HARRISBURG, Pa. — Anne Doolin, whose compassion for animals and people in peril has moved her to rescue and foster thousands of pets and provide meals and services for so many in need, has been named the 2017 January Davies Humanitarian Award winner presented by the U.S. Harness Writers Association (USHWA).
The award was created in 2008 by USHWA member Callie Davies-Gooch in memory of her daughter to recognize contributions beyond harness racing.
Doolin, whose work in harness racing began as publicist at the Meadowlands in 1988, has always been a staunch advocate for animals, from racehorses to stray dogs and feral cats. In the last 10 years she has transitioned into an important cog in a large network of dog and cat fosters, rescues and shelters.
Now a resident of Lexington, Ky., Doolin, who after leaving the Meadowlands later worked in publicity and marketing positions at Scioto Downs in Columbus, Ohio, and The Red Mile in Lexington, seemingly works 24 hours, seven days a week, making sure the homeless have food and shelter, and that dogs and cats can be placed in caring homes. Doolin was also a sought after member of the Breeders Crown and Hambletonian Special Event teams, and still works for the Breeders Cup, writing entrant bios.
“With all the volunteer work with the homeless and animals that Anne does I believe January would very much approve of the award,” said Davies-Gooch. “January would be very proud of what Anne has done over the years in ensuring people don’t go hungry and animals are cared for. Anne’s compassion is truly admirable and remarkable.”
Doolin said she felt overwhelmed when she learned from Davies-Gooch of the award.
“This is amazing and I am floored,” said Doolin. “I thought a lot of January and to win this award makes it even more special.”
Doolin has been a foster parent to more than 1,000 dogs and cats over the years. She also helps coordinate transfers of the animals from shelters to forever homes. Despite working tirelessly in that capacity, she still finds time to check on the elderly and the homeless in the Lexington area. To help in that capacity, Doolin is currently president of Downtown People Inc.
“We are a group that feeds the homeless and under-served a home-cooked meal every Sunday in downtown Lexington,” said Doolin. “We average between 150-200 people a week, and we do this year-round. I also do some rescue work as I am transport coordinator for an average of 25 people a week out of shelters.
“The animals are also year-round. Besides the fostering, I help coordinate the transfers of mainly dogs and some cats from shelters to homes.”
Doolin will be honored at the Night of Champions, the Dan Patch Awards banquet, which will take place on Sunday, Feb. 25, at the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando, Fla.
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