When I resumed my position as BCAC president, Neil Weiss graciously told me that I was entitled to write an article each month for the paper. After reflection, my thoughts were that both Neil and Ira Goldstein write articles each month on everything that is relevant to the industry, and that a third article addressing similar matters was unnecessary. I asked Neil if I could devote my column to helping animals and he graciously agreed. Neil, I will always be grateful.

But from the beginning it was clear that my focus on helping animals was not well received by some, and perhaps many. Way back, I received an anonymous letter sent to the BCAC offices with one of my articles that had an overlay that read something like, “We thought you cared about the industry, but you only care about animals.”

More recently, something else was said to me that made me realize that my intentions are grossly misinterpreted. And for that reason, I have decided that while I may write a periodic article in the future, it will be focused on the industry. I assure you that while my writings in the past were only about animals, my skillset is such that it was never at the expense of my personal efforts on behalf of the industry.

In closing, I ask that you always adopt and never shop for an animal. If you have stray cats near where you live, TNR (trap, neuter, and return) is so important to stop the exponential population of kittens being born that often face hunger, danger, and disease. Coldness in the winter and fleas and ticks in the summer. Feeding and providing shelter to them is amazingly kind but making sure that no new kittens are born to face the same fate is critical.

Reach out to your local shelter or NorthShore Animal League to find out about their Community Cats spay and neuter programs. And, If I can ever be helpful to you, I can be reached at diana@bigapplecar.com.

Be well, stay safe, and be the best person you can be both in your professional and personal life. Be kind to each other and be kind to animals. In many cases, animals are the most loyal friends you can have.

Article by Diana Clemente

Diana Clemente is President of the Black Car Assistance Corporation and Big Apple Car.

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