Meet PEN’s Team

Amy Clanin, Founder
Amy Clanin is an educator, trainer, and catalyst for innovation and collaboration in conservation education.  She is the founder of Primate Education Network (PEN) and has 19 years of experience in designing and facilitating learning experiences for zoos, sanctuaries, schools, local communities, and conservation educators and practitioners working across 30 primate range countries.

With degrees in Primate Behavior & Ecology and Anthropology, Amy’s commitment to learning experience design began as a guide at the Knoxville Zoo and the Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute.  She also taught at Smithsonian’s National Zoo, led an education project on chimpanzees as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Senegal, and worked with primate conservation organizations in Borneo, Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  In 2012, Amy established PEN to address three needs of conservation educators: connections, resources, and training.

Pradeep Suthram, Advisor
Pradeep Suthram is the Director of Product Experience at, a non-profit dedicated to helping scale social enterprises.  He has over ten years of hands-on entrepreneurial and business consulting experience and has served as a business designer and product manager.  His focus is to improve collaboration and innovation at startups, non-profits, and multinational corporations.  Pradeep's career has been defined by his passion to use technology and data for social and conservation causes.

Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka, Advisor
Dr. Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka is a veterinarian and Founder and CEO of Conservation Through Public Health (CTPH), a non-profit organization based in Uganda and dedicated to the coexistence of endangered mountain gorillas, other wildlife, humans, and livestock in Africa. Interested in animals since the age of 12, Gladys started a wildlife club at her school and organized trips to the Queen Elizabeth National Park.  She was Uganda's first wildlife veterinarian and the star of the BBC documentary, "Gladys the African Vet."  In 2009, she won the Whitley Gold Award, the top prize awarded in what has been considered as the "Green Oscars" for her conservation work. In February 2013, CCTV News: Faces of Africa featured CTPH in a documentary entitled "Gorilla In Our Midst," available to watch now at

Lou Ann Dietz, Advisor
Lou Ann Dietz has an Ed.S. in Educational Systems Development and a long history of helping conservation practitioners.  In 1983, she began working in Brazil with a team of biologists, protected area managers, and community leaders to develop an education component of the golden lion tamarin conservation program.  This program continues today and is coordinated by the Associação Mico-Leão-Dourado (AMLD), a Brazilian NGO Lou Ann helped to found.  As World Wildlife Fund’s Brazil Program Officer for 16 years, Lou Ann pioneered the integration of both social and biological sciences to develop solutions to complex conservation problems.  Lou Ann currently serves on AMLD’s Board of Directors and is an independent consultant, training and coaching conservation practitioners in the application of the Conservation Measures Partnership's Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation.  Before joining PEN's Advisory Board, she was nominated as our April 2013 Educator of the Month.

Maryll Moon, Advisor
Maryll Moon is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) who raised grants and donations for environmental and advocacy organizations for 20 years in Washington, D.C. before taking her current position on the fundraising staff of a community hospital in Aurora, Illinois.  A native of Aurora, Maryll received a Bachelor of Arts degree in French from Harvard University.  Her professional memberships include the Association of Fundraising Professionals, the Grant Professionals Association, and the West Suburban Philanthropic Network.

Xyomara Carretero-Pinzón, Volunteer
Xyomara Carretero-Pinzón is a biologist and a founding member of the Colombian Primatological Association (Asociación Primatológica Colombiana).  She received her master’s degree in Biological Science and her Ph.D. in Geography, Planning, and Environmental Management.  Her research focus was on the development of management tools to improve primate conservation efforts in fragmented landscapes.  Xyomara has more than 18 years of experience studying primates and working closely with rural and indigenous groups in different parts of the Orinoquian and Amazonian regions of Colombia.  Over the years, she realized the importance of education in order to change local people’s perceptions about primates and their forest in general.  Through her education efforts, she has witnessed changes in the perception of communities working in farms at her study area.  Listen to Xyomara's Voices from the Field interview!

Thirza Loffeld, Volunteer
Thirza Loffeld discovered her passion for primate conservation during an internship at the Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage in Zambia.  She later conducted research for the Jane Goodall Institute in the Netherlands.  Following these experiences, Thirza pursued an M.Sc. in Primate Conservation at Oxford Brookes University.  During her graduate studies, she gained in-situ experience, assessing the effectiveness of guide training for a gorilla habituation program in the Central African Republic.  Thirza has a strong interest in primate education and served as the Field Education and Advocacy Coordinator with Selamatkan Yaki, a conservation, research, and education program, focusing on protecting the Sulawesi crested black macaque.

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