I am kind of wearing out pointing to all the stuff Boks is doing and having the Mayor standing steadfastly behind him.
I understand there has been a lot of internal criticism about Boks regarding his management style, animal cruelty and neglect in the shelters, his apparent inability to speak the truth, and his failure to perform in a leadership role at LAAS, but there are not even rumors that he would be going as there were two or three months before Stuckey left.
The LA animal community has made no effort to begin a search for a replacement as we did after Greenwalt resigned. Should Ed be fired or resign, the choice of a successor will be left entirely up to the mayor again and look what it got us last time.
There has been a constant internal criticism of us with Blackman, the mayor and Robin Kramer holding the view that no matter who they select as GM, they will be attacked. They believe they gave us who we want when they gave us Boks--an advocate of No-Kill.
We did not select Boks, the mayor did. Boks was not our choice.
When Greenwalt resigned three years ago, a sample of the animal community set up or own search committee to replace him. Mike Bell, Scott Sorentino, Tamie Bryant, Christy Metropole, David Casselman, Rich Mclellen and I along with several others whose names I caanot remember, were on it.
As part of our research I rejected Boks as a candidate because of his poor performance in Phoenix. The Bernstein Committee sent a short list to Hahn and he picked the last person on earth who should have had the job, Stukey. Then a year later Villaraigosa selected someone our committee felt could not do the job and wondering why Boks Maricopa County website statistics talked about what a huge no-kill guru he was when there was little improvement in their euth rate at all.
The LA animal community has never had a say in who was selected as GM--never. Yet the mayor and his henchmen think we are all ADL, all nutty radicals, and therefore should not be given a place at the table of choice.
I admit to being a quasi-nutty radical, if that means my life is devoted to helping animals, but my facts are right on, and I also think I am voicing the consensus viewpoint of the wider LA animal community in their desire to get rid of Boks.
But man, it is up to us to convince the mayor and henchmen that ignoring our combined will and sentiment will not bring to rest the opposition to any Bozo he might select. It is also up to us to find viable candidates to present to him an an option. We are failing miserably at this task.
Let's start with some names of potential candidates that we know will apply or should apply. I'm not saying I'm for or against these people but they applied to be the AGM and/or AGM.
These people applied
Laura Beth Heisen-attorney, rescuer
Shannon Keith-attorney, rescuer, film producer
Teri Macellaro-attorney, rescuer
Linda Gordon-city employee
Jacky DeHavilland-legal aide
Linda Barth-current AGM
Debbie Knaan-attorney, past AGM
other names, may not be interested in the job
Carl Friedman-San Francisco, Arizona
Mary Martin-Maricopa, NewYork
Mary Herro-Arizona, Las Vegas
Julie Bank-Oceanside, Maricopa
Geurdon Stuckey-He did better than Boks
Judy Mancuso-AB 1634 woman
We need someone truly passionate, not fake passionate.
Ed Boks at the very least should take a HUGE pay cut if he is to remain any longer.
I think it's true that if we had to choose between him and having no GM, the animals and city would be MUCH better off without a GM. He does so much harm and not much good, if any. Just think of the good his salary could do going to a good cause and not to his worthless ass.
Ed Boks should not take a pay cut. No one reasonable would accept a job where that could happen to them. Boks should just go.
The problem of a headless department is that you leave the department as is. You leave Troy Boswell. You leave the Animal Cruelty Task Force - combo plate of crazily, sadistically incompetent (see picture of Muffin strangling mid-air) and evil (see Det. Linda Ortega, the creepy, civil-rights-denying psycho).
Those people should go too. The department needs a serious purge. They need a whole new paradigm. They need smart, competent people -- from the GM, to the ACOs, to the shelter staff, to the volunteer coordinators.
Like it or not, we need a GM who knows how to manage, who knows how to hire good managers, and they need to pay what good, competent staff cost.
And we need to stop screwing around with our own stupid, childish personal agendas. If you don't, you are, like it or not, doing Boks' work for him.
November stats reveal boks refused 108 kittens and an extra 22 died = 130.
Guess what kitten euth is down by? 140. Others were doa, missing.
NoKill is soooo easy. I am now confident that I can make any shelter NoKill almost instantly without ever leaving my office with a few math tricks. It's all in the wrist.
Taimie Bryant-animal law professor at UCLA
The last interim GMs. Just throwing out names, not saying I want them to be the GM
Sharon Morris-was interim GM twice
Ms. Adams-was AGM under Greenwalt and interim GM after him
Maybe the Mayor wants a person of color. He could just promote someone of color who currently works for the City. Anyone know any good candidates in the City?
I wish this guy would become the GM. He is the Sheriff of Maricopa and runs a little animal shelter.
Sheriff Joe Arpaio-Maricopa sheriff
Maybe councilman Bernard Parks wants to give it a try?
