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The Westminster Kennel Club Announces 
New Director of Communications
 
Gail Miller Bisher
Gail Miller Bisher, a long-time communications professional as well as dog show judge and exhibitor, has been named Director of Communications for The Westminster Kennel Club. She replaces David Frei, who has moved on to other opportunities but will be hosting his last telecast of the Dog Show in 2016 on CNBC (Monday, Feb. 15) and USA Network (Tuesday, Feb. 16) from 8-10pm ET.
 
Bisher (pronounced By-sher) has more than 30 years of experience in the dog world as a handler, trainer, writer and spokesperson. She is an AKC-licensed conformation judge and Canine Good Citizen evaluator, with a background including conformation, obedience, herding and earthdog trials.
 
Professionally, she has handled marketing, business development and public relations for The American Kennel Club as well as various dog websites. She has appeared in major media including NBC's Today show, the New York Times and CNN as well as handling radio media tours nationwide.
 
Bisher's history with The Westminster Kennel Club began when she won second place in Junior Showmanship at the WKC show, and she has worked in the press room and produced video segments at The Westminster Dog Show in past years.
 
"We are delighted to have Gail Bisher as the new face of The Westminster Kennel  Club," said Club President Mr. Sean W. McCarthy. "Her experience in the dog world combined with her high level of qualifications as a Communications professional ensure that the 140-year legacy of The Westminster Kennel Club is in good hands."
 
Westminster Show Chair Mr. Thomas H. Bradley, 3d., seconded the confidence: "Gail is a pleasure to work with as well as a consummate communications pro," he said.
 
For her part, Bisher could not be happier. "For someone who loves dogs as I do, there is nothing more exciting than to be part of The Westminster Kennel Club - the premier organization in our sport and such a strong voice for all dogs," she stated.
 
Assisting Bisher in the Communications Department this year are Katherine Wright, a third-generation terrier breeder and exhibitor, and Terri Cude, who spent many years in dog sports along with having 30+ years' experience in the communications field.
 

 
-- Gail Miller Bisher
Director of Communications
The Westminster Kennel Club

 
 
 
 
 
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About the Show

From the Kennel Club of Philadelphia and celebrating America's continued love of man's best friend, "The National Dog Show Presented by Purina" returns for its 14th year on NBC. Hosted by actor, author and Broadway star John O'Hurley, the event features 2,000 of the nation's leading canines from over 170 breeds (including the world's largest, smallest and most exotic) strutting their fur in the hopes of following in the pawsteps of Nathan the Bloodhound, last year's crowd-favorite top dog.

"The Dean" David Frei provides expert show commentary, and Mary Carillo chimes in as an adept sideline reporter for this ultimate canine showdown. But which dogs will have their day, and which will leave with their tails between their legs? After all, there can only be one "Best in Show."

Two-hour LIVE special

Ada Nieves
 
Since 2004 Ada has been the dog fashion designer for  The NY Pet Fashion Show  celebrating its 11th year on 2015. She is the Creative Director of the show along Co-Chair.
 
In additional to that,  her runway shows include ; NYC Major’s Alliance The Adoptapalooza, Christmas Feet at Bryant Park, Fashion Show for the New England Grooming Expo, Sizoo Barcelona 2005, ABC’s Canine Couture, NYC Canine Cruise , the Queens Pet Fashion Show in NY, Meet The Breeds Pet fashion Shows for both AKC (dogs) & TICA (cats ), Matilda The Algonquin Hotel Cat Benefit events and many more were now include cats and chickens to model. A video of her Rat Fashion Show at the first and only NYC Rat Convention in 2011 went viral and got her national and international attention having her appear at the iconic Late Show with David Letterman.
 
Have worked as Pet Stylist for epsiodes of 30 Rock, From Underdog to Wonderdog , TV reality show on E!, Ice loves Coco, The Anderson Cooper Tv Show and the re-enactments of most memorable moments of the VMA's for MTV. Most recently dressing the cats for Kitty break at Puppy Bowl, the most watched show besides football games - Animal Planet TV network. 
Her own Chihuahua Vanilla plays judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg at Last week tonight with john oliver HBO show with more than 1 million views in the Dog Supreme Court.

