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The annual AKC Breeder of the Year award honors those breeders who have made an impact on their breed and dedicated their lives to improving the health, temperament, and quality of purebred dogs.

On December 18 at the AKC National Championship Presented by Royal Canin, Kent Boyles and Liz Oster were awarded the 2018 Breeder of the Year award for their Kenlyn/Marquis German Shepherd Dogs.

“We are proud to honor Kent Boyles and Liz Oster with the 2018 AKC Breeder of the Year award,” said Dennis B. Sprung, AKC President and CEO. “The Kenlyn/Marquis German Shepherd Dogs prefix has been associated with top quality German Shepherd Dogs in the United States and their influence on the breed will be seen for years to come.”

Kent Boyles and Liz Oster have over 60 years of experience between the two of them. They have bred more than 100 champions and finished more than 400 titles in the German Shepherd Dog breed.

Liz is a second-generation fancier whose parents bred, showed, and trained German Shepherd Dogs since the 1950s. Kent purchased his first German Shepherd Dog at age 15.

Kent and Liz will be honored with a commission from a canine portraitist to memorialize a prominent dog from their breeding program. Their names will be inscribed on a perpetual trophy, which will be displayed, along with the painting, at the AKC headquarters in New York City.

Breeder of the Year Group Winners

All seven Group honorees were presented with medallions during the show on December 15, 2018.  Group winners included:

  • Sporting Group: Wilson and Bonnie Pike, Silverhall Cocker Spaniels
  • Hound Group: Robert Urban, Foxfire Black, and Tan Coonhounds
  • Working Group: Victoria Weaver and Pamela Marsh, Gamegard Rottweilers
  • Terrier Group: Laurie Zembrzuski and Gaby Gilbeau, LAMZ Bedlington Terriers
  • Toy Group: Larry and Penny Dewey, Ruffian Miniature Pinschers
  • Non-Sporting Group: Robert and Linda Love Banghart, Rebelrun Chow Chows
  • Herding Group: Kent Boyles and Liz Oster, Kenlyn/Marquis German Shepherd Dogs