Dr. Kwane Stewart named CNN’s hero of the year 2023
The year 2023 saw Dr. Kwane Stewart, known as The Street Vet, being crowned CNN’s Hero of The Year, a title which has catapulted him into global recognition due to his relentless efforts in assisting homeless people and their pets through his veterinary skills.
Stewart showcased his commitment by travelling across California in a specially equipped vehicle, offering a range of medical services. These included vaccinations, regular health check-ups, and treatments to pets owned by homeless people. His mission went beyond providing healthcare to animals; he also extended support and resources to the pets’ owners who were battling housing instability.
Stewart’s veterinary career spans over two decades in California. His rise to fame was propelled by his award of CNN Hero of The Year in 2023.
Dr Kwane Stewart’s career trajectory began in 1997 as an associate and emergency clinician in San Diego. It wasn’t long before he climbed up the ranks to become the Chief Medical Officer of Vetco Hospitals, Inc. He also held the position of County Veterinarian, where he successfully reduced the high euthanasia rates of a struggling animal shelter.
Stewart’s expertise was sought by media corporations and heavyweight companies such as Disney, United Airlines, and SeaWorld. They engaged him to improve their animal care standards. Recently, he completed a six-year tenure as the Chief Veterinary Officer at American Humane and served as the Director of their legacy program.
Stewart’s work is well-received globally, but he remains discreet about his personal life, with the media having little knowledge of his age or family life. Despite the curiosity surrounding these aspects of his life, Stewart maintains his focus on his work and the recognition he earned as CNN’s Hero of The Year in 2023.
In 2023, Stewart was voted by online users as one of the Top 10 CNN Heroes, a testament to his dedication and commitment to his cause. His journey into street outreach began over a decade ago when he treated a homeless man’s dog outside a 7-11 convenience store while on a coffee run.
This seemingly small act significantly improved the dog’s health condition and sparked Stewart’s outreach efforts. While accepting his CNN Hero of the Year award, he said, “I’ve wanted to be a veterinarian my whole life, since I was a child,” and expressed gratitude for being able to fulfil his lifelong dream. The award carries with it a prize money of $100,000, which Stewart plans to use to expand his work. In addition to this, he is also an Elevate Prize winner, receiving $300,000 and resources from The Elevate Prize Foundation.
Stewart, along with the other top 10 CNN Heroes, received a $10,000 cash award and could potentially receive donation-matching up to $50,000 from The Elevate Prize Foundation.