North Shore Animal League America to Honor Rachael Ray with President's Award for Humanitarian Excellence

(Port Washington, NY) – Daytime host and best selling author Rachael Ray will accept North Shore Animal League America's prestigious President's Award for Humanitarian Excellence at the eighth annual Lewyt Humane Awards Luncheon on Wednesday, June 3, 2009.

Ray will be honored at the Animal League event, taking place at the Garden City Hotel in Garden City, NY, for her extraordinary efforts on behalf of companion animals. North Shore Animal League America is the world's largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization, saving the lives of nearly 20,000 animals each year.

In 2008, Ray partnered with Ainsworth Pet Nutrition to develop Rachael Ray Nutrish™, a line of delicious and nutritious dog food with real meat as its first ingredient and no by-products. Ray donates all of her proceeds from the sale of Nutrish to pet charities. Through Rachael's Rescue, she is able to help charities that take care of animals who have no one else to look out for them.

"I am heartbroken by the thought of the millions of mistreated and abandoned animals taken in by shelters each year and in this depressed economy the problem may only get worse," said Ray. "I am deeply proud of the work we are able to undertake through Rachael's Rescue with our partner North Shore Animal League America and I look forward to continuing our work together helping animals in need."

Rachael's devotion to her own dog, Isaboo and her support of shelter and rescue groups have brought attention to the plight of homeless animals.

"We have greatly benefitted from Ms. Ray's attention to our mission and her willingness to offer various levels of support to our organization," said Animal League president, John Stevenson. He stated that Nutrish and Rachael's Rescue have given generously to the Animal League on several occasions, including supporting its annual fundraising Gala as well as sponsoring Animal League spokesperson Beth Ostrosky Stern as she ran for the animals last fall in the New York City Marathon.

"Rachael Ray is a powerful voice in the media and someone of great influence among the American public. She demonstrates the deepest compassion when it comes to the needs of homeless animals. We are proud and grateful to have her support," commented Stevenson.

For ticket information, contact Denise Zayas at 516-883-7900 ext. 821 or visit the luncheon website.