In the News

Thomas J. O’Connor Officers Named Animal Control Officers of the Year

Monday, October 31, 2016

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno is pleased to announce that the animal control officers from the Thomas J. O’Connor Adoption Center (TJO) have been named Animal Control Officers of the Year by the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) and Animal Rescue League of Boston.

Mayor Sarno stated, “Many a times, we take for granted the important and unheralded role our animal control officers play on behalf of public safety. I congratulate and thank each and every one of them for their continued and dedicated efforts.”

The award was presented to Animal Control Officers Hannah Chapman, Renee Robichaud, Julie Sanborn, Daniel Simpson, Elfred Mateo and Mason Rivera during an awards banquet in Marlborough, MA on Friday, October 21st. These officers are the front line of public health and safety for the cities of Springfield, Chicopee and Holyoke. They work tirelessly to protect the animals in these cities, and by doing so, humans and their health.

“It is an incredible opportunity working with the TJO Animal Control Officers day in and day out.  I have a deep respect for their commitment to creating a more humane community, their perseverance through the most difficult cases and their dedicated professionalism.  I am so proud and grateful to have this dynamic team representing the cities we serve - Springfield, Chicopee and Holyoke,” said TJO Executive Director Pamela Peebles.

The officers were nominated by Christine Allenberg, MSPCA Law Enforcement, for the greatness they achieved as a group. She said, “I have watched them grow as officers, compassionate animal advocates and respected colleagues.  I work very closely with them on a regular basis and am always impressed with their quick response, professionalism and ability to problem solve.  I am constantly amazed at the daring feats they perform to rescue any animal from any situation.  Completely fearless is the only way to truly describe each and every officer.  Each one unselfishly, even when off duty, responds if needed.  Many situations are horrific and I have personally witnessed each and every nominated officer calmly evaluate the situation and do what is right for the animals and people involved. “

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