Our Team

Tamara Lackey, Executive Director, Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Nikon Z9, Nikon Ambassador

Tamara Lackey

Founder & Executive Director

Tamara has been the Executive Director of Beautiful Together since co-founding it in 2014. An advocate for children waiting for families, she saw the extraordinary connection between children and animals through years of tangible project work in Ethiopia and the United States. She envisioned the Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary as a bridge between these worlds, linking two vulnerable populations to benefit the other in a naturally therapeutic way. Finding land, creating partnerships, building a team of like-minded advocates and witnessing thousands of heartwarming outcomes all affirmed this decision.

Tamara is also a professional photographer, Nikon Ambassador and show host for PBS NC Chasing Frames. She has delivered presentations at Google, Disney, Harvard Law School and more, speaking on the power of photography and storytelling to affect real change. She and her husband, Steve, also own Coco Bistro & Bar, a plant-based restaurant in Chapel Hill partnered with Beautiful Together. They, their children, and their many pets are excited for the continued growth of this sanctuary – and all the hope it represents.

Jane-Howard Crutchfield

Director of Dog Rescue Operations

Jane-Howard joined Beautiful Together to help implement and run the animal rescue project. Her role includes overseeing the dog adoption program and foster caregiver operations, field services, as well as the animal behavior and rehabilitation program.

Jane-Howard has worked in all areas of animal rescue since 2015: fostering, transporting, training, and volunteering at local animal shelters. As a Certified Dog Trainer, she has a passion for helping animals live their best lives. To her, rescue is more than just saving a life— it’s also making sure that the animal has a happy life. She will be directing training classes at the sanctuary (for kids and adults) as well as working with animals who may need behavioral modification before finding their forever homes.


Steve Lackey

Director of Sanctuary Build Operations

Steve is the co-founder of Beautiful Together, and he has been working on related non-profit projects and funds since 2014. As a long-time animal rescue advocate, he often finds himself surrounded by a number of foster pets on a day-to-day basis, whether he actually knows they are in his house or not!

Steve is responsible for helping to realize the on-the-ground vision of the animal sanctuary. He oversees development and coordination with all general and subcontractors, managing communication with builders and fielding county requirements. His efforts include ensuring compliance with all permitting requirements and overseeing and participating in the build-out of all utility infrastructure onto the property. He also manages new sanctuary development roles and volunteer coordination efforts. And he now finds himself driving a tractor, something he'd never expected to do.

He and his wife, Tamara, love to run their dogs on the property as much as possible while building everything from the ground up (and both pups rate the sanctuary land a 10 out of 10).

Steve Lackey, Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary, Chapel Hill, NC, Photo Tamara lackey Nikon Ambassador
Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary

Leslie Davis

Director of Youth Programming

Leslie has spent the last twenty years in a variety of youth counseling and advocacy roles. A long-time supporter of UNC Athletics, her background also includes mentoring a number of college athletes over the years, as well.

Leslie is a passionate volunteer and advocate for the Hargraves Community Center in Chapel Hill, and she understands the challenges children in our community face as it relates to an inequity of opportunities. She is excited to help build out and lead this major part of The Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary as its Director of Youth Programming.

Leslie lives in Chapel Hill with her husband and their family, which includes three teenagers, two chickens, three dogs, and a myriad of basketball hoops.

Julie Paddison

Director of Cat Rescue Operations

Julie’s first cat as a young girl was named Socks. It was love at first sight, and she has loved cats and all animals since then. She has been active in animal rescue for over 20 years in many roles, including medical foster, fundraising lead, event planning, marketing support, president, board chair, and most recently, Cat & Clinic Team Lead,  Supplies Manager and Business Development Coordinator. Julie believes that no animal should live in pain or fear and deserves protection and care to prevent that. She is excited to be part of the mission and programs of Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary.

Julie lives in Durham with her four resident cats and a rotation of foster cats. She worked in the healthcare industry for 22 years and now owns a restaurant in Chapel Hill and a wine bar in RTP. She is an avid cyclist and competitive triathlete.

Julie Paddison and Maku
Dr Eve Boggs, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary, Animal Rescue, North Carolina, Veterinarian

Dr. Eve Boggs

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine

Dr. Eve grew up in the foothills of South Carolina and graduated from the University of Georgia College of Vet Med in 2003. After vet school, she moved to Ohio with her vet school sweetheart for his internship and residency where I began in small animal private practice. She was inspired by her mentor there to become certified in Veterinary Acupuncture in 2006. In 2007 they moved to North Carolina and, aside from a short time as a mobile holistic practitioner, she have been in general small practice since. Eve has always been passionate about client education and providing individualized patient care:

"When people understand why we make certain recommendations for their pets, compliance improves, trust is gained and this results in better long term outcomes for patients. There are many ways to care for pets and this often means thinking outside the box which takes time, intention, compassion and empathy. While incredibly rewarding, practicing this way has also been my downfall because this is not how medicine in general is structured. Giving people the information, tools, and understanding of what they need to best care for their pet takes time, energy - it doesn’t end when the day is over. After 20 years practicing the only way that felt rewarding to me, it also eventually became exhausting, and I lost the joy of being a veterinarian to some degree. Our profession has very high burn out rate, and I was not immune.

