Remembering our friend and colleague, Humane Agent Wade Hanson (1955-2018)

Wade Hanson, pictured holding small black dog

Animal Humane Society and the people of Minnesota have lost a tireless champion for animals.

Wade Hanson died Sunday, December 23, at his home in Pine City. During his 24-year career as a humane agent for Animal Humane Society, Hanson helped hundreds of thousands of animals. His work protecting animals from abuse and neglect took him to every corner of the state.

Hanson brought kindness and compassion to his work confronting animal cruelty.

“Wade daily committed himself — seven days a week, 365 days a year — for 24 years to his job of being a humane agent. That’s who he was,” says AHS President and CEO Janelle Dixon. “In all those years he never lost sight of the 'humane' part of the work and the humanity toward animals.”

Wade Hanson, pictured holding white bird

Wade Hanson joined the Humane Society of Ramsey County as a humane agent in 1995 and continued in that role when the organization merged with others to form Animal Humane Society in 2007. For the last decade, he focused on combating animal abuse and neglect in the northern half of Minnesota. Until 2018 he was one of only two full-time humane agents in the state of Minnesota.

“Wade embodied our mission,” says Kathy Mock, Chief Government Affairs and Community Engagement Officer. “He cared very deeply about the animals we serve and the people he worked with at AHS and in the community. He showed us on a daily basis what it means to compassionately and responsibly create a more humane world for animals.”

Hanson reflected on his work in a 2017 interview. Every morning I’m excited to get on the road and make a difference for animals. They are such an important part of people’s lives and they deserve to be treated properly. And when they’re not, I want to be there to help, simple as that. I’d keep doing this work forever if I could.”

Funeral services for Hanson will be held Friday, December 28, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Swanson’s Funeral Chapel, 665 Third Ave. SW, Pine City, Minnesota 55063.

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