Photo by The Dogist

Photo by The Dogist

CHRISSY BECKLES,
FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT

My name is Chrissy Beckles and I am fighting so these dogs do not have to. And I mean that literally not figuratively. I am a champion Amateur Boxer who fights to make a difference for these pups. I first visited Puerto Rico over eight years ago with my husband, who is a stuntman and was filming on the island. We love dogs and were horrified at what we encountered. It is hard to visit a beach without seeing its residents -- usually very cute pups who sometimes chew rocks because they are so hungry. It broke our hearts. We are Brits who now live and work in New York. I did some research and found a couple of rescue groups working in Puerto Rico and began volunteering and donating to them. We adopted our second ‘fur child’, Boom Boom from a horrific situation in the Arecibo shelter in 2008. I have been rescuing full time in Puerto Rico since 2009 and launched The Sato Project in November 2011.

Our team on the ground in Puerto Rico

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Dr. Felicano, Clinica Mi Mascota

Our dogs are treated under the care of Dr. Agnielis Feliciano, the owner of Clinica Mi Mascota. Dr. Feliciano has been involved in rescue work and shelter medicine for the majority of her career, studying and learning about up to the minute techniques and practices in the US and then bringing her expertise back to the Island of Puerto Rico.

The staff at Clinica Mi Mascota have welcomed our dogs with open arms and are enjoying working with The Sato Project.

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DAPHNE OSARIO, THE SATO PROJECT 'NANI'

Daphne and her husband, Steve have been boarding and training those of our rescues that need some extra help socializing or behaviorally before they take their freedom flights to NY. Daphne also helps with our dogs at both of our vet clinics, on rescue missions and of course transports. No one can load a plane like Daphne! Affectionally known as the Nani, Daphne takes our extra special cases under her wing and works miracles. 

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SARAI CRUZ NEGRÓN, VETTING COORDINATOR

Sarai is an undergraduate biology student in UPR in Humacao with aspirations to continue studies as a veterinary technician. She began working at Candelero Animal Hospital in 2009.  She feels personal gratification knowing that she can help improve pet-owner relations, and feels that nothing is as satisfying as taking an animal in the worst possible health conditions and nursing it back to health so that they can later go on to a forever home. Her favorite TSP rescue was named after her. Sarai was the only survivor of a litter of seven whose siblings were lost to distemper.  Sarai fed the pup by hand and raised her until The Sato Project found her forever home,  and she will always be in her heart. Sarai has been working with The Sato Project on our extensive Spay/Neuter/Vaccine and Microchip program in Yabucoa and more recently on Spayathon and also oversees all of our vetting.

Sarai ensures each and every one of our rescues completes our extensive and unprecedented vetting protocols and she never stops smiling! 

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Our team on the mainland

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Jennifer Shepherd, Development, Communications, + Operations Director

Jennifer joined The Sato Project in 2014 to help lead its organizational development, fundraising, and communications efforts. A life-long animal lover with a background in non-profit fundraising and administration, she loves sharing The Sato Project's incredible rescue stories, and helping our organization grow. Please email her at jennifer@thesatoproject.org if you would like to discuss your ideas for supporting The Sato Project.

Development Officer

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Tara Steinberg, Communications aSSOCIATE

Tara grew up in a household of animals in the Midwest, where every spring there was at least one species of baby animal being nursed back to health in the living room and her dog was her best friend. She is honored to bring her life-long love of animals to such an amazing organization as The Sato Project that is saving lives every day. In addition to many nonprofit environments, she has also worked in film, television, and theatre.

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Esther Heine, US TRANSPORTATION COORDINATOR

Esther is the woman who always says yes! Whether a home visit is required or one of our dogs needs delivering to their new family Esther is always ready to go. Esther coordinates our transports when they arrive in New York and ensures that each and every one of our dogs gets to their destination safely.

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sAMANTHA Gurrie, Director OF ADOPTIONS

Samantha has been working with rescue dogs in New York City for years, and now focuses her energy on satos. Her favorite part of the job is playing matchmaker with dogs and adopters, and she won’t sleep till she finds every pup the perfect home. If you’re interested in fostering or adopting a sato, email Samantha at adoption@thesatoproject.org.

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Eric lARNICK, Development associate

Eric joins The Sato Project after a decade working in publishing, where he collaborated with animal welfare organizations all over the world and brought important issues like pet rescue and endangered species conservation to an audience of millions. His favorite part of the job is witnessing a community of rescuers and supporters come together to give every animal the second chance they deserve. He is always excited to pet a new dog.

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Barbara Repetski, Adoptions assistant

Barbara is a long-time lover and supporter of The Sato Project. Barbara and her family have adopted four of our satos and say that they are some of the best things in their life! Barbara lives in the Pocono Mountains and runs the Hemlock Campground and Cottages. Her favorite part of helping with our adoptions is matching people with the perfect dog.

Kristin O’brien, Volunteer coordinator

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Luanne, Foster Coordinator

Our Board of Directors

President and Founder: Christina Beckles

Vice President & Treasurer: Sara Meyers

Secretary: Devin Shanahan

Director: Stacy Alldredge

Director: Bobby Beckles

Director: John Gerhardt

Director: Tracy Warren

The Sato Project's Conflict of Interest Policy: Board members and staff notify all board members of any perceived or potential conflicts of interest and abstain from voting on any issues where a conflict of interest has been determined to exist.