For me, the shift to working with BT has renewed my joy in my profession as it gives me an opportunity to learn new ways of doing things, solving problems that have not been a part of my daily practice, and giving back to a population of animals and people that I haven’t worked closely with before. I am re-energized to learn new things again and get to work with an amazing group of humans who are all passionate about what we can do for animals, our youth and our community- together.

I did eventually marry my vet school sweetheart, Jamie, and we have 2 human boys, Kenan and Rowan as well as 3 cats (Cloud, Perry, and Anais), 3 leopard geckos (Nelly, Ming and Fatty) and a fish (Patches). No dogs currently, but maybe one day. I aspire to meditate but have found I’m most mindful when I am crocheting or baking sourdough bread. I also love audiobooks, trying new food, craft beer and wine."

Kim Pollar with Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary

Kim Pollard

Operations Manager

Originally from upstate New York, Kim and her family have lived in North Carolina for the last nine years. Her background is a combination of business and operations management and production. She opened Chatham Home, an antiques and gift shop in Pittsboro that she owned and managed for a couple of years, while also working on restoration projects.

As the Line Producer of The Chasing Frames Show with Tamara Lackey, a PBS NC show focused on showcasing those who are transforming lives, protecting our planet and rescuing those in need, Kim managed all the details that went into managing an episodic series in addition to a busy photography studio. She was also the Business Manager for Endurance Productions.

Kim loved her two rescue greyounds and enjoys time with her three rescue cats while continuing to fall in love quickly with each of her foster pets. She, her husband and their two daughters live in Cary, North Carolina.


Melissa Weil

Dog Rescue Operations Manager

Melissa's lifelong love of animals led her to start fostering in 2016, and she quickly discovered her purpose in the world. Rescue has become a huge part of her life and she has made the most wonderful friendships over the years meeting so many like-minded people. She has fostered many dogs and has a soft spot for the shy, nervous ones and the moms with puppies! Over the years, she has gotten more involved with the behind the scenes aspects of rescue.

Her love of detail and spreadsheets works well for her current role managing dog rescue operations for Beautiful Together. She handles record management and medical care coordination for dogs, as well as supporting fosters in any way she can. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with friends, family, and her pack of rescue dogs!

Melissa Weill, Dog Rescue, Beautiful Together, Animal Sanctuary, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary

Jenn Kramer

Cat Rescue Operations Manager

Jenn has been a middle school science teacher for the last 22 years, and she loves watching the joy of discovery in her students. Being home with virtual teaching, she got the pleasure of sharing the world of animal fostering with her students - and they got to watch puppies and kittens grow. But the best part of her life, by far, is her son. He was adopted when he was one year old from Ethiopia, and it was then that she realized how much more love can grow each day. She discovered how healing and calming the pets in their house were to him, and in the midst of the COVID pandemic, they decided together to foster for Beautiful Together. During the process of finding foster pets homes, she saw such a healing transformation in her son - he had come full circle to helping another living creature that needed to be adopted find a forever home. The wisdom that came from his mouth with each adoption proved how important the mission of Beautiful Together is for this world. They went on to foster two pregnant mom cats, helping them deliver kittens, and Jenn became a key part of the team.

Jenn helps to find forever homes for all the cats and kittens in foster care, while also getting to spend time caring for the people who are entrusted to foster these sweet, amazing animals.


C.D. Mock

Dog Adoptions Manager

C.D. joined Beautiful Together with the intent to help with onsite operations after hearing about the sanctuary. In the meantime, though, he began to implement the vetting process for dog adoptions, connecting approved applicants to fosters and the pet they desire to meet.

C.D. has been involved in dog adoptions and dog socialization since 2015, through local shelters, and he enjoys working with dogs in all areas of care and rehabilitation.  C.D. has also worked with a national dogfighting prevention group and remains active in that area,  identifying prospective suspects and helping to expose their operations.

Being a part of Beautiful Together is a lifelong dream come true, and he is thankful and anxious to see it evolve.

kristen mcduffee

Kristen McDuffee

Youth Programs & Sanctuary Operations Manager

When not assisting with fostercaregiver support for animal rescue operations, Kristen oversees Beautiful Together's Timbernook programs: nature-based, child-led play experiences at the sanctuary. In addition, she manages day-to-day sanctuary efforts, assisting with Beautiful Together's operations' move to the sanctuary property.

Nancy Rothrock

Clinic Coordinator and Cat Adoption Assistant

Nancy is a medical photographer with 20+ years experience and a software company owner who moved to the Chapel Hill area from Indianapolis in 2019 with her husband. Moving to the area just at the start of the Covid pandemic, Nancy was looking to become involved with animal rescue to connect with people, as well as to care for animals.

