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Alene Anello profile

Updated: Mar 25





Alene Anello is an animal law attorney and the founder of Legal Impact for Chickens in the United States. Her journey in law, started by her commitment to animal rights, includes a Harvard Law education and roles in litigation and legal counsel. Alene has worked at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, The Good Food Institute, and the Animal Legal Defense Fund. Alene focuses on promoting the welfare of farmed animals.




Alene’s Path to Animal Law: 


Alene is a dedicated lawyer focusing on animal law. Even though her family had a legal background, she didn't originally plan on becoming a lawyer. She was deeply committed to animal rights during her college years and began working in the movement full-time by joining  PETA after college. Alene wanted more intellectual challenge, so she decided to try law and went to Harvard Law School. 


After finishing school, she clerked for a federal judge, did a fellowship at the Animal Legal Defense Fund, and worked at The Good Food Institute (GFI) as a Legal Counsel. While at GFI, she missed doing litigation work. Eventually, she accepted a job as a Litigation Staff Attorney at the Animal Legal Defense Fund. 


After a year and a half in that role, Alene went through a tough emotional time when she lost two cherished birds. This experience inspired her to become an entrepreneur, and she started a nonprofit called Legal Impact for Chickens. This organisation focuses on helping birds, especially chickens, and reflects her dedication to fighting against cruelty to farmed animals.


Through her journey, Alene has become a prominent figure in animal law, especially in advocating for the well-being of farmed animals. Her experiences show passion and determination are vital in this challenging yet rewarding field.


Alene’s Successes in Animal Law: 


  • Alene and her team sent a cease-and-desist letter to Rural King, a farm supply store accused of denying water access to chicks and violating animal welfare laws. In response to the letter, Rural King agreed to introduce random animal welfare checks within the company. 


  • Alene’s team filed an amicus brief during a sentencing hearing for a slaughterhouse, an unusual move in trial courts. The aim was to compel the court to consider the defendant's previous Humane Methods of Slaughter Act violations, which weren't originally included in the prosecution's argument. The court's acceptance of the brief was a significant win, as it creates an avenue for animal advocates to speak up in future cases, potentially leading to stricter penalties for companies that abuse animals.


Alene’s Challenge in Animal Law: 


  • Alene points out a major hurdle in animal law: advancing cases beyond the initial motion to dismiss stage. This struggle arises because animal law is still an evolving field, and the legal system might not be fully prepared or willing to deal with animal rights issues in depth. Animal lawyers often encounter setbacks, even when the facts and laws support their case. Societal attitudes and legal precedents don't always align with the interests of animal welfare. Alene's experiences with cases of bigger companies illustrate this challenge vividly. Despite having strong arguments, these cases were often dismissed early in the legal process, highlighting the complexities and difficulties faced in advocating for animal rights within the current legal framework.







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