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For Immediate Release: 04/23/08

California Animal Association announces 2007 legislators of the year

Sacramento, CA — The California Animal Association (CAA) is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2007 Legislator of the Year award: Senator Sheila James Kuehl (D-23) and Assembly Member Mark DeSaulnier (D-11).

Senator Kuehl has served the state Legislature since 1994, is the first female Assembly Speaker pro tem, and the former chair of the Senate Natural Resources and Water Committee. She has vigorously advocated for environmental and animal protection issues including passage of SB 353 which allows animals to be included in protective orders in cases of domestic violence.

Assembly Member DeSaulnier has served the state Legislature since 1996, is the former mayor of Concord, CA, and has served four terms on the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors. He has pursued animal protection legislation at both the local and state levels and was instrumental in shepherding CAA’s wildlife bill, AB 1477, through the 2007 legislative session. Assembly Member DeSaulnier continues his crusade for animals in 2008, authoring CAA-sponsored legislation to protect family pets abandoned in home foreclosures.

“The people of California are fortunate to have such hard-working and dedicated advocates for animal protection issues,” says Nicole Paquette, CAA Board of Directors. “Our state truly benefits from their service.”

“The greatest honor is to be praised by the praiseworthy,” said Senator Kuehl. “The California Animal Association brings a dedicated, strong, and cohesive voice for animal protection to the Capitol and it has been a great pleasure to work with these wonderful advocates.”

“I am delighted to have been selected as the California Animal Association’s Legislator of the Year,” commented Assembly Member DeSaulnier. “It is an honor to join the company of esteemed colleagues like Senator Kuehl in fighting for humane legislation. I recognize the importance of working on animal protection and wildlife issues, and am committed to helping foster strong laws and policy in these areas.”

CAA also announces the release of its 2007 legislative scorecard, which rates legislators based on their voting record on animal issues. Legislators scoring 100% or higher include Assembly Members Loni Hancock, Paul Krekorian, Lloyd Levine, Pedro Nava, Ira Ruskin, and Lori Saldana; and Senators Ellen Corbett, Lou Correa, Sheila Kuehl, Alan Lowenthal, and Carole Migden.

The California Animal Association is a coalition of 13 state and national animal protection groups that work together to advocate statewide policies to improve the lives of animals. The organizations that comprise the California Animal Association form a unified voice on animal protection issues — giving legislators, aides, lobbyists, and agency representatives one comprehensive source to turn to for expertise and information on legislation affecting animals.

Nicole Paquette, California Animal Association, 916.622.7170, nicole@bornfreeusa.org

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