Our Board of Directors
STAR – St. Louis Avian Rescue, Inc. is governed by an elected Board of Directors. Its officers are charged with conducting STAR’s business in accordance with our Code of Ethics.
Janet Draper, President
A long-time bird lover and life-long resident of St. Louis, Janet has been involved in the local bird scene for decades. She was one of many courageous individuals in the St. Louis bird community who responded to the great need for rescue services by spending their own personal time and money to help distressed birds find positive outcomes.
As an outgrowth of her personal rescue efforts, she helped found a non-profit organization dedicated to serving the St. Louis community by rescuing, caring for and rehoming distressed birds.
That organization has evolved into STAR – St. Louis Avian Rescue, Inc. STAR has the mission of providing rescue, veterinary care and rehoming services to distressed birds; sound training advice to current owners; and education about these unique animals to the public.
In addition to her efforts with STAR, Janet remains active in the community. She has served as an Officer and Board Member of the Gateway Parrot Club for nearly a decade.
Justin Reis, Vice President
Fascinated by animal intelligence from an early age, Justin became interested in parrots after auditing a course in cognitive ornithology. The idea that humans were not the “top of the ladder” but rather the end of one evolutionary branch, that other branches had independently developed unique intelligences of their own, was a revelation.
Of the list of animals thought by researchers to be the most intelligent in the world: elephants, cetaceans, primates, corvids, and parrots (psittacines). Only one was readily accessible.
Justin joined the rescue in 2009 as a way to become better acquainted with an animal which fascinated him. The experience of fostering was a wonderful way to share life with these remarkable creatures and the need for a rescue organization to improve conditions for these long-lived animals was soon obvious.
Cage cleaning and home visits eventually evolved into an election to the Office of Secretary. In 2011 he joined the Board of Directors. Justin is just happy to give back to the entrancing wonders of nature that have so captivated him…
Kelly Coyle, Treasurer
Kelly began working with the rescue as a volunteer and foster. Having a particular love of African Greys she has helped a number of foster birds transition to happy homes and even given two Timnehs forever homes in her own humble abode.
Recognized by her fellow volunteers for her tireless efforts executing and improving day-to-day operations she has been a steady presence on the Board of Directors since 2011 and was unanimously elected to the office of Vice President in 2014.
Jennifer Kennah, Secretary
Jennifer joined the rescue as a volunteer in 2010 and quickly became a staple foster of Macaws and Cockatoos. An effective facilitator she was elected to the Board of Directors in 2013. Jennifer is a strong advocate for animal rescue and also volunteers for Urban Future, an inner city youth mentoring program. She has 1 Dog, Xena, a Bernese Mountain Dog, in addition to her birds.
Jeanne Carmack, Member
Jeanne joined as a volunteer for Star (St. Louis Avian Rescue) about a year ago. She is an avid fan of parakeets and cockatiels and has owned birds most of her life. She strongly believes in bird rescue and rehabilitation. She is currently fostering a cockatiel, and has also fostered parakeets. She was elected to the board in 2016.
Debbie Neske, Member
Debbie joined as a volunteer in 2015. She is currently “owned” by a goffins cockatoo, Annie and two Chihuahuas. Debbie describes herself as a foster failure since she adopted Annie shortly after fostering. Debbie enjoys fostering birds of all sizes. She was elected to the board in 2016.