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(SANTA BARBARA, Calif.) – The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department is
pleased to announce that after an extensive recruitment process, Sarah Aguilar has
been selected as the new County Animal Services Director. Aguilar brings a wealth of
experience in animal welfare and management and has actively led nationally-
recognized organizations in leadership development, innovative partnerships, and
community engagement.

Aguilar has been a key leader in various animal-serving organizations, most recently as
the Senior Director of Operations at Austin Pets Alive in Austin, Texas, an animal
rescue organization serving 12,000 pets annually. Previous to her role in Austin, Aguilar
was the National Foster Programs Manager at Greater Good Charities in Seattle,
Wash., and Deputy Director of the Pima Animal Care Center in Pima, Ariz.
“While the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic created significant hardships within the
animal welfare world and locally in Santa Barbara County, this period also provided us
with an opportunity to reassess, rebuild, and strengthen our programs and services,”
shared Deputy Director for Community Health Paige Batson. “We are excited that Sarah
will be leading Santa Barbara County Animal Services to a whole new level of achieving
best practices, providing quality services for our community animals, and fostering
strong partnerships with community stakeholders.”

Aguilar will be coming to California with her husband, Enrique, and their rescue dogs,
Monchi and Luci. Aguilar returns to the Central Coast, previously having worked as the
Foster Care Coordinator at Ventura County Animal Services.

“I am beyond ecstatic to accept the role of Director of Animal Services for this well-
established and well-loved organization whose history of success is based on a plethora
of rich partnerships,” shared Aguilar. “My goal in leading this organization is to build
upon the achievements of the past, maintain a high level of service, and continue to
grow our support of the community throughout Santa Barbara County.”

Aguilar officially joins Santa Barbara County Animal Services on Monday, September
19, 2022.


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