Animalearn Names Humane Parent of the Year

Anne Graff (L) and Kaitlin Graff (R) with dogs Chopper (L) and Caicos (R)
Jenkintown, PA - Animalearn is pleased to announce that the recipient of its 2011 Humane Parent of the Year Award is Anne Graff, a dedicated mother and animal advocate living in Lexington, Kentucky. Graff was selected this year because of her work to educate district officials and teachers about dissection alternatives and her dedication to help incorporate them into the curriculum at Henry Clay High School.

Graff, an animal lover who resides in Lexington with her family and several cats, dogs, and horses, first became involved with this issue when she learned that a human anatomy and physiology course offered at her child’s school included five weeks of cat dissections. Anne’s daughter Kaitlin, who is also opposed to dissection for ethical reasons, prompted her to take action.

“Animalearn was the first organization I contacted when researching dissection alternatives.” said Graff. “They provided me educational materials that I could present to teachers and administrators, and also connected me with teachers who provided encouragement and stories of their success which inspired and kept me moving forward.”

Daughter Kaitlin, now a college student, is proud of her mom’s work. “Through her efforts, she is providing a voice to students who are uncomfortable with dissection but do not feel they have any other options and do not feel empowered to assert their beliefs.”

Over the past year, Graff has voiced her concerns about dissection and has met with several key high school administrators to help them understand that students can learn anatomy using hands-on models and computer software programs. She has also shown them that alternatives can provide an equally effective and more humane learning experience, as well as offer a significant cost savings for the school district. Due to Anne’s persistence, administrators at Henry Clay have developed an interest in dissection alternatives.

Associate Director of Animalearn, Nicole Green, says parents can and do have the power to make an influence at their children’s schools. “Time and time again, I have seen parents become significant change makers not only for their children but also for animals used in education,” said Green. “We are proud to honor Anne because she has taken those courageous steps to educate her local school about the abundance of humane science teaching tools that students can use in place of animal specimens.”

Graff is keenly aware that her advocacy not only impacts students now, but also those in the future, and this recognition is motivation to continue her work. “I am very honored to receive the Animalearn Humane Parent of the Year Award.”

As part of the award, Ms. Graff will be entitled to select some high quality alternatives worth approximately $1,000 for her local school district, where they will be useful for many years to come.

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Animalearn, the educational division of the American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS), works with educators, students, and others to achieve quality humane science education without harmful use of animals. Visit or call (800)729-2287.


Nicole Green, 215-887-0816,
Ending the Use of Animals in Science