About & WRAM Board of Directors
President: Whitney Stiehler
Whitney is the current President of the Wildlife Rehabilitators’ Association of Massachusetts(WRAM). She joined WRAM in 2002 and became the secretary of the organization in 2014, then the president in 2015. Whitney Currently leads WRAM’s Conference Planning Committee and WRAM’s Website Design Committee.
During the day, Whitney is the Wildlife Program Administrator at the Tufts Wildlife Clinic in North Grafton, MA located at The Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. She has worked in education and wildlife for the past 25 years. She has been a high school biology teacher, Wildlife Visitor Educator, Veterinary Assistant, and has taught Tufts Wildlife Clinic Outreach programs. She was also the Wildlife Supervisor at the Massachusetts Audubon Society.
She has researched bison, wolves and grizzly bears in Yellowstone National Park, and prairie dog behavior in New Mexico. Additional research experiences include conservation projects about population dynamics in the Peruvian Amazon River Basin and traveling to South Africa to assist in the study of brown hyena behavior.
Fun Fact: She has a soft spot for rodents, crows and vultures. In her off time, she enjoys photographing wildlife and traveling.
Vice President: Patty Reilly
Patty joined the Board in 2019 after becoming a WRAM member and wildlife rehabber in MA several years ago. She saw a great opportunity to help the growing organization and network with other rehabbers. Patty currently leads WRAM’s Education Committee and WRAM’s Newsletter Committee.
Patty was previously a rehabber in CT but had not been doing any rehabilitation for quite a while. She took the wildlife rehabilitation training course at the New England Wildlife Center and volunteers at NEWC as often as she can.
Patty has spent most of her career as a research scientist studying immunology at Yale and Harvard Medical Schools and at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals. While at BI, she established a science program for kids in 4th and 5th grades, bringing science and real scientists into their classrooms. Patty most recently working as a research analyst tracking cell and gene therapies for Informa Pharma, a company that tracks clinical trials and drug development globally. She has a BS in Zoology from Connecticut College and an MS in Biology from SCSU.
When Patty is not rehabbing Eastern cottontail rabbit babies, she enjoys walks with her 3 dogs, travel, photography and bird watching along the North River where she lives.
Secretary: Alesha Strycharz
Alesha Strycharz joined WRAM in 2022 after attending an Introduction to Wildlife Rehabilitation seminar hosted by Judy Pasko and Sam Tompkins in January 2022. After a year of observing how critical wildlife rehabilitators are to species conservation and educating the public through interaction, Alesha applied for the WRAM Board of Directors as Secretary.
As a newly licensed rehabilitator who experiences the value of WRAM first-hand, Alesha is passionate about furthering WRAM's mission to promote communication between Wildlife Rehabilitators and facilitating educational opportunities for the public and rehabilitators alike. Her experience in project management and marketing will help rehabilitators focus on providing care for injured and orphaned wildlife by exploring ways to automate or improve administrative processes.
Alesha is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and works as a director of marketing for a real estate investment, development, and management firm. Alesha holds a degree in communication and public relations from George Mason University.
Fun Fact: I learned about wildlife rehabilitation the evening before my bachelorette party in 2021, and with Judy's guidance, my fiancé and I spent the evening caring for a nestling house sparrow. The next morning, my bridesmaids delayed the start of the bachelorette so we could transport the sparrow to Littleton Animal Hospital.
Treasurer: Mike Kanarek
Mike Kanarek is an avid environmentalist who also spends time volunteering at Mass Audubon’s Drumlin Farm and MassEnergize. He is a member of the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) as well. Mike tries to seize every opportunity to put his business degree and consulting background to work for nonprofits, particularly those that protect wildlife and habitat.
He joined the WRAM board because he wants to ensure that rehabbers in New England always have a stable community of peers to provide one another with support and share information that will help to protect wild animals. Mike currently leads WRAM’s Grant Committee and WRAM’s Strategic Planning Committee.
In what little free time he has, Mike tries to provide his flock of rescue parrots with a good home, and design and publish board games through his company, Aviary Games.
Cortney is a clinical researcher at Tufts Medical Center, working with health professionals to turn their innovative clinical research into patient care. Her background is in conservation biology, having received her MS in Queensland Australia, studying flying foxes and their role as a vector species of zoonotic viruses. Cortney currently oversees WRAM’s Slack App and WRAM Membership.
Cortney has a particular affinity for bats, though she is passionate about animals in general. She has traveled internationally to volunteer in wildlife sanctuaries, zoos, and other animal-centric organizations. She even rehabilitated a spectacled flying fox while she lived in Australia – an endangered species!
