Jamie Veronica Murdock was born on July 16, 1980, the daughter of Carol Baskin and her first husband, Michael Murdock. Growing up, Jamie was surrounded by wildlife and animal rescue, learning the important lessons of compassion and respect for animals. This sparked her passion to make a difference in the world, and she set out to do just that. Jamie has since been the President of Big Cat Rescue, a member of the Board of Directors, and Chair of the Volunteer Committee for well over ten years.
Jamie has been an integral part of the organization and has been instrumental in the development of its success. She has developed a sponsorship program whose financial success contributes to meeting the annual budget and runs the administrative side of the volunteer program. Additionally, she processes promotion applications, runs hour reports, follows up with volunteers, and keeps policies and training classes up to date. As the staff photographer, she also publishes the quarterly Big Cat Times newspaper and creates print and web advertisements, billboards, brochures, books, donor plaques, and signage. She also manages discount offers and reciprocal agreements with other attractions.
Jamie has also designed and implemented the sanctuary’s worldwide Internship Program and is a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. She manages the sanctuary’s bobcat rehab program and has successfully raised, rehabilitated and released many wild Florida bobcats. She also leads expeditions into the release sites to track and camera trap wild bobcat populations and oversees and handles all rescues, veterinary procedures, transfer of animals on the property, and regulatory compliance issues.
Her Mother, Carol Baskin
Carole Ann Stairs was born on June 6, 1961, on the Lackland Air Force Base in Bexar County, Texas. At age 14, she was reportedly gang raped by three men who lived across the street from her house. This traumatic event did not stop her from pursuing her dreams, as in January 1991 she married her second husband, Don Lewis, and joined his real estate business. They established Wildlife on Easy Street, an animal sanctuary near Tampa for big cats, in 1992.
In 2020, Carole Baskin was cast in season 29 of Dancing with the Stars and was featured in the highly successful Netflix documentary, Tiger King. Baskin and her company, Big Cat Rescue, have lobbied Congress to ban the private trade and ownership of exotic cats, leading to the Big Cat Public Safety Act which was signed into law on Dec. 20, 2022 by President Joe Biden.
Throughout her career, Baskin has had a long-running feud with Joe Exotic, the former owner of the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma. In June 2020, a federal judge granted Exotic’s former zoo property to Baskin and Big Cat Rescue. In November 2019, Universal Content Productions announced that they were adapting a Joe Exotic podcast for television, with Kate McKinnon portraying Baskin. In February 2021, Baskin revealed that she had been asked to feature in a planned second season of the show, but she refused. She was interviewed alongside Howard Baskin by British filmmaker Louis Theroux for the BBC documentary Shooting Joe Exotic in March 2021.