Anybody who thinks local activists with no practical experience running an organization larger than a handful of folks are qualified, or would be chosen, to be a GM of ANY department in a big city like LA are nutzo. That's especially the case for Animal Services after Hahn tried it with Stuckey.
Villaraigosa's pattern seems to be to try to find people with fancy credentials and resumes that are relevant to the position he hires them for. It doesn't always work out, obviously, but he doesn't then turn around and look for relative amateurs to replace them. He also doesn't think much of the humane community these days - we all know that - so why in hell would he ask us about anything?
I wouldn't even ask us anything. We seem to be so great at making up our own explanations about the stats without there being any way on earth to prove what we're saying. See the comment about refusing 108 kittens - that person doesn't even pretend to explain that allegation. Why bother, when all you have to do is say any stupid thing and bunches of us know-nothings will believe you if it matches up with our preconceptions? Why should anybody who has any power listen to any of us?
Contrary to one of the other commenters here, Stuckey did NOT do a better job than Boks. He left all the people we hate in positions of power and actually turned the whole damned department over to them to run. At least Boks has forced a few of them out and tried to make the rest more accountable. Stuckey wasn't into PR like Boks is, but that's because he didn't give a damn about what anybody thought, whether things were going well or not. The only people he didn't piss off were those who kissed up to him. The rest he froze out, including the commission. Do we really think those were the good old days? That's pretty sad. We're so blind we can't even see how it's different now. It's not great, but it is different. But we're so hung up on the quest for perfection that we can't get past it.
Doing anything about bad staff is not easy when they can whine to the union or hide behind the Civil Service rules and appeal to the Civil Service Commission every time you look cross-eyed at them. (Nathan Winograd will never understand that, because he'll never take a job like this - anywhere.) Boks, at least, is trying.
If we think staff unrest is a bad thing in this situation, we're even less qualified than ever to be so full of ourselves about this. The more pissed off they are, it usually means they're being asked to work, which is a novelty around here. It may not win Boks any fans either inside or outside of the department, but maybe we should consider it a decent alternative to letting them be fat and happy sitting around the staff lunch room eating pizza instead of doing their jobs. Here's the list of GM's who let them do exactly that: Rush, Lee, Olson, Knapp, Morris, Greenwalt, Morris and Stuckey.
The main thing is that Eddie Musical is right - if we want the Mayor to seriously consider alternatives, we better offer serious alternatives, and we're not.
Scratch all the local activists. They're non-starters, whether they're lawyers, filmmakers, legal aides or window washers. This mayor isn't going to choose one of them, and if that's going to be our litmus test, we're going to waste a lot of time, energy and emotion for the rest of the time he's in office (like it or not, that's something we're not going to be the ones to determine all by ourselves).
Scratch Winograd, who told us all in North Hollywood back in 2005 he didn't want this job and has spent much of the time since then insulting Villaraigosa for hiring Boks. So fat chance he has!
Some of the out-of-towners might be viable, but they know what it's like here. They know they'll be crucified within months because they're not the personal choice of one LA humane community pimp or another. (Hey, does Ferdin have a deal with Winograd to get a cut of any money he makes when she shamelessly promotes him?)
Knaan now knows better. She was on the job just a few months before ADL picketers were outside her house complaining she wasn't trying to undermine her boss. What kind of idiocy is that?
That leaves Linda Barth, who probably would end up being interim if Boks leaves. Is that what we want?
Add all this up and it seems like we've all managed to go to hell without even dying. Unfortunately we're sending a bunch of animals ahead as our advance scouts.
It appears there might be something dysfunctional about allowing self-righteous anger, egomania, personal vendettas and know-it-all arrogance to dictate how we do this. We don't seem to know as much as we think we do or maybe we wouldn't have been screwing it up consistently for 20 years.
"self-righteous anger, egomania, personal vendettas and know-it-all arrogance"
That's as good a description of the people who define themselves as the L.A. rescue community as any I've seen.
I don't say that to add to the hate. I'm just wondering if anyone can look at that and see him/herself even a little bit -- and maybe try to change.
I would add one thing, a phenomenon I see all the time -- and fight in myself: The idea that I'm the only one who really knows pain -- my own or an animal's. Only I am qualified to fight, only my opinions count, because when I see an animal suffering, or when I lose one I love -- only I feel the true horror and tragedy.
You're not the only one. And no one else has to pass your test to be considered "truly" compassionate. And I would add that just because you had a bad childhood or a tragic life in one way or another, that does not give you insight denied to others. What the animal is going through bears only a very superficial resemblance to what you went through. An animal doesn't need personal validation or a happy childhood. It needs to be fed, cared for and safe at this moment. It's not your tortured inner child and it wants what dogs and cats want -- not what you want.
Lots of people have had pain, including some who would never let you know in a million years, because they have a right to deal with pain in their way. But you don't have the right to dismiss their contribution because they aren't screaming the same thing you're screaming.
Besides, I've never seen screaming save one animal. I've seen cooperation, efficient action and personal flexibility save a few.
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