Her favorite thing about being on the WRAM board is the passion and dedication that the rest of the board brings – everyone cares deeply for wildlife and many spend all of their available time helping as many animals in need as possible. Everyone is hardworking and motivated.
Curtis Beyer: Legal Advisor
Curtis Beyer is a current Board Member of the Wildlife Rehabilitator’s Association of Massachusetts (WRAM). He joined WRAM and the Board in 2019 to utilize his legal knowledge to assist WRAM in its mission. Curtis is an attorney licensed in both Massachusetts and Florida. He earned his B.A. from UMass Amherst and his J.D. from Boston College.
Curtis is an avid animal lover and assists his wife, who is a licensed rehabilitator, with her efforts. He is excited to join the efforts of the passionate members of WRAM and is looking forward to contributing by providing legal insight to WRAM to assist its members in the meaningful and challenging work they do.
Jenna has always loved wildlife and the calming effect of nature. Jenna was in search of a home for her growing enthusiasm for wildlife welfare and habitat protection, so she pursued a wildlife rehabilitation license. She is extremely interested in protection and conservation of wildlife and natural resources in Massachusetts. She strongly believes in WRAM’s mission to facilitate communication and education among the wildlife rehabilitation community, their commitment to conservation, and providing educational materials to MA residents. Jenna believes real change happens through education and she is excited to be part of the team!
Jenna has a Bachelor of Science in Radiation Therapy from Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. She received her MBA from Endicott College. She lives on the Northshore with her husband, Kevin, and their 3 Chihuahuas. She currently has a squirrel tenant named Larry living in the nesting box she built last year. Jenna and the pups enjoy watching him and his squirrely antics through the living room window.
Judy Pasko: Mentorship Program Coordinator
Judy Pasko has been a wildlife rehabilitator since 2006 and is the founder of Cummington Wildlife, Inc. Judy holds a State permit and a Federal permit for Migratory Birds and Waterfowl. She specializes in rabbit rehabilitation, songbird rehabilitation, and Merganser duckling rehabilitation. Judy is currently retired and able to devote time to wildlife rehabilitation and mentoring of other wildlife rehabilitators. Prior to retiring, Judy worked for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as an Investigator for the Department of Early Education and Care. She holds a Bachelors Degree in Human Development and a Masters Degree in the Education of Young Children with Special Needs. Judy has facilitated the revision of the Wildlife Rehabilitation State Exam and the Wildlife Rehabilitation Study Guide for the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. In addition, Judy has partnered with Dawndale Farm Wildlife, Inc in the development and presentation of seminars titled “Preparing to Become a Licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator” to assist people in their journey to learn wildlife rehabilitation.
Priya Patel, BVM MRCVS: Veterinary Advisor
Priya’s passion for wildlife medicine and rehabilitation first started during an undergraduate internship at New England Wildlife Center (NEWC) in 2007. She graduated from the Royal Veterinary College of London in 2014 and went on to complete an internship in wildlife medicine and conservation at Tufts Wildlife Clinic. There she developed a specialized interest in avian medicine and surgery. She then returned to NEWC and is now the medical director of their Cape Cod branch, The Birdsey Cape Wildlife Center.
Rob Adamski, DVM, Veterinary Advisor
WRAM Advisor Robert Adamski holds a BS in biology from Delaware Valley College of Science & Agriculture, an AS in veterinary technology from Harcum College, as well as a BVMS from the University of Glasgow in Scotland. He is honored to serve as an associate professor for the Captive Wildlife Care & Education Program at Unity College as well as acting as a consultant veterinarian for the two largest wildlife centers in Maine (e.g. Avian Haven in Freedom and Center for Wildlife in Cape Neddick.) Rob serves as an instructor for International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council (IWRC) & as consultant to the board of directors for the Wildlife Rehabilitators Association of Massachusetts (WRAM) that services all of New England.
Off duty, Dr. Adamski engages valiantly in a battle of wills while attempting to pacify and herd his two rescued Canadian tortoiseshell cats. He enjoys hiking, volunteering with the American Red Cross and his local fire department and serves in the US Army Reserves Veterinary Corps. In his few spare moments, you can find him catching a movie at the local cinema and enjoying a bucket of popcorn large enough to double as a swimming pool.
Stephanie is the Executive Director Wild Care, a wildlife rehabilitation hospital located in Eastham, as of March 2016. Her entire career has been dedicated to avian rehabilitation, wildlife conservation and nonprofit fundraising on both coasts. She holds a special affinity for birds (and mice!).
