PIMA COUNTY, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Kristen Auerbach will be the new department director of Pima Animal Care Center, according to a news release from PACC.
Auerbach is serving as the deputy chief animal services officer at the Austin Animal Center in Austin, TX. She will begin her new role at PACC on July 10.
"We are excited that Ms. Auerbach has decided to join the PACC team and make Pima County her home," said Dr. Francisco García, assistant county administrator for health services & chief medical officer, in the news release. "She has the vision, passion, and leadership skills we need to take PACC to the next level of lifesaving and public service."
She is joining the PACC team when the organization is working on a new shelter facility, is now its own Pima Co. department, and is working to increase its animal save rate. In 2016 PACC saved 90 percent of the pets who entered the shelter, right now staff is working to increase the save rate for baby animals and the big dogs.
According to the release, in Auerbach's current position in Austin, the facility takes in some 18,000 animals annually and the shelter is a municipal one like PACC. She has helped to lead the Austin facility to a 96 percent save rate. Prior to her work in Austin, Auerbach served as the assistant director of the Fairfax County Animal Shelter in Fairfax, Va., where she helped lead the efforts to overturn breed-specific adoption restrictions, double adoptions, and cut euthanasia in half. She is a nationally recognized expert on a variety of subjects including shelter intake reduction, innovative foster care, community-based animal welfare, and lifesaving social media. Her work has been featured in numerous national publications, websites, and news outlets.
In her previous two positions, Auerbach successfully reduced intake and increased live outcomes. In Austin, she brought intake down by more than 10 percent in just one year. In both Fairfax and Austin, she worked with the local field services officer teams to start and manage groundbreaking community programs like the Austin Pet Resource Center, return-in-field for stray pets, and free spay/neuter and microchip clinics for owned pets.
"I'm excited to join the team at Pima Animal Care Center, which is already well-known for leading the way in lifesaving animal services," Auerbach said. "I can't wait to build on the momentum of such a great organization and help save even more lives by engaging the community."