Paws for a Moment by Bonny Corbeil

ACC Animal Report

The St. John Animal Care Center conducted its annual meeting on Wednesday, January 16, at 7 p.m. at the Gifft Hill School lower campus. Important facts reported:

– 24 dog adoptions
– 140 spayed female cats; 148 neutered male cats
– 20 spayed female dogs; 23 neutered male dogs
– Number of 2007 intake of animals: 227
– Food for feral cat stations: 928 bags
– Dog licenses issued: 37

Anyone wishing more detailed reports and financial information may pick that information up from ACC Shelter Manager Connie Joseph.

Departing board members were thanked for their service to the community. They include Bill Dove, Susanne Kirk, Kristen Cox and Alfredo Alejo.

New board members were welcomed. They include:

– Michelle Carle, who is a mortgage banker at FirstBank and relatively new to St. John. Michelle will also be our new ACC secretary. Welcome Michelle!
– Kathryn Dupree, St. John attorney, who we know will be an incredible asset to us
– Cathy Braaten, owner of the Beach Bar
– Paul Jordan, whose wife Alyce was instrumental in restructuring our ACC Board of Directors a few years ago. Paul brings numerous skills to our ACC.

These new board members will bring their own unique talents and we all welcome them aboard!
Our Officers for 2008 are:

– President B.J. Harris of St. John Properties
– Vice President Diana Ripley, a St. John consultant
– Secretary Michelle Carle
– Treasurer John Fuller

Other directors include: Dean Baldwin, owner of Frames of Mind, Flotsam and Jetsam and Sugar Birds; Elaine Campbell, retired and long-time St. John animal advocate and supporter; Jennifer Dale, former manager of The Marketplace and marketing consultant; Sheila Karcher, business owner; Nancy Louis, Garden by The Sea innkeeper; Oriel Smith, Caneel Bay Resort director of grounds and landscaping; and Jennifer Troisi, interior decorator.

I continue on the board as education chair, and will continue writing these Paws columns to keep the community informed. My personal thanks to John Fuller who edits them. I could not write them without John.

Board reports can sometimes be a little boring, so here are some personal impressions of last year’s ACC board in a true “coconut fashion.”

No one runs a tighter meeting than our president, B.J. Harris! It is almost always on time, very focused and on-target. What is also important to know is that B.J. comes to these meetings with a new set of “animal ears” each month. What a combination — a great balance of fun and focus. Thank you B.J.

John Fuller keeps our finances in great order and keeps us abreast of needs before they arise. He is a great numbers man. John is very committed and so appreciated by all.

One of the hardest workers on our board and one incredibly good guy is Oriel Smith. What an asset he is to us!

Elaine Campbell, though a “snow bird” is always involved, even from abroad. Elaine is always coming up with new ideas for adoptions and income, and when she is unable to attend a meeting, you can count on her husband John to attend as her proxy.

Jennifer Troisi is our new chair of membership. This is wonderful since she has lived on St. John for so long. This is a very important area of development to financially sustain our organization and officially “connect” those animal advocates with membership. Look for Jennifer’s membership plan and campaign in the coming year.

Jen Dale is the “positive pixie” in the group, always ready to help.

Of course, our vice president Diana is hands-on and can be found regularly at the shelter supporting the staff there.
Sheila Karcher did the difficult job of secretary in 2007. Both Sheila and others are happy that she will be able to participate more. Sheila was instrumental in our very successful “Paws and Claws” event at the Westin a few years ago, which helped reopen our ACC doors.

We will need your ongoing support this coming year. Remember we are St. John’s representation for you, to speak for those animals in need who can’t speak for themselves. Any time you have suggestions or concerns, or even donations, please talk to our board members. We need you involved to make the ACC work.

Feel free to e-mail me anytime at with Paws column suggestions or ACC ideas.