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The Westminster Kennel Club recently announced that Mr. Thomas H. Bradley III is scheduled to judge Best in Show at the club’s 141st dog show Feb. 13–14, 2017. A lifetime participant in the dog sport, Mr. Bradley competed in his first dog show as a teenager in 1955, showing his German Shorthaired Pointer at the Adirondack Kennel Club show in Lake Placid, New York. He went on to become a breeder of German Shorthaired Pointers, Pointers, Labrador Retrievers, and English Cocker Spaniels under the Luftnase kennel name. Over the years he has also owned and shown Cairn Terriers, Whippets, and Cocker Spaniels, and more recently he has bred Border Terriers. He was co-breeder of the great Pointer Ch. Luftnase Albelarm Bee’s Knees, CD, JH, winner of more than 50 all-breed Bests in Show, three-time Best of Breed winner at the American Pointer Club national specialty (1989, 1991, 1992), and winner of the Sporting Group at Westminster in 1989.

thomas h bradley iii wkc
Mr. Thomas H. Bradley III is scheduled
to judge Best in Show at Westminster 2017.
Photo: Westminster KC

Mr. Bradley was approved in 1965 to judge German Shorthaired Pointers, German Wirehaired Pointers, and Weimaraners, and he now judges all sporting breeds and Best in Show. In 1975 he joined the Westminster Kennel Club, and since then he has held many positions within the club, including communications director, but he is best known for his 15-year tenure as show chairman for the annual Westminster KC dog show in New York.

Mr. Bradley is also a founding member and executive director of Take The Lead, a charitable organization established in 1993 to support people in the dog sport with terminal or life-threatening illnesses.

He is the former president of Thomas H. Bradley, Inc., a wholesale hardware company in Watertown, New York, established in 1897 by his grandfather.

Westminster KC president Seán McCarthy expressed the club’s gratitude to Mr. Bradley:

“On behalf of the Westminster Kennel Club, I would like to thank Mr. Thomas H. Bradley, 3d., for taking on the challenging role as our Show Chairman for the past 15 years. Anyone who has met or worked with Tom knows him as a consummate gentleman and a fair-minded person with great compassion for all involved in the sport. Tom has effortlessly steered our event through many transitions and contributed in innumerable ways. Thank you Tom for contributing to the legacy that is the Westminster experience, and thank you for your significant contributions through the many changes we’ve made in the past five years. In 2017 Mr. David A. Helming will be taking over the position of Show Chairman for the 141st Westminster Kennel Club show. We have every confidence that he will contribute to our ongoing innovations while maintaining the traditions of our club.” —S.M.

sean mccarthy thomas bradley
Mr. Bradley (L) with Westminster Kennel Club president Seán McCarthy. Photo: Westminster KC

Group Judges

Mr. Bradley will be selecting his winner from the seven group-winning dogs sent to his ring by a panel of group judges from across the U.S. The group judges officiating at Madison Square Garden on the evenings of Monday and Tuesday, February 13 and 14, will be:

Monday, February 13

Hound Group: Mrs. Robert D. (Polly) Smith, of St. Stephens Church, Virginia

Toy Group: Mrs. Charlotte Patterson, of Destin, Florida

Non-Sporting Group: Mrs. Anne Bolus, of Harrison, Tennessee, Non-Sporting

Herding Group: Dr. Robert Smith, of St. Stephens Church, Virginia

Tuesday, February 14

Sporting Group: Mrs. Paula Nykiel, of Washington, Missouri

Working Group: Mr. John Ramirez, of Downey, California

Terrier Group: Mr. Kenneth M. McDermott, of Newburgh, New York


Junior Handling Judges

For the 84th year, a Best Junior Handler will be awarded at Westminster. On Tuesday, February 14, Dr. Steven Herman, of Dade City, Florida, will select the winner at Madison Square Garden. The eight Junior Showmanship finalists will be determined in preliminary rounds by Mrs. Mary Ann Alston, of Ocean Pines, Maryland, and Mrs. Joan Savage, of Banks, Oregon.

