By Staff Reports
(Apple Valley)– It takes a skilled and compassionate person to work with some of the High Desert’s most vulnerable residents…animals. Apple Valley Animal Services (AVAS) Supervisor Kristin Hebertson fits that description perfectly and was named the Town’s Employee of the Quarter at Tuesday’s council meeting for her efforts.
“Kristin puts in extra hours to ensure that the best care is provided to animals housed in our facility and that the highest level of sheltering services is provided to our contract agency, residents and animals,” said Gina Schwin-Whiteside, Animal Services Manager. “Her dedication to quality provides the department support for accomplishing our goals.”
Hebertson began her employment at the Town as a Registered Veterinary Technician in 2006 and was promoted to Animal Shelter Supervisor in 2013. Her co-workers describe her as a valuable asset to the AVAS Department with a “can-do” attitude.
“Most of the animals that come into the shelter do not have a home and warm bed waiting for them elsewhere. I feel it is my responsibility to make their stay here at the shelter as comfortable as possible,” said Hebertson. “They cannot take care of themselves so I try to provide for them as best as I can. If they are sick or injured I do my best to treat them. If they just need a little extra affection or a treat to make their day better I try to give it to them.”
In January 2013, the Town began providing animal sheltering services for the County of San Bernardino. The new contract increased the number of animals coming into the facility as well as the number of adoptions, rescues and owner returns that were processed. In the first year of the contract, the number of vaccinations administered to sheltered dogs and cats increased by 105% and from July to December 2014, the shelter averaged 562 new sheltered animals per month. Hebertson has managed the increased animal population with compassion and efficiency.
“Kristin not only monitors the over-all health of the animals in our care, but also ensures that our shelter staff is trained and equipped to meet the needs of our visitors,” said Schwin-Whiteside.
In addition to her duties at the shelter, Hebertson also participates in community events that raise funds for the facility including the annual “Fur Ball” benefit dinner, the “Cruisin’ Fur Critters” Poker Run held in late spring, and the “Paws N’ Claws Pet Fair” held each fall.
“Thanks to Kristin and all of the dedicated AVAS team members, our department was able to accomplish a lot during 2014 and gear up for more community events in 2015,” said Schwin-Whiteside. “We are honored that one of our staff members has been awarded this recognition.”