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Director, Animal Care Services

Location:  City of San Antonio, TX Download:  City of San Antonio, TX - Director, Animal Care Services - Brochure

About San Antonio 

The City of San Antonio is the nation’s 7th largest city and is home to more than 1.5 million residents. Located in South Central Texas, approximately 140 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, San Antonio offers its residents one of the most attractive and affordable lifestyles in the country. Residents enjoy one of the lowest tax rates in the state as well as a plentiful supply of high-quality housing and low utility rates. The economy of San Antonio is an excellent mix of business services, manufacturing, health care, communications, corporate and regional offices, government, and the convention and tourism industry. San Antonio is also home to one of the largest concentrations of military bases in the United States. One of the nation's fastest growing cities, San Antonio is rich in recreational and cultural opportunities with over15,000 acres of public parks and 150 miles of trails, over 50 museums and galleries, and home to the 5-time champion San Antonio Spurs. The Historic San Antonio Missions are Texas’ only Unesco World Heritage site and is a Unesco designated Creative City of Gastronomy. 

City Government 

San Antonio has a Council-Manager form of government with an eleven-member City Council. Councilmembers are elected by District, while the Mayor is elected at-large. The term of office for the Mayor and all members of the City are two-year terms, for not more than four (4) full terms of office. The City Council appoints the City Manager, who appoints all officials in executive positions with the exception of the City Clerk, City Internal Auditor, Presiding Judge, and Municipal Judges. 

The City of San Antonio has been recognized for its high level of professional management by the ICMA and National Civic League, amongst others. For ten consecutive years, the City has maintained a AAA bond rating. The Fiscal Year 2023adopted operating budget is $3.4 billion with close to 13,000 employees across approximately 40 departments. The City has made a commitment to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion, primarily through the formation of a citywide Office of Equity in 2017, which was transformed into our Department of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility(DEIA) in 2022. 

Animal Care Services (ACS) Department 

The City of San Antonio Animal Care Services is the largest, open admission, municipal shelter in South Texas. Serving SanAntonio residents, ACS resides on a 14-acre campus boasting a variety of programs and services aimed at encouraging responsible pet ownership and compliance in our community.  The mission of Animal Care Services is “to encourage responsible pet ownership by promoting and protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the residents and pets of San Antonio through education, enforcement, and community partnership.” 

Since 2005, the City of San Antonio has taken progressive steps towards implementing more humane practices and programs at Animal Care Services. These innovations have resulted in significant measurable progress towards a more engaged community. To illustrate—just a decade ago, the department had a 32% Live Release rate in FY11. The following year, ACS engaged in strategic planning that saw our placement rate climb to greater than 90% in 2016. After a post-pandemic environment, we saw a decline in our live release rate. In the last year alone, the department had a live release rate of 88%, below the 90% targeted rate. Because continuous improvement is a part of ACS’s structure, a new Strategic Plan was developed and finalized with community input. The Strategic Plan reestablished ACS priorities and increased operational capacity. In addition, funding for a new 16,000 sq. ft. hospital has been allocated to be built within the footprint of the ACS campus. Currently, the hospital is in design stage. 

This new Strategic Plan implements a balanced approach to animal care and control with a focus on five strategic priorities: (1)supporting a safe community for people, (2) protecting the safety and humane treatment of pets, (3) supporting the placement of pets for life, (4) fostering positive connections within the community, and (5) empowering a healthy and thriving workforce. 

The Position 

The Director of Animal Care Services is responsible for providing management and administrative oversight of the Animal Care Services Department. The ACS Director will develop and ensure the deployment of the strategic plan to promote increased responsible pet ownership through enforcement, stray pet population control and increasing the live release rate of animals. They will coordinate assigned activities with other City departments and outside agencies, and evaluate and makes recommendations related to animal care procedures and methods. The ACS Director exercises direct supervision over professional, technical, and clerical staff. 

Essential Job Functions 

·        Develops policies and procedures, and monitors work activities to ensure compliance with established guidelines.

·        Evaluates and recommends changes and improvements to existing standards and procedures.

·        Plans, directs and evaluates the work of the Animal Care Services staff.

·        Reviews and interprets Animal Care policies and regulations mandated by Federal, State, and local government entities, and oversees the operation of a safe and humane animal euthanasia program; remains abreast of modern euthanasia methods.

·        Implements procedures utilized in daily operations to ensure direct results are achieved; prepares reports as required by Federal and State agencies.

·        Plans and administers the personnel and fiscal needs for the Animal Care Services Department; prepares and monitors the department's annual budget.

·        Responds to questions from the public, City officials, and the media and assists in resolving sensitive inquiries and complaints from both internal and external sources.

·        Works with the Animal Care Services Advisory Board.

·        Works with Public Health officials in monitoring and reviewing animal-related community concerns.

·        Provides management and administrative oversight of the Animal Care Services Department; plans and oversees the new Animal Care Services facility.

·        Ensures performance measures and metrics are developed, monitored, and achieved at every level of the organization.

·        Serves as the animal control authority for the City of San Antonio including public health and safety, quarantine of animals, and rabies control.

·        Negotiates and is involved in regular monitoring of contracts and local agreements.

·        Ability to assess and evaluate the need for underserved and marginalized areas of the city.

·        Ensure proper spay and neuter contracts are in place to help manage population growth.

·        Ability to work effectively with pet adoption and rescue groups and expand fostering capacity.

·        Design, and develop transport strategies to maximize adoption opportunities.

·        Ensures proper euthanasia protocols are followed.

·        Develops short-and long-range strategy for the department.

·        Oversees timely and cost-effective oversight of department construction projects.

·        Maintains a strong sense of leadership to motivate the workforce.

·        Performs related duties and fulfills responsibilities as required. 

Education & Experience

Qualified candidates will have a Bachelor's Degree from an accredited college in Public Administration, business administration, or a related field. They will also have seven (7) years of management experience of a large Animal Care Facility or equivalent business operations experience to include supervisory experience. The most highly qualified candidates for consideration will be selected based on a combination of education, career experience, and accomplishments that best fits the needs of the City of San Antonio. 

Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate will be a professional public administrator with a background in the management of a large complex and fast-moving organization. Having a proven track record of relationship building with diverse employee populations is critical and being an influential leader who can attract followers and engage employees is important.  The successful candidate must also be accessible, approachable, and will be a progressive leader with a collaborative management style. The ability to communicate messages and presentations skillfully and effectively to stakeholders in a clear and concise manner is critical to be successful in this position.  The ideal candidate needs to be a proven leader who understands the multiple facets of animal care services and is effective at inspiring staff and building morale in a productive way. 


The City of San Antonio is offering a competitive salary commensurate with experience. The anticipated hiring range for the ACS Director is $150,000 - $200,000. The City offers generous benefits and retirement including annual and personal leave; monthly car allowances, deferred compensation plan, relocation/moving expenses and participation in the Texas Municipal Retirement System (TMRS). 

How to Apply 

Interested applicants should forward a cover letter and resume to:
Reference: SADASD 

Affion Public
PO Box 794
Hershey, PA 17033

*The deadline to receive resumes is March 04, 2024* 

The City of San Antonio is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. 

Posted: 02/05/2024