Board touts experience, skills of new CEO at MHS

The Maui Humane Society’s board of directors announced that it has appointed Sandra “Sandy” Shelby as its new chief executive officer.

The Illinois resident will start at the society’s Puunene shelter on July 15, according to an announcement late Thursday.

“We are very excited about the breadth of experience and skills that Sandy brings to MHS,” said board Chairwoman Judith Aikawa. “She has worked in wildlife rehabilitation, development and fundraising, rescue, no-kill, limited admission and open admission shelters. She has experience in all facets of shelter operations that pertain to MHS. We are confident that Sandy will prove to be a great leader for our agency and will be a compassionate advocate for the animals on our island. We hope the community will join us in welcoming her and helping her to adjust to our island lifestyle.”

According to the announcement, Shelby has a bachelor’s degree in organizational leadership and nearly 20 years of experience in the field of animal welfare. She started her career as an animal caretaker at The Fund for Animals Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Ramona, Calif. She later served as director of development and humane education for Haven Humane Society in Redding, Calif., then founded and served as executive director for Another Chance Animal Welfare League, a rescue agency in Palo Cedro, Calif.

She moved to Illinois in 2009 and served as executive director of the Anderson Animal Shelter in South Elgin until 2012, when she took time off from her career to care for a terminally ill family member.

Shelby was not available immediately for an interview, according to Candy Aluli, the board’s first vice chairwoman.

She said that Shelby wanted to wait before she speaks publicly.

“Sandy won’t be available for interviews until she actually arrives on island and has a chance to become more familiar with the operations of MHS,” Aluli said.

She added: “We expect Sandy’s first few months will be focused on building relationships and settling in to her new role in our agency and community. Fresh eyes are always a good thing, and we look forward to her input and ideas on all aspects of MHS operations. She knows saving lives is the top priority for MHS, and we expect she will embrace that goal and help us make headway in reducing euthanasia.”

Shelby replaces former CEO Jocelyn Bouchard, who resigned, effective at end of April to take a job with the Hawaiian Humane Society on Oahu. Her resignation was announced in late February. Bouchard served with the Maui Humane Society for 20 years; 10 years were as its chief executive officer.

The board received more than 140 applications for the position of CEO at the Maui Humane Society.

According to forms filed with the Internal Revenue Service for the 2011-12 fiscal year, the Maui Humane Society has an operating budget of more than $2 million and net assets or fund balances of $2.2 million. In calendar year 2011, the society had 60 employees and 82 volunteers.

Maui County contracts with the society to provide animal management services. The society shelters unwanted animals, provides spay/neuter services, operates a pet adoption program and promotes humane education and children’s programs.

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