Stephanie served as the Animal Care Coordinator of the Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley in San Jose, CA, and also Executive Director of the Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society in the bustling technology hub of Cupertino, CA. She was extremely fortunate to also spend 6 months as Interim Executive Director at the San Francisco Bay Bird Observatory. All of this experience has landed her exactly where she needs to be, at the helm of Wild Care, an amazing wildlife rehabilitation facility on Cape Cod that is making a difference for wildlife, one animal at a time.
Fun Fact: In her spare time, Stephanie can be found dancing! She is training for a dance competition later this year. She also enjoys hiking, exploring the natural areas of Cape Cod, and catching a sunset whenever she can.
Teresa Loftin: Webmaster
Teresa wishes she had the space and land to be a rehabilitator but she simply does not. So, instead, she offers her talents where she can including providing WRAM with her skills in web development and marketing.
Teresa’s love of animals dates back to her beloved “Fonton” a stuffed elephant she received from her uncle shortly after she was born. Fonton resides today on a shelf in Teresa’s office as a reminder that all animals, great and small, deserve to live. In the past few years, Teresa has become a docent at Southwick’s Zoo teaching conservation and preservation to guests. Any opportunity she gets to incorporate her love of the earth in what she does she jumps on.
For the boring stuff, Teresa has been a full-time web developer for Tufts University since 2000 and moved to the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts in 2012. She has attended the Dawndale Farm Wildlife How to Become a Wildlife Rehabilitator program but has not been able to convince her husband to move to a place with land so she can become a wildlife rehabilitator.
Tracy Zustra has been a wildlife rehabilitator since 2011 and is the founder of Berkshire County Turtle Rescue Inc. Although her focus is turtle rehabilitation, she does accept other wild animals such as squirrels and opossums and is eager to learn more about other species. She is very grateful to have her husbands support. He helps with all sorts of things like building and setting up enclosures to coming up with creative ways to make rehabilitating easier. She joined WRAM because she wanted to build relationships with other wildlife rehabilitators and help raise awareness of the need for more wildlife rehabilitators in Berkshire County.
Professionally Tracy is a Dementia Practitioner, Memory Care Specialist, and Activities Director in a long-term care nursing home. For the past 16 years she has enjoyed enriching seniors lives with meaningful activity programs. She also leads a large pet therapy program where seniors can enjoy all kinds of animals such as rabbits, bearded Dragons, leopard geckos, chickens, and her with Siberian Husky.
WRAM Advisory Committee Members
Robyn is lead certified veterinary technician and a permitted wildlife rehabilitator at the Birdsey Cape Wildlife Center. She graduated from Joliet Junior College in 2015 with a degree in veterinary medical technology, and moved from Illinois to Massachusetts in 2016 to pursue her life’s dream of helping injured and orphaned native wildlife. In addition to her time at the Birdsey Cape Wildlife Center, she has also completed internships at both Willowbrook Wildlife Center and The John G. Shedd aquarium, furthering her knowledge of exotic animal nursing care. She looks forward to helping to educate and assist both veterinary technicians and rehabilitators in the field.
Karyn graduated from Wittenberg University in 2010 with a B.S degree in biology and minor in mathematics, then immediately pursued professional opportunities in wildlife rehabilitation. After interning at a facility in Southern Wisconsin, she moved to Oklahoma where she worked first as an intern and nursery team leader, and then a Wildlife Care Manager for the WildCare Foundation. While overseeing the daily rehabilitative and veterinary care of wild patients at WildCare, she pursued continuing education opportunities that prepared her for and helped her pass the IWRC examination to become a Certified Wildlife Rehabilitator in 2015. She joined Center for Wildlife in 2018, and currently serves as the Senior Wildlife Specialist and Medical Clinic Apprentice Coordinator in their medical clinic. In addition to her wildlife background, Karyn is pursuing her degree in veterinary technology and has previously worked with companion animals as a kennel technician and veterinary technician. Her passion, though, is wildlife rehabilitation and conservation medicine, and she is excited to be able to contribute her knowledge and skills to WRAM as an advisor.
What is WRAM, Inc.?
WRAM (Wildlife Rehabilitators Association of Massachusetts) is a non-profit organization that has been committed to the professionalism of Wildlife Rehabilitation in Massachusetts since 1992.
What are WRAM's objectives?
To promote the communication and dissemination of information among the Wildlife Rehabilitation community
To provide educational materials and resources to the residents of Massachusetts
To support the conservation of wildlife and natural resources in Massachusetts
To foster partnerships with governmental agencies such as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife