SYDNEY, N.S. - The Nova Scotia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has appointed a new board to give advice on operations at its troubled shelter in Sydney.

The shelter has been the subject of an ongoing legal dispute over the standard of care.

SPCA executive director Kristin Williams said 20 candidates were interviewed for board positions before the six were appointed.

"We have professionals from all different backgrounds including education and finance . . . and I think together this group presents a strong team and a strong set of resources for the shelter to pull upon," said Williams.

Sydney area businesswoman Lori MacMullin has been installed as the new board president and Cape Breton University professor Dan Yakimchuk will serve as vice-president.

The new six-member board will work in an advisory capacity until the legal case is completed.

"Our desire is that this board becomes the official board of the Cape Breton branch of the SPCA," Williams said.

The Supreme Court of Nova Scotia recently granted the society interim control of the shelter in the ongoing dispute with local officials.

Williams said work is continuing to upgrade the shelter, including painting, furnace repairs and electrical work.

She said the new board will hold its first meeting next week.

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