8/26/2016 - New director for animal adoption center named

Montgomery County has named its new director of the Animal Care and Adoption Center.

Eileen M. Mahan will lead the mission of the “no-kill” facility, which will actively work to save the lives of animals through adoptions, improved animal care, increased spays and neuters and expanded foster homes. She was selected in a several-months interviewing process among a nationwide group of more than 50 applicants.

“Eileen can hit the ground running because she knows the County, and knows the citizens and network of organizations supporting animals,” Supervisor Mary Biggs said. “She has the enthusiasm for the job and compassion for the animals. We’re excited to have her.”

Mahan is a familiar face to animal care organizations here. Her County service began in 2009 as a deputy animal control officer where she worked with citizens to adopt dogs and reunite lost pets with their owners. Her duties also included maintaining a safe community through enforcement of animal control codes and ordinances, education and community outreach.

Mahan’s new duties will also include cultivating relationships with animal care and rescue groups, including the County’s partner, Friends of Animal Care and Control (FACC), and other organizations.

“Eileen shares the same vision as Friends (of Animal Care and Control),” said FACC President Christie Heslip. “She has a good understanding of the challenges we will face with finding homes for cats for the first time, and how she is going to work through those challenges.”

Mahan previously was lead interpreter at Claytor Lake State Park for the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation from 2006 to 2008.

She graduated with a bachelor of science degree in zoology from the State University of New York at Oswego. She also is a graduate of the Basic Animal Control Academy at the Central Shenandoah Criminal Justice Academy.

Mahan may be contacted at (540) 382-5700 ext. 4067 or mahanem@montgomerycountyva.gov.

About the animal adoption center
The Animal Care and Adoption Center is under construction on five acres along Cinnabar Road near the County’s Frog Pond recreational area.

The 16,300-square-foot center’s primary goal is to increase animal adoptions by expanding visitation and maximizing visibility through attractive design, in a recreational setting where prospective pet owners will be able to visit dogs in an outdoor courtyard and cats in the community room. Through partnerships with Friends of Animal Care and Control (FACC), other local animal groups and volunteers, the center will emphasize increasing adoptions and returning pets to their owners. The facility is intended to serve as a recreational destination where people can volunteer to walk the dogs, care for the cats or just visit with the animals. In addition to areas for strays and adoptions, the center will include clinical and office spaces, including public classrooms and meeting areas.

Radford-based architectural firm Thompson & Litton, teaming with Shelter Planners of America, is overseeing the architectural and design aspects of the building, which will have the capacity to house 68 dogs and 64 cats. There will be 12,600 square feet enclosed and 3,700 square feet covered space.

Travelers along U.S. 460 between Christiansburg and Blacksburg can check out progress on construction. The facility is expected to be complete in late 2016; the center will open in early 2017.

About the photo
Bam Bam is a 3-year-old pit bull mix described as a “sweet and entertaining boy.” He is available for adoption to a home with older children and no cats.

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