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NEW YORK, NY (Dec. 10, 2003) – The American Kennel Club announced today the panel of Judges who have been selected for the fourth annual AKC/Eukanuba National Championship, to be held in Tampa, FL, on Saturday, January 15, 2005.

The 2005 event will once again showcase the nation’s top AKC registered dogs as well as top international dogs. For the first time, Group and Best In Show judging will be simulcast LIVE on Animal Planet and the Discovery Channel.

Heading the panel as Best In Show judge for the 2005 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship is Michelle L. Billings of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Mrs. Billings grew up in a family of dog and horse fanciers.

In 1952, she moved to Stone Mountain, Georgia and started Kings Creek kennels. This kennel became widely known for top quality Beagles and German Shepherd Dogs. During this time, Billings also became an all-breed professional handler, grooming, training, and conditioning breeds from all Groups, until retiring from handling in 1970.

In 1972, Billings began her judging career. She is currently one of only ten women approved as an all-breed judge in the US, and has been chosen to judge numerous National Specialties here and abroad. In addition, she has judged at major shows all over the world.

Billings has received numerous honors in the sport, most notably the Gaines "Fido" award for "Woman of the Year" in 1983, and the Kennel Review award for "Judge of the Year" in 1986. As a result of these and other milestones in her judging career, she was inducted into the New York Sports Museum Hall of Fame in 1993, and the Nature's Recipe (formerly Quaker Oats) Hall of Fame in 1998. Additionally, Mrs. Billings was a nominee for AKC’s Lifetime Achievement Award in the category of Conformation in both 2002 and 2003.

Judges for each of the seven variety groups are:

SPORTING – Marjorie Martorella of Englishtown, NJ
HOUND – Everett W. Dean, Jr. of Richmond, VA
WORKING – Robert Stein of Henderson, NV
TERRIER – Betty-Anne Stenmark of Woodside, CA
TOY – Enrique Jorge Filippini of Buenos Aires, Argentina
NON-SPORTING – Maxine V. Beam of Roanoke, TX
HERDING – Eileen Pimlott of Cupertino, CA

The Judge for Best Bred-By Exhibitor in Show is Mrs. Jane K. Forsyth of Pinehurst, NC.

Jane Kamp Forsyth, began her career in dogs at a very early age. Mrs. Forsyth was named the Kennel Review Handler of the Year three times. She has won three Gaines Awards, including Woman of the Year, and was inducted into the American Boxer Club Hall of Fame in 2001. After 43 years of handling, Mrs. Forsyth retired in 1981 to become a judge. She now judges all breeds in the U.S. as well as all breeds for the FCI. She has judged in England, Finland, Sweden, South America, Puerto Rico, Canada, Italy, and Mexico. Mrs. Forsyth was honored to judge at the inaugural AKC National Championship in 2001.

Judges for the seven Bred-By Exhibitor variety groups are:

SPORTING – Mrs. Robert D. Smith of St. Stephens Church, VA
HOUND – James Reynolds of Ontario, Canada
WORKING – Mrs. James Edward Clark of Greenwood, DE
TERRIER – Dr. Sam Draper of Monroe, NY
TOY – Dr. Harry Smith, of Durham, NC
NON-SPORTING – Frank Sabella, Fort Lauderdale, FL
HERDING – Steven Gladstone, Mount Pocono, PA

The Judge for Best Junior Handler is Robert S. Forsyth of Pinehurst, NC.

Judges for the breeds and varieties are as follows:


Barbara D. Alderman Brittanys, Setters (English), Setters (Gordon), Spaniels (Field), Spinoni Italiani

Dr. Klaus Anselm Retrievers (Chesapeake Bay), Retrievers (Flat-Coated,) Retrievers (Labrador), Retrievers (Nova Scotia Duck Tolling), Spaniels (Am. Water), Spaniels (Clumber)

Constance M. Barton Setters (Irish), Spaniels (Cocker), Spaniels (Eng. Cocker)

Dr. Bernard E. McGivern, Jr. Spaniels (Sussex), Spaniels (Welsh Springer), Vizslas, Weimaraners, Wirehaired Pointing Griffons

Denny C. Mounce Pointers (German Shorthaired), Pointers (German Wirehaired), Pointers

Ms. Elizabeth Muthard Retrievers (Curly-Coated), Retrievers (Golden), Spaniels (English Springer), Spaniels (Irish Water)


Michael Canalizo Basset Hounds, Petit Basset Griffon Vendeens, Rhodesian Ridgebacks

Espen Engh Borzoi, Greyhounds, Ibizan Hounds,
(Norway) Irish Wolfhounds, Scottish Deerhounds

Dr. Jose Luis Payro Afghan Hounds

David M. Powers Dachshunds (All Varieties)

