“Ten with the Team” will be a recurring post spotlighting Humane Society of Northeast Georgia (HSNEGA) staffers answering 10 questions to help you get to know them better. Today’s “Ten with the Team” is Bob Martin, HSNEGA Adoption Center Director who joined HSNEGA in June 2011.
- Tell us briefly about your current position.
As the Adoption Center Director, I am responsible for all financial transactions associated with HSNEGA and for managing the Wellness Clinic, Adoption Center, and Animal Care departments. In addition to directly supervising the personnel in these areas, my responsibilities include generating policies and procedures necessary to ensure a successful, viable organization.
2. What do you love most about your work?
Seeing homeless animals find loving forever homes. Hearing some of the awesome adoption stories, it makes you wonder who rescued who.
3. What accomplishment during your tenure makes you the most proud?
I do accounting work so anything I can tell you here would bore you to tears; however, I have fostered several rescued animals during my time at HSNEGA and consider these success stories to be a big accomplishment.
- What is your most memorable story involving HSNEGA?
It’s hard to pick one, so here are some favorites that come to mind.
A few years ago we rescued several dogs from a backyard breeder who had 30+ dogs. One little dachshund, Toby, captured my heart. In his short life, he’d experienced minimal contact with people and had extremely limited social skills. We were concerned his temperament made him unadoptable. I refused to give up on him and volunteered to foster him in my home. After only two weeks in a loving environment, this little guy was transformed into a happy, well-adjusted puppy who was easily adopted. I still receive updates from his adoptive family. Toby was my first foster, but definitely has not been my last, and each experience resulting in a forever home for a previously abandoned/neglected animal is immensely rewarding.
The second story had a tragic beginning but, thankfully, a very happy ending. Someone placed two dogs in a box and threw them out on the side of the road. The male was hit by a car and killed. The female, a dachshund, was in labor and delivered one male puppy while in the box. Someone stopped to rescue the family and, through a chain of rescues working together, I became their foster. They both thrived in a loving environment and, once vetted, were adopted immediately to loving forever homes.
The third story is a bird of a different feather, literally. In 2012, I lost Scooby, my beloved dog of 15+ years. Scooby had been with me since the day of his birth and his death rocked me to my core. After that loss, I was convinced I did not want another animal to be a permanent part of my life. Nine months after Scooby’s death, a parrot named Greer was surrendered to HSNEGA. I became Greer’s foster day with the goal of socializing him. I quickly fell in love…I guess you could say it was love at third bite! I ended up adopting him and, to this day, Greer is my constant companion. He goes to work with me every day and customers have come to know me as “the bird man.”
I know I can’t save every animal, but it is incredibly rewarding to be able to make such a huge difference by investing a little of my time and heart.
5. If you were to tell one person “Thank You!” for helping me become the person I am today, who would that be?
My mother. Growing up, I had a non-present father so my mother had to work extra hard to provide for me and my siblings. Needless to say, times were tough, but my mother has always given me unconditional love and support and provided the role model for the type of person I aspire to be.
6. What mottos do you live by?
I actually have two mottos: “Never judge a man until you have walked in his shoes” and “Treat others as you would like to be treated.” If more people would embrace these philosophies, there would be a lot less hatred and judgement in the world.
7. What inspires you?
I am inspired by my ability to make a difference.
8. What would you be doing if you weren’t in animal welfare?
In some capacity, I would be fulfilling my other passion, which is traveling.
- How do you recharge?
I am blessed with an amazing family and group of friends who I love to spend time with to decompress.
- What super power would you like to have?
I would love to be able to teleport which would allow me the luxury of visiting places around the world without the hassle of traveling there.