NEW YORK--The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced that Mary Jo White, former U.S. Attorney and current partner at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP has been elected Chair of the ASPCA Board of Directors. Ms. White has been a member of the Board since 2009.
Ms. White is a partner at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, a leading international law firm, and serves as Chair of the firm's 225-plus lawyer Litigation Department. Prior to joining the firm in 2002, Ms. White was U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, where she led a team of more than 200 Assistant U.S. Attorneys to successfully prosecute some of the most significant national and international matters, including complex white collar and international terrorism cases. Ms. White is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers and the International College of Trial Lawyers. She is the recipient of numerous awards and is regularly ranked as a leading lawyer by directories that evaluate law firms. In addition to her role at the ASPCA, Ms. White is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
"Mary Jo's deep interest in animal-related issues coupled with her expertise in law enforcement makes her a tremendous asset to the ASPCA," said ASPCA President & CEO Ed Sayres. "The ASPCA's founding principle is to provide legal protection and care for animals and it is extremely fitting that someone of Mary Jo's background and experience takes the helm. We are thrilled to welcome Mary Jo and are confident that she will serve the ASPCA, its members, donors and staff very well."
"Legal protections and proper care for animals are essential to living in a humane society. Around the country, the ASPCA serves in a leadership role, enforcing animal welfare laws and rescuing and rehabilitating animal victims of cruelty," said Ms. White. "I am consistently impressed with the ASPCA's high level of skill in all that it does for animals - whether it's in the courtrooms, shelters, veterinary clinics, the legislative arena or on rescue operations. I'm honored to chair the organization as we continue this important work."
The Board also announced the election of James L. Nederlander, president of Nederlander Organization, and Tim Wray, partner of Family Endowment Partners, LP, as co-vice chairs of the Board; Thomas M. Belden, senior vice president of Wells Fargo Private Bank, as treasurer, and Franklin Maisano, former chair, president & CEO of Integrity Life Insurance, as secretary.
The ASPCA leads, operates or funds some of the most important animal welfare programs in the country. Early this spring, it launched an innovative national animal transport network to help transfer adoptable animals in high supply to areas of low supply and high demand. The organization is also creating a new legal advocacy initiative to help local communities prevent animal cruelty in their neighborhoods. It operates a national, 24/7 Animal Poison Control Center in Urbana, Ill., working on approximately 167,000 cases every year. Through its community partnerships with shelters around the country, the organization is sharing industry best practices in animal sheltering and veterinary medicine. Today, the organization is on the ground in areas devastated by recent natural disasters such as Joplin, Mo., where it established an emergency shelter and provided food and supplies to help displaced and rescued pets.