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The American Kennel Club® announced today that Director of Judging Operations, Peter Gaeta will retire on March 2, 2009. Gaeta joined AKC in 1999 as an Executive Field Representative in the Fort Worth-Dallas area. In July 2005 he was promoted to Director of Judging Operations and began working in the Raleigh AKC Operations Center.

“Peter’s decade of dedication to AKC has left a positive mark on the judging department and our organization,” said Darrell Hayes, Vice President, Dog Show Judges. “He will be missed by his colleagues and we wish him success in his future endeavors.”

Under his direction the department was expanded to include Judges Education and Gaeta was responsible for implementing and streamlining the AKC Judges Institute. In addition, he contributed to revisions in the judging approval policy and process. He devoted much time to addressing AKC kennel clubs and judges groups around the country and helping them understand AKC policies and procedures. He has written numerous articles for AKC and other fancy-related publications.

Gaeta has been a purebred dog enthusiast since the early sixties. While his first purebred dog was a Pug, his time in the show ring began with Great Danes. Later as a handler, Gaeta extended his expertise to a great variety of breeds. During his tenure at AKC, he and his wife Terri have enjoyed a house full of Bedlington Terriers. Gaeta will retire to Charlotte, NC, where he will pursue a judging career and return to what started it all: the search for a new puppy to play with.