Due to overwhelming response, Pet Age has extended the deadline for nominations to Friday, June 2. Nominations can be submitted here.
Pet Age is looking for industry icons who have shown a long-term commitment to the success of the pet industry based on experience, integrity and leadership. Successful candidates will have at least 20 years in the pet manufacturing or servicing industry. The award recipients will be recognized and profiled in the September issue of Pet Age. Winners will be selected by a panel of judges. This year’s judges are Nancy Apatow from PetLift, Gary Bagnall from Zoo Med and Greg Judge from Southeast Pet. Below is more about each judge:
Nancy Apatow, PetLift
Apatow has been a part of the pet industry for over 50 years. Her father and mother are the founders of PetLift and the inventors of innovative grooming equipment such as the hydraulic and electric grooming tables and walk-in animal bathing tubs. Apatow has worked in the company since she was young and has had years of experience listening to and then meeting the needs of the groomer, veterinarian and animal handler as well as all facets of the pet industry. In 1995, Nancy took over operation of the business and has been instrumental in the engineering and development of new equipment as well as production and sales. Today, Nancy is the driving force behind new product development and industry innovation, and with her pulse on the grooming industry, she is leading PetLift into the future with passion, experience and expertise.
Gary Bagnall, Zoo Med
Bagnall has worked in the pet industry 50 years starting at Russo’s Wonderful World of Pets in Newport Beach, California, at age 11. At 16 he managed his first pet store, and at 19 he worked for a tropical fish importer in Los Angeles. This same year he started a live reptile import/export business which became California Zoological Supply. Cal Zoo eventually led to manufacturing reptile products, and Zoo Med Laboratories, Inc., was born. Bagnall has 20 pet product patents to his name, although he says his greatest achievement was the invention of the first UVB lamp for reptiles in captivity. He is also currently the chairman of the board of USARK (United States Association of Reptile Keepers) and was awarded a lifetime achievement award from the American Cichlid Association.
Greg Judge, Southeast Pet
Judge is the CEO of Southeast Pet, a pet supply distributor based in Atlanta, Georgia. Judge began his career in the pet industry 52 years ago as a tropical fish retailer and, later, as an importer in southern California. In 1975, he and his wife, Holly, moved to Atlanta to open what is now called Southeast Pet. He played a key role in founding PIJAC and co-founding PIAG (Pet Industry Association of Georgia), sat on those boards as well as the board of what is now called WPA. In 2015, Judge sold 100 percent of Southeast Pet to its employees in a bold move to secure the future of Southeast Pet and it team members.