AVMA Honors Syndicated Columnist and Radio Host, Steve Dale, With Top Humane Award

Schaumburg, IL — American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) will honor Steve Dale, locally based, but nationally syndicated radio host and newspaper columnist, as the 2002 recipient of the AVMA Humane Award.

The AVMA Humane Award is the only AVMA award presented to a non-veterinarian. It recognizes exceptional compassion for animal welfare and humane efforts on behalf of animals.

As a syndicated columnist and radio host, Dale touches the lives of millions of pet owners every day. His bi-weekly syndicated column, “My Pet World,” is featured in more than 100 newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune, The Detroit Free Press and The Atlanta Journal and Constitution. “Pet Central,” his weekly radio show is broadcast locally in Chicago and “Animal Planet Radio” and “The Pet News” air across the country. He reaches millions of listeners.

His messages are compelling as he tackles tough issues and gets results. Because of Mr. Dale, “pet dumps”-trash chute-type drop off facilities for unwanted pets-were closed in one community. When a Chicago alderman announced plans to introduce legislation with breed-specific language after two dog-bite fatalities, Mr. Dale invited her on his radio program to hear the issues and concerns of pet owners. In addition, he worked with legislators and animal experts to write non-specific breed legislation. The Chicago Animal Control Act is now a legislation model for cities around the country.

Most recently, he was the first reporter to cover the importance of dogs in the recovery efforts after September 11 and in animal-assisted therapy to help rescue workers and the victims’ families. As a result of his work, the Red Cross is considering animal-assisted therapy response teams as part of its disaster relief efforts.

A champion of animal welfare, Mr. Dale focuses on humane, accurate and scientific information to enhance pets’ lives and create better pet owners. He has received many awards, including Syndicated Newspaper Columnist of the Year by Editor and Publisher. Active in several animal-oriented organizations, Mr. Dale is also a director of the Chenny Troupe, an animal-assisted therapy organization helping the physically and emotionally challenged.

“Steve’s efforts to accurately and professionally communicate animal health-care needs is truly appreciated by the AVMA, its members and the pet owners they serve,” said Dr. James Brandt, President of the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Steve is the only the 17th person to receive this honor. Others have included: Roger Caras, Betty White, and many unsung heros who work tirelessly for the humane treatment of animals. Among the volumes of letters the AVMA received endorsing Steve, Chicago veterinarian, Dr. Sheldon Rubin said, “”Steve has all of the qualities that define the word humane as they relate to both man and animals, he is kind, tender, merciful, and considerate.””

Steve will receive the award (a Tiffany sculpture and $500 monetary prize) at a special general session, this Saturday, July 13 at the AVMA Annual Meeting held in Nashville, Tennessee.

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