Staff

short with glassesNicole Rogers – Executive Director

Nicole  has led nonprofit organizations for the past 24 years.  In collaboration with the Board of Directors, Nicole is excited about leading the growth of SFWS and achieving its compassionate and important mission to the fullest! Although this is her first animal sanctuary, Nicole finds herself serving a cause that is dear to her heart, animal welfare, joyously.  Nicole has a Masters’ degree in International Public Health from Tulane University and has worked in Africa, Bangladesh, and the U.S.  In her role as Executive Director for SFWS, Nicole is passionate about bringing her diverse nonprofit leadership knowledge and experience to SFWS.

Gentry PhotoGentry Leonard, Sanctuary Curator: Gentry’s interest in SFWS began when he began serving the organization as an animal care volunteer. Through hard-work and dedication, he was selected to serve on the Board of Directors and then transitioned to his current and vital role as the Sanctuary Curator.  He earned his Bachelor’s Degree from Texas A&M, and is currently completing his Masters’ in Recreation, Park, and Tourism Sciences through A&M. He has worked, interned, or volunteered at multiple zoos and sanctuaries across the country including the Houston Zoo and the Saint Louis Zoo. While not striving to make St. Francis the best place for wolves and wolf dogs to live out their lives, Gentry is a HUGE Texas A&M football fan. He also travels quite often, most notably visiting zoos around the country (over 20 already!) and visiting Orlando annually for their Halloween festivities.

 

Abigail HixsonAbigail Hixson – Sanctuary Keeper

Abigail started out her animal care career at the age of 18 interning at Big Cat Rescue and from there has improved both her skills and passion for working with animals. After leaving the wild cat sanctuary, Abigail went on to work with wolves, dingoes, new guinea singing dogs, and other canines as a caretaker.  She then moved to Virginia and expanded her knowledge as a wildlife rehabilitation extern while working with many different species of wildlife. Soon after, Abigail found her way to Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary as an intern and quickly feel in love with not only the animals, but the people around her. Her hard work and strong bonds with the animals helped create a permanent place for her. Abigail is passionate about ensuring the well being of  any animal in her care, and is both excited and committed to doing whatever she can to improve the lives of the wolves and wolfdogs that call the Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary home! 

 
 

Felica Lauderbaugh – Sanctuary Keeper

Felica’s love of the natural world began at the tender age of 3 when her parents took her to see Jaws and she fell in love with sharks.  Felica received her Veterinary Technology Certification in Houston, Texas where her heart lead her to work as a Zookeeper with big cats and bears in the Carnivore Section of the Houston Zoo. Goats, alligators, birds of prey and all else that’s included in the Houston Zoo’s Children’s Zoo and African elephants, black rhinos, giraffes and cheetahs at the Caldwell Zoo in Tyler, Texas.  Felica managed the health and care of the thousands of cats and dogs that came through an open door animal shelter in Washington State. Sharing her knowledge and passion for animals is deeply fulfilling for her and she hopes her young daughters follow in her footsteps.  She has a great love of family and adventure, spending lots of time at her friends working farm on General James Fannin’s historic property in Brazoria, Texas. Her furry family includes three kitties and two dogs, a Dachshund and a Fila Braziliareo.