Rufus’ Island Dedicated to Long
Time Devoted Supporter Elisabeth Lahti


June 4, 2011 was a very special day at Save the Chimps and one we will never forget. Guests from around the country arrived to attend a private ceremony in honor of one of STC’s dearest supporters, Elisabeth Lahti.

Thanks to a generous gift of $2.5 million from the Bohemian Foundation, STC had its first Island Naming ceremony dedicating Rufus’ Island to Elisabeth Lahti. The day could not have been more lovely; Mother Nature was at her best as the family and friends of our honored guest circled the property for a tour in a 29 passenger bus. The chimps were curious about this unusual event, and could be seen out on their islands watching the vehicle as it passed.

“This is a personal tribute to my mom,” said Pat Stryker, Founder of the Bohemian Foundation. “Save the Chimps is one of the many causes that she supports.  Growing up, she taught us to love, protect and care for all animals.  It is a privilege to make this donation in honor of my mom as a way to celebrate her philanthropy and how she continues to model philanthropy for her friends and family.”  Advocating for the care and protection of chimpanzees runs in the family as Ms. Stryker’s brother, Jon Stryker, through his Arcus Foundation, worked in partnership with the late Dr. Carole Noon to
co-found Save the Chimps.

“We are deeply moved by this incredibly generous gift,” said Jen Feuerstein, Save the Chimps Sanctuary Director. “This gift will allow us to continue to honor our commitment to the chimpanzees, so many of whom survived the horrors of life in a laboratory. Walls and bars have been replaced with spacious islands and blue skies, and the chimps now roam freely with their chimpanzee families. Save the Chimps is here to provide for the chimpanzees’ every need for the rest of their lives. We are very grateful for Pat’s gift to the sanctuary. It’s wonderful that she has chosen this opportunity to honor Betty, who is a long-time supporter and dear friend to our late founder Dr. Carole Noon.”

Following the ceremony, a delicious brunch, stories and laughs were shared under a tent with a view of the original Air Force Island.

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Thank you to the Bohemian Foundation and to the Stryker Family for their generosity, compassion and devotion to chimpanzees and making the world a better place.

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