Who we are
ANIMALS 24-7 debuted in early 2014, produced by husband-&-wife team Merritt & Beth Clifton.
Committing journalism since 1968, mostly on animal-related news beats, and an active charter member of the Society of Environmental Journalists since 1990, ANIMALS 24-7 editor Merritt Clifton in 2010 received the 15th annual ProMED-mail Award for Excellence in Outbreak Reporting on the Internet for contributions to understanding the animal behavioral and cultural aspects of emerging zoonotic disease. Having previously been news editor for the Animals’ Agenda magazine, 1988-1992, editor of the Animal People newspaper, 1992-2013, and editor of the annual Watchdog Report on Animal Charities, 1999-2013, Merritt was keynote speaker at the first No Kill Conference in 1995.
Beth Clifton, our social media editor, photographer, and researcher, brought to ANIMALS 24-7 extensive hands-on experience with a wide range of wild, exotic, and domestic animal species, including as a former mounted police officer, animal control officer, veterinary technician, and school teacher. Beth too is an active member of the Society of Environmental Journalists, and of many social media newsgroups pertaining to animals and habitat.
ANIMALS 24-7 director Jill Campbell, among our most enthusiastic readers from inception, with her husband Dave manages the Someday Farm Vegan Bed & Breakfast, Island Recycling, and Scotty’s Towing, all community institutions in Freeland, Washington. Jill & Dave also look after a variety of sheep, goats, poultry, exotic birds, cats, & small dogs, mostly rescued from adverse situations. Raised in Japan, Jill was a vet tech before meeting Dave.
ANIMALS 24-7 director Roger Witherspoon, currently editor/publisher of the investigative news web site Energy Matters, has for more than 50 years reported about state and national politics, foreign affairs, finance, defense, civil rights, constitutional law, health, the environment, and energy for a variety of both print and electronic media. On a temporary hiatus from journalism, Roger developed the global Save The Tiger program for the Exxon Corporation. Roger authored the biography Martin Luther King, Jr. to the Mountaintop (Doubleday, 1985); is a longtime board member of the Society of Environmental Journalists; and cofounded both the New York Association of Black Journalists and Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists, which grew into the National Association of Black Journalists.
ANIMALS 24-7 director Alexandra Semyonova, an animal behaviorist specializing in dogs since 1989, is author of The 100 Silliest Things People Say About Dogs (Hastings Press 2009, Italian edition 2014) and The Social Organization of the Domestic Dog (Carriage House Foundation, 2002). Alexandra was for 10 years an inspector for the Dutch SPCA.