HRS Staff

Meet the House Rabbit Society Team! In addition to the core team, we rely heavily on our dedicated volunteers and receive advice from a variety of outside advisers to help us develop best practices that can be replicated at a national level.

Chris Kelley

Executive Director

A longtime leader for a diverse group of national nonprofits, Chris Kelley joined House Rabbit Society in late 2022 as executive director. He is responsible for overseeing volunteer leader management, finance, fundraising, marketing, program development, and operations. Chris has immersed himself in all things rabbit rescue and spends time at our HRS headquarters and San Francisco Bay Area facility to better understand the plight of our rescues. One of his main goals is to give a voice to rabbits–who have been undervalued and abused by so many–so they may lead fulfilling lives. Chris is also forging long-lasting relationships for the organization so we continue to grow and remain the leader in rabbit welfare across the globe. Chris is happiest when he’s with his family walking their dog.

Larissa Church

Communications Manager

Larissa fell in love with rabbits at a young age, but due to family allergies wasn’t able to have one of her own until much later in life. She adopted her first pair of rabbits, Tuna and Margaux, from one of House Rabbit Society’s chapters in Southern California, BunnyLuv Rabbit Resource Center in Los Angeles.

After moving to the San Francisco Bay Area, Larissa began volunteering with several dog and cat rescues. She started volunteering at House Rabbit Society in 2017 as an adoption counselor where she helped with adoptions, grooming, Hop Shop sales, and more. She also volunteered as an editor and contributor for the House Rabbit Journal. In 2019, after a decade of working in marketing, Larissa became HRS’s communications manager. She’s motivated to use her time and skills to do what she can to help educate people about rabbits, how special they are, and the kind of care they need.

Larissa and her partner Craig currently live with their rabbit, Pepper, and cat, Poppy. They recently brought home an HRS foster rabbit, Fortune Cookie, who they hope to bond with Pepper.

Amber Tadena

Shelter Manager

In 2016, Amber began volunteering with House Rabbit Society, bagging hay for the Hop Shop. She quickly transitioned to an animal caregiver and two years later was hired to be the Hop Shop manager and volunteer coordinator. In 2021, Amber transitioned to shelter manager where she wears many hats, managing seemingly everything and everyone at the shelter! Amber treats each guest as the unique individual they are with different needs, life experiences, and skills. She tailors advice and expectations making for a more welcoming experience and a returning member of the HRS community.

Amber became involved with rabbits at age 10 when her aunt let her family know about an abandoned rabbit who they wound up rescuing. Whiskers quickly became part of their family, living mostly in the kitchen and even bonded with their black lab.

Amber’s goal with House Rabbit Society is to help educate people about rabbit companionship, reduce the amount of dumped/strayed pet rabbits, and, of course, have all the shelter rabbits adopted. As Amber cares for around 100+ rabbits at any given time at the shelter, she doesn’t currently have a rabbit at home, although she and her partner Erin do have a one-eyed Frenchie named Wade.

Sharea Giger

Animal Caregiver

A lifelong lover of animals, Sharea Giger’s dream job growing up was working with animals. And since 2018, she has been an animal caregiver with House Rabbit Society’s Richmond, California shelter where she cleans, feeds, and medicates the shelter and boarding rabbits. She also helps organize and maintain the cleanliness of the shelter. As a youngster, Sharea met Oreo, a dutch rabbit at a town festival in Idaho where her grandparents lived, and rabbits have been her favorite animal ever since. She wants people to know that rabbits can be very affectionate and to learn more about what wonderful pets they can make.

Sharea’s childhood rabbit was Fluffy, a Holland lop-eared. Mushu is her current rabbit.

Grace Marie Santos

Registered Veterinary Technician

Grace always knew she would have a career working with animals. And in 1987 she passed the state and national boards to become a registered veterinary technician making her dream come true. She continues to keep up with her training and is involved with numerous veterinary organizations. She started with HRS in 2018 and is currently the resident anesthesia and surgical tech at our San Francisco Bay Area shelter. She also helps train volunteers to help with veterinary assistance. Grace wholeheartedly immerses herself in helping the shelter rabbits and those who are brought in by their guardians for treatments. At home, Grace currently has one dog, a rat terrier named Boneca, and a rescue lionhead rabbit named Pixie.

Dr. Christine Austin

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine

After volunteering her time at HRS for several months, Dr. Austin was officially hired in June 2022 as the HRS staff veterinarian. She brings with her a wealth of experience in rescue work. A lifelong lover of rabbits, Dr. Austin grew up with rabbits and has volunteered with multiple rabbit rescues for more than 10 years. It was this love of lagomorphs and knowing how challenging it is to find quality veterinary care for them that inspired her to become a veterinarian.

Dr. Austin received her bachelor’s degree from UC Davis and her DVM from the Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine. She’s incredibly passionate about shelter medicine and also works at Oakland Animal Services, the city’s only municipal, open-admission shelter that takes in over 5,000 animals per year. Previously she worked at VCA Bay Area Animal Hospital in Oakland.

Dr. Austin shares her home with her partner Mike and their two rabbits, Pongo and Acorn, along with six dogs, four cats, and a rotation of foster animals from the shelter.