2016 Pet Hero Award Winner - Naomi Judd
Humanitarian of the Year
Most people know Naomi Judd as a country singer and humanitarian. After being diagnosed with Hepatitis C, a chronic liver disease that she contracted during her previous career as a registered nurse, her singing career was sadly cut short. Though she retired from the music industry, Ms. Judd did not retreat from the public spotlight; instead, she has devoted her fame and celebrity to build a better world for both people and animals.
Ms. Judd’s charity work is far-reaching, and includes American Humane Association, River Cities Harvest, the Saint Louis University Liver Center, M.A.D.D., Parents Television Council, Make-A-Difference Day, Women's World Peace Initiative, the National Domestic Violence Hotline, and her own July 4th Judd's Annual Food Drive to benefit families of Appalachia.
The abandonment of America’s Military working dogs on foreign soil is a stain on our country’s history. It seems unthinkable that the dogs that saved so many would either be shot of left to starve when the services started using them overseas. It is estimated that these four-legged warriors each save the lives of an estimated 150-200 servicemen and women during their careers. Judd has been a tireless advocate for returning America’s Military Working Dogs to U.S. soil when they retire. Ms. Judd accompanied American Humane Association President and CEO Dr. Robin Ganzert again and again to plead their case before members of Congress, who finally passed legislation ensuring their repatriation.
It took more than a year as an Ambassador to the American Humane Association working hand in hand with their CEO, Dr. Robin Ganzert, but Congress finally passed and President Obama signed a law featuring the AHA language, guaranteeing a ride home for all military working dogs and giving their former human handlers first right of adoption. In this way, the heroic dogs who save lives on the battlefield can continue their work on the home front, helping our brave veterans coping with PTS.
Celebrity can have a powerful impact, and Ms. Judd has been determined to use her ability to influence to benefit others. With her influence on Capitol Hill, the Canines and Childhood Cancer study received international coverage including NBC News, TIME Magazine, and hundreds of other media reports, making it more likely such therapies will become standard at children’s hospitals around the world. Ms. Judd also supported the launch of the Congressional Humane Bond Caucus, a powerful new voice promoting the value of animals in our lives and their humane treatment.
Naomi, the Pet Philanthropy Circle thanks you for your dedication and life commitment to animal welfare.
Pet Hero Awards