Animal Star Awards
1938. Mary Burgess
Mary Burgess, from Hampshire, founded the annual ‘Animal Star Awards’ in 2016 to raise awareness of animal welfare, recognising over 130 rescue centres, small animal charities and individuals from across the UK who are leading in the field.
Mary is a successful businesswoman and clinical hypnotherapist who, through her love for dogs, began to branch out into the study of animal psychology and behaviour, and fully appreciating. Drawing on her connections in the industry, she was inspired to set up an award programme to recognise examples of extraordinary animal behaviour, and individuals who are helping to show how animals bring positive change to communities. As well as the Animal Star Awards, Mary has also founded ‘Pawsmouth Dog Awards’ and ‘Santa Paws’ to celebrate animal charities in her local community around Portsmouth and highlight important issues surrounding dog welfare. During lockdown, she also lent her support to campaigns to improve pet theft reform, and launched a dedicated pet food bank to help people struggling to feed their pets.
“I’m absolutely delighted to be awarded a Points of Light award. It means so much to me both personally and professionally.
“The Animal Star Awards started off as a hobby and has grown into something very special and the pet food bank helped many people during lockdown who were struggling to feed their beloved pets. I’m so proud I was able to help them through a difficult and challenging time.”