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Ann Graves named Seattle Animal Shelter executive director

Ann Graves becomes Seattle Animal Shelter’s executive director on Sept. 20, 2017.

Ann Graves, who has been serving as the Seattle Animal Shelter acting director for the past year, has been named the shelter’s executive director. Graves’ appointment comes after a six-month, nationwide recruitment.

During Graves’ tenure as acting director, she has done an outstanding and commendable job helping to guide SAS through transition and challenges, said William Edwards, director of Regulatory Compliance and Consumer Protection. The RCCP division in the Department of Finance and Administrative Services oversees the Seattle Animal Shelter.

“We have the greatest of confidence that Ann will continue to grow and build on her experience with the support of highly dedicated staff, volunteers, the Seattle Animal Shelter Foundation, our partners around the region and state and the communities we serve,” Edwards said.

Before stepping in as acting director last year, Graves was the shelter’s manager of field services, the shelter’s regulatory and investigations unit. She joined the Seattle Animal Shelter in 2000 as an animal care officer before becoming an officer in the field services unit, then enforcement supervisor and manager. Graves previously worked at the Humane Society of Seattle/King County (now known as Seattle Humane) as the offsite adoption supervisor after volunteering there for several years. Ann has served on the board and in officer roles for the Washington Animal Control Association and the Washington Federation of Animal Care and Control Agencies and in 2016 was named the National Animal Care and Control Association Animal Control Employee of the Year.

“The Seattle Animal Shelter plays a vital role in our community in so many ways. I am truly honored to be a part of this remarkable team of dedicated animal care professionals and volunteers and am humbled to accept the position of executive director,” Graves said. “I look forward to the work ahead as we build toward our future in providing progressive, responsive, data-driven and comprehensive services to the people and animals of Seattle and as we continue saving one life at a time.”

The city of Seattle received 62 applications from candidates across the country, including Washington, Oregon, Texas, California, Florida and Washington, D.C. Interview panels were comprised of representatives from the Seattle Animal Shelter Foundation, the Seattle community, city of Seattle managers, Seattle Animal Shelter volunteers and Regional Animal Services of King County.

Graves appointment as executive director is effective Sept. 20, 2017.

The Seattle Animal Shelter, located at 2061 15th Ave. W., is open from noon to 6 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday for adoptions and licensing. For more information, call 206-386-PETS (7387) or visit