The New Director of HSPPR’s Pueblo shelter

What excites you most about being the new Director of HSPPR’s Pueblo shelter?

More than anything, I love being able to work with animals and community to create the best outcomes possible for both. I also enjoy the challenge of identifying what resources we have and how to best use them for maximum impact.

What does a typical day in your job look like?

No two days are ever the same! My day consists of so many different things, from operations to community relations. In the end, it all boils down to me collaborating with others to ensure everything is running as smoothly as possible.

What is one memory from an animal at HSPPR that warms your heart?

That’s a hard question to answer! There is something heartwarming every single day. A recent memory that sticks out for me is about Carmelo, the alpaca. This was a shining example of collaboration! First, we collaborated with the county Sheriff to remove him from an abusive home. Then, we wanted to ensure that Carmelo not only got a new home, but was rehomed with someone who could meet his caregiving needs. So, we alerted staff about his situation. Soon after, one of our volunteers who has experience with alpacas came in to groom Carmelo to make sure he looked handsome for potential adopters. Little did she know that she would fall in love, and he went home with her that day. It’s the perfect example of how the community can work with us to find the best possible outcome for an animal!

You’re an HSPPR veteran. When did you first start at HSPPR, and what was your position? How has the organization changed over the years, and what has inspired you to stay for the ride?

I started on August 1, 2000 as a customer service manager. I can’t believe today will mark 19 years here! The organization has grown extensively in my time here, but one thing has remained the same: the integrity. We are always trying to do more, do better, grow, adapt, help more people and help more animals. We’ve learned that we can’t help the animals without the people – both employees and community members. We have worked to strengthen our internal and external relationships and gain the respect of the community.

What does “socially conscious sheltering” mean to you?

To me, socially conscious sheltering means doing the right thing for each individual animal. Many people get caught up in the numbers. How many came in to the shelter? How many got adopted? However, when you look at each one individually, they all have a different story and different potential outcomes. Socially conscious sheltering means using the resources we have in the best way possible to get the best outcome for each animal that comes through our doors. It means making them more than just another number.

What is one thing you would like for the Pueblo community to know about HSPPR?

I truly believe HSPPR is an outstanding organization. It’s always trying to do more and do better. We really do strive to make the most appropriate decisions to protect the animals and the community. We don’t make hasty decisions. We are thoughtful in all that we do.