LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A sign that discord could be brewing again at the Animal Foundation.
13 Investigates has learned that chief operating officer James Pumphrey was fired this week after serving in the role for approximately four months.
This follows the resignation or abrupt retirement of several other shelter leaders last year.
In December, North Las Vegas Councilman Richard Cherchio and Las Vegas City Councilwoman Victoria Seaman called for an investigation and audit by the Animal Foundation after chief investigator Darcy Spears 13 released a series of reports revealing a shelter in crisis.
At the time, we heard from several former employees who claimed the animals were not receiving proper care and the staff were overwhelmed.
Hilarie Grey, the shelter’s executive director since January, said she couldn’t comment on Pumphrey’s firing because it was a staffing issue.
However, she told us that they had taken steps since the beginning of the year to make the shelter a better place for animals and employees.
“One of the things we’ve really focused on is creating a pathway plan for every animal that comes into the shelter so they’re not just seen by an admissions counselor, but also by our veterinary teams.” , said Gray. “So that we know what their best route is through the shelter, hopefully to adoption, to their proper outcome. And we are now doing daily rounds, like you would see in a public hospital that includes our behavior team, our veterinary team. Everyone who knows animals and can understand, for example, what that best way is.”
Gray says that, like so many other businesses and organizations, the Animal Foundation has been challenged to recruit and retain staff during and after the pandemic. She says they now have a strong pool of candidates and plan to fill a number of positions soon.