The 2013 Carole Noon Award for Sanctuary Excellence was awarded to Pat Derby posthumously and to the Galt-based Performing Animal Welfare Society, the sanctuary she co-founded, on Wednesday. Derby died in February after a long battle with cancer.
The award was established by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries to honor those who dedicate themselves passionately to sanctuary animal care, and is named in honor of Carole Noon, a sanctuary pioneer and champion of chimpanzees, according to a press release.
It was presented at The Humane Society of the United States' Animal Care Expo's opening ceremonies by Michael Markarian, GFAS vice president, and chief program and policy officer of HSUS.
"Pat Derby was a remarkable champion for captive wildlife, and she knew that our movement must not only take in the cast-offs and care for them, but also advocate for policy changes and shifts in attitudes to get at the root causes of problems," Markarian said in a prepared statement. "She has inspired so many to take on this cause and stand up for captive wild animals in all settings."
Derby was a strong advocate for sanctuary standards and helped to found the Association of Sanctuaries, which was a predecessor to GFAS. GFAS has continued to build on what Derby helped to create.
Her life partner, Ed Stewart, was expected to accept the award on her behalf.