The SPCA Hall of Fame 2019
SPCA is extremely fortunate to have the support of many dedicated animal lovers who give selflessly to help the animals which come into our care.
This year, six recipients are being honoured in the SPCA Hall of Fame for their outstanding contribution; Albie Shepherd, Anne Shepherd, Gwen Garrick (posthumous), Jan Baker, Marjorie Orr and Ron Guyton.
Over the past decade, Albie has been a devoted volunteer and foster parent at SPCA Auckland clocking up more than 8,600 hours helping the canine team. Over that period (which is the equivalent to 16 hours per week over a ten-year period!) Albie has cared for thousands of dogs. He truly lives SPCA’s values and has dedicated much of his life to helping animals in need.
Albie and his wife Anne have fostered more than 130 animals including dogs, adult cats, and litters of kittens. The staff at SPCA Mangere centre say that Albie’s reliability is what they depend on during their busy season, and they absolutely love that he comes into the centre over Christmas dressed as Santa, ringing a bell and handing out lollies – which has become something of a yearly tradition!
On top of all of this, Albie is also a Legacy donor and has made numerous contributions to SPCA over the years.
Anne has been a dedicated volunteer at SPCA Auckland since 2009, and for close to a decade she has been a Volunteer Supervisor, which sees her organising a roster of 10-15 volunteers. Her exceptional volunteer team is a reflection of her skill and passion for SPCA.
Along with her husband Albie, Anne fosters SPCA animals in their home. Anne puts in countless hours and love to help each animal thrive, and the couple often offer up multiple rooms in their home to ensure they are able to help as many animals as possible. Staff say the Shepherd’s foster animals always return to SPCA with friendly and affectionate dispositions, a credit to the time and care they have received.
Anne also volunteers her time at Bird Rescue, and is always excited to share her stories with SPCA staff and volunteers.
Gwen Garrick (posthumous)
Gwen dedicated 40 years of her life to the welfare of those who cannot speak for themselves, alongside her husband Bert Garrick (former Waikato SPCA Branch president for a decade in the 60’s and 70’s).
From the early 1960’s until her death in 2002, Gwen was active at Waikato SPCA and went on to work at national level, first becoming a committee member and later becoming secretary at Waikato SPCA. When she was made Chairperson, she advocated on many animal welfare issues that were common practice at the time. Gwen spent time helping to gather evidence for prosecutions, and she also helped to write animal welfare bylaws in the Waikato. She was successful in introducing the first Inspectors’ warrants for women, and together with Bet Cousins - the first female Inspector- brought about a number of successful prosecutions.
Gwen was made an Hon. Member of SPCA and received Recognition of Service to the Wellington SPCA, the SPCA Gold Medal of Merit for outstanding service to animal welfare, and a QSM for services to animal welfare.
Jan has been a canine foster parent at SPCA in Mangere centre for 17 years, fostering more than 380 puppies in the last seven years alone! She is also an incredible SPCA supporter, Legacy donor, honorary life member, and special donor.
Over the years, Jan has adopted more than 30 animals from SPCA, most of which were farm animals with medical or behavioural problems.
In 2014, Jan created a facility solely for SPCA foster animals on her country property which is still being used today and allows puppies to relax and feel at home. Jan has put countless hours into her SPCA foster puppies, as has her own dogs who are very attentive to the puppies, teaching them basic manners and how to socialise. Jan delights in documenting her foster puppies’ experiences, and when her puppies are returned to the centre, she creates picture boards that include blurbs about each animal, ensuring SPCA staff are able to find the best homes for that puppy.
Staff have described Jan as irreplaceable, incredibly caring and passionate.
Marjorie has been a passionate animal advocate for more than 35 years, spending countless hours improving the lives and wellbeing of animals which come into SPCA’s care.
Since 1985, Marjorie has been involved in a long list of roles at Otago SPCA. She became a warranted Animal Welfare Inspector from 2002-10 and helped in the hospital from 2013-2016 after renewing her veterinary practice certificate.
Marjorie has been actively involved in creating and carrying out education activities for SPCA, preparing summaries for the Otago CEO and has even organised a team of ‘Cuddle Fix’ volunteers to make regular visits to the Otago University to help students de-stress.
Ron has been an invaluable volunteer at SPCA Nelson Centre for approximately 14 years, recently celebrating his 90th birthday. Ron began volunteering in the cattery area and helped take care of farm animals including sheep, goats, chickens, ducks, and even the resident alpaca, Zito. The volunteers loved working with Rob and he loved helping to train them up. The SPCA Nelson team sorely miss Ron as he retired from volunteering after his 90th birthday, and when he recently visited, it was quite an emotional moment for everyone. Staff describe him as, ‘one of a kind’, and said that his dedication and commitment to SPCA was outstanding.