Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

New Director, New Direction | First Priorities: Build Alliances, Trust, Reputation and Staff Morale

Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

New Director, New Direction | First Priorities: Build Alliances, Trust, Reputation and Staff Morale

Article excerpt

MANATEE COUNTY ANIMAL SERVICES

MANATEE COUNTY -- Today, Sarah Brown starts a high-profile job she hopes will be as rewarding as it will be challenging.

That it will be challenging is a certainty.

As the new chief of Manatee County Animal Services, the former executive director of the Humane Society of Pinellas County is taking over an agency that has been under fire from animal activists for years.

She is aware of the controversies: the 2014 raid on the Napier Log Cabin Horse and Animal Sanctuary that led to confiscation of roughly 300 neglected animals, eventual imprisonment of the owners and questions about how MCAS inspectors allowed such conditions to exist; allegations about how euthanasia cases are handled at the county shelter and whether certain animals should have been killed; the recent court case that overturned the death sentence for Padi, a dog that severely injured a 4-year-old boy, and prompted a pending change in state law to allow pet owners in such bite cases to present provocation as a possible defense.

Brown said her priority is to "start building alliances, start building trust" to improve MCAS' reputation, its staff morale and its relationships with other animal rescue organizations.

"I want to hear their feedback and mend those fences," Brown said.

She is glad the County Commission is reinvigorating the Animal Services Advisory Board, which became dormant and for which she wants an active role.

"I'm not sure what all of my challenges will be yet," Brown acknowledged. Yet she believes she can be a leader who enables MCAS to turn a corner and achieve its longstanding goal of becoming a "no kill" shelter that no longer has to euthanize animals because its shelter is over capacity.

"I'm going to make it happen," Brown said of the "no kill" goal.

As a girl in Ohio, Brown cared for rescue animals her mother, a veterinarian technician, brought into their homes. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.