When the turmoil at the Toronto Human Society hit the press last week, my first reaction was, “Thank God I don’t sit on that board”. I’m sure I wasn’t alone. As a volunteer board member, what’s going on now at THS, and what may transpire over the coming months, is your worst nightmare.
I’ve been reading a bit about the history of governance at THS, and it’s a long-running, complex and unhappy story stretching back to the early 1970s, strewn with sick, neglected animals and angry, disillusioned employees, volunteers and members.
And behind the headlines of sick animals, the real story of THS is one of failed governance, a weak board without the skills and experience to govern an ambitious, wilful chief executive officer. Together they were able to fend off efforts by determined reformers to sit on the board, until the whole thing came crashing down.
For more information, see the website of the Association for the Reform of the Toronto Humane Society at www.reformths.com.
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