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A new face at the shelter

Among the adorable cats and dogs, there’s a new human face at the Claiborne Animal Shelter — Scott Luckadoo has been named executive director of the shelter and wants to “take it to the next level.”

Luckadoo, a Claiborne County native and 1986 graduate of Powell Valley High School, spent almost 27 years in the U.S. Army, retiring back to his hometown after many adventures with the military.

“I saw the ad for a director and thought, what better way to serve?” he said. “Now I can be home and serve my community.”

He has a troop of volunteers who he says have done a wonderful job, including tremendous support from trustees that are placed by the Claiborne County Sheriff’s Department. The shelter needs more, though, to handle the workload.

Community outreach is something Luckadoo has already been working on, reaching out to area schools, Lincoln Memorial University and other community organizations to tell people about the shelter and recruit volunteers.

“Volunteers are the lifeblood of the shelter,” he said, adding that people who can work just a few hours a week to entire days can find a spot. Students can work on TN Promise volunteer hours at the shelter as well.

He is planning on at least two kids’ camps next summer that will center on animal careers and animal care.

Luckadoo is also working on the shelter’s website — www.claiborneanimalshelter.com — a newsletter and other outreach mechanisms.

The shelter takes in from 350-400 animals each month, he said, and they adopt out as many as possible and reunite some with owners.

The Claiborne Animal Shelter Board came together in February 2008 with the goal of building an animal shelter. The shelter was built from donations, fundraisers and volunteer labor. The shelter’s mission is “To serve our community by sheltering animals in a humane environment, promote pet adoptions, and reduce pet overpopulation through spay/neutering, and education.”

“A hundred percent of all donations go toward the upkeep of the shelter, which in turn helps to save lives. We also have a needs list which anyone interested in donating may find on Facebook or you can get a hard copy at the shelter,” he said.

The shelter is currently running a “buy one, get one free” special on cats because of the sheer number of them, he said. He and the shelter volunteers welcome people to drop in and look at the pets available or just take a tour of the facilities.

“We want people to come and see what we’re about,” he said. “Money can buy you a fine dog but only love can make him wag his tail. Visit us at the shelter and find your fur-ever friend.”

For more information about the shelter or to volunteer, visit their website or Facebook page or call 423-626-2686.