I established the Gregory J. Reiter Memorial Fund in early 2016, to continue promoting animal rescue, veganism, and wildlife conservation – three causes that were a particular passion for Greg and me.
This October 16 will be the second anniversary of Greg’s death, followed by our 25th wedding anniversary on October 24. As these anniversaries approach, I would be very grateful for any tax-deductible donation of $10 or more to the Fund.
Here are some Q3 2017 highlights of organizations and projects the Greg Fund has been supporting:
PETA’s Norfolk, Virginia-based Community Animal Project (CAP) was very dear to Greg and me, and has been the single largest recipient of grants from the Greg Fund. This season, CAP team members with emergency training and experience – along with a staffer from the Virginia Beach SPCA, recipient of this year’s PETA Gregory J. Reiter Animal Rescue Award – have been on the ground in Texas and Puerto Rico rescuing animals after Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Maria.
PETA’s horse racing campaign, which rescued my newest adoptee Charlie, is also a major recipient of Greg Fund grants. In August, this campaign introduced a new technology that allows bettors to donate a portion of their winnings to the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) – with the goal of supporting racehorses when they are retired from the industry, rather than selling them for slaughter in Canada or Mexico.
PETA’s legal department, also a recipient of Greg Fund grants, continued to receive recognition for its precedent-setting work. On September 19, General Counsel Jeff Kerr was presented with a DCA Live 2017 Trending 40 Corporate Counsel Award as one of the top in-house lawyers in Washington-area corporations and nonprofits; and on September 21 The Times of London named him Lawyer of the Week.
Animal Place, a California farm animal sanctuary, inspired Greg and me to become vegetarian and ultimately vegan after a visit in the year 2000.
The Greg Fund began providing substantial support to the Animal Place Food for Thought program in spring 2016, helping develop informational resources to aid North American environmental and wildlife organizations in implementing vegan or vegetarian menu policies. In spring 2017, the Fund continued this support by providing additional funding for recognition grants to organizations newly participating in the Food for Thought program. The program has been so successful that the Fund made an additional grant in Q3 2017.
The following organizations have newly adopted vegan or vegetarian menu policies, endorsed the Food for Thought program, and received grants in Q3 2017:
- Global Wildlife Conservation (Austin, TX)
- North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance (San Francisco, CA)
- Our Children’s Earth Foundation (Napa, CA and Palm Beach, FL)
- Second Chance Wildlife Center (Gaithersburg, MD)
- Second Chance Wildlife Rehabilitation (Pueblo, CO)
- Utah Interfaith Power and Light (Salt Lake City, UT)
This dynamic new organization has had several fresh successes during Q3 2017 in its work to stop taxpayer-funded animal experiments – and as a result, the Greg Fund has made an additional grant to further support its work. Just two examples from the past week:
- As reported in the Washington Post on September 25, White Coat Waste worked with Dr. Jane Goodall to successfully persuade the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to suspend experiments on the effects of nicotine in monkeys.
- As reported in a September 25 national USA Today cover story, White Coat Waste has been campaigning with great success to end cruel and wasteful Veterans Administration experiments on dogs. In July, White Coat Waste worked with the US Congress to unanimously pass a bipartisan amendment to defund V.A. dog experiments. Now, White Coat Waste is working with the US Congress on the bipartisan Preventing Unkind and Painful Procedures and Experiments on Respected Species (PUPPERS) Act, to make the defunding permanent.
I have continued to support this sanctuary, long a favorite of Greg’s and mine, through Greg Fund grants and with my volunteer time. This quarter, the sanctuary has been busy admitting newly rescued animals. These include a piglet named Ellie who fell off a truck on the Washington DC beltway, plus four goats and four sheep who were among those freed from a truck in Pennsylvania after its drivers led police on a 34-mile high-speed chase.
If you are in the greater Washington DC area, and especially if you have kids, do consider coming to Poplar Spring’s annual Open House today, Sunday October 1, 1-5 pm; and its Thank the Turkeys event Saturday November 18, 12-4 pm.
Other organizations to which I have contributed through the Greg Fund include:
Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM), whose accomplishments this quarter included ending a Cleveland Clinic program that formerly used and killed live dogs for emergency medicine resident training.
Compassion Over Killing, whose accomplishments this quarter included the sentencing of ten Tyson chicken farm workers for animal cruelty. More details in this Washington Post article. The organization also held its DC Veg Fest on September 2 – an annual event that Greg and I attended several times, and which continues to be a favorite of mine.
Good Food Institute, whose accomplishments this quarter included helping to raise venture capital for clean meat company Memphis Meats, and introducing a course about the meat alternatives industry at UC Berkeley (Greg’s and my alma mater).
Last but not least, I am deeply grateful to those who have already made 2017 donations to this Fund in Greg’s memory. In addition to anonymous donors, the following generous individuals have authorized me to acknowledge their contributions by name:
- Bledsoe, Chris
- Chandna, Alka
- Curro, Jeana
- Friedrich, Bruce
- Garvey, Ann and Tony
- Gilmore, Shannon M.
- Gordon, Charles
- Jablansky, Joni and Paul
- Jones, Stephanie
- Kirchenbauer, Lisa
- Kobor, Adam and Krisztina
- Marcus, Syd
- McWalters, James P
- Meeker, Dana
- Morris, Greta Nance
- Nachminovitch, Daphna
- Nardacci, Michael and Jennifer
- Wason, Betsy
- Woods, Lisa
I also wish to thank the Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation and Charles Schwab Foundation for contributing to the Greg Fund through their employee donation matching programs.
~ Alysoun Mahoney