Imagine a person chasing a terrified puppy across an open field. The puppy is suddenly and brutally clothes-lined by a rope thrown around her neck from behind. Her legs fly out from under her and she falls on her back with a thud. Her attacker grabs her, lifts her up off the ground and body slams her. She would cry out, but she can’t breathe. In shock, the puppy’s legs are quickly tied together so she can’t run from her tormenter; and she is dragged by the neck with the rope.
Now imagine this scene occurs not in an open field, but in an arena filled with hundreds, perhaps thousands, of cheering fans; and the puppy is not a dog, but an animal sometimes referred to as a “doggie” – a baby calf. Continue reading “Rodeo: Legalized Cruelty by Ed Boks”
Imagine being responsible for the life or death of 55,000 dogs and cats every year. As the General Manager for the City of Los Angeles Animal Services Department, the desperate need of these animals weighed on my mind every day. I was determined to end pet homelessness and the practice of killing and disposing of our society’s surplus companion animals.
In Judeo/Christian literature the word “sin” originates from the idea of “missing the mark”. Our understanding of missing the mark has been explained by theologians through the ages as resulting from sins of commission and sins of omission.
While pondering this idea, I wondered how the concept of sin, or “missing the mark”, might apply to our responsibility for the environment and the animals who inhabit it. It occurred to me that there are three deadly sins we commit when we fail in our responsibility for animals: cruelty, neglect, and hoarding. Continue reading “The 3 Deadly Sins: Cruelty, Neglect and Hoarding by Ed Boks”
Imagine how you would feel if your boss told you he was so happy with your work performance that he decided to give a bonus to your coworker. I suspect you would be dumbfounded. Yet, in my line of work, it is not uncommon to hear, “I really love the work my local humane society does – so I sent a donation to the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) or to the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) to help support you.”
In the quest to achieve No-Kill (which I define as applying the same criteria a loving pet guardian or conscientious veterinarian would apply to deciding a shelter animal’s fate), we must learn to overcome the many widespread myths regarding shelter animals.
In a recent blog, consultant Joan Garry, provides some sage advice to board and staff leaders of nonprofits. In her blog, titled “How to Handle Criticism of Your Organization“, Joan opines on the state of our “strange new world”. A world she feels is not particularly kind or generous.
She points out that the polarization and incivility we witness in our politics also abounds in the world of nonprofit organizations – where negativity can be found both inside the organization (a staff upset with a change in health benefits) and externally (community members feel voiceless in some kind of directional change.) And of course we always have the local blogger or wannabe journalist with a big ol’ bone to pick.
Board members have a lot of responsibility to the organization they represent, to the community for which they are stewards of the nonprofit’s resources, and also to the organization’s CEO. The CEO’s success is tied closely to the support he or she receives from the board. How can individual board members support their CEO’s success? Below are the six ways I’ve found that have the greatest impact. Continue reading “Top 6 Ways a Board Can Help Its CEO”