2018 DWAA Awards Banquet
Online ticket sales for this event have closed.
The 2018 DWAA Awards Banquet takes place the evening of Saturday, Feb. 10, 2018 at the iconic New Yorker Hotel in Manhattan. Dr. Marty Becker, a.k.a. “America’s Veterinarian,” will give a keynote speech and legendary dog show host and author David Frei will be inducted into the DWAA Hall of Fame!
Laura Coffey, Today.com producer/editor/writer and author of the bestselling book My Old Dog: Rescued Pets with Remarkable Second Acts, will share tips about book promotion, and writers will accept Maxwell Medallions and checks for special awards. Please join us for a special evening of networking and celebration!
Saturday, February 10, 2018
4-5 p.m. – General Membership Annual Meeting
5-6 p.m. – Banquet registration/Cash bar opens
6:15 p.m. – First speech begins
7-9 p.m. – Dinner service and awards ceremony
The New Yorker
A Wyndham Hotel
The Sutton Place Room – 3rd Floor
481 Eighth Ave.
New York, NY 10001
Special Hotel Rates
We have special rates at The New Yorker, with the discount code “DWAA” until Friday, Dec. 22 – the facility fee of $29 will be waived:
Executive Queen on Friday, Feb. 9, 2018 – $179 plus tax
Executive Queen on Saturday, Feb. 10,2018 – $239 plus tax
Executive Queen on Sunday, Feb. 11, 2018 – $109 plus tax
Executive Rooms with two double beds – add $20/night
*Please call and ask for in-house reservations during business hours: 212-971-0101 option 1
Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. EST
Saturday: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Call now – the deal is only held until Friday, Dec. 22. Rates can fluctuate after that date. Thanks!
Caprese Salad with Roma Tomato and Basil Pesto Drizzle
Choice of entrée:
- Pan Seared Breast of Cornish Hen with Butternut Squash Puree and Fresh Watercress Salad with Crispy Proscuitto Pan Dripping Gravy
- Vegetarian Mushroom Ravioli with Brown Butter and Tarragon
Raspberry Chocolate Mousse Cake with Crème Anglaise
Dr. Marty Becker
Dr. Marty Becker, “America’s Veterinarian,” has spent his life working toward better health for pets and the people who love them. He is the founder of Fear FreeSM, an initiative to “take the ‘pet’ out of ‘petrified’” and get pets back for veterinary visits by promoting considerate approach and gentle control techniques used in calming environments.
Dr. Becker was the resident veterinary contributor on “Good Morning America” for 17 years. He is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the American Humane Association as well as its Chief Veterinary Correspondent, a founding member of Core Team Oz for “The Dr. Oz Show,” and a member of the Dr. Oz Medical Advisory Panel.
He has written 25 books that have sold almost 8 million copies, including three New York Times best-sellers — one of which is the fastest-selling pet book of all time, Chicken Soup for the Pet-Lovers Soul. He has been a contributor to Parade magazine, Reader’s Digest and AARP.com. Animal Radio hosts him monthly as their Chief Veterinary Correspondent.
He also writes the weekly nationally syndicated newspaper feature Pet Connection with his writing partner, Kim Campbell Thornton, and is featured in Dogster, Catster, and on Vetstreet.com.
Dr. Becker is an adjunct professor at his alma mater, the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, and also at the Colleges of Veterinary Medicine at both Colorado State University and the University of Missouri. Additionally, he has lectured at every veterinary school in the United States, and is on the advisory board of World Vets, an international veterinary and disaster relief programs to help animals.
A passionate advocate for the human-animal bond, Dr. Becker serves as an adjunct professor at the Research Center for Human-Animal Interaction at the University of Missouri’s College of Veterinary Medicine. He is an honorary board member of Pet Partners and the Humane Society of New York, as well as a past board member and strong supporter of his local pet rescue group, Second Chance Animal Adoption of Bonner Ferry, ID, and a supporter of the Panhandle Animal Shelter in Sandpoint, ID, the Kootenai Humane Society in Coeur d’Alene, ID, and the Whitman County Humane Society in Pullman, WA.
Dr. Becker also serves as the Chief Veterinary Correspondent for the American Humane Association, with a strong focus on supporting their efforts to end the use of gas chambers in animal shelters, a cause for which he has successfully advocated since his earliest days as a veterinarian. His special fondness for older pets has led him to a spot on the Advisory Board of The Grey Muzzle Organization, which is dedicated to helping homeless senior dogs.
He practices at North Idaho Animal Hospital because he loves veterinary medicine, pets and the people who care for them.
New York Magazine once called David Frei “probably the most famous human in the world of canines.”
