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International Award Given to Colorado State Animal Ethics Expert
Dr. Bernard Rollin, a Colorado State University Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and University Bioethicist, was awarded the prestigious Henry Spira Award by the Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing. Dr. Rollin, long recognized as one of the world's foremost experts in animal ethics and bioethics, accepted the award Aug. 22, in Berlin, Germany.
In the mid-1970s, Dr. Rollin, who studied at the University of Edinburgh and Columbia University, began to examine ethical issues raised by animal use in research, such as animal pain and consciousness and the moral status of animals in society. Since then, he has published 14 books and more than 300 research papers on general philosophy, genetic engineering, farm animal welfare and animal consciousness and pain. Working with a number of Colorado State veterinarians, he devised legislation that became federal law in 1985 that regulates the veterinary and scientific treatment of animals. He was among the first to pioneer college courses for scientists and veterinarians related to animal bioethics.
Dr. Rollin is only the third person in the world to be presented with the Henry Spira Award. The award was established in 1999 to honor the memory of Henry Spira, an animal rights pioneer whose campaign for the use of alternatives to testing products on animals led to the founding of the Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing.
"Dr. Rollin has been at the leading edge of quite literally changing the way the world views the subject of animal ethics," said Colorado State University Provost and Senior Vice President Tony Frank. "Colorado State University has been extraordinarily fortunate to benefit from his contributions to our faculty, students and institutional reputation. As a popular professor who teaches in three departments, Dr. Rollin provides Colorado State researchers and students with thought-provoking information and excellent ethical resources on which to build their future."
Dr. Rollin taught the world's first course in veterinary medicine ethics at Colorado State, where the course has been a required part of veterinary curricula since 1978. He is credited as a pioneer in reforming animal use in teaching surgery and laboratory exercises in veterinary colleges. In addition, Dr. Rollin serves as an animal research and farm animal welfare issues consultant with various government, regulatory and research agencies around the world, and he has testified before Congress on animal experimentation issues.
Dr. Rollin works with and lectures to a variety of groups including animal researchers, animal rights groups, farmers and ranchers, legislators and others, and is recognized as a leader in working with industries on a variety of issues. Dr. Rollin also is a founder and board member of Optibrand, a Fort Collins company specializing in animal identification and trace-back.