Peggy Cunniff to retire after 32 years of leadership
The National Anti-Vivisection Society (NAVS) today announced the appointment of Kenneth Kandaras as its new executive director, effective July 1 of this year. Kandaras will succeed Peggy Cunniff, who is retiring after serving as executive director of the organization since 1986.
Kandaras has been an integral part of NAVS for nearly 20 years, serving as a member of the board of directors since 1999 and as board president since 2002. An attorney and law professor, Kandaras has been a faculty member of The John Marshall Law School since 1976, teaching primarily in the areas of civil procedure and trial advocacy.
Kandaras’ tenure at John Marshall was also marked by the continued support of the school’s National Research Library for Animal Advocacy, one of the nation’s first dedicated animal law collections. The library was founded in partnership with NAVS in 1995. Under Kandaras’ leadership the Law School has sponsored and led numerous symposia on issues of animal law, animal rights and the ethical issues surrounding animal experimentation.
“Stepping away from NAVS after a literal lifetime in service of this noble cause was not an easy decision,” Cunniff says. “But Ken’s extensive legal advocacy background and his deep understanding of the issues that form the basis for the ethical and scientific argument against the exploitation of animals will help carry NAVS’ efforts forward. I can step down as executive director knowing that I am leaving NAVS—and the animals—in capable hands to be led by a compassionate heart.”
Following a short sabbatical, Cunniff intends to remain involved with NAVS in an advisory capacity.
“Nobody will ever wholly replace Peggy’s voice, her strength or her passion for animals,” notes Kandaras, “but I am confident that NAVS’ extraordinary team of animal advocates and I will further the momentum that she has set in place and expand upon the strong foundation that she has built. I thank Peggy for her decades of service to NAVS and I look forward to her continuing role in advancing our mission for many years to come.”