Elephants have many supporters around the world including some celebrities who are passionate about ending animal abuse. Even with their busy schedules, these power players have made time for a cause they dear to their hearts: advocating for the protection of these gentle giants.
Let’s give a shout out to these famous people who are doing the right thing in speaking out on behalf of elephants:
1.Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
It’s always good to have a world leader on your side and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has made it clear that we need to save elephants from extinction. Secretary Clinton has called upon other world leaders to stop the epic slaughter of elephants and has asked U.S. diplomats around the world to raise awareness about wildlife trafficking. The State Department also declared December 4 as Wildlife Conservation Day. “Our goal is to inform more people about this global conservation crisis,” she recently told CBS News. “Attacks on elephants and rhinos are multiplying at an alarming rate.” She is also exploring what policies the State Department can enact to stop illegal smuggled animal goods into the United States and abroad.
- Clinton calls on world leaders to end African elephant slaughter (article and video)
- Hillary Clinton Slams Wildlife Trafficking
2. Chelsea Clinton
The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree in the Clinton household. Chelsea Clinton, daughter of Hillary Clinton and now a NBC News Special Correspondent has produced two reports on the ivory trade. In the summer of 2012 she visited the Nairobi Nursery in Kenya to interview Daphne Sheldrick about the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and their work to integrate orphaned baby elephants back into the wild. Chelsea also got to witness and film the rescue of a baby elephant. Her goal is to spread awareness about the threatening levels of elephant poaching in East Africa.
- Chelsea Clinton Visits Kenya in Support of Elephants (article and Chelsea’s NBC videos)
3. Yao Ming
Basketball player Yao Ming is a superstar on and off the court. Using his celebrity status as one of China’s most widely known public figures, Yao Ming is committed to help spreading awareness among Chinese about the need to stop purchasing ivory products. His goal is to “eliminate the demand for rhino horn and ivory right at the source.” In his role as goodwill ambassador to WildAid, Yao Ming travelled to Kenya in August 2012 to begin filming a documentary about the ivory trade tentatively titled The End of the Wild. He has also filmed a PSA that shows him blocking a bullet and saving an elephant.
4. Jorja Fox
CSI star Jorga Fox fights crime on the small screen and she also fights for elephant rights in the real world. When she heard about the unethical treatment of circus elephants, she couldn’t stay quiet and has been a proactive supporter ever since. She helped to produce the movie that Juliette stars called How I Became An Elephant and she will often appear for Q&A after a film screening. As an ambassador for Animal Defenders International Jorga Fox lends her voice and time to helping educates people on the misuse of bullhooks to train show elephants.
5. Alec Baldwin
Alec Baldwin, star of the TV show 30 Rock, is an A-list actor who also gets an A+ for activism. As a celebrity supporter of PETA, in March 2012, Alec came out with a hard-hitting video that urges people to boycott Ringling Bros. Circus because of their mistreatment of elephants, proof of which was captured in undercover video footage. Alec also wrote a letter to the Department of Agriculture to ask them to enforce laws that are already in place. “Local laws designed to protect these animals are not being enforced because the circus skirts authorities or uses its financial clout to get them to look the other way,” wrote Alec. “That’s why I am writing to you and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to step up and enforce the Animal Welfare Act.”
6. Leonardo DiCaprio
Just in case you need ANOTHER reason to fall in love with Leo – he adores elephants. In October 2012, Leo announced that he is teaming up with the International Fund for Animal Welfare to lead an anti-poaching campaign called “Elephants, Never Forget.” As the campaign’s global ambassador, Leo seeks to raise awareness about the lax oversight of the black market for ivory that “has led to the prospect of extinction for the species in several African countries.”
- Leonardo DiCaprio Targets Elephant Poachers (Huffington Post article)
- “Elephants, Never Forget” Educational Lessons and Activities for Students
7. Kristin Davis
Now that she’s done playing sweet Charlotte on Sex and the City, Davis can focus on causes close to her heart – such as baby elephant rescue and adoption. Kristen had heard about the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust on 60 Minutes and wanted to stop by and visit it on her next trip to Kenya. Little did she know that she would end up rescuing a baby elephant when she was there! Davis was so touched by the experience that she has made it her mission to spread awareness about the ivory trade. Her efforts have paid off and in 2011 the Humane Society awarded her the Wyler Award for the attention she has brought to the plight of orphaned African elephants. Kristin called her work “a profound labor of love” and added, “Elephants are truly amazing animals and they need our protection, and what people in this country may not realize is that they can help by not buying ivory items.”
- Adopting Orphaned Elephants (article and slideshow from Oprah Show)
8. Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, and Sarah Ferguson
Elephants have captured these royals’ hearts so tightly that they consider elephants their ‘dates.’ You can go on a date with an elephant, too. Look to the Stars has a special adoption program where you ‘date’ an elephant for 12 months and, according to their site, receive love letters on recycled elephant-dung paper, photos, elephant info and a Valentine’s Day card.
Other celebrities who support elephants
There are tons of other celebrities who are out there helping elephants. Jada Pinkett Smith, Ashley Judd, Giselle Bundchen, and Maria Menounos are just a few others.
We will continue to highlight good deeds on the blog so check back in soon!