David Frei is well-known to millions of television viewers as the longtime co-host of USA Network’s annual telecast of the popular Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

David has co-hosted the live Westminster coverage from New York’s Madison Square Garden since 1990. In connection with that role, he has made many appearances on The Today Show, Good Morning America, The Early Show, Ellen, The View, Martha Stewart, Charlie Rose, and many more. His adventures with the Westminster Best In Show winners have taken him many places, including the White House and for a ride on a float in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. He has been director of communications for the Westminster Kennel Club since 2003.

David also has been co-host on NBC of The National Dog Show on Thanksgiving Day since its inception in 2002, a telecast seen by about 20 million viewers every year.

His new book, Angel On A Leash, about his work and observations in the world of therapy dogs and his life in dogs, was released in November 2011.

A longtime breeder-owner-handler and judge in the world of purebred dogs, he has judged all over the world, including the U.S., Canada, Australia, Denmark and China, and has also enjoyed much competitive success with his Afghan Hounds, Brittanys and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. His Ch. Stormhill’s Who’s Zoomin Who was the #1 Afghan in 1989 and retired as the top-winning female in the history of the breed.

But he is most proud of the wonderful work that his own dogs do as therapy dogs, regularly visiting patients and families at the Ronald McDonald House New York and at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York. His Brittanys, Teigh and Belle, who have recently passed, pioneered the practice in many places, and his Cavalier, Angel, and Brittany, Grace, are carrying on for them today.

With Westminster, David helped to create Angel On A Leash, a charitable activity supporting a therapy dog program at the Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital of NewYork-Presbyterian. Angel On A Leash has become an independent 501(c)(3) charity with David as president and CEO, and has expanded into a number of additional facilities across the country. The success of the program provided the inspiration for his new book of the same name.

David’s contributions to the world of dogs have been recognized by the Dog Writers Association of America in 2009 with its prestigious American Kennel Club Distinguished Service Award, and in 2010 by the World Dog Press Association with its Media Award.

He also does volunteer work with Transfiguration Church and School in New York’s Chinatown, and in 2006 was honored by the Transfiguration Education Association with a special award for “his loyal support of Transfiguration Schools and his dedication to philanthropic causes.” His work with Angel On A Leash and his own therapy dogs has been recognized by the American Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club with its prestigious Patricia L. Kanan award, and by a number of other organizations as well.

He is a past board member for Take The Lead, a dog show world charity that provides for people with life-threatening and financially devastating illnesses and injuries. He is a past board member of the Morris Animal Foundation, a member of the St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital Sports Council, and a past president of the Afghan Hound Club of America.

David is the co-author, with Mike Lingenfelter, of The Angel By My Side, a critically-acclaimed best seller about a heroic service dog, published in 2002 (www.angelbymyside.com) and the winner of two DWAA awards as best book of the year.

In 2004, he appeared in one of the final episodes of the HBO hit series, Sex And The City, playing a smitten dog show judge awarding a big win to Charlotte and her Cavalier (mostly to Charlotte).

Previously, he held public relations positions with the Denver Broncos, San Francisco 49ers and ABC-TV Sports in New York. A native of Oregon, he owned two very unique and popular sports bar restaurants in the Seattle area, as well as his own public relations agency, before moving to New York City in 2002. His wife, Cherilyn, is a certified Catholic chaplain and Director of Spiritual Care and Family Support at The Ronald McDonald House of New York City.

Visit www.westminsterkennelclub.org for more information on the show ...

DAVID FREI

Expert Analyst

________

David Frei, one of the most authoritative voices in the dog show world, is a natural choice to serve as the expert analyst for NBC’s The National Dog Show Presented by Purina®.

An American Kennel Club (AKC)-licensed judge who has officiated dog shows all over the world, Frei has hosted USA Network’s coverage of the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show from Madison Square Garden since 1990 and has a myriad of other television credits.  He has co-hosted the National Dog Show since its inception in 2002.

