Alex has been working to help animals for decades. He is a Co Founder of the world’s largest non profit animal adoption website, Adopt-A-Pet.com, providing free services with over 100,000 homeless dogs and cats viewable and available for adoption, 24 hours a day. For 10 years he served as Vice President of the non profit NEAVS, a multi-million dollar animal protection lobbying related organization. His most widely known service to animals is as the Co Founder and Chairman for 20 years of the world’s largest animal rights organization, PETA, with $35 million in current annual revenue and two million members. He led the lobbyists, lawyers, investigators and fundraisers for PETA, described by the New York Times as the “mover and shaker” of the thousands of organizations in the animal protection community.
He served as the lead undercover investigator and legal tactician before leaving in 2000. While there, he successfully out maneuvered a long list of adversarial Cabinet level federal agencies, such as the USDA, NIH, NASA, etc., and many of the nation’s largest corporations – winning many landmark cases for the animal protection community. Precedents he spearheaded, include the first police raid of an animal research facility; the first confiscation of animals from a laboratory, the first arrest, prosecution and criminal conviction of a scientist on charges of cruelty to animals; the first, second and third terminations of federal research grants because of cruelty to animals; the first forced closing of a U.S. Pentagon animal laboratory, and the closing of the world’s largest horse slaughter company, amongst others.
Additional successful campaigns include forcing dozens of major corporations to end various inhumane practices regarding animals, including General Motors (at the time the world’s largest corporation), Texaco, Exxon, Mobil Oil, L’Oreal, Avon, Revlon, Amway, Benetton and others. He planned and executed landmark investigative work inside a federally funded research facility, producing a case cited by film director Oliver Stone and many others, as “the case that launched the U.S. animal rights movement” … The Silver Spring Monkeys.
Spanning 15 years it was heard before the U.S. Supreme Court twice, involved hundreds of members of Congress, over 55 U.S. Senators and led to congressional hearings and the passage of federal animal protection legislation. Alex was the undercover investigator and directed the lobbying and litigation throughout the 15 year project, leading Harvard University to perform a study on “how to defeat the animal movement”. The study was commissioned by the American Medical Association, and it described Pacheco as a “folk hero”.
Alex started PETA with no funding, no college degree, no staff and no experience. He played a key role in building the organization from scratch to the point where anyone can mail an envelope from anywhere in the U.S., with nothing more than PETA written on it, and it will be delivered. He is the recipient of the Crew Member of the Year Award, by the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, The Peace Abbey Courage of Conscience Award, and was voted into the U.S. Animal Rights Hall of Fame.