Recent Press Releases & Media

Liberty Humane Society Names ITelagen® CEO John O’Keefe President of Board


Pairing Marks New, Proactive and Progressive Approach to Animal Control Management

Jersey City, NJ – June 10, 2009 – The Liberty Humane Society (LHS), the only shelter of its kind serving Jersey City, today announced that John O’Keefe, CEO of healthcare technology provider ITelagen, LLC, has been named President of the LHS Board of Directors. Jersey City faces some very unique and formidable animal control challenges. O’Keefe’s acumen as a businessman and strategic planner will aid greatly as LHS moves to the very forefront of animal management and control, bringing all of Jersey City along with it.

Jersey City faces an enormous feral cat problem, compounded by a very high degree of indiscriminate Pit Bull over-breeding. Already, more than 2,700 animals come through the doors of LHS annually, and that number increases by 20 percent every year. LHS is taking strategic, proactive steps to address both issues, acting in the interests of the animals, the city, its businesses and citizens simultaneously.

“I’m glad to be a part of what Liberty Humane Society is doing,” explains O’Keefe. “The animal control issues faced by our city are immense. The feral cat population is massive and growing constantly, and represents a health risk to the residents and business owners of Jersey City.”

A single pair of male/female cats can produce some 250,000 others during the course of their and their offspring’s lifetimes. LHS is preparing an innovative and progressive approach to managing the feral cat problem. Soon, the doors will open on LHS’ veterinary clinic, where there will be a mass spay/neuter program undertaken with a key difference between most other shelters’ attempts in this regard. By methodically catching, sterilizing, tagging and releasing feral cats into segregated, controlled colonies, LHS is moving to the forefront of animal management and control.

“As we begin to sterilize the feral cat population of Jersey City, by moving them into managed controlled colonies, we will be able to do three things,” adds Janet Russell, Director of Development for LHS. “One, we will be able to feed and immunize these animals to help keep them from roaming and spreading disease. Two, the sterilized cats will not reproduce, so over time the colonies will shrink and eventually disappear through attrition. And three, we will be able to do all of this without the need for mass euthanasia, fulfilling our role as a truly humane society.”

In addition, Jersey City has inherited a large amount of stray Pit Bulls, due to indiscriminate breeding and abandonment. Through a combination of community education with the schools, working closely with Animal Control officers when there is cause for enforcement and by being one of the only shelters willing to take the breed in, LHS is also helping to address yet another animal control problem that negatively reflects on the city, while at the same time rehabilitating the public image of a misunderstood and wrongly-feared breed.

“If we don’t take proactive measures to control these problems now, it might get to a point where we’ll never be able to control the issues at hand,” O’Keefe continues. “Our animal control challenges cast a negative light on our city, diminish our ability to attract thriving new business and make it difficult for Jersey City employers to attract the best people. I’m proud to be on board with LHS at the start of these important programs.”

Recently, O’Keefe worked directly with Lenox Hill Medical Group after a technology upgrade, in the donation of 90 computers to LHS, thus revolutionizing technology for the organization. Since then, ITelagen, an innovative provider of one-stop, flat-fee healthcare information technology and support, has continued to work with LHS from a technology standpoint by providing free IT support.

About ITelagen, LLC
ITelagen (www.itelagen.com) brings electronic health records, practice management and claims management solutions to small- and medium-sized medical practices. ITelagen’s subscription-based service includes hosting and management of EMR applications and proactive onsite and remote IT support for all aspects of a practice’s computers, network and staff. ITelagen offers solutions for practices of any size and specialty, and tailors every implementation to the unique needs and budget of each client. For more information, please visit ITelagen on the Web at www.itelagen.com.

About Liberty Humane Society
The Liberty Humane Society (LHS) was created in 1998 to work in partnership with the City of Jersey City to build and manage a state-of-the-art animal shelter, and in 2004, management of the Jersey City animal shelter officially transferred to the Liberty Humane Society. LHS does everything in its power to educate the public and place shelter animals in loving and responsible homes. In 2007, LHS adopted out more than 700 dogs and cats. For more information, or to see a list of adoptable animals, visitwww.libertyhumane.org.