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Founder & Board

Lynn Cuny

Founder & President

Even as a child in San Antonio in the early 1950′s, Lynn recognized that she had an unusual affinity for Nature and animals, along with a particular concern for the suffering that often resulted from their encounters with humans. As a young adult she began work as an animal caretaker at the San Antonio Zoo, but she found herself at odds with the philosophy that saw wildlife as suitable objects for captivity and exhibition. After publicly exposing wrongdoings at the zoo, she left to find better ways of helping animals.

In 1977 she founded Wildlife Rescue & Rehabilitation and immediately began rescuing urban wildlife — birds who had fallen from trees as nestlings, raccoons, opossums, skunks, and many others who had been hit by cars, trapped in attics, or orphaned when their parents were killed. At that time the organization was based in Lynn’s home and supported by her throwing an early morning paper route seven days a week. She had business cards printed and immediately circulated these to make others aware of her work for wildlife, word quickly spread, and Lynn began receiving more and more calls for animals in need of help.

Two of the first calls involved a skunk whose head was stuck in a mayonnaise jar and a bobcat kitten who had been rescued from a glass box in a pet shop. The kitten had been declawed with a pair of pliers and was sitting in a pool of blood when she was seen and purchased by a caring family who took her home and called Lynn. This kitten would be the first of thousands of bobcats to be rescued in the coming years. Lynn took the kitten into her home and gave her two rooms in which to live so that the cat would not become tame. The skunk was set free once the jar was removed but the bobcat, along with another bobcat who was rescued from animal control around the same time, became the first permanent residents of WRR. The bobcats lived to be 18 years old.

From the start of the organization, Lynn dreamed of and planned for a 200-acre sanctuary with plenty of natural space for animals in need of rehabilitation and those who would become permanent residents. After over 20 years, a large donation from a generous supporter helped make that dream come true; Wildlife Rescue purchased 187 acres in the Hill Country and a few years later two other donors made possible the purchase of an additional 25 acres adjacent to the original parcel. The WRR facility in Kendalia, northwest of San Antonio, is the perfect place in which to care for sick and injured animals. The Sanctuary also provides permanent homes for non-native victims of the wildlife “pet” trade, animals housed in roadside zoos, animals retired from laboratory research, and native animals whose injuries preclude independent survival.

Lynn is the recipient of several awards, including the Today’s Woman Award from the San Antonio Light, the Headliners Award from the Association of Women in Communication, and the Outstanding Woman of the Year Award from the San Antonio Express-News. She is the author of Through Animal’s Eyes: True Stories from a Wildlife Sanctuary, published by the University of North Texas Press in 1999, and the sequel, Through Animals’ Eyes, Again: Stories of Wildlife Rescue, published in 2006. In her spare time, Lynn is an avid gardener.

Board of Directors

Lynn Cuny, Founder/President
Ret Gen Chris Divich, Board Chair
Tim Ajax
Cathy Amato
Angela Koester
Sissy Sailors

Lynn Cuny with dog

Aside from her duties as Founder & President of WRR, Lynn has served in various capacities for a number of organizations. These include:

  • Trustee of the Ahimsa Foundation of Boston
  • Member of the Board of Directors of the Summerlee Foundation
  • Advisory Board member for the Emerald Canopy Rainforest Foundation
  • Co-founder of The Association of Sanctuaries (TAOS)