Our first High Five RVA recipient is Chuck Marchant, Operations Manager at Richmond Animal Care and Control (RACC). Chuck and his team provide humane care for more than 3,000 strays, injured, abused and relinquished pets a year. As an open admission shelter, RACC takes in every animal in need in the City of Richmond— including animals that are severely injured and/or neglected. They are saving more than 83% of the animals they serve.
H5RVA: What's your favorite thing about working in animal control?
Chuck: I'm an early riser so I'm usually the first one in the shelter every morning. It may sound funny, but waking all the kids up every morning while I'm doing my rounds is probably the best part of my day. Being the only open-admissions shelter in the City, we get all of the neglected and un-socialized pets that have nowhere else to go. After a few days with our crew it's amazing to see how happy these kids are to see their new people friends in the AM. It's really nice to have 200 furry friends excited to see you and kick off your day.
H5RVA: And your least favorite thing?
Chuck: The flip side of that coin is that as the only open admissions shelter in the City we see the worst of what people can do to their pets every day. It takes a special breed of person to do what we do and we're incredibly proud of our work and perseverance, but it's truly a daily grind and it wears on you. Our staff has a saying that we'd love to put on T-Shirts: "Animal Control Ain’t No Joke." Having said that, we have many, many more good days than bad.
H5RVA: What’s your favorite thing to do in Richmond?
Chuck: I love going out to brunch with my wife and daughter!There are so many great restaurants in this city. We enjoy eating at our favorites and catching up with each other.
H5RVA: How long you have been at RACC?
Chuck: I began volunteering directly with RACC in 2000 when the shelter was on Hopkins Road after volunteering with various rescue groups. I joined the team as a full-time employee in 2005 and have been happy coming to work ever since!
Chuck was nominated by High Five RVA founder, Amy McCracken, for his role in saving a dog whose family had moved away and left him behind without telling anyone. After being discovered by animal control, he was taken to RACC where no one came for him. The shelter staff recognized he was a special dog, and kept him safe until a rescue (Richmond Animal League) transferred him to their shelter. That’s where he insisted that he save the life of Amy (who happens to work at RAL). You can read their story here. HIGH FIVE, CHUCK AND RACC!