Colorado's Wild Animal Sanctuary Recognized as one of Top 5 Animal & Wildlife Welfare Organizations in the World

Prestigious United Nations Foundation and StayClassy Honor The Sanctuary at Award Show

May 05, 2014, 16:10 ET from The Wild Animal Sanctuary

KEENESBURG, Colo., May 5, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Wild Animal Sanctuary, the nation's premiere refuge for rescued exotic, large carnivores, was selected as one of the top five nonprofits for animal and wildlife welfare in the world at the 5th Annual "CLASSY" Awards.

"Being recognized for our cutting edge features such as free-roaming habitats and uniquely elevated walkways, which allows for public view of these beautiful creatures in a way that preserves the sanctity of the animal's territory, is truly what's important for preservation and education," said Pat Craig, Founder and CEO of The Wild Animal Sanctuary.

The CLASSY Awards is the largest social impact awards ceremony in the United States, highlighting the greatest champions of social progress.  More than 3,600 nonprofits competed for the top five spots across 25 different recognition categories.  A review panel comprised of over 100 cause-specific experts evaluated each organization and recommended candidates for the awards. 

"Colorado is known for its pioneering spirit and relentless determination – two qualities the Wild Animal Sanctuary exudes through their trailblazing work to create one of the nation and world's most respected sanctuaries," said Governor John Hickenlooper.  "I can't think of a more deserving organization to be recognized with this distinguished honor."

The Wild Animal Sanctuary has gained the attention of animal rights advocates worldwide for their elevated Mile Into The Wild Walkway, which allows The Sanctuary to serve its mission of public education about the Captive Wildlife Crisis while at the same time respecting the animal's territorial instincts.

"It's our hope that others in the field will seek to understand this method which allows animals a stress-free existence after years of living in what for many have been horrid conditions. All creatures deserve this basic dignity," said Craig.

About The Sanctuary

Founded in 1980, the Wild Animal Sanctuary is the nation's oldest and largest sanctuary.  The 720-acre sanctuary is located 30 minutes outside of Denver and is home to more than 330 rescued lions, tigers, bears, wolves and other large carnivores.

To learn more about The Wild Animal Sanctuary, visit

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SOURCE The Wild Animal Sanctuary