Dedicated, Compassionate, and Talented!
Steve Jenkins, Board of Directors
Steve has been crazy for animals ever since he can remember - rescuing turtles in the road, squirrels who have fallen from trees, so it was no surprise when he answered the call from an acquaintance to bring a "mini-pig" into his and Derek's very small home in Georgetown.
Steve brings his incredible social media skills and love of all animals to Happily Ever Esther as the co-founder and member of the Board of Directors. He is a loud and proud speaker for animal welfare around the world.
Derek Walter, Director of Operations
The road to becoming the farm manager for Happily Ever Esther was not the straightest path. Spending years becoming an incredibly talented professional magician, Derek never thought he would quit the life in the spotlight to become the animal caretaker, but this couldn't have been a more perfect fit.
Derek spends most of his time in the barn (especially with his best buddy, Bear), making sure the HEEFS store runs smoothly, and directing all of the events at the farm.
Krista Hiddema, President
Krista serves as the President of the Board of Directors for Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary. Krista previously spent six years as the Vice President of Mercy For Animals in Canada, where she led twelve undercover investigations exposing the truth of what happens behind the closed doors of slaughterhouses and factory farms. She is passionate about farmed animals, and in helping people realize that farmed animals are just as deserving of love and respect as the cats and dogs we share our lives with.
Krista lives with her husband Nigel, where together they rescue Great Danes, cats, and all manner of fur-kids!
Susan Housel, Board of Directors
Susan splits her time between Naples, FL and Georgetown, ON and brings her tremendous project management skills to ensuring that Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary has clear and realistic goals both in the present, and for our many lofty goals for animals in the future.
Susan shares her life with her husband Ray, their two children, Jacqueline and James, their three canine family members, Baxter, Pluto and Rutabaga, and is a tireless advocate for those who have no voice.
Andrea White, Farm Sanctuary Coordinator
A life-long animal lover, Andrea has been involved in a variety of animal rights projects and organizations, including the completion of animal care internships at Animal Place, volunteering in wildlife rehabilitation, doing outreach with Farm Animal Rights Movements, and being involved with the Save Movement in Toronto.
At the sanctuary Andrea wears many hats, some of which include organizing events and work days, managing animal care, and assisting with administrative work. Andrea is continuing to develop a photography project highlighting individual animals rescued by farm sanctuaries across North America.
Alison Watt, Animal Care Specialist
Alison is bringing a lifetime of working and caring for animals to HEEFS. As a young child in Nigeria, her favourite activity was playing with the toads beneath the front windows of her home. As a young adult in Eastern Ontario, she was introduced to small animal handling and first aid while volunteering in veterinary clinics.
In 2014, Alison began working with rescued farmed animals. Caring for sheep, goats, pigs, horses, cows and more. She learned how to assess their general health, treat wounds and recognize signs of ailments requiring veterinary care along with proper feeding, appropriate housing, enrichment and routine care including inoculations, hoof trimming and grooming.
As a full-time animal caregiver, Alison will help with daily medical care, animal enrichment, feeding, health checks, and cleaning. Her years of experience, and confidence with large animals will be a great asset to our ever growing animal family.
Michael Sizer, Maintenance
Michael discovered his love for animals early in life as he spent much of his time exploring outdoors in his hometown of Sudbury, Ontario. Later he became an advocate for animal rights and a strong believer in the need for farmed animal sanctuaries in spreading compassion and understanding.
Along with his love of animals, Michael has some serious mechanical and construction skills which include welding, small engine repair and woodworking. All that, and a "make it work" motto, is just what we need as Michael takes on the role of part-time handyman at HEEFS.
Kathy Fischer, Volunteer Coordinator
Kathy's commitment to animal advocacy started in her teens, and she now manages our amazing farm volunteers. From very skilled veterinary technicians who come weekly to folks who just want to help out from time to time, we couldn't do it alone.
Kathy brings her strong relationship-building and leadership skills to helping ensure that every animal at HEEFS is given the love and respect they so richly deserve. In her spare time, Kathy loves hanging out with Phineas and Maggie, her animal companions.
Kim Rushnell, Social Media Coordinator
Kim is a long time animal activist, whom after offering to bake a cake for Esther's 2nd birthday, was hooked on working for a pig. Kim manages Esther's various social media platforms and is passionate about spreading compassion for all farmed animals across the globe. Kim lives with her professional golfer husband and their many fur kids. She is also Esther’s official babysitter.
Personal philosophy: we can change the world just through the simple act of showing kindness to all! Preach with your life, and when necessary use words.
Sheryl Greenspan, Editor-in-Chief
Ever since she first visited HEEFS as a workday volunteer, Sheryl knew that she wanted to become more involved in helping the Sanctuary reach out to people all over the world spreading its message of compassion for farmed animals everywhere.
Sheryl brings a lifelong love of animals and 25 years of professional copywriting and editing experience to her role at Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary.
Crystal Downs, Accountant
Running a charity involves following many specialized and generally accepted accounting principals in both Canada and the United States. So, in 2017, we brought Crystal Downs, CPA, CGA on to our team.
In her role as our part time accountant, she is responsible for making sure that our accounting and financial reporting are accurate and compliant. Crystal, a long-time supporter of Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary, and life time lover of animals, works as a full time accountant in Georgetown and enjoys playing ringette in the winter and baseball in the summer.