Elizabeth Kleist - Executive Director Biography coming soon.
Michael Kleist, CVT, RLAT: Director Mike is a Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT) in Illinois specializing in non-human primate behavior and enrichment. His interest in exotic animals began early on and he has worked in various aspects of husbandry, breeding and captive care with many different species. Mike has a unique passion for working with venomous reptiles and looks to further his career in the field of venom research. By breaking down different venoms, researchers can work with the natural toxins to create new life saving drugs.
Mike and his wife Elizabeth both volunteer their time and expertise with the Friends of Scales Reptile Rescue (FoSRR) in Wheeling, IL helping provide care for sick, injured, or unwanted reptiles through education, rehabilitation, and rehoming. Likewise, the founders of FoSRR volunteer their time and expertise with Exotic Wildlife Sanctuary. We are thrilled at the partnership that has blossomed between Exotic Wildlife Sanctuary and Friends of Scales.
Mike’s dream for the sanctuary is to see it grow into a self-sustaining facility that the public could visit, interact and learn the importance of preservation through conservation of the exotic wildlife that we share this planet with.
Tony del Alcazar - Director Biography coming soon.
Dr. Dana Varble, DVM Dana Varble received her B.S. in Zoology from Southern Illinois University in 1999, and a veterinary degree from University of Illinois in 2003. She previously worked in clinical exotic and emergency medicine. She has spoken locally, nationally, and internationally at conferences and seminars on herpetological and exotic animal medicine and surgery.
She joined the Association of Reptilian and Amphibian Veterinarians in 2003, served on the board of directors from 2008 to 2014, and was the president of ARAV from 2012 to 2013. In January 2015, she began to serve as the Executive Director of ARAV and Director of exotic animal activities for North American Veterinarian Community. She was recently named medical director of Exotic Wildlife Sanctuary NFP.
She shares her home with a certified trailing bloodhound named Calhoun, a Rottweiler mix - Dottie, a cat - Abe, four ball pythons, and a bearded dragon.