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Shelter upgrades are the cat's meow

July 29, 2011|By David Laurell
(David Laurell )

Two respective events saw the staff and Volunteers of the Burbank Animal Shelter (VBAS) reveal their newly renovated facility, while thousands of locals and visitors gathered to meet and greet a galaxy of stars from classic films and television shows this past week.

Proud to show off the numerous renovations, improvements and upgrades at the Burbank Animal Shelter, VBAS President Denise Fleck joined members of her board and shelter staff to host an open house on June 21. The event included tours of the improved facility given by Animal Control Officer Brenda Castaneda. Guests for the day’s first tour included Mayor Jess Talamantes and executives from Warner Bros. Studio Facilities (WBSF) who donated, designed and fabricated the shelter’s upgrades. Among the studio VIPs in attendance were WBSF President Jon Gilbert and Vice President Jeff Nagler, Vice President of production services Norm Barnett and Vice President of Office Services and Property Management Jeff Miller.

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Having conducted a division-wide survey among employees of WBSF, the division that oversees the physical operations, production and post-production at Warner Bros. Studios, it was overwhelmingly decided that the animal shelter was their choice in which to philanthropically reach out to the community. “It was a natural for us,” said Barnett who credited Gilbert for being the impetus for the project. “Jon was instrumental in our involvement and then it became, in every way, a group effort for us to reach out to the community in a meaningful way.”

Gilbert, who said that WBSF wanted to embrace a cause that had meaning to all members of the division, added they were aware of the good work being done by the Burbank Animal Shelter. “You can tell by visiting here that the shelter’s employees do their work as a labor of love,” said Gilbert. “We wanted to be a part of that.”

Among the numerous improvements WBSF made is a new set for the North Victory Place shelter’s Channel 6 Adopt-A-Pet television show, upgrades to the exercise and socialization areas, shade shelters and misters and electrical upgrades that, for the first time, have made it possible for the shelter to do X-rays on site. “What Warner Bros. has done has been an inspiration to all of us at the shelter,” said Castaneda. “It has been great for morale.”

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