The Scituate Animal Shelter has chosen a new director, after its previous director stepped down from the position last week.
Treasa Downey had worked as the shelter director for five years, a period of tremendous growth and change within the organization, staff said.
“She of course will be missed. That is an understatement,” said Kim Hallisey, who replaced Downey in the role and had been the shelter's animal care coordinator.
Downey not only oversaw the move from a facility on The Driftway to a new space located on Route 3A in 2009, but helped establish numerous programs that have made a considerable difference at the facility.
“She was the one that pushed through the pediatric spay/neuter, and that is a huge difference,” said Hallisey, who has worked at the shelter for two years. “We’ve [also] grown enormously. She made a huge impact on our volunteers. She’s just a wonderful teacher to everybody while she was here.”
In the last few years alone, adoptions have been rising, with 350 animals adopted in 2012 -- a 50 percent increase from 2011.
Downey was not immediately available for comment, and Hallisey wasn’t sure of her plans looking forward.
“I think she’s looking to take a little bit of time off,” she said. “This is a hard industry to be in for an extended period of time, sometimes you need a bit of a break.”
Although the change will require some transition, Hallisey said stepping into the position has been overwhelming and exciting, and that there is much to accomplish.
“I’m looking forward to continuing the work [Downey] did and do some maybe some new things this upcoming year, get back into the swing of things,” Hallisey said.
Among those will be continuing work with other animal shelters, and helping those that don’t have the space capacity or resources that are available in Scituate.
Hallisey also said community outreach would remain important. “We want to continue with the community outreach we do, all the vaccine clinics. We’re hoping to do a microchip clinic to help people with their lost pets even more than we do already,” Hallisey said.
Micrcochips can be placed in dogs or cats so they can be located by GPS when they're missing.
The change is only the latest for the organization, which celebrated their 20th birthday during the summer and also added an executive director to their administrative charts in April 2012.
The shelter is now looking to fill Hallisey’s old position of animal care coordinator.
For more information on the job opening, click here.