Gotham Hall – New York, New York

In a night without parallel, in a new location that many Manhattanites didn’t know existed, Pro Plan & Dogs In Review rolled out their 2013 Winkie winners to an expectant audience that was a who’s who of the dog world. The location at Gotham Hall did not disappoint with its dramatic ambiance ideally suited for what was about to be announced: the 2013 ¬†Winkie Awards.

Gotham Hall – New York, New York

The Show Dogs of the Year award was created in 1954. It is the oldest and most prestigious award given in the fancy. Tickets are by invitation only and highly coveted. To be nominated by the committee is a great honor, to win the award is a dream come true and considered the pinnacle of achievement in lives devoted to purebred dogs and the sport.

From (L-R)Nancy Pincus, Amiko Allen, Tom Pincus, Valerie Nunes-Atkinson, Leon Goetz, John Adams, Kevin Lord

The nominating committee chose an outstanding group of candidates & shows for the fancy to choose from. The ProPlan guests were treated to a spectacular multi-media show highlighting the careers of the nominees. Then, the moment everyone waited for… the announcements of the 2013 winners.

Hall of Fame 2013 Inductee – Ellen Charles
Handler of the Year: Valerie Nunes-Atkinson
Owner Handler of the Year: Leon Goetz
Judge of the Year – Edd Bivin
Breeder of the Year – Elaine Paquette Quiche’s Bouviers
Show of the Year – Houston Kennel Club

Group Winners for 2013
Sporting Group – GCH CH Clussexx Collaboration With Traddles “Seymour”
Hound Group GCH CH Kiarry’s Pandora’s Box “Jewell”
Toy Group GCH CH Marlex Classic Red Glare “Classie”
Non Sporting Group – Bichon GCh Ch VogelFlight Honor To Pillow Talk “Honor”
Herding Group GCH CH Cordmaker Topsy Turvey “Charlotte”
Terrier Group GCH CH Afterall Painting The Sky “Sky”
Working Group – GCH CH Claircreek Impression De Matisse “Matisse”

Attendees of the event loved the new location, complimenting the service and the food. Jennifer Stevens said “the Gotham Hall is gorgeous, walking distance from the Affinia and the Hotel Penn, the food was wonderful, the presentations exciting. Ellen Charles’s presentation was terrific and Mary Olund’s Acceptance speech was awesome.”

Surrounded by family and friends, the honorees were enthusiastic about the new location, and gracious in their comments, acknowledging their teams, what the Winkie means to them as an honor, the highlight of already storied careers. Valerie Nunez-Atkinson commented “And to my wonderful assistants…..Super exciting night…..Thank you to all my clients for entrusting me with all their fabulous dogs year after year. Thank you Simply, it’s not possible without you.Thank you for all your hard work and dedication. I love you to to pieces.” Leon Goetz, accompanied by his partner John Adams, offered “It was an honor just to be nominated but the win represents what I’ve always believed & tried to achieve. With the right dog, work & perseverance, owner handlers can successfully compete alongside the pros. I’m very honored to represent all the hard working owner handlers in the sport.”

Ellen Charles noted: “What an exciting night, the new venue is beautiful, the food and service excellent and so wonderful to win two Winkies. The Induction into the Hall of Fame is such an honor And hard for me to believe standing with those who I have admired and learned so much from in past years.”