How did you first become involved in dogs? What breeds have you been involved with and in what capacity – breeder, owner, handler?
We purchased our first Shih Tzu from a breeder in the early 1970s and began breeding and exhibiting two years later. Actually our first purebred was a Miniature Smooth Dachshund. We have bred and/or finished more than 90 Shih Tzu, most of them breeder/owner-handled. We have also bred a number of Chihuahuas, including Group and specialty winners.
Who has been your mentor or mentors?
In terms of Shih Tzu our mentors have been Louis and Florence Sanfilippo, Dee Shepherd and Peggy Hogg; as a judge, Bill Bergum, Langdon Skarda and Harry Smith.
What is, or was, your profession?
I hold a BA in German, a minor in English, a minor in art and music history, and an MA in educational administration. I was a high school teacher/administrator for 35 years. I also coached high school football and basketball and academic decathlon. I retired in 2002 after 35 years in education.
Do you have any hobbies or special interests other than judging?
Other interests and hobbies include cooking and music (classical and jazz). I played clarinet and sax as a kid and in the U.S. Army as well. I am an avid college sports fan, especially basketball and football.
Do you have any pet peeves when judging?
Pet peeves when judging: the use of the phrase “I got dumped” for just not winning; exhibitors who are totally unaware of when they should enter the ring and are not aware of the pattern a judge has used all day; stuffing bait in a dog’s mouth moments before I start to examine the bite; and reciting the dog’s records and parentage while taking pictures.