Agility Judges

Overseeing the fourth annual Masters Agility Championship at Westminster on February 11 will be Mr. Paul Moore, of Welford, Northamptonshire, United Kingdom, and Ms. Ann Riba, of Old Mill Creek, Illinois.

Obedience Judges

Ms. Lynn F. Eggers, of Grapevine, Texas, will determine the winner of the second annual Masters Obedience Championship on Monday, February 13.

Breed Judges

The judging panel for the Best of Breed or Variety competition held at Piers 92/94 in New York City on Monday and Tuesday, February 13–14, 2017, includes the following (pending AKC approval):


Mrs. Mary Ann Alston, of Ocean Pines, MD: English Springer Spaniels, Lagotti Romagnolo, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers, Sussex Spaniels, Welsh Springer Spaniels.

Dr. Steven Herman, of Dade City, FL: American Water Spaniels, Boykin Spaniels, Brittanys, Clumber Spaniels, German Shorthaired Pointers, German Wirehaired Pointers, Pointers, Weimaraners.

Mrs. Joan Savage, of Banks, OR: English Setters, Field Spaniels, Flat-Coated Retrievers, Gordon Setters, Irish Setters, Irish Red and White Setters, Irish Water Spaniels, Wirehaired Pointing Griffons.

Mr. Terry Stacy, of Chapel Hill, NC: Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers.

Mr. Mark Threlfall, of Merrimack, NH: Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, Curly-Coated Retrievers, Cocker Spaniels (all Varieties), English Cocker Spaniels, Spinoni Italiani, Viszlas, Wirehaired Viszlas.


Mrs. Mary Ann Alston, of Ocean Pines, MD: American English Coonhounds, American Foxhounds, Black and Tan Coonhounds, Bluetick Coonhounds, Cirnechi dell’Etna, English Foxhounds, Harriers, Plotts, Portuguese Podengo Pequenos, Redbone Coonhounds, Sloughis, Treeing Walker Coonhounds.

Mr. Espen Engh, of 3405 Lier, Norway: Beagles (both Varieties) Dachshunds (all Varieties).

Mr. Age Gjentes, of 3405 Lier, Norway: Borzoi, Ibizan Hounds, Whippets.

Dr. Steven Herman, of Dade City, FL: Afghan Hounds, Bloodhounds, Greyhounds, Irish Wolfhounds, Pharaoh Hounds, Salukis, Scottish Deerhounds.

Mrs. Kimberly Meredith-Cavanna, of Pleasant Hill, CA: Basset Hounds.

Mr. James Reynolds, of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: Basenjis, Otterhounds, Petits Bassets Griffons Vendéens.

Mr. Jay Richardson, of Elgin, IL: Norwegian Elkhounds, Rhodesian Ridgebacks.


Mr. Jon Cole, of Nashville, TN: Anatolian Shepherd Dogs, Chinooks, Komondorok, Kuvaszok, Leonbergers, Neapolitan Mastiffs, Siberian Huskies.

Mrs. Dorothy Collier, of Sapphire, NC: Akitas, Alaskan Malamutes, Great Pyrenees, Newfoundlands, Rottweilers, Samoyeds, Standard Schnauzers.

Mrs. Kimberly Meredith-Cavanna, of Pleasant Hill, CA: Bernese Mountain Dogs, Boxers, Bullmastiffs, Cani Corsi, Giant Schnauzers, St. Bernards.

Mr. Walter Sommerfelt, of Lenoir City, TN: Boerboels, Dogues de Bordeaux, German Pinschers, Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs, Tibetan Mastiffs.

Ms. Joyce Vanek, of Evergreen, CO: Black Russian Terriers, Doberman Pinschers, Great Danes, Mastiffs, Portuguese Water Dogs.


