Be the Change You Seek for Animals

03/07/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Michael Markarian Chief Program & Policy Officer, The Humane Society of the United States

If you are a reader of this blog, or a subscriber to the HSUS or HSLF email lists, you are already someone who takes action on urgent animal protection issues. But if you want to get even more involved, there's no substitute for joining your fellow animal advocates in person to celebrate the
victories and work together to confront the challenges ahead.

I wrote last week about our Humane Lobby Day events coming up in 41 states, and I hope you will travel to your own state capitol to participate. There are also several national conferences and events that occur just once a year, and represent the premier gatherings for animal protection advocates and professionals around the country. I hope you will mark your calendars and not miss out on these unique opportunities to join thousands of animal lovers in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Washington,
D.C. -- as you brush up on the basics, learn the latest in cutting-edge strategies to take back to your community, and are inspired to make a difference.

TAFA_HSUS_Logo_4C_smTaking Action for Animals: To be held July 24-27 in the Washington, D.C. area, TAFA is the largest national conference for the animal advocacy movement. Last year, more than 1,000 people attended our training workshops, plenary sessions, large exhibit hall, Lobby Day on Capitol Hill, cooking demonstration, rally to stop puppy mills, and much more. This year's theme is "The Art of the Possible: Change Animals Can Believe In." You'll learn how to plan effective campaigns, walk the halls of Congress to lobby your federal legislators on animal protection issues, and hear from speakers such as HSUS president and CEO Wayne Pacelle, comedian and author Carol Leifer, and Colorado State University professor and bioethicist Dr. Bernard Rollin. Registration opens today for TAFA 2009, so you can plan now and take advantage of the early discount rate. Unlike other conferences that charge you extra for every meal, the TAFA registration cost of $140 includes two lunches, a banquet dinner, food and drinks at a welcome reception, and other snacks between workshops.

Animal Care Expo:
The world's largest educational conference for the animal care, control, rescue, and emergency services fields will be held April 6-9 at Bally's in Las Vegas. Animal Care Expo is the must-attend event for animal sheltering professionals and anyone in the hands-on animal care community, offering 48 professional development workshops, eight intensive daylong certificate courses, a huge exhibit hall with more than 175 booths, and endless networking opportunities. This year's Expo features an inspiring welcome address from Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, international bestselling author of When Elephants Weep, Dogs Never Lie About Love, and The Nine Emotional Lives of Cats -- launching his newly released book, The Face on Your Plate: The Truth about Food. At just $175, you won't find better value for your money than Animal Care Expo 2009.

Genesis Awards: The HSUS's 23rd Annual Genesis Awards, to be held on March 28 at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, pays tribute to the major news and entertainment media for producing outstanding works in television, film, print, and the arts which raise public understanding of animal issues. The awards are bestowed by a host of celebrity presenters, and the star-studded ceremony draws representatives from the media, entertainment, social, business, and humane communities. Ticket prices start at $350 each for general seats, and
table prices start at $3,500 for a table of 10.

Georgetown Animal Law Conference:
For the first time this year, The HSUS and Georgetown University Law Center are presenting a conference on animal law -- "From the Horse's Mouth: Firsthand Perspectives on Animals, Law, and Policy in the United States." Join experts in the field of animal law for a series of discussions among key elected officials, law enforcement officers, agency officials, veterinarians, economists, and state and federal judges to explore how professionals outside the field of animal law address legal issues affecting animals in everyday practice. The daylong conference will be held on March 27 at the Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C.