We’re working towards a world where animals are understood and respected in such a way that they are no longer exploited, abused or made to suffer.
Chief Executive Officer
Debra became SAFE’s CEO in 2018. A long-time animal advocate, Debra was SAFE’s Managing Director in 2012, after a twenty-five-year career in film and television. Her love of animals and a concern for the way they are treated led Debra to work with a wide number of groups wanting to make positive changes for animals. Previously, she served on the boards of both SAFE and Wellington SPCA, produced and co-presented an animal rights radio programme and has experience as a business owner and journalist.
Hans has a longstanding commitment to animal advocacy in New Zealand. He has worked as an animal welfare inspector, manager and director for the Wellington SPCA. In his roles as Campaign Director and Executive Director for SAFE, Hans has exposed many shocking animal cruelty practices on national media, cementing his reputation as New Zealand’s most outspoken critic of animal exploitation. With 13 years experience within the SPCA and a 33 year affiliation with SAFE, Hans is one of New Zealand’s most experienced and recognised animal rights campaigners.
Head of Education
Nichola has worked as a humane educator in New Zealand since 1994. Creating awareness of the human-animal relationship to promote a more compassionate and caring existence for animals has been the main aim of her work. Initially, Nichola worked for Wellington SPCA where she developed and delivered an outreach programme for primary schools and community groups, produced and published a children’s magazine, ran an active junior members club and implemented an animal-assisted therapy programme. Nichola joined SAFE in 2004 and has since launched ‘Animals & Us’, a humane education programme for secondary schools, and the popular youth group ‘Animal Squad’ for 8 to 14-year-olds. The Education Department has since grown to include the Eat Kind programme that supports people looking to make a positive change for animals’ through the adoption of a plant-based vegan diet and lifestyle.
Marianne grew up in London, where her Kiwi parents spent an extended ‘O.E’. With degrees in ecology and marine biology, Marianne has always had an interest in the environment. After leaving university, she worked in animal advocacy in the UK for 15 years, focussing particularly on campaigns against animal experimentation and fishing. She has worked with SAFE in voluntary and paid roles for over 20 years and is currently Campaigns Manager.
Corporate Campaigns Coordinator
Jessica’s background lies largely in the film and television industry, where she gained several years of experience producing and managing creative projects and campaigns for international brands and advertising agencies. Her dedication to animal advocacy led her to volunteer countless hours of her time to various animal protection organizations and rescue charities over the past decade. A passion for a greater understanding of animal-related issues in New Zealand motivated her return to university where she graduated from Unitec with a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Animal Management and Welfare in 2016. She now heads SAFE’s Corporate Campaign initiatives, where she can combine her production and campaign delivery skills with her ongoing passion and commitment to animal advocacy.
Eat Kind Programme Officer
Through her work, Kylie provides Kiwis with access to positive, informative tools and resources that empower cruelty-free, plant-based and vegan choices. Kylie has a passion for nutrition and completed her studies in Food Science at Lincoln University in 2016. She is an avid runner, and since becoming vegan has taken part in numerous ultra-marathon events. Along with a desire to contribute to a better Aotearoa for animals, Kylie is passionate about advocating foods that are kinder to our bodies and the planet.
Nellie’s drive to help animals initially led her to study Animal Welfare and Veterinary Nursing. She was introduced to animal rights campaign work when she made the connection between the cats and dogs she was caring for in the Vet Clinic and the animals on her plate. Nellie started as a volunteer for SAFE, and since then has contributed to the Supporter Engagement team and worked as a Volunteer Coordinator. In 2018, she joined the Campaigns Team, where she now advocates for animals used in experimentation, hens confined to cages and animals in the live export trade.
Mona started volunteering for SAFE when she was 13 years old. She had a passion for understanding why political change wasn’t happening for animals which prompted her to study Political Science and Public Policy. She has worked on multiple election campaigns in New Zealand and Australia and briefly worked as an events coordinator at Parliament. After joining SAFE as Campaigns Officer, Mona completed a Certificate of Proficiency in Animal Law from Auckland University of Technology. She focuses on SAFE’s political and legal campaigns working on ending live export and farrowing crates for pigs.
Eating a plant-based diet is the most important thing you can do to help animals. It's a simple switch, but it makes a big difference. You'll feel great knowing that you are putting your values into action. Challenge yourself to give it a try. We bet you’ll find it tastier and easier than you ever imagined!
As a charity, SAFE is reliant on the support of caring people like you to carry out our valuable work. Every dollar goes towards providing education, undertaking research and campaigning for the benefit of all animals.