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Humane Society Expands Management Team

December 30, 2018, 7:42 AM HST (Updated December 30, 2018, 10:25 AM)
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An expanded team of professionals will take the reins of the Hawai‘i Island Humane Society (HIHS) in 2019, to usher in the next phase of the organization’s development. Major milestones in 2019 will see the opening of the Animal Community Center, expansion of the ability to spay, neuter and rehabilitate animals under HIHS care and a continued emphasis on enhancing the bond between people and animals.

“We are thrilled to announce a three-person management team who will work directly with our staff, volunteers and community and report to our Board of Directors,” said HIHS President Adam Atwood.

Lauren Nickerson, a Harvard Graduate and Fulbright Scholar with a Masters in Education and compassion for animals who need help, will be the new Community Programs Director. She will oversee HIHS Education and Community Outreach Programs, ramp up the volunteer network and be the contact for fundraisers and donor support. If you see Nickerson out and about, she will probably have Pearl, a blind and deaf dog she adopted through the HIHS Second Chance Fund, tagging and wagging along.

Regina DR Serrano will be the new Shelter Operations Director for all three HIHS shelters in Kea‘au, Kona and Waimea. Serrano is a graduate of Purdue University’s Veterinary Technician program. In addition to her training in animal healthcare, Serrano has spent the last 10 years managing employees working on job sites across three islands. In her free time, Serrano has volunteered with HIHS and many other animal welfare organizations around the Big Island. Most recently, she volunteered countless hours to assist animal rescues during the lower Puna eruption lava flows.

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Robert Belcher, a Hawai‘i Certified Public Accountant inactive, will be the Finance Director. Belcher graduated from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa with degrees in Accounting and Agricultural Economics. His work with both the County of Hawai‘i and private businesses, combined with a commitment to community involvement, make Belcher uniquely qualified to guide HIHS through this next exciting phase of development.

Atwood added, “In addition to the management team, Hawai‘i Island Humane Society will be adding a second full-time staff veterinarian in February. The new veterinarian will serve East Hawai‘i, while Dr. Kristina Henricks will continue to serve West Hawai‘i. This will allow for more efficient and comprehensive care of the animals placed in our care every day.” The HIHS Spay and Neuter Waggin’ will also continue to bring free sterilization services to some of the more remote areas of the island, where pets may otherwise continue to contribute to the overpopulation problem.

About Hawai‘i Island Humane Society
The mission of the Hawai‘i Island Humane Society is to promote respect for all animals, prevent cruelty to animals, eliminate pet overpopulation, and enhance the bond between humans and animals. HIHS holds a contract with the County of Hawai‘i to enforce certain animal-related laws and it offers 24-hour service for injured animals and other animal emergencies, humane education classes, low-cost spay and neuter services, lost and found assistance, micro-chipping and more. Learn more online or call (808) 329-1175.

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