WASHINGTON, May 13, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Following a nationwide search, animal rescue expert Justin L. Scally has been named National Director of American Humane Association's Red Star™ Emergency Services. The legendary Red Star program began in 1916, when the Secretary of War asked American Humane Association to care for horses wounded on the battlefields of World War I Europe. Since then, Red Star has led hundreds of domestic and international emergency efforts following such disasters as the Great Ohio Flood of 1937, the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hurricane Katrina, 9/11, the Haitian and Japanese earthquakes, the Joplin tornado, and Superstorm Sandy. In just the past five years, the Red Star program has rescued and sheltered more than 70,000 animals, logging 21,999 volunteer and 12,737 response staff hours in major deployments. Red Star also responds to other significant events challenging local communities' resources, including animal hoarding, cruelty cases, and puppy mill seizures. In addition, Red Star brings healing animal-assisted therapy (AAT) services to military families coping with the impact of service, children with cancer, and those affected by tragedies. Red Star recently deployed an AAT team to Boston following the terror bombings to help heal the stricken city. News of its work there was carried nationwide on more than 200 NPR stations.
Time of Rapid Expansion
Scally assumes the helm of the Red Star program at a time of rapid expansion. In addition to its seasoned staff and 200 highly trained volunteers across the country, Red Star has a growing number of emergency response vehicles strategically placed to respond to hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, wildfires and other natural and manmade disasters. In addition to its famous 82-foot Rescue Rig with its mobile operating theater and complement of emergency chase vehicles, Red Star recently acquired a 30,000-pound, 50-foot long Ford F-350 and trailer capable of carrying four specially trained emergency responders, supplies and equipment capable of sheltering up to 100 animals to be based in the South Florida area, which is often hit by hurricanes. The acquisitions are part of American Humane Association's ambitious Red Star Centennial Expansion project, a strategic plan is to have a major response vehicle in each of the 10 FEMA regions.
Scally, a Maryland native comes to the American Humane Association with a wealth of knowledge and experience to lead the Red Star Emergency Services team. He has worked for the Humane Society of the United States, served as director of the Louisville Metro Department of Animal Services, and was credited as former director of the Wayne County Department of Animal Control in Goldsboro, North Carolina for bringing the agency animal control and protection protocols into the 21st Century. Scally holds many certifications and has received numerous awards and recognitions for his work involving animals over the years. Scally has traveled the nation working to save animals from cruelty and natural disasters. Throughout his career, he has worked alongside local, state and federal law enforcement authorities to bring animal abusers to justice in numerous high-profile cases across the United States.
Scally began his animal career at an animal clinic in Glen Burnie, Maryland and was later named an animal control officer for the Anne Arundel County Police Department. Scally will assume his new role on July 1.
"I'm thrilled to be joining the team at American Humane Association," said Scally. "The voiceless victims of abuse, neglect and natural disasters rely on us to be their protectors – to end their suffering and to bring peace of mind in their time of despair. American Humane Association does this phenomenal work through the heroic efforts of the renowned Red Star Emergency Services team. I'm honored to have been chosen to lead this team which saves thousands of animals each year and protects communities from disasters and crisis situations."
"Red Star has a remarkable history and we were looking for a remarkable leader," said American Humane Association President and CEO Dr. Robin Ganzert. "Justin Scally has the vision, the passion, and the experience to build on our work in the disaster relief area, and lead Red Star into its second century of lifesaving service to the nation."
American Humane Association
American Humane Association is the country's first national humane organization and the only one dedicated to protecting both children and animals. Since 1877, American Humane Association has been at the forefront of virtually every major advance in protecting our most vulnerable from cruelty, abuse and neglect. Today we're also leading the way in understanding the human-animal bond and its role in therapy, medicine and society. American Humane Association reaches millions of people every day through groundbreaking research, education, training and services that span a wide network of organizations, agencies and businesses. You can help make a difference, too. Visit American Humane Association at www.americanhumane.org today.
SOURCE American Humane Association