In 2011, Frei published Angel on a Leash (BowTie Press), which tells of his years of experience and work with therapy dogs. His first book, The Angel By My Side (Hay House), published in 2002 with Mike Lingenfelter, tells the true story of the Delta Society Service Dog of the Year that helped save a man suffering from numerous heart complications. The book claimed two Dog Writers Association of America (DWAA) awards in 2002.

In the dog show world, Frei has enjoyed much competitive success as a breeder/handler/owner of Afghan Hounds and Brittanys.  Despite this competitive success, Frei is most proud of the work that his dogs do in therapy efforts, visiting patients and families at the Ronald McDonald House of New York and at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Frei is the Director of Communications for the Westminster Kennel Club, and before that, was the Director of Media Relations for the American Kennel Club. He is the founder and chief executive of Angel on a Leash, a non-profit foundation that facilitates therapy dog visits to patients in hospitals and healthcare facilities around the country. He is a member of the Sports Council for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis and volunteers at Transfiguration Church and School in New York’s Chinatown.

Frei has held public relations positions with the Denver Broncos, San Francisco 49ers and ABC-TV Sports in New York. He lives in New York City with his wife Cherilyn, the Chaplain and Director of Family Support at the Ronald McDonald House in New York.

ELITE COMPETITION, NEW BREEDS AND MORE
IN NATIONAL DOG SHOW PRESENTED BY PURINA®
THANKSGIVING DAY ON NBC FOLLOWING MACY’S PARADE

Holiday TV Special, Hosted by John O’Hurley & David Frei,
Also Airing Saturday Night in Primetime on NBC

New York, NY  – The NBC Thanksgiving Day special, “The National Dog Show Presented by Purina®,” will crown one of America’s great purebreds as its 2013 champion on Thanksgiving Day, bringing canine competition and entertainment into America’s living rooms for the 12th year.

The holiday special (noon-2 p.m. in all time zones) follows the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on NBC and is watched annually by a total of almost 20 million viewers. Over 175 breeds vie for Best in Show honors in the tradition-rich Kennel Club of Philadelphia competition. An encore presentation will air on NBC in primetime on Saturday, November 30, from 8-10 p.m. ET.

“Families now know to find the National Dog Show Presented by Purina® on Thanksgiving Day at noon following the Macy’s Parade,” said Jon Miller, President, Programming, NBC Sports and NBC Sports Network.  “With the encore presentation Saturday night, these great dogs get to show their stuff in primetime for the second consecutive year.”

The special is a celebration of America’s fascination with man’s best friend, hosted by beloved TV personality John O’Hurley, best known as “J. Peterman” on Seinfeld. O’Hurley is joined by expert analyst David Frei, the voice of the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show on USA Network and America’s foremost authority on the sport.

The National Dog Show also boasts a powerful online presence at www.NBCSports.com and at www.NationalDogShow.com.  Because of heavy interest from breed enthusiasts around the world, those platforms offer a look at every dog in the group competition, featuring the walks and judging of all the breed-winning canines.  The online video will include extensive highlights from the TV special and video from the 11 past Best in Show winners.  The sites will also feature behind the scenes photos and video, capturing all of the backstage energy generated by 1,500-plus eager canines.

Unlike traditional dog show coverage, the two-hour special’s unique content is facilitated by the open format of the event, one of only four remaining “benched” shows in which the dogs are on display all day for the visiting public.

The show will spotlight three new AKC-recognized breeds, the Portugese Podengo Pequeno, the Rat Terrier and the Chinook, making their television and major-event debuts.

The National Dog Show Presented by Purina takes place on Saturday, November 16, at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center as part of the Kennel Club of Philadelphia’s annual cluster of all-breed shows.  

The producer of the event is Carson International of Ketchum, ID, the world’s most prominent producer and packager of canine events for live audiences and television.

 

As the World’s Most Pup-ular Hotel, New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania prepares exclusive amenities & events to welcome 2013 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show participants

December 6, 2012. (New York City, NY)—Recognized as the 2012 Pet Friendly Hotel of the Year and host hotel for the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania is preparing to welcome all canine hopefuls participating in the 2013 event. As in previous years, the Hotel will host a majority of the Westminster Dog Show contestants in New York.

