Jessika Ava, MS, MPA(she/her)

Jessika is the CEO & Founder of Thrive Philanthropy, a grant-making firm with a mission to connect high-impact donors with results-driven advocates across the world in effort to overcome industrial animal agriculture and create just food systems.

She holds a Master’s degree in Biostatistics, a second Master’s degree in Nonprofit Management and Evaluation, and a Bachelor’s degree in Evolutionary Biology and has over a decade of experience in international philanthropy with a lens toward race and gender equity. She also has experience and skills in program evaluation, quantitative analysis, and leading programs and multinational teams. She’s spent significant time living and working in both Global North and Global South countries.

Previously, Jessika developed and led one of the world’s largest international vegan regranting and capacity departments, where she successfully expanded the food systems movement across 70+ countries including regions historically neglected for funding. She also conducts quantitative evaluations to ascertain the meta-impact of grantmaking. Past experience also includes Asian elephant conservation and Asian street animal welfare, and she’s an international speaker and has spoken at numerous conferences in multiple countries. She sits on the boards of multiple organizations.

She has extensive literacy in animal rights and vegan social justice movements, including tactics, philosophy, and history, and an extensive international vegan advocate network of 300+ organizations from 70+ countries, many of which are grantee/funder relationships.

She has over a decade of experience in international philanthropic grant-making with a lens toward race and gender equity using Trust-Based Philanthropy, Participatory Co-Design, and Power Balancing approaches. She increases vegan advocacy initiatives around the world by strategically building capacity. Jessika specializes in leading philanthropic and grant-making assistance, managing international projects, and conducting quantitative program assessments.

Jessika Ava is one of the first Native Americans to sit in a leadership position in the vegan, animal rights space.

She’s been vegan since 2007 and vegetarian since 1992. She shares her life with a 3-legged street dog from Kathmandu and splits her time between New York and Kathmandu, Nepal.

She is involved with Sneha’s Care as a Program Evaluator, Organizational Development, Intercultural Communication, and Mentoring.

Sneha’s Care is fortunate to have Jessika Ava on the advisory board.

She can be reached at jessika.ava@thrivephilanthropy.org