County Administrator Ken Joiner said Dani LaPlant gave him notice on Wednesday morning. Her resignation will be effective March 1.
“I just have an opportunity to go a different direction in my career,” LaPlant said by phone later Wednesday. She declined to provide further information about her decision to resign.
LaPlant said when she was hired she hadn’t thought about how long she might stay on as director, but said the short turnaround was unexpected.
“I’m going to miss everyone, the people, the staff, and of course the animals,” LaPlant said. “And I couldn’t have asked for any more guidance or backing than the County Commission who have been wonderful.”
LaPlant said she still plans to volunteer at the facility, which has a full-time assistant director.
The county hired LaPlant in January after former director Charles
McDonald retired in October. LaPlant’s hiring was recommended from the Animal Control Board, which was created last year after complaints about inhumane treatment at the facility. Investigations into the allegations yielded no criminal charges.
LaPlant said at the time she was working to improve the image of Animal Control Center.
“She is such a great person and we were so lucky to have her,” Janet Odom, president of the board, said Wednesday. “I can’t say enough about her and we really wish she would stay. We would do anything for her, and she would do anything for us.”
Joiner said the county is taking applications for the job and the board will decide on a full-time replacement. Joiner said LaPlant, a retired juvenile probation officer, had a limited salary due to her retirement status. The board and county will have to decide an appropriate salary for a new director, he said.
Staff writer Brian Anderson: 256-235-3546. On Twitter @BAnderson_Star.