KHS founder from Silverdale turns 100

Almeda Harris  Wilson receives a scrapbook from KHS staff. - Contributed Photo
Almeda Harris Wilson receives a scrapbook from KHS staff.
— image credit: Contributed Photo

Kitsap Humane Society recently helped one of their founders, Almeda Harris Wilson, celebrate her 100th birthday.

Wilson, who played a significant role in founding Kitsap Humane Society, had a celebration at home with family and close friends, including Kathy Mahan, the daughter of Kitsap Humane Society’s founding board member William Mahan; Dr. Jennifer Stonequist, KHS’ director of shelter medicine and Eric Stevens, KHS’ executive director.

“More than anyone in our county, Almeda has been responsible for saving thousands of animals’ lives by establishing Kitsap Humane Society in the early 1960s,” said Stevens. “Almeda told me she was absolutely determined to create a place for homeless animals after a neighbor found an injured dog and took it to the dog pound, only to find there was nobody there on the weekends in the 1960s.

“When her neighbor couldn’t figure out what to do with the dog, he called the police, and they sent an officer out and shot the dog. After that, Almeda went to city hall and complained to the mayor, and he said, ‘why don’t you get a humane society started?’ And, so she did.’”

Among those attending was Wilson’s grandson, Jason Harris.

“My grandmother treasures her part in the formation of Kitsap Humane Society and she talks of it often with happiness and a small bit of pride,” said Harris. “She has always loved animals and continues to care for them to this very day by giving stray cats food, water and a place to stay when in need.”

Kitsap Humane Society invited its Facebook followers to help wish Wilson a happy birthday. Many adopters, volunteers and donors posted good wishes, adoption stories and photos saying how their pets have benefited their lives and KHS published the posts in a scrapbook as a birthday gift for Wilson.

“It has made me so happy to know that Kitsap Humane Society exists and does such fine works in order to care for and prevent the suffering of animals, and that so many deserving animals have found great homes with Kitsap families,” Wilson said.

Kitsap Humane Society is a private, non-profit charitable organization that has been caring for animals in need since 1908.

KHS’ admits more than 4,200 animals per year and has a 94 percent lives saved rate, one of the highest in the U.S. For more information, visit


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