CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Longtime Kanawha County animal shelter volunteer Sylvia Shaffer has resigned from the Kanawha/Charleston Humane Association board of directors.
Shaffer, largely credited with creating the modern animal shelter system in the county, resigned along with Humane Association board member Georgia Hess, board President Kim Hutton confirmed.
"We're sorry to see Sylvia go, because she's such a pillar of knowledge on animals, the law and the Legislature," Hutton said Friday.
Shaffer declined comment when contacted Friday.
The animal shelter board has had a tumultuous couple of years, as the board split into factions over the way the shelter should be run. Kanawha County Commission President Kent Carper said the rift has gotten deeper recently.
"They've had a significant disagreement in policy the last couple of months," Carper said. "It's been the old guard versus the new guard."
Newer members of the shelter board have been pushing an animal rescue agenda and more progressive ideas at the shelter, while more senior members like Shaffer favored a more traditional approach.
Hutton said the animal shelter board will hold a special meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in part to discuss appointing temporary replacements for Shaffer and Hess. Shaffer was up for re-election in June to the 15-member board, while Hess was up for re-election next year.
The animal shelter board will also discuss a draft report issued by a veterinarian from Virginia Tech who came to the animal shelter in December to help investigate a massive distemper outbreak.
Reach Rusty Marks at rustyma...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1215.