It is a great honor for me to receive this Lifetime Achievement Award from the Women's International Film & Television Showcase, it only saddens me that my husband, Tony Blanco, cannot be with me to share this moment, as he would be as honored and proud as I am.
I congratulate you on the beautiful initiative to support and celebrate the dedication, passion and integrity of women in film everywhere, and I thank TheWIFTS Board for considering me worthy of this precious award. I am very sorry to be unable to receive it in person. Thank you!
THE WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL
FILM & TELEVISION SHOWCASE
DECEMBER 10TH 2017
Passion & Integrity
Commerce & Creativity
Equality Not Hierarchy
Jan Creamer – United Kingdom
Otilia Animal Advocacy Award
President & Co-Founder
Animal Defenders International
Jan Creamer is the recipient of TheWIFTS Foundation Otilia Animal Advocacy Award 2017. Her leadership of Animal Defenders International and its remarkable achievements around the world is a testament of her and ADI’s indefatigable commitment to the welfare of animals. ADI’s award-winning feature documentary Lions Ark is the story of the rescue of all animals from Bolivia’s circuses.
Jan Creamer is President and Co-Founder of Animal Defenders International, based in the US, the UK and Colombia (founded 1990). She is also the Chief Executive of the National Anti-Vivisection Society (NAVS), founded in 1875, which is the world’s first body to challenge the use of animals in research and continues to lead the campaign today. Creamer also heads the Lord Downing Fund for Humane Research which awards grants to scientists for advanced medical and scientific research that does not use animals, a post she has held since 1986.
The life-changing moment in Jan Creamer’s life as an advocate for animals was in 1975, when she joined a local NAVS, and an organizer handed her a leaflet in the street, following the exposé of Imperial Chemical Industries(ICI)’s smoking tests on beagle dogs. Jan started work for the NAVS as a magazine editor and regional campaigns officer, speaking to schools, in the media and public events, a post she held in1982.
Jan Creamer, is also a writer and co-producer of the multi-award-winning feature documentary Lions Ark about the rescue of all animals from Bolivia’s circuses, and a number of short films on animal protection. She has worked undercover and filmed and photographed inside laboratories, animal dealers, factory farms, slaughterhouses, circuses and other establishments all over the world. Using false identities, hidden cameras and elaborate cover stories, she has tricked her way into an international laboratory dealer and left with a group of beagles that the dealer was sure were heading for experimentation. Holding her nerve and biting her tongue, Jan has gathered evidence in the most inhospitable of circumstances.
Her photographs and video have been used in the media internationally, and gathering the evidence is a core component of ADI and NAVS campaigns. With ADI Vice President and NAVS Campaigns Director Tim Phillips, Jan plans and coordinates the teams of undercover field officers who work deep inside animal industries gathering evidence. In South America, ADI was undercover inside the circus industry for two years moving from country to country. The findings shocked the entire continent, with the investigation leading to bans on animal circuses in Bolivia, Peru, Paraguay and Ecuador, and with legislation moving forward in Colombia and Brazil.
For 40 years, Jan Creamer has campaigned tirelessly. Her investigative filming and photographs have been published worldwide; she is the author and co-author of many reports, legislative briefings; has helped draft government legislation; and produced evidence for courts.
Jan is actively and constantly Involved in implementation of international wildlife regulations, with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) (CITES); on cross-border movements of live animal exhibitions; on the European Parliament ending laboratory use of apes, wild-caught monkeys, phase-out of monkeys born of wild-caught parents; the EU cosmetics test ban; amended chemical testing regulations for the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemical substances (REACH) legislation; has secured national laws on animals in circuses, worldwide; and led international rescues and relocations of wild animals released from circuses, including whole countries.
In her phenomenal leadership of the ADI team, she coordinates ADI collaboration with governments; following the achievement of animal circus bans in Bolivia and Peru, has tracked down illegal circuses to seize animals and set up temporary rescue facilities, then relocated nearly 200 animals (wild and domestic) to forever homes, and many back to their natural habitats.