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Humane Society of the United States presents 23rd Genesis Awards

March 30, 2009 |  6:33 pm

Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi at the 23rd Annual Genesis Awards

The 23rd annual Genesis Awards, presented by the Humane Society of the United States to honor film, television and print media efforts to raise awareness of animal issues, was held Saturday in Beverly Hills.  Our colleague Lee Margulies has the details of the event's big winners:

"Bolt," the story of a pampered, sheltered dog suddenly thrust into the outside world on its own, was cited in part for its depiction of "the sad truth about unwanted and abandoned cats and dogs," while "The Simpsons" won for its episode "Apocalypse Cow," which the Humane Society praised for "telling it like it really is about the fate of 4-H club animals and the bleak, inhumane nature of factory farming."

Among other winners announced Saturday were three ABC programs: "Grey’s Anatomy," for an episode that dealt with the ethical issues of using live animals in medical research; "20/20," for an episode about elephants in captivity; and "World News Tonight" for a variety of reports on animal issues.

"The Oprah Winfrey Show" was honored for shedding light on what the Humane Society described as "the cruelty of puppy mills, dog fighting and factory farming," while another daytime talk show host, Ellen DeGeneres, was cited along with her partner, actress Portia de Rossi, for their successful campaign efforts on behalf of California's Proposition 2, last year's ballot initiative that mandates more room in pens and cages for egg-laying hens, veal calves and pregnant sows.

DeGeneres and de Rossi received the Wyler Award, named for Gretchen Wyler, the late Broadway star and animal activist who founded the Genesis Awards.

--Lindsay Barnett

Photo: Portia de Rossi and Ellen DeGeneres accepting their award.  Credit: Dan Steinberg/Associated Press.

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