New shake-up at Safe Harbor animal shelter in Jupiter

A new board of directors named

JUPITER, Fla. - There has been a regime change - again - at Safe Harbor Animal Sanctuary in Jupiter. New leaders and even a new name are coming for the no-kill shelter that some say has been plagued with financial and managerial problems for years.

An all-new board of directors was named Thursday; just the latest in a number of top-level shake-ups at the shelter.

A new board of directors and, perhaps, a new day is on its way to Safe Harbor.

"Safe Harbor has been in disarray from a managerial standpoint and a financial standpoint," said Herb Baum, the new president of what will soon be called Furry Friends Adoption & Clinic.

"We have asked for and voluntarily received the resignation of the entire board," said Baum.

The outgoing board members fired Kay-Lynette Roca in January. Roca helped start the shelter twenty eight years ago and was most recently serving as Executive Director. Over the last several months, Roca has been investigated by Jupiter police and the IRS amid allegations of money mismanagement.

"When they raided my home, when they started investigating, I said 'investigate away'," said Roca on Thursday night. "Was it humiliating? Yes. Was it invasive? Yes." At this point, Roca is not facing any charges.

Baum said Safe Harbor needed a major shake-up - again. Though, several of the new board members have previous connections to Safe Harbor, including Baum.

"He is a tough guy," said Roca, who worked with Baum in the past. "But he has got a philanthropic heart and he's an animal lover."

Roca said she does not know what the future will hold for the organization she helped build for nearly three decades. She says earning public trust and donations may be tough, no matter who is at the helm.

"I never wanted anyone to think that I have betrayed them, that I had taken advantage and betrayed their trust in me or my organization," she said.

 

 

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