Creating Golden Opportunities: Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz offers 60 free pet adoptionsJan 24, 2023 08:00AM ● By Kathy Montgomery
One of the first two Golden Tickets for a free or reduced-price adoption sponsored by Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz were distributed in September at Walk Like Madd, a fundraiser for Mothers Against Drunk Driving sponsored by Goldstein Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz. (Photo courtesy of Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz)
When Hurricane Ian ravaged Southwest Florida, it flooded the downtown Fort Myers office that Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz has occupied since its founding 60 years ago. It also hit Gulf Coast Humane Society (GCHS)) hard.
As a result, Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz extended until May 2023 its plan to sponsor 60 free pet adoptions through 2022.
“As part of our 60th anniversary celebration of serving the community, we are delighted to connect the community with loving animals in need of homes,” said Chris Smith, managing partner for the firm.
Fortunately, all animals at GCHS were fine after the storm passed, but the facility, fences and grounds were damaged. The cat lanai, which was remodeled earlier in the summer, the breezeway and the animal rehab play area were destroyed. The roof of the administrative office blew off and went through the windshield of the GCHS’s newest van.
Before the storm, which was projected to make landfall between Tampa and the Panhandle, GCHS took in animals from shelters in Labelle and Glades County, which anticipated impacts from tropical force winds.
By the time Hurricane Ian changed course and impacted Fort Myers, GCHS had 175 dogs and cats at the shelter. Five staff members rode out the storm with the animals, concerned about the high winds.
Water pressure was impacted when the water line was damaged and the building’s generator was hit by lightning. Without phones, staff started reaching out via text to partners throughout Florida and as far away as Chicago and San Diego. By placing animals at other shelters, GCHS lowered its animal count to 20 within two or three days after the storm, allowing for assessment and repairs to the facility.
Shortly after landfall, GCHS began receiving animals that became lost after the storm or dropped off by families who did not have a home to keep them. GCHS took in 30 animals in five days, with more than 40 scheduled for another week.
“Gulf Coast Humane Society is honored to partner with our friends at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz in the Golden Ticket adoption promotion,” said Gary Willoughby, executive director of GCHS. “Both agencies have served the citizens of Southwest Florida for many decades and this collaboration highlights the importance of pet adoption, while supporting charitable causes and helping potential pet owners as well. We believe that pets are important members of our family and through partnerships like this one, we know dozens of families will be enjoying 2023 and beyond with an appreciative new family member.”
Sean and Becke Porter got a golden ticket to adopt Starsky, a companion to their cat Bella. “We very much look forward to this new chapter and thank you for the Golden Ticket!” Steve said.
Since 2019, the firm has proudly supported and donated 3,670 pounds of dog and cat food, and treats, to Gulf Coast Humane Society. The donations help support the Pet Food 4 Furever Families and supply food for people fostering shelter pets.
GCHS is a non-profit, no-kill animal welfare organization that does not receive any federal, state or county funding or funding from the Humane Society of the United States. To provide humane care, refuge, medical care and facilitate adoptive homes, GCHS relies on donations, grants, bequests and fundraising events to keep pets until they find a forever home.
The Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz adoptions are made possible with “Golden Tickets” that are distributed at events hosted by the firm and the Humane Society to people wishing to give cats and dogs at the shelter “furever” homes.
Visit Facebook.com/GoldsteinBuckley/events to find events offering a “Golden Ticket” for a free or reduced-price adoption.
To support the GCHS financially to support rebuilding the facilities, visit GulfCoastHumaneSociety.org/donate/
Kathy Montgomery has been writing for more than 30 years about Southwest Florida and the interesting people who live in the region.