20 years of lifesaving wouldn’t have been possible without an incredible team dedicated to LifeLine’s mission to end the euthanasia of healthy and treatable animals in county shelters. In looking forward to our next 20 years, LifeLine is celebrating these individuals: our lifesavers. One way we intend to honor our team is by uplifting their unique voices and stories. Our hard working teams are a connection to and reflection of the diverse and dedicated community we partner with every day.
Meet Pamela Bryant, LifeLine's Human Resources Manager
Pamela has dedicated the last 17 years to helping people and pets in Atlanta! Growing up, Pamela loved animals and had dreams of becoming a veterinarian. Pets of all kinds, cats, dogs and even rabbits, gravitated to her, and she to them. As an adult, her nurturing nature led her down a path where she was able to connect and help people in her many roles.
Pamela first started her career in a corporate customer service role before becoming a Quality Assurance Trainer, and eventually, the head of her department. When the company outsourced her department, she decided to spend more time at home with her children. Once her kids were older, she decided to re-enter the workforce.
Pamela knew she wanted to make a difference and incorporate her love for animals into her career, so when she saw an opening with Fulton County Animal Enforcement, she applied. After submitting an application more than 20 times, Pamela finally landed an interview and, ultimately, a job with Fulton County Animal Services!
Pamela started at the Fulton County animal shelter in 2005 working in the front office, and remains one of our most longest tenured employees. She experienced several different organizations assuming the management of animal services, while wearing many hats in her time at the shelter. She moved to the adoption department as a supervisor, worked as a Rabies Coordinator and, when LifeLine took over in 2013, Pamela became a Client Care Manager.
An Impact Nearing Two Decades
It was in her role as manager that Pamela felt she was able to drive more effective change. She was the only black woman in a management role at the shelter at that time and found that many team members felt more comfortable coming to her with their needs and concerns. Pamela was then able to help bridge that communication gap with others in leadership. In fact, that is one of the ways Pamela has felt she has most strongly made an impact—being a source of comfort and reassurance for those around her.
After nearly two decades, Pamela has witnessed some important changes in animal welfare. She shared how much better a state the shelters are in compared to when she first started. Then, the county shelters were overpopulated and euthanasia rates were very high. Shortly after taking over management, LifeLine achieved and is proud to have sustained no-kill rates, saving 90% or more of the animals, at both of the county shelters.
Pamela has also seen a mindset shift in the community in that there is a mutual understanding that our role as an animal services organization is to support people and pets.
Despite these accomplishments, Pamela recognizes that there are still challenges we face as an organization. One of the most important issues we need to continue to tackle is a lack of diversity. Pamela emphasized that we need more people of color in leadership positions, which will serve to bring us closer as a team and to our community. We want to recruit more diverse talent, so we can continue to build and strengthen the connections between our organization and the community we serve.
During her time with LifeLine, Pamela shared that she most enjoyed her role as an Adoption Supervisor. Finding homes for the animals was the highlight of her day! In transitioning to her current role as Human Resources Manager, she sought a change from managing a team and looked to assume more responsibility for organizational programming. This role has allowed her to get to know the teams better across all of LifeLine’s locations.
Outside of the office, Pamela shares her passion for helping animals with her family. She has five rescue pets of her own, three dogs and two cats from Fulton County Animal Services!
When asked who have been her biggest inspirations, Pamela couldn’t think of just one person. She has been inspired by her parents, her husband and some of her close colleagues. Well, the admiration is mutual!
We know that change doesn’t happen overnight. But Pamela is a self-proclaimed optimist and is looking forward to a new generation of lifesavers who are sure to bring great ideas to the table. She hopes that the next generation will continue to bring people together, because this crucial work takes a village.
Her advice for anyone looking to make a difference? The work isn’t just about the animals. We need to understand the diversity, beliefs and different perspectives of people in our community in order to progress in this industry. “Behind every animal is a person and you need to be able to link the two together.”