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Ellen Kessler, controversial appointee to state vet board, resigns after calling ranchers ‘lazy,’ ‘nasty’

COLORADO POLITICS, Jan. 24 — Animal rights activist Ellen Kessler, a gubernatorial appointee to the State Board of Veterinary Medicine, submitted her resignation from the board at 3:26 p.m. Monday.

Kessler’s letter, released by the governor’s office, said her resignation would be effective at the close of business on Feb. 11.

“I realize that some of my actions have caused anger and discomfort and that I was unprofessional in my judgment,” Kessler wrote. “I apologize to you and the citizens of our great state and wish you the best of luck as you continue to make Colorado the best in the nation.”

Kessler, appointed to the state vet board in 2020, has earned the wrath of ranchers and farmers for what they view as inflammatory attacks on the livestock industry. She’s a friend of first gentleman Marlon Reis, Gov. Jared Polis’ husband. Reis is also an animal rights activist.

Polis’ office issued this statement Monday night: “The Governor appreciates that Ms. Kessler has taken responsibility for the impact of her hurtful words. He looks forward to selecting a veterinary board member that better shares his strong respect for Colorado’s hard working ranchers and helps builds confidence in the practice of veterinary medicine across our state.”

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