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John Jacobs

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MI USA

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Michigan Humane Society
June 10, 2012

Someone mentioned in an earlier post about problems with transparency not being new to MHS.

They were not kidding.
Ex-HSUS VP Wills cops a plea



Hoyt then recommended Wills to the Michigan Humane Society, where he was executive director, 1979-1989. Wills resigned from MHS when the board began inquiring into the disappearance of $1.6 million. A bookkeeper, Denise Hopkins, was eventually convicted of embezzling $56,000 of the missing sum. Wills next founded the National Society for Animal Protection, only to dissolve it when he joined HSUS.

Recovery from Misuse of Funds Takes Years


At MHS,
Been there, Done That.

South of Santa Cruz, on the far side of Monterey Bay, SPCA of Monterey County executive director Gary Tiscornia could testify from direct experience about the difficulties that the Santa Cruz SPCA, Sevierville Huame Society, LA/SPCA, et al can expect to meet ahead. Tiscornia headed the Michigan Humane Society for a decade after predecessor David Wills departed, leaving an unexplained deficit of $1.6 million.

Bookkeeper Denise Hopkins was successfully prosecuted for allegedly embezzling a small portion of it. Wills was successfully sued in 1994 for taking money under false pretenses at his next stop, the defunct National Society for Animal Protection, and was in 1997 convicted of embezzling from the Humane Society of the U.S., where he was vice president for investigations, 1991-1994.

Wills was never brought to account for any of the missing Michigan Humane money, however, and although Tiscornia was credited with impressively rebuilding the organization, the losses had a ripple effect evident even 10 years afterward, when Michigan Humane cut back a discount pet sterilization program because tight funding inhibited hiring enough veterinarians to keep it operating at all three of the MHS shelters.

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2012

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