Maggie Howell '86
Wolf conservationist and advocate
At a GCS assembly Maggie said, "I feel like I am giving back to the animals." This idea is one she stresses in much of her work.
If you walk into GCS accompanied by a real live wolf on a leash, you are a trailblazer. Period.
As a child, Maggie Howell visited her local veterinarian more often than her pediatrician, routinely bringing in injured city "wildlife" she had rescued.
She attended Brearley after GCS, and then went on to Vassar, earning a degree in biology, focusing on animal behavior. After a several years working in the jungles of Wall Street, her passion for natural wildlife led her to working with big cats in Washington State. Later she expanded to include other predators at Arizona's Out of Africa Wildlife Park as manager of the Big Carnivore Group adding wolves, bears and hyenas to her charge.
In 2005, she took a position as the Educational Director of the Wolf Conservation Center (WCC) in South Salem, New York and with the move shifted her focus toward conservation rather than bio-educational and entertainment focus of her previous jobs.
In 2013, Maggie was appointed executive director of the organization and remains a steadfast advocate for wolves. In 2014, she became the coordinator for the Northeast Wolf Coalition. The WCC also participates in the Species Survival Plan (SSP) and Recovery Plan for two critically endangered wolf species, the Mexican gray wolf and the red wolf. The WCC is currently home to 13 lobos and they continually strive for ways to broaden their reach to create a national movement for their conservation.
With Maggie at the helm, the WCC aims to become the pre-eminent facility in the eastern United States for the captive breeding and pre-release of endangered canid species, while continuing to expand education and outreach programs. In helping this important species battle extinction, she is truly at the head of the pack.