Meet Our Staff

Kent Weber, Co-Founder and Executive Director

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Photo by Annie White

Kent has spent the past three decades as an experiential educator working to provide a home for rescued animals. His patience and skill as a teacher have benefited thousands of volunteers and visitors over the years. He is the main spokesperson for the traveling and on-site Ambassador Wolf programs, and has inspired compassion and understanding in countless visitors. Kent has profound architectural knowledge from his background in construction management, and he applies this knowledge to make the sanctuary sustainable through solar power and passive solar design. Kent wears many different hats at the sanctuary: You might find him in our tool shop, teaching new volunteers how to build something for the first time, talking about group psychology to high school students, or explaining wolf-dog regulations to someone on the phone. During the summer, the one hat you can count on him wearing almost every day is his cowboy hat.

Tracy Ane Brooks, Co-Founder and Director

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Photo by Shevaun Williams

With over two decades of experience working with wolves and horses, Tracy understands animal behavior and has developed gentle handling techniques that are truly her own. Tracy teaches interested Mission: Wolf staff how to use body language to communicate with wolves and horses. She has also developed successful handling techniques for the captive Ambassador wolves to help them feel calm and happy in public, unnatural, and new environments. Tracy is currently developing a wolf/horse body language teaching program at the sanctuary, using positive interactions between people and animals as an educational and therapeutic tool. She published a book about her work, entitled A Walk in Connection. An accomplished artist, Tracy has raised money for the sanctuary from sales of her artwork.

 

Mike

Photo by Elisa Behzadi

Mike Gaarde, Refuge Director

Mike is a happy hippie who just loves wolves. He came to Mission: Wolf in September 2013 and has never stopped working as hard as he can for the wolves. Him and his fiance are very excited for their future as well as the sanctuaries future. Mike’s charisma and excitement for our mission makes him a driving force on our staff. When he’s not working with the wolves, Mike can be found  leading many refuge projects and teaching new skills to any and all who are interested or being artsy fartsy working  with jewelry. In his free time, Mike likes to ride his dirt bike, be silly, wear pink, and go snowboarding. Much like the wolf, Mike is always striving to be mindful, aware, and knowledgeable of the world around him.

 

Tricia LePore, Animal Caretaker

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Photo by Claire Tellekson-Flash

Tricia has rejoined Mission: Wolf full-time after spending the summer of 2017 working for the wolves and the community. She can usually be found wearing vibrant patterns, brazenly learning a new skill in the tool shop, or speaking kind words of encouragement to fellow staff members and strangers alike. She helps to keep our wolves fed and our refuge running, and always does so with a charming laugh and witty comment.  She has now become our new Animal Caretaker and her devotion to the wolves shines through her vibrant smile every day.

 

 

jake with nashira 4

Photo by Laura McGehee

Jake Menzies, Meat Caretaker

Jake’s infectious love and puppy-like energy combined with his serious commitment to these animals makes him a force to be reckoned with. He manages the feeding schedules and meat processing for our resident wolves, and can usually be found speed-walking around the sanctuary with an expansive grin across his face. Extra points if you can guess where his accent is from (hint: he’s not Australian).

Christian Pietzsch, Mechanics Caretaker

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Photo by Laura McGehee

Christian hails all the way from Germany, and he makes the chocolate cakes to prove it. He brings with him in-depth mechanics knowledge and long, dedicated hours spent working while humming songs under his breath. He is a heartfelt friend to all the canines and humans of Mission: Wolf, and a wonderful addition to the community games and dinners.