Mr. Jon Cole, of Nashville, TN: American Staffordshire Terriers, Bull Terriers (both varieties), Miniature Bull Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers.

Ms. Julie Felten, of Wauconda, IL: Kerry Blue Terriers, Lakeland Terriers, Parson Russell Terriers, Rat Terriers, Russell Terriers, Sealyham Terriers, Standard Manchester Terriers, Welsh Terriers.

Mr. Jay Richardson, of Elgin, IL: Airedale Terriers, American Hairless Terrier, Border Terriers, Cairn Terriers, Irish Terriers, Miniature Schnauzers, Scottish Terriers, Smooth Fox Terriers and Wire Fox Terriers.

Mr. Bruce Schwartz, of Los Angeles, CA: Australian Terriers, Bedlington Terriers, Cesky Terriers, Dandie Dinmont Terriers, Glen of Imaal Terriers, Norfolk Terriers, Norwich Terriers, Skye Terriers, Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers, West Highland White Terriers.


Mr. Espen Engh, of 3405 Lier, Norway: Affenpinschers, Pekingese, Pomeranians, Yorkshire Terriers.

Mr. Peter Green, of Bowmansville, PA: Italian Greyhounds, Toy Poodles, Pugs.

Mrs. Jacqueline Stacy, of Chapel Hill, NC: Havanese, Japanese Chin, Maltese.

Ms. Beth Sweigart, of Bowmansville, PA: Brussels Griffons, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Chihuahuas (both varieties), English Toy Spaniels (both varieties).

Ms. Lee Whittier, of Vancouver, WA: Chinese Cresteds, Miniature Pinschers, Papillons, Shih Tzu, Silky Terriers, Toy Fox Terriers, Toy Manchester Terriers.


Mrs. Barbara Alderman, of Moon Township, PA: American Eskimo Dogs, Bichons Frises, Chow Chows, Cotons De Tulear, Finnish Spitz, French Bulldogs, Lhasa Apsos, Löwchen, Norwegian Lundehunds, Schipperkes, Tibetan Spaniels.

Mr. Jon Cole, of Nashville, TN: Bulldogs.

Mr. Peter Green, of Bowmansville, PA: Boston Terriers, Standard Poodles, and Toy Poodles.

Mr. Jay Richardson of Elgin, IL: Dalmatians, Keeshonden.

Mrs. Jacqueline Stacy, of Chapel Hill, NC: Chinese Shar-Pei, Shiba Inu, Tibetan Terriers, Xoloitzcuintlis.


Mr. Jon Cole, of Nashville, TN: Bouviers des Flandres.

Mrs. Dorothy Collier, of Sapphire, NC: Australian Shepherds, Bearded Collies, Beaucerons, Briards, Polish Lowland Sheepdogs, Pulik.

Mrs. Kimberly Meredith-Cavanna, of Pleasant Hill, CA: German Shepherd Dogs, Pumik.

Mr. James Reynolds, of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: Border Collies, Canaan Dogs, Cardigan Welsh Corgis, Collies (both varieties), Pembroke Welsh Corgis, Shetland Sheepdogs.

Mr. Walter Sommerfelt, of Lenoir City, TN: Australian Cattle Dogs, Belgian Malinois, Belgian Sheepdogs, Belgian Tervuren, Bergamascos, Berger Picards, Entlebucher Mountain Dogs, Finnish Lapphunds, Icelandic Sheepdogs, Miniature American Shepherds, Norwegian Buhunds, Old English Sheepdogs, Pyrenean Shepherds, Spanish Water Dogs, Swedish Vallhunds.


Top photo: Westminster Kennel Club 2016 Best in Show winner, German Shorthaired Pointer “CJ,” GCh. Vjk-Myst Garbonita's California Journey, with co-breeder/co-owner/handler Valerie Nunes-Atkinson, of Temecula, California. Photo: Courtesy Diana Han, Nor Cal Bulldogger
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