Carolyn Rubin, DVM

CARES Project Program Director

Head Veterinarian Wild sun Rescue Center

Dr. Rubin is from New Orleans, Louisiana. She is a graduate of Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine, a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Colegio de Medicos Veterinarios de Costa Rica, and the American Society of Primatologists. After attending an undergraduate biology program in the Galapagos Islands, her studies took a drastic turn from human to veterinary medicine.  Dr. Rubin practiced in a 17-doctor small animal hospital in the US before moving to Costa Rica. In Costa Rica her career came full circle back to her biology roots when she teamed up with Wild Sun Rescue Center. She is truly grateful for the mentors who opened many doors and passionate about wildlife conservation, thus has developed the CARES Project to pay it forward.  She currently provides veterinary medical services to wild animals and pets, and loves teaching and sharing with students.

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Jeremy Levine

Wild Sun Rescue Center Director

CARES Project Education Team

Jeremy Adam Levine is from New York, and the Director and Founder of Wild Sun Rescue Center. Due to the area’s need for an animal rescue center he decided to open a facility on his property in Cabuya, Costa Rica. Jeremy has a Wild Life Rescue Certification from International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council, an MBA from USC Marshall, and a BA in Television, Radio and Film from the Newhouse School of Communications. He is dedicated to helping the local wild life and spreading education about the importance of our ecosystems and keeping them healthy. Jeremy is famous for his sense of humor, however takes the best practices of wildlife rehabilitation very seriously. He shares his knowledge and experience with CARES students, as well as manage the meals and accommodations during their stay.



Vernan Arias Vega

Wild Sun Rescue Center Biologist

Head Biologist Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project

Vernan Arias Vega is Wild Sun's Resident Biologist and has over 20 years of experience working with wildlife in Costa Rica. His focus is on wildlife management and environmental sustainability. He has worked extensively with reintroduction as a tool for wildlife conservation. To date he has successfully bred and released over 100 native scarlet macaws with the AsoProLapa Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project. CARES students will be able to learn about, and participate in, a truly successful and exciting conservation project.





Ezra Mendales

CARES Project Education Team

Rescue Center Site Co-Manager

Ezra received his degree in Evolutionary Biology and Conservation from the University of Toronto specializing in primatology. Before working in Costa Rica, he has worked at field stations in Panama and Ecuador as well as the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. His research focuses on South American primate ecology and evolution. Ezra's previous work at primate rescue centers as well as his passion for tropical conservation has brought him to the Wild Sun Rescue Center. He offers his wealth of knowledge and support to our students as part of the CARES Team.

Carmen Atwater

CARES Project Education Team

Rescue Center Site Co-Manager

Carmen studied environmental science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a focus on ecology and wildlife conservation. Her prior experience in wildlife rehabilitation, animal care, field biology, and environmental education go hand in hand with her passion for conservation to help her to make informed decisions about the animals in our care. She is the best primate handler in the neotropics! Carmen runs the animal care student orientation. She enjoys teaching CARES students what she loves.

Randy Santamaria Orozco

Chef, Karaoke Singer, Resident Magician, & Salsa Instructor

Randy is our chef that everyone wants to take home with them! He keeps all of us happy at the center with his delicious fresh food and infectious smile! Not only does he cook typical Costa Rican dishes like Arroz con Pollo and Gallo Pinto but also prepares beautiful rainbow salads, Fresh Spring rolls with a Thai peanut dipping sauce, Eggplant Parmesan, homemade pizza, and even weekly sushi nights. if you're lucky you'll get to watch his magic show!