The American Kennel Club (AKC) proudly announced the winners of the 2017 AKC Lifetime Achievement Awards: Patricia W. Laurans in Conformation, Elizabeth (Tibby) Chase in Companion Events and Jim Campbell in Performance.
The awards, created by AKC President Dennis Sprung, are presented in recognition of exceptional participation and achievement within the dog fancy. The finalists and winners, based on nominations from AKC member clubs, have impacted the dog sport on a national level through club involvement, judging, exhibiting, breeding and teaching.
Laurans, of Newtown, Connecticut, has been active in dogs for over 50 years as an exhibitor, all-breed handler and breeder of Best in Show, National Specialty-winning and top producing German wirehaired pointers.
She has served as delegate for the German Wirehaired Pointer Club of America for over 30 years. During that time, she was elected to the AKC Board of Directors, started an AKC Breeders Education program and helped establish the Junior Scholarship program.
When Laurans left the Board of Directors in 2000 she was elected to the Parent Club Committee and has served as its chairperson from 2000 to the present. During this tenure she helped establish the Parent Club Conference Program and chaired three National Parent Club conferences. In 2013 she helped establish the AKC Reunite Pet Disaster Trailer Program and serves as its co-chairperson.
Chase, of Monson, Massachusetts, desperately wanted a Welsh pony as a child, but her sensible parents presented her with a Pembroke Welsh corgi. This little dog introduced Chase to the challenging world of dog training and was her first high in trial dog in 1961. She has been involved with dogs, dog training and corgis ever since.
While obedience is her first love, Chase has successfully trained and shown dogs in rally, tracking, agility, herding and conformation. One “special” Pembroke, “Tyler,” Ch. Heronsway Free Style UDT ROMX, is one of a few obedience titled dogs to win the breed at Westminster. In very limited breeding, Tibby produced several Pembroke champions and others that excelled in obedience, herding and agility.
Campbell, of Marrero, Louisiana, grew up in in rural Mississippi in the 1950s and ’60s. Rabbit hunting with grade beagles instilled in him a love for the sport. In 1978 he got his first AKC registered beagles. After moving to New Orleans, he met Maurice Ellis, Rannie Ladner and Tommy Moffet. Jim gives credit to them for teaching him what to look for in a hound and how to condition them. His first good dog was Jazztown T-Beau, who had a great nose, outstanding line control and check work that set the standard for what he looks for in a dog to this day.
Jim has bred many worthy hounds over the years, seven of which finished as AKC field champions. He finished four field champions himself, two of which went on to win the AKC SPO Nationals. FC JO’s Hustler won the Southern States Championship twice. FC Huff’s Riverland Charter won the SPO Nationals in 2007 and to date has produced six field champions. Jim also owned Tommy’s Talking Deacon and Blue Ann. The latest field champion that he finished is FC JO’s Shaq.
The honorees, who were selected from votes cast by AKC member clubs, will receive engraved Revere bowls on Friday, December 16, at the Delegates luncheon held in conjunction with the AKC National Championship presented by Royal Canin in Orlando, Florida. A sterling silver Tiffany and Co. bowl, engraved with the names of all recipients past and present, is on permanent display at AKC headquarters in New York City.
For more information on the recipients, go to http://www.akc.org/about/awards-and-honors/lifetime-achievement/recipients/2017/