Paul Wellman

No one could have reported on or photographed the Santa Barbara Zoo’s Amur leopards, the subjects of this week’s cover story, with more empathy than Michelle Drown and Caitlin Fitch, even though, between them, they have five dogs living in their respective domiciles. “There’s so much to the leopards’ story,” Senior Editor Drown said, “and it’s our little zoo that has a breeding pair of animals that are nearly extinct.” For her part, Fitch, an art director for the Indy, fought a sinus condition brought on by smoke from the Thomas Fire to stay in town and photograph the leopard pair for the story. “I always jump at the chance to shoot behind the scenes there,” she said. “I love our zoo.”


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