Like the rest of the world, we were very sad to hear of Betty White’s passing at the age of 99. We loved and admired Betty’s passion for animals, her incredible sense of humor and sass, and her generosity of spirit. Betty was a dear friend, dedicated supporter, and ambassador for GDB since 1986. We are forever grateful for her many contributions to our life-changing mission.
“Betty White was a treasured friend to Guide Dogs for the Blind for more than 35 years,” says Christine Benninger, President and CEO of Guide Dogs for the Blind. “To celebrate her incredible life, we are naming one of our Golden Retriever puppies after her. We will introduce BettyRose, a nod to her iconic character from Golden Girls, in early 2022, when the puppy is approximately eight weeks old, which is the age when she will go to her volunteer puppy raiser."
During the past 35-plus years, Betty not also supported GDB she served as an ambassador for our organization. She helped raise funds by appearing in several PSAs urging others to support GDB, provided matching gift incentives for fundraising campaigns, donated in-kind gifts to be auctioned off at events (including lunches with herself!), and made capital campaign gifts to build a new Student Residence Hall and Puppy Center on our California campus.
In addition to being an animal lover, Betty also advocated for those with disabilities like blindness and was a strong proponent of diversity and inclusion. Like us, Betty, believed that everyone deserves to move through the world safely and confidently—to live the life they want to live.
“Betty was a one-of-a-kind friend we will never forget,” says Christine. “We look forward to honoring her amazing contributions to GDB later this year and beyond.”