Dr. Robert D. Smith Foxhounds (American), Foxhounds (English), Norwegian Elkhounds, Salukis, Whippets

Charles E. Trotter Basenjis, Beagles (Both Varieties), Harriers, Otterhounds

Phyllis M. Wolfish Black and Tan Coonhounds,
(Canada) Bloodhounds, Pharaoh Hounds


Roberta C. Davies Doberman Pinschers, Great Danes

Sheila M. DiNardo Bullmastiffs, Great Pyrenees, Kuvaszok, Mastiffs, Samoyeds

Jean Fournier Komondorok, Newfoundlands, Siberian Huskies

Roger R. Hartinger Akitas, Alaskan Malamutes, Bernese Mountain Dogs, Saint Bernards, Standard Schnauzers

David J. Kirkland Giant Schnauzers

John Lyons Anatolian Shepherd Dogs, Boxers, Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs, Portuguese Water Dogs, Rottweilers

Dr. Jose Luis Payro German Pinschers


W.R. Irving Australian Terriers, Border Terriers,
(United Kingdom) Dandie Dinmont Terriers, Scottish Terriers, West Highland White Terriers

David J. Kirkland American Staffordshire Terriers, Parson Russell Terriers, Miniature Bull Terriers, Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers

Hon. David C. Merriam Airedale Terriers, Bull Terriers (Colored), Bull Terriers (White), Fox Terriers (Smooth), Fox Terriers (Wire)

David M. Powers Norfolk Terriers, Norwich Terriers

Ferelith Somerfield Bedlington Terriers, Cairn Terriers,
(United Kingdom) Miniature Schnauzers, Sealyham Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers

Cindy Vogels Irish Terriers, Kerry Blue Terriers, Lakeland Terriers, Skye Terriers, Welsh Terriers

Phyllis M. Wolfish Manchester Terriers (Standard)


Michael Canalizo Pugs, Italian Greyhounds

Ellen M. Charles Poodles (Toy)

Arlene A. Czech Havanese, Miniature Pinschers, Papillons, Toy Fox Terriers, Manchester Terriers (Toy)

Robert S. Forsyth Chinese Cresteds, Maltese, Shih Tzu, Yorkshire Terriers

Marilyn Mayfield Cavalier King Charles Spaniels

Dennis McCoy Affenpinschers, Brussels Griffons, English Toy Spaniels (KC & R), English Toy Spaniels (B & PC), Silky Terriers

Denny C. Mounce Japanese Chin, Pekingese

Joe C. Walton Chihuahuas (Both Varieties), Pomeranians


Ellen M. Charles Bichon Frises, Lhasa Apsos, Poodles (Miniature), Poodles (Standard)

Ms. Elizabeth Muthard Tibetan Terriers

Dr. Gerard C. Penta American Eskimo Dogs, Boston Terriers, Finnish Spitz, French Bulldogs, Tibetan Spaniels

Roy Stenmark Chow Chows, Dalmatians, Löwchen, Schipperkes, Shiba Inu

Joe C. Walton Bulldogs, Chinese Shar-Pei

Phyllis M. Wolfish Keeshonden


Dr. Carmen L. Battaglia Australian Shepherds, Border Collies, Briards, Welsh Corgis (Cardigan), Welsh Corgis (Pembroke)

Roberta C. Davies Bearded Collies, Belgian Sheepdogs, Belgian Tervuren

Robert S. Forsyth German Shepherd Dogs

Jean Fournier Australian Cattle Dogs, Bouvier des Flandres

Marilyn Mayfield Belgian Malinois, Canaan Dogs, Old English Sheepdogs, Shetland Sheepdogs

Dr. Jose Luis Payro Collies (Rough), Collies (Smooth),
(Mexico) Polish Lowland Sheepdogs

Phyllis M. Wolfish Pulik

Casandra Clark
Carol E. Rappaport-Fish

The AKC National Obedience Invitational and AKC National Agility Championship will again be held in conjunction with the 2005 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship. Obedience competition will take place on Saturday and Sunday, January 15 & 16, 2005, Agility competition will run January 14–16, 2005.

· Mrs. Louise C. Botko
· Mr. Curtis M. Cunningham
· Ms. Lynn F. Eggers
· Mr. Donald A. Levinson
· Mrs. Diane J. Propst
· Mrs. Sharon Ann Redmer

To be announced

The 2005 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship will mark the fourth year of the AKC's premier showcase for dogs, which is co-presented by The Iams Company. For the first time, the show will be simulcast LIVE on cable television’s Animal Planet and the Discovery Channel.

Qualifying dates are as follows:
AKC/Eukanuba National Championship: October 8, 2003 – October 5, 2004
AKC National Obedience Invitational: July 1, 2003 – June 30, 2004
AKC National Agility Championship: October 3, 2003 – October 31, 2004