AKC Breeder of The Year

Sometime in August of 2006 the telephone in Tracy, CA, rang. It was AKC officially calling to speak with Bev Verna. "Oh no!" Bev thought, racking her brain for reasons why AKC might -call. "What form did I not fill out correctly?" was her first thought.

The AKC caller, a Mr. Rella, politely asked, "How are you today?" Bev said, "Fine" in a shaky voice. "I have some news that might make your day better," Mr. Rella said brightly. "You have been chosen Terrier Breeder of the Year!"

Bev describes the moment: "I think I was in shock and said a few dumb things after that!"  It took a while for Mr Rella to convince me that this was really true.  Although the exact process of choosing the various Breeders of the Year is unclear, Bev said that she had learned that the AKC Board is involved and there are certan requirements that needed to be met --such as years of participation and number of champions bred and their quality - both in the show ring and their "get."

 

Beyond her shock, Bev said, "I am very humbled that I was chosen from the thousands of dedicated breeders everywhere. We all do the same thing, care for our dogs, research and study to come up with a good breeding, spend sleepless nights awaiting the whelping, and then hover over the litter daily. After that we agonize over which is the best pup and then devote loads of attention to the one we pick. I think I represent all of us and am very proud to do that."She continued, "Part of the award criteria was 'success in the show ring' and I would be remiss here if I did not acknowledge my partner of the last ten years, Jerry Weirick. Jerry has been an instrumental part in the success Regency has enjoyed in the ring. I don't think I could have done it without him. He has wonderful hands on a dog and they all love him! He has finished not only many Regency dogs but clients' dogs as well.

At the ceremony, during the AKC/Eukanuba World show, the AKC's Mr. Ron Menaker put a beautiful medallion around each of the seven group awardees' necks and the announcer read a small synopsis about the individuals.

"I remember being so nervous up until then," recalled Bev, "but as Ron slipped the medallion over my head he smiled and winked --that was a real tension reliever! I'd like to think he did that just for me, but most likely all the ladies got that same wink and cute smile!"

This honor is one that I will never forget and that I will be forever grateful for.  When you devote a lifetime to your passion, it is a feeling beyond description to be recognized by your peers and a group as monumental to the advancement of dogs as the AKC.