Taking Command


Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs Honored with Bebout Award
December 2011

The American Kennel Club is pleased to announce that the Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs, Inc. (CFDC) is the third quarter 2011 recipient of the Walter Bebout Memorial Award for Leadership in Canine Legislation.

Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs

Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs President Doug Johnson.
Photo courtesy of Linda Hart.

Named for the late Director of the AKC Government Relations Department, the "Bebout Award” recognizes those federations and owner/breeder organizations that have been actively involved in educating legislators and have worked to preserve the rights of responsible owners and breeders. Winners of the Bebout award receive a $1,000 donation to help offset the costs associated with their organization’s legislative efforts.

The Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs was organized to encourage and promote the welfare of dogs and to protect the interests, rights and wellbeing of responsible dog owners and breeders in Colorado. Since its founding in 2000, the CFDC has played an active role in educating legislators and dog owners about responsible dog ownership and dog owners’ rights. Some of the federation’s many outstanding accomplishments include:

  • Providing kennel clubs throughout the state with seminars and educational materials on legislative action.
  • Establishing relationships with state and local legislators to ensure that they are seen as the local resource for information on responsible dog ownership issues.
  • Working with professional lobbyist Janet Fox Stephens, who breeds and shows Welsh Terriers.
  • Establishing grassroots networks, and working together with other animal groups to defeat bills that would limit the rights of responsible dog owners.

Among its successes, the CFDC helped defeat a 2008 state bill that would have restricted breeding and limited dog ownership and a 2011 bill that would have removed due process rights for individuals accused of animal cruelty. The federation is currently working to repeal breed-specific bans in Denver and surrounding communities and to fight new breed-specific proposals elsewhere.

The CFDC also assists kennel clubs in neighboring Wyoming. At the request of the Cheyenne Kennel Club, the CFDC’s legislative liaison testified before the Wyoming House Agriculture Committee and worked with Wyoming legislators to change a bill that would have created unreasonable restrictions on dog owners to one that corrected deficiencies in existing cruelty laws. In 2011, CFDC helped defeat two bills in Wyoming that would have restricted dog owners’ rights.

“AKC’s Colorado federation and Legislative Liaison Linda Hart have made a tremendous difference in protecting the rights of responsible dog owners in Colorado. Between their work to repeal BSL in communities like Denver and Aurora, protecting the rights of responsible dog owners at the state level, and even helping out their neighbors in Wyoming, this group is a great example of how federations and kennel clubs really do make a positive difference in the lives of the dog-owning public. I’m honored to work with this dedicated group,” said Sheila Goffe, AKC’s Director of Government Relations.

Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs

Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs (back row) Board Members Glenda Henson and Jan Leonard, Secretary and Legislative State Liaison Linda Hart, (front row) Vice President Louise Leone, and Board Member Karen Brown. Not pictured – President Doug Johnson, Treasurer Karen Kotke-Partington, and Board Members Hildy Morgan and Bruce Clark. Photo by Bill Kohler.


Click here
for more information about the Bebout Award. For an award nomination form, click here.