LOS ANGELES—The lovely home of a well-known Hollywood philanthropist provided the perfect setting for the presentation of the prestigious 2012 Lord Houghton Award for outstanding service to animal welfare. Animal Defenders International (ADI) was honored to present this year’s award to Bob Barker, philanthropist and Emmy-award winning host of The Price is Right.
The nomination and presentation of the yearly award is shared between four of Europe’s largest animal protection groups. The groups rotate the presentation, with one group presenting the award every four years.
Barker is a television icon and dedicated animal lover. His support of animal rights has been ongoing and far-reaching. Barker’s philanthropy is of a global scale and has saved millions of animals. The Sea Shepherd ship the “Bob Barker” is one result of his generosity; the elephant habitat at the Performing Animal Welfare Society’s (PAWS) ARK 2000 Sanctuary in San Andreas, Calif., is another.
In addition, Barker enabled ADI’s Operation Lion Ark to not only remove all circus animals from Bolivia, but it also enabled ADI to build shelters and bring 29 lions to sanctuaries in the United States. Thanks to his support and the tireless work of ADI, circuses are now banned in Bolivia.
Barker has also provided an endowment that enables students at top law schools to study animal rights law and animal protection issues. He has spent 30 years helping to inform the public on the plight of animals in the United States and across the globe.
Jorja Fox, actress on CSI, received the ADI Animal Champion Award for her work to protect animals used in the entertainment business.
ADI actively campaigns across the globe for animal rights, animal rescue, and educating the public on animal and environmental issues. They provide technical advice to governments, securing progressive animal protection legislation, drafting regulations, and rescuing animals in distress.
Lion Ark Night was the theme of the fundraising and award event, highlighting ADI’s Operation Lion Ark. A feature-length documentary of the rescue is being made, and the evening provided a sneak preview of the film.
Vegan hors d’oeuvres were served, and the atmosphere of the evening was cordial and relaxed with a touch of humor on the part of the award recipients. A silent auction to support the fundraising gala for ADI was filled with offerings that drew people outside onto one of the patios overlooking Hollywood.
Celebrity attendance included Kate Linder from The Young and the Restless, Mindy Sterling from Austin Powers, Corey Feldman from The Lost Boys, Alison Eastwood, Karen Black, Eric Roberts, James Reynolds from Days of Our Lives, Anne-Marie Johnson, Carrie Ann Inaba from Dancing with the Stars, and Elisabetta Canalis also from Dancing with the Stars.
The Lord Houghton Award was created in honor of Lord Houghton of Sowerby (1898–1996). Lord Houghton was a member of the UK House of Lords and had a prominent role in British politics. Animal welfare was a large focus of his politics, and he actively campaigned for legislation for animal welfare.
The award was first presented in 1982. Recipients have ranged from quiet, dedicated volunteers who are passionate in their work for animals, to ministers, legislators, scientists, and well-known international personages.
Previous award recipients include Linda McCartney; Sheila and David Siddle, co-founders of the world-renowned Chimfunshi Chimpanzee Sanctuary; Pat Derby and Ed Stewart, co-founders of the PAWS’s ARK 2000 sanctuary for elephants and other animals; and Vicki and Tony Moore, co-founders of Fight Against Animal Cruelty in Europe, known for their work exposing cruel fiestas in Spain.
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