The American Kennel Club is pleased to announce Mary McFaun as the winner of the Quarter 1 Community Achievement Award.
McFaun serves on Vermont’s Animal Cruelty Advisory Investigation Board (ACIAB), a board created in 2015 by the VT Senate Judiciary Committee and had no representation for dog enthusiasts until McFaun and the Vermont (VT) Federation of Dog Clubs got involved. As a member of the board, she is tasked with coordinating policy efforts that are agreeable to many different factions, as well as clarifying current laws to ensure cruelty investigations meet legal requirements for prosecuting animal cruelty. But being just a member of the board was not enough for her – McFaun also sits on the executive board of the ACIAB, serving as secretary to ensure the minutes of the meetings were not slanted or misconstrued by rival groups.
In addition to her role on the state board, McFaun serves as President of the Vermont Federation of Dog Clubs and is a delegate to the federation from the Green Mountain Dog Club. She spends countless hours at the Vermont State House attending committee meetings and testifying on animal legislative issues. As federation President, she worked closely in 2019 with a taskforce that analyzed the federation’s strengths and weaknesses and presented a strategic plan to the federation board to capitalize on opportunities in 2020.
“Fanciers and pet owners in the state of Vermont owe a great deal of gratitude to Mary for her dedication to protecting their rights as dog owners,” said Sheila Goffe, AKC’s VP of Government Relations. “Her work on the ACIAB and other legislative efforts have been monumental. We are proud to recognize Mary’s hard work by honoring her with the AKC Community Achievement Award.”
Mary has owned and raised standard poodles since 1970. Over the years, the dogs served not only as family companions, but as guardians to her horse, sheep, and other animals on their farm. Her current poodle “Niko” (Songbird Dream Maker CGC, BN, RN,RI,RA,RE) received his Rally Excellent title last year and has qualified for advanced Rally competition at the Rally National Championship in 2020. Mary is married to State Representative Francis McFaun and have two daughters, one son and six grandchildren that live nearby.
The AKC Community Achievement Awards support and recognize outstanding public education and legislation efforts of AKC-affiliated clubs, AKC-recognized federations and their members. The AKC selects award recipients who promote purebred dogs and responsible dog ownership within their communities or who have successfully introduced, monitored and responded to legislative issues affecting dog ownership.
Nominations for the AKC Community Achievement Award are accepted year-round. Honorees receive a certificate of appreciation and a $1,000 check payable to their AKC club or AKC-recognized federation to further public education and government relations efforts. Click here to nominate an individual, club or federation.