The 137th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show takes place on February 11th and 12th, 2013 with only the Breed judging at Piers 92/94. The Westminster Kennel Club has arranged shuttle buses to transport participants and guests directly from the Hotel to Piers 92/94 throughout each day. The Groups, Junior Showmanship Finals and important Best In Show will still be held at Madison Square Garden, directly across from New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania.

“We are ready to host the VIP’s (Very Important Pooches) for the annual Dog Show given our perfect Westminster location, unbeatable rates and exclusive guest amenities,” said Jim Flynn, General Manager/All Dogs’ Best Friend at the Hotel. “Westminster guests will have a great show in our Lobby alone as they get to see up close all of the different breeds and perhaps even a future Best in Show.”

No one does it better than the Hotel Pennsylvania and the property is known for hosting Westminster champions, including 2008 Best in Show Uno the Beagle, and even the first ever ‘pup’tual Westminster wedding ceremony in 2011. To prepare for this special occasion, the property is planning to set up a variety of exclusive onsite daily events and amenities to coincide with the Show exclusively for guests, including:

- Direct shuttle bus service for Dog Show participants and guests from the Hotel to Piers 92/94 each day.
- Exclusive welcome package for Westminster guests.
- A live Westminster Kennel Club broadcast satellite feed from the Hotel’s Lobby.
- Hosting the New York Pet Fashion Show taking place on Friday, February 11th; starting at 7 pm EST.
- Hosting the largest in-door doggie spa in all of New York, the 1st In-Line, Inc. sponsored Green Room Salon & S’paw’ offers a variety of amenities for Show participant: bathing/beauty parlor/salon, dog grooming/comfort station, exercise area, walking area, and even his and hers relieving area.
- Hosting the The American Canine Education Foundation (ACEF) & the Senior Conformation Judges Association (SCJA) 30th Annual Buffet Reception & Dance.
- Our exclusive on-site Doggie Concierge will be working hard to attend to all canine requirements (such as ‘pup’arazzi interviews and hotel tours) related to the Westminster Dog Show.
- The Paw Mall, located at the Dog S’paw’, will feature all the latest accessories and gifts for both owners and pets to enjoy, from jewelry to pet clothing.
…and so much more!

New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania is offering unbeatable room rates for Westminster guests with dogs and those without dogs. To stay at the host hotel where all the Westminster Dog Show action happens, contact 212-736-5000 (locally) or 800-223-8585 (toll-free) or visit www.hotelpenn.com today.

Westminster is the oldest, continuous sporting event in America, with the exception of the Kentucky Derby.  The Dog Show is the most prestigious of National Dog Shows and has been held every year despite power shortages, hazardous weather conditions, economic depressions and World Wars.

About New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania
Since 1919, New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania has been host to millions of visitors to Manhattan, more than any other hotel in the world. The hotel is one of only two hotels in Manhattan to earn the prestigious ENERGY STAR award, which exemplifies superior energy performance and efficiency. With 1,700 rooms and over 90,000 square feet of function and adjacent exhibit space, the hotel’s location on 7th Avenue at 33rd Street is conveniently located to the Midtown business district and within walking distance to many of Manhattan’s famed tourist attractions, including Times Square, the Theater District and the Empire State Building. Directly across from Penn Station and with most major subway lines within one block makes getting to and around Manhattan exceptionally easy. Reservations can be made on-line at www.hotelpenn.com or by calling 212-736-5000 or toll-free at 800-223-8585. The World’s Most Popular Hotel is a registered trademark of New York’s Hotel Pennsylvania.

“THE NATIONAL DOG SHOW PRESENTED BY PURINA”

2012 FACT SHEET


WHAT:    “The National Dog Show Presented by Purina” is the annual two-hour, family-oriented television special broadcast on NBC.  This American Kennel Club (AKC) - sanctioned dog show, hosted by the Kennel Club of Philadelphia, is one of the oldest and most prestