October 7, 2019 — American Humane, the country’s first national humane organization, which saves, protects, and improves the lives of some one billion animals every year, awarded its prestigious National Humanitarian Medal to renowned zoologist, veterinarian and conservationist Christopher Dold, DVM.
Dr. Dold has been working for decades to care for, rescue, and assist in the conservation of the world’s animals. After earning a Bachelor of Science degree in zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his doctorate in veterinary medicine from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine, Dold worked with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and a nonprofit he co-founded to help rescued stranded Hawaiian Monk Seals and other marine mammals including seals, sea lions, otters and dolphins. He also worked to provide surgical services and medical and preventive care to companion animals in a veterinary hospital.
He went to become a National Academies-National Research Council Postdoctoral Clinical Fellow with the U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program and completed a University of California-Davis Internship in Marine Mammal Medicine and Pathology at The Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito, where he provided veterinary care to animals needing rehabilitation. In 2005, he joined the team at SeaWorld, where he eventually became chief zoological officer, responsible for the care of more than 80,000 animals representing 350 species at seven different zoological parks. Dold also leads the organization’s rescue and rehabilitation program, which has saved and returned to the wild more than 36,000 animals, as well as its science, research, conservation and education programs.
Dr. Dold is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, European Association for Aquatic Mammals, and the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians. He serves as the Science Committee Chair for the Scientific Advisory Committee of The Shedd Aquarium’s Microbiome Project and is serving or has served on the boards of directors for the Association of Zoos & Aquariums; Canine Companions for Independence South East Chapter Region; Hubbs SeaWorld Research Institute; One Blood (Florida Blood Centers) Regional Board of Reference; Hope Charter School; and the International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine. Animals are a family affair for Chris, his wife and children, who share their home with three dogs, a cat, and a parrot.
“Through his work, Chris Dold has not only helped rescue and care for hundreds of thousands of animals, but has inspired millions of people to become interested in protecting the remarkable and endangered species who share our Earth at a time when the world’s species are facing what scientists are terming a Sixth Mass Extinction,” said Robin Ganzert, PhD, president and CEO of American Humane. “For his outstanding work to help preserve the rich legacy of life on Earth for future generations, American Humane is honored to recognize him with our National Humanitarian Medal.”
“I feel truly honored to receive American Humane’s National Humanitarian Medal,” said Dr. Dold. “Through my career and life, I have had the incredible fortune and opportunity to work with and for animals, and people who care for animals. The work we’ve done together has always been about making a better world. I am humbled by this award.”
American Humane is the country’s first national humane organization, founded in 1877. To learn more, please visit www.americanhumane.org.