The Drew Barrymore all-star cast feature film “Big Miracle,” Stephen Colbert's satirical “The Colbert Report,” David E. Kelley’s “Harry’s Law,” "Rock Center with Brian Williams," Discovery Channel’s “Ivory Wars,” ABC’s “Nightline,” and global pop icon Ke$ha took home the honors in major news and entertainment media categories presented at The Humane Society of the United States’ Genesis Awards Benefit Gala on Saturday, March 23, at The Beverly Hilton, Beverly Hills, Calif.
“Dancing with the Stars” popular judge and passionate animal advocate Carrie Ann Inaba hosted the ceremony.
Universal Picture’s “Big Miracle” received best Feature Film for its inspiring true story about international efforts to save a family of trapped whales, Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” picked up the Sid Caesar Comedy Award for its biting satire of a Congressman’s defense of dogfighting, and NBC’s “Harry’s Law” won the Dramatic Series Award for a thought-provoking storyline questioning the ethics of keeping primates in captivity. Best TV Documentary went to Discovery’s “Ivory Wars” for a penetrating look at the alarming escalation in elephant ivory trade, and the best TV Newsmagazine Award was shared between NBC’s “Rock Center with Brian Williams,” for in-depth reporting on endangered orangutans and rhinos and the issue of chimps in research, and ABC’s “Nightline” for an investigation into the shocking abuse of Tennessee Walking Horses by one of the industry’s best-known trainers.
Following in the footsteps of Genesis Award alumni Sir Paul McCartney, Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi, Hayden Panettiere, Kristin Davis and Ian Somerhalder, platinum-selling recording artist Ke$ha received HSUS’ coveted Wyler Award for her dedication to spreading the word about multiple animal protection issues to her massive international fan base. Bestowed on a celebrity or public figure for increasing awareness of animal issues via the media, the award was given to Ke$ha in recognition of her work to spread the word about street dogs, the trophy hunting of endangered lions, shark-finning, Canada’s commercial seal slaughter, dogfighting and cruelty-free cosmetics, among many other important animal welfare concerns.
In other categories, Nat Geo Channel’s “Wild Justice” snagged best Reality Series, ABC’s "World News with Diane Sawyer" took the National News Award, “CBS This Morning” picked up best Morning Show, and Los Angeles’ “KNBC 4 News” won the Local TV News prize.
“We are so grateful to the news and entertainment media for keeping animal protection issues firmly in their view in genres as diverse as comedy programming and documentaries. Concern for the welfare of animals has universal audience appeal, and since so much of what negatively impacts animals occurs out of sight, it’s important that these issues remain in the media spotlight,” said Beverly Kaskey, senior director of HSUS’ Hollywood Outreach program and executive producer of The Genesis Awards.
Among those who attended were Carrie Ann Inaba, Ke$ha, Kaley Cuoco (Big Bang Theory), Wendie Malick (Hot in Cleveland), Constance Marie (Switched at Birth), Moby (Musician), Elaine Hendrix (Fetching), Jon Huertas (Castle), Seamus Dever (Castle), Bellamy Young (Scandal), Pauley Perrette (NCIS), Hal Sparks (Lab Rats), Michael Vartan (Hawthorne), Charlotte Ross (Glee), Vanessa Marano (Switched at Birth), Diane Warren (Songwriter), Katie Cleary (Deal or No Deal), Kimberly Elise (Bounce), Owain Yeoman (The Mentalist), Shannon Tweed (Reality Star), Laura Marano (Austin & Ally), Fiona Gubelmann (Wilfred), Lindsay Pulsipher (Justified), Sophie Tweed-Simmons (Gene Simmons: Family Jewels), Lisa Guerrero (Reporter), Tamar Geller (Dog Trainer), Leilani Munter (Nascar Driver), Nikki Boyer (Yahoo’s Daytime in No Time), Ted Lieu (CA State Senator), Jackson Galaxy (My Cat From Hell), JoAnne Worley (Comedian), Taylour Paige (Bounce), Officer Michele Budish (Wild Justice), Officer George Struble (Wild Justice), Ken Kwapis (Big Miracle), Tony Denison (Major Crimes), Dominic Scott Kay (Pirates of the Caribbean), Ana Garcia (KNBC 4), Lou Wegner (Trouble With The Curve), Sarah Whalen (Wild Justice) and many others!