Starting out as a cat and kitten foster, her role with Beautiful Together grew as time went on. Now she is the rescue clinic coordinator, assisting the staff veterinarians in the clinic with the care of the dogs and cats in our rescue. Nancy is also part of the Medical Cat & Kitten Fosters' Team, caring for  the sickest kitties that Beautiful Together takes into care.

Nancy Rothrock with Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary

Angela Myers

International Youth Programs Manager

Angela has been a supporter of Beautiful Together since its inception and joined officially to run the International division of our Youth Programming. Angela works directly with the young men in our Ethiopian transitional housing program, guiding them as they grow and mature personally, as well as mentoring them in their support of Kidane Mehret Children’s Home. With six children of her own, this position is a natural fit for Angela. She is passionate about children without traditional families, and recognizes the importance for kids of all ages to have consistent love and support as they grow and find their way in this sometimes unfair world.
Angela grew up in eastern North Carolina and completed pharmacy school at UNC-Chapel Hill in 2000. She lives in Chapel Hill with her husband, Clint, and their children. They have one daughter and five sons - the youngest two are twins adopted from Ethiopia. The family has two dogs (one adopted through Beautiful Together) and a cat, and they enjoy fostering puppies for Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary.
Angela Myers

Michele Melet

Co-Coordinator of Events

Michele joined Beautiful Together after 18 years in account management, sales, and sales management. For most of her career, she worked in the incentive industry helping Fortunate 5000 clients design, promote, and operate group travel and sports events. For years she worked as the PTA Cultural Arts Representative, bringing shows and artists in residence to a Chapel Hill elementary and middle school. Within the community, Michele and her two children volunteered at HomeStart for 7 years, a non-profit that provides housing and services for families experiencing homelessness. They began a weekly afterschool recreation program for children called "Make Your Mark!" and found a Mother's Day Fundraiser that generated over $25,000 in revenue.

A long-time animal lover and a vegetarian since age 7, Michele feels at home coordinating events for Beautiful Together and finding forever homes for dogs and cats. During her free time, Michele enjoys hiking with her adopted dog, road and Peloton bike riding, and working out.

Stefanie Losavio

Stefanie Losavio

Co-Coordinator of Events

Stefanie is delighted to be working with the Beautiful Together Events Team where she gets to meet so many wonderful animals and see them find them the loving homes they deserve. When she's not cuddling cats and dogs, Stefanie can be found conducting clinical research and training therapists to treat posttraumatic stress disorder. Stefanie looks forward to continuing to work with Beautiful Together as the animal sanctuary grows!

Stefanie is delighted to be working with the Beautiful Together Events Team where she gets to meet so many wonderful animals and see them find them the loving homes they deserve. When she's not cuddling cats and dogs, Stefanie can be found conducting clinical research and training therapists to treat posttraumatic stress disorder. Stefanie looks forward to continuing to work with Beautiful Together as the animal sanctuary grows!

Lisa Montone

Dog Adoption Coordinator and Transition Manager

Lisa is originally from upstate New York where, in spite of weekly shots for allergies to animals and the outdoors, she convinced her parents to bring a dog into their family, send her to horse camp, and spend a summer doing wildlife rehabilitation. Her passion for animal rescue began when she adopted retired racing greyhounds in early adulthood and has been an "adopt don't shop" advocate ever since.

She moved south in search of more sunshine, far less snow, and the ability to spend more time outdoors. She's been working for an RTP tech company for 24 years. In her "free" time, she enjoys running outdoors, watching college sports and, of course, spending time with her three rescue pups.

Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary
Beautiful Together Animal Sanctuary, animal rescue, Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Carol Bouchner

Legal Consultant & Policy Advocate

Carol became passionate about animal rescue after she and her husband adopted their first-ever foster, Maya Angelou Saunders Bouchner (full name only used under exceptional circumstances) almost seven years ago. She joined the team at Beautiful Together when she learned that she could contribute not "just" as a foster but also as a lawyer, policy advocate, and government relations professional, skills she honed over the course of many years since she graduated from law school.

Carol's focus at Beautiful Together is on building out a framework that ensures that we build relationshops with animals we rescue AND with our amazing fosters and adopters. Carol will also lead Beautiful Together's adovacacy efforts at the local and national levels - working to implement laws and regulations that further our mission.

Tommy Parker

Sanctuary Build & Clinic Team

Tommy joined Beautiful Together as a foster in 2019. Since then, he has expanded his participation to many aspects of this loving organization. As part of the build team, he has had the opportunity to participate in some of the initial projects at the 83-acre sanctuary site. Tommy has also collected and transported donations and supplies, rescued animals from animal control, represented Beautiful Together at adoption events, escorted animals during wellness days at various schools, helped with instruction during youth programming, and starting in 2023 has been a part of the clinic team.

As a child, Tommy grew up around many animals that his family rescued to include cats, dogs, snakes, rabbits, horses, pigs, goats, and turkeys, just to name a few. Tommy retired from the United States Marine Corps with a strong desire to give back to the country and community that he loves. Along with teaching middle school, Beautiful Together continues to fill that desire to serve and give back and has been a blessing to Tommy and his family.

Tommy Parker and Gracie Beautiul Together


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