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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animals, Wildlife Preservation & Protection

Mission: Our mission is to protect and defend all native and non-native wildcats.

Results: The WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society was founded on the premise that education and objectivity are the key components in order for us to achieve our mission and to “ensure a wild future for all wildcats.” In 2016 we launched Project Re-Design creating a "Brand New Look," to keep up with the latest technological advancements in presenting our programs, services, and information. Our website provides a valuable reference tool to research the existing state and federal laws that affect wildcats in captivity as well as their comrades in the wild. In April, WCCLAS introduced a new weekly podcast series: "WildCat News Brief," with host Alex Warner; providing a recap of the latest news around the world on captive and wild cats; legal updates; trafficking, trade and transport of wildlife, scholarly publications of note, and of course our work in progress. The Journal of the WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society, our legal and academic publication, provides a unique forum for professionals and scholars to analyze and comment on the issues affecting wildcats around the world, reflecting the perspectives of all disciplines including law, education, medicine, science, philosophy, religion, humanities, social science, and art. Contributing authors and artists are experts across the curriculum and from world-renowned institutions. Two issues will be published back to back in December and late January, one devoted to African Lions and the second on the proceedings from the 17th Conference of the Parties, to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna & Flora. WCCLAS will be represented at CoP17 as an approved NGO Observer. WCCLAS continues to bring education out to the community in the form of legal bar conferences, elementary and high school class programs, partnering with other organizations; and have become part of international and local coalitions in order to engage collectively in our efforts to restore wild populations and combat the atrocities of commercial exploitation of captive and wild cats. Our initiative to prohibit caged, confined or canned hunting of big cats is building a strong group of public supporters! We will continue to press our federal and state congressional members to implement measures to ban this activity. We will be launching Phase I of our comprehensive captive wildcat database in July 2017 along with in-depth research reports on the status of captive wildcats in the U.S. and domestic and international trade.

Target demographics: To help everyone understand the issues with captive wildcats and why a wild future is important for the survival!

Geographic areas served: We work in all areas in the U.S.

Programs: Legal aid and advocacy; educational programs and materials, and research information.

Community Stories

28 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Earlier this year, WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society debuted their new redesigned website--it is phenomenal! While their former site was practical for the "time" I do enjoy the new redesign, layout and it's compatibility with mobile devices. I also enjoy their new weekly podcast on wildcat news with host Alex Warner. The information they provide on wildcats is informative and objective. Looking forward to seeing what's in store for next year!

Previous Stories

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This past July I attended the Law Library of Congress, Power Lunch Presentation – America’s Captive Big Cats given by Lisa Tekancic, Esq., the pres/ceo of WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society. The presentation defined the various issues related to breeding, possession, trade and conservation along with the associated laws and the problems with enforcement at the state and federal levels. Ms. Tekancic made the presentation interesting through her compassion, objectivity, intelligence and humor. All these traits are necessary to lead WCCLAS and further its mission.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I recently began working for WCCLAS as a remote volunteer and I have to say my experience so far has been very rewarding. The organization has a wonderful group of core leadership and volunteers. They tirelessly work to improve the living conditions of all wildcats and at the same time provide excellent educational and legal resources all for the asking!

Advisor

Rating: 5

I've been involved with WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society for many years now and am honored to once again share a few of my observations. First, it amazes me how inventive and creative the team is and I do enjoy listening to new ideas for upcoming programs and services. I am especially in thralled with the latest edition of the weekly wildcats news brief podcast. Second, very proud that our CEO and Wildcat conservation consultant represented the organization at CITES CoP17 in South Africa. It is truly a honor for me to be involved with such a talented and enthusiastic group of individuals; all who selfishly thrive to make life better for all wildcats.

Previous Stories

Advisor

Rating: 5

It is with great pleasure that I write this review on behalf of WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society. I am honored to lend my professional experience as a volunteer advisor to assist in the development of their future programs and services. The CEO is smart, personable, inventive, objective, humorous and humble; these traits are also reflective of the organization. A truly positive advocacy force in the field of big cat conservation.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am delighted to write a review in support of the outstanding work performed by the WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society. As a long standing (intermittent) volunteer, I am at the ready to take part in various out-reach and educational programs offered by the organization. They are truly a wonderful organization and I hope to be able to contribute to their programs in the future. I am looking forward to the next journal issue on African Lions -- a long time in the making but well worth the effort!

Advisor

Rating: 5

The WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society continues to develop new initiatives and strengthen its core in order to continually provide legal and educational resources for the public and in its efforts to fulfill its mission to protect and defend all native and non-native wildcats.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am happy to support WCCLAS and the important work they do to ensure the future wildcats. Their commitment is evident in the expanding work they do, like the new weekly Wildcat news podcast that keeps all informed and educated about all the conservation issues surrounding wildcats. Keep up the good work WCCLAS!

Donor

Rating: 5

I continue to support WCCLAS' work in banning canned hunting in the U.S. and abroad and their commitment to create the first U.S. captive wild cat population database. Their new wildcat news brief podcast is outstanding!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am delighted to write another review for WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society. When I was in grad school I contacted them for information on cheetahs for a project. They were exceptionally helpful! After I completed my studies, I became a part-time volunteer research assistant and love every minute I am able to contribute to help them fulfill their mission. Everyone is wonderful to work with and I am so proud to be involved with such a great group.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm not a client but a grad student and was looking for background information on lions and cheetahs both captive and wild. A professor suggested I contact WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society. I visited their website which is very impressive! I sent an email and received a response the next day. A staff member spoke with me for over an hour and provided me with additional information he put together!

I hope I will be able to give them some of my time when I finish school as a volunteer! They are wonderful!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

WCCLAS is a wonderful group of talented professionals and volunteers who are so dedicated to the cause of saving all wildcats--especially eliminating the commercial exploitation of wildcats in captivity. I've been working for WCCLAS for many years now and is such a rewarding experience.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society has a wonderful team of volunteer professionals who mainly work part-time. We all enjoy our work and time spent together building WCCLAS' reputation as the "go-to" wildcat organization for objective, well-researched and accurate information. We receive emails and telephone inquires from individuals, students at all levels, news and media outlets, as well as other NGO's on a variety of wildcat issues. Our CEO will take the time to speak with folks directly and follow-up with specialized written reports. This part of our work is not readily seen, however, we are here and always willing assist with wildcat research.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I can say unequivocally, that one of my best decisions was to answer WCCLAS’ call for a volunteer and to have been chosen by WCCLAS for the work that this non-profit does for the betterment of all wild cat species. The staff are engaged, action-driven and responsive to the plight of wildcats by planning and initiating projects (often) designed to either fulfill an existing need, or one that has a direct impact on legislation affecting wild cats.
As a volunteer, I have been treated with the utmost respect and consideration by the two staff members who assist me with the work I am doing for WCCLAS. These members are unfailingly kind, considerate and supportive, and always available to answer my questions concerning the work. The assignments that I have been given are challenging and interesting, and knowing that these projects are being conducted in part, to raise public awareness or to advocate for legislation beneficial to native and non-native wild cat populations, makes it that much more rewarding for me.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am delighted to write a review in support of the fabulous wildcat advocacy work and related programs being done by WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society.

Our long-term and new volunteers are truly a talented group of professionals who are striving to make WCCLAS the best in providing objective research articles and reports, educational programs, and legal reform.

One specific group is diligently working on one of our most challenging initiatives: our U.S. captive wildcat database. The database is currently going through implementation testing and we plan to launch Phase I in July 2017.

The WCCLAS crew launched a "new look" in keeping up with new trends in technology and are amazingly creative in presenting material in new formats, such as the creation of a weekly podcast series: WildCat News Brief, hosted by a phenomenal voice-over artist Alex Warner.

I am so very thankful to my fellow board members, our volunteers, and our supporters, for making the important work achieved by WCCLAS possible.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am honored to once again write a review in support of the fabulous wildcat advocacy work and related programs being done by WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society. A truly gifted group of volunteer professionals who are striving to make WCCLAS the best in providing objective research articles and reports, educational programs, and legal reform. The staff continues their work on one of our most challenging initiatives~our U.S. captive wildcat population database, Project Sabu, which we hope to launch in 2014. I am delighted to work with the staff and am always pleased when presented with new ideas and concepts to address the issues involving captive and wild cats.

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General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

As an avid supporter of organizations attempting to protect our severely shrinking wildlife populations, I am seriously impressed by the WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society. I found their organization listed as a resource by Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's David Suzuki for his program "The American Tiger", which was released in 2012 as part of his series called "The Nature of Things" I have found his work to be quite compelling and therefore looked up this organization. WCCLAS is the most serious professional organization that I have found to date to deal with the legal protection of wild cats and the public education of their plight.

Board Member

Rating: 4

just got back from south africa. i'm so glad Wildcat Conservation Legal Aid Society exists. we need to continue to protect these amazing animals.
i'm glad i'm a part of this organization.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

I attended a number of presentation delivered by this organization and they were more illustrative and informative than numerous books and movies on the same subject

Chris2345

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

WCCLAS is a competent and committed wildcat advocacy organisation. Many people underestimate the importance of animal advocacy, preferring to support more visible and tangible wildlife sanctuaries. But cruelty to animals and poor conservation is always a failure of policy, and advocacy works at a policy level to improve the lives of animals. You can save dozens of animals in a sanctuary, but by changing policies for the better, you can save thousands.
And make no mistake, it is exhausting and time consuming work.

Previous Stories

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

My only experience with this org is through their Journal, which I contributed to. As you can see the Journal is a serious and comprehensive publication, featuring expert and well researched articles relevant to wildcats.
Lisa Ann was efficient and helpful, and dedicated to her cause..

Donor

Rating: 5

I am happy to endorse the work and mission of WCCLAS. Their contribution to conservation thru education and legal advocacy is a significant one. The information provided on the website and in the Journals is a trusted source of truth in a sea of misinformation. And, as an animal rescue volunteer, I’m especially interested in WCCLAS’s new initiative on prohibiting caged, confined or canned hunts of big cats. The impact of this work could do so much to reduce exploitation and relieve suffering right here in the U.S. Four paws up for more success in the future.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

It is an honour to once again write in support of the WildCat Conservation Legal Aid Society (WCCLAS) as one of the truly great nonprofit organizations. Since my last review WCCLAS has gone from strength to strength, highlights of which include:

Raising significant awareness of the issues concerning private ownership of big cats in captivity in America through documentary appearances and lectures;

Involvement of WCCLAS volunteer staff in a potentially global project to help conserve the world's few remaining wild tigers;

Confirmation by a leading global tiger conservation partnership that WCCLAS volunteer submissions provided a 'first class analysis' of the issues facing the world's few remaining wild tigers;

The launch of an innovative new WCCLAS initiative to prohibit caged, confined or canned hunting of big cats; and

Significant involvement by WCCLAS volunteer staff in the discovery of the true and alarming extent of the lion bone trade from South Africa to South East Asia.

The above is clear evidence that WCCLAS continues to epitomize the best qualities of a what a true and legitimate nonprofit organization should be.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am currently working on my third article for the WCCLAS Journal and have been really impressed with the awareness raising work of this comparatively young organisation. The Journal is freely available to view online and the WCCLAS website is also regularly updated with news and developments as regards the issues facing the world's 36 wild cats, both in the wild and in captivity.

Few people realise that there are barely 3,000 tigers and 16,000 lions left in the wild. The tiger could be extinct in the wild in 10-20 years yet this is also not generally known. The WCCLAS represents a breath of fresh air in the wild cat conservation movement in that it gives a voice to a broad cross section of cat conservationists who may not otherwise have been published simply because they don't have MSc and / or Phd after their name. Does this mean the Journal is of lesser quality than a peer reviewed wildlife oriented Journal? Not a bit of it. The WCCLAS Journal is sensible and professional in terms of content and complements the scientific journals perfectly. WCCLAS is exactly what the cat conservation field needed and came along at just the right time, when the world's 36 species of wild cats need all the friends they can get. Highly relevant and highly recommended.

Donor

Rating: 5

WCCLAS is truly an awesome wildcat advocacy organization! I am supporting their program to ban canned hunting of big cats in the United States.

Donor

Rating: 5

As an animal lover and someone concerned about conservation I have been impressed with and supportive of WCLAS's objective to use the legal system to fight the exploitation of wildcats.
The Journal publication and website are trusted sources of information that help me understand the often complicated legalities surrounding controversial issues like private ownership of wildcats as pets.
Lisa Ann Tekancic, president of WCLAS, is a passionate advocate and highly dedicated to their mission of ensuring a future for the cats in the wild where they belong.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

WCCLAS is a leader and a model for professionals and the public seeking to protect wildlife who is so imperiled today. Throughout my dealings with WCCLAS, I have been impressed with their stellar scholarship, ethics, and commitment to positive collaboration. This latter quality is both critical and rare in the competitive and divisive atmosphere that sadly characterizes so many interactions today. Because of WCCLAS' dedication, efficacy, and ethical integrity, it comprises a vital contribution to wildlife conservation and society at large. I cannot recommend anyone more highly.