Board of Directors and Staff

The International Foundation for Ethical Research is guided by a Board of Directors who volunteer their time and expertise to ensure that the resources of IFER are used in the most efficient, professional and effective ways possible. Working together, they bring decades of experience in nonprofit management, finance, and legal expertise to the Foundation.


Peggy Cunniff is the former President of the International Foundation for Ethical Research and is Executive Director Emerita of the National Anti-Vivisection Society. She was the Executive Director of the National Anti-Vivisection Society since 1987 and served on its Board of Directors when NAVS founded IFER and has continued to support the Foundation. Peggy has also served as President of the National Council for Animal Protection and worked with numerous coalitions of animal advocacy organizations. Prior to her work in animal advocacy, she was a City Planner in the city of Chicago’s Department of Development and Planning.


Sylvia O. Decker is an attorney whose professional career stands in testament to the contributions of women leaders within the legal community. She is currently a Vice President in the Personal Trust Administration of The Northern Trust Company who helps to advise her clients on their long-term financial plans and how to wisely invest for their future and their legacy. While she is lending her professional expertise to ensure that IFER is managed by the highest professional and ethical standards, she is ensuring that her own legacy reflects her commitment to advancing humane, ethical science.


Kenneth Kandaras is the president of the International Foundation for Ethical Research (IFER). He has served in this position since October 2018. In addition to his work with IFER, Kandaras is the Executive Director of the National Anti-Vivisection Society (NAVS). He 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. He assumed the role of Executive Director of NAVS in July 2018. An attorney and law professor emeritus, Kandaras was a full-time faculty member of The John Marshall Law School from 1976 to 2018, 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.


Thomas Moore is a highly respected attorney who successfully represents his clients with skill, experience and passionate advocacy. He is also an advocate for the “under dog” and understands that animal protection is a logical extension of other respected social justice movements.


Pamela Osenkowski, Ph.D. is a Science Advisor for both the National Anti-Vivisection Society and for the International Foundation for Ethical Research. Dr. Osenkowski earned her B.S. in Biology at the University of Michigan and her Ph.D. in Cancer Biology at Wayne State University. She conducted her postdoctoral studies in Alzheimer disease at Harvard Medical School and is currently a Senior Lecturer in the Biology Department at Loyola University Chicago.


John Scheid is an attorney with extensive experience as a litigator and successful negotiator who wholeheartedly endorses the mission of IFER. He especially appreciates that it serves as an effective bridge between people who care passionately about animals and those who work in science. He believes that implementing new advancements in technology offers the greatest opportunity for ending the use of animals as research tools and for finding solutions to serious human health problems.