As the co-host of NBC’s National Dog Show Presented by Purina since its inception in 2002, David is seen every Thanksgiving Day by the largest TV audience for any dog show – most recently more than 25 million viewers in 2016. It is the same role that he perfected in 27 years as the longtime (1990-2016) co-host of USA Network’s Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. He has now added to his duties with NBC/USA as co-host of the Beverly Hills Dog Show, which debuted on Easter in 2017.
Being America’s “dog guy” has brought him many appearances on network television, including “Today,” “NBC Nightly News,” “Good Morning America,” “Fox & Friends,” “The View”, Martha Stewart,” and more. The dogs have taken him to the White House for a visit with the President, for a ride on a float in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, to ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange, to throw out the first pitch at two Major League Baseball games, to a role on HBO’s “Sex And The City” and even to an appearance as a pastry judge on the Food Network’s “Best In Show” competition.
A breeder-owner-handler and judge in the world of purebred dogs for more than 40 years, he has enjoyed much competitive success with his Afghan Hounds, Brittanys and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. His dog, Ch. Stormhill’s Who’s Zoomin’ Who, was the top Afghan Hound in the country in 1989 and retired as the top-winning female in the history of the breed. As a judge, he has officiated at shows in the U.S., Canada, Australia, Denmark and China.
But David’s true passion comes from the work that his dogs have been doing as therapy dogs at places such as the Ronald McDonald House and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York (where his Brittanys, Teigh and Belle, were the first therapy dogs ever allowed into these places), and at New York’s VA Medical Center. After Teigh and Belle passed, David’s Cavalier, Angel, and his Brittany, Grace, took over for them at many New York facilities.
While at Westminster, he created a charitable activity, Angel On A Leash, to support a therapy dog program at New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital. Angel On A Leash later became an independent charity with him as founder and president, creating and advocating for therapy dog programs many places, expanding nationwide and receiving many honors for its wonderful accomplishments.
David’s second book, Angel On A Leash (named after the charity), is his view of his world of therapy dogs and his life in dogs, and was the 2012 winner of a Dog Writers Association of America’s Maxwell Award as best depiction of the human-animal bond. David was also the co-author, with Mike Lingenfelter, of The Angel By My Side in 2002. Also a DWAA Maxwell winner, it tells the story of Dakota, Mike’s heroic Golden Retriever service dog. David’s third book, about his years at Westminster, is under way.
He also served as director of communications for Westminster from 2003 to 2015, during which time he was recognized with awards from the DWAA (its AKC Distinguished Service Award), the World Dog Press Association, the Association of Purebred Dog Writers (the Stonehenge Award), and Purina (Better with Pets Award).
Petside.com named him as the Pet Person of the Year in 2011, and in 2015, Dog Fancy magazine, in its final issue, included him in a retrospective, “45 People Who Changed the Dog World.”
He has been honored for his work with Angel On A Leash by the American Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club, the ASPCA, the Pet Philanthropy Circle and a number of other organizations. He is a past board member for Take The Lead and Morris Animal Foundation, and a past member of the St. Jude Children’s Hospital Sports Council. He has also been recognized for his volunteer efforts with Transfiguration Church and School in New York’s Chinatown for many years.
A native of Eugene, Oregon, David lived in Seattle for 20 years where he owned two popular sports bar restaurants and his own PR agency. He then moved to New York City in 2002, working fulltime for the Westminster Kennel Club before moving to Cannon Beach, Oregon, in 2016, and now works as a consultant for NBC Sports. Previously, he held public relations positions with the Denver Broncos, San Francisco 49ers and ABC-TV Sports in New York.
Laura T. Coffey
Laura T. Coffey has been a professional member of DWAA since 2014.
She is a writer, editor and producer for the website of NBC’s TODAY show and the author of the bestselling book My Old Dog: Rescued Pets with Remarkable Second Acts. A journalist with more than 25 years of experience, Laura has written and edited hundreds of high-profile human-interest stories for TODAY.com since 2008. In recent years, she has won first-place writing awards from the Society for Features Journalism and the Dog Writers Association of America, and headline-writing awards from the American Copy Editors Society.
Before she started writing for TODAY.com, Laura worked as a reporter, columnist, and editor for msnbc.com, social issues editor at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, deputy business editor at the San Diego Union-Tribune, managing editor of The Prague Post in the Czech Republic, a reporter and editor at the Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce, a reporter at the Peninsula Clarion in Alaska, and a reporter and columnist for the St. Petersburg Times in Florida. Her work has also appeared in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, PBS NewsHour Online, Best Friends magazine, and many other publications.
Laura lives in Seattle with her husband, Michael, their son, Tyler, and their two senior dogs, Frida and Manny.