has always said, without you, there is no us. Our supporters are the foundation that propels our work to help animals forward. 

In 2024, our team has many big goals! We plan to reopen to the public in a big way: offering tours every weekend, monthly volunteer work parties, events throughout the year, and opening our guest house. We will increase our educational and advocacy efforts by re-launching an intern program, continuing our compassion campaigns, and growing our Food For Thought program. Finally, we will continue our work rescuing animals while focusing on enrichment and high-quality care for all those who call the sanctuary home.

Thank you for the warm welcome, and I look forward to embarking on this exciting journey with all of you.

With compassion,

Jess Carroll
Executive Director

Passing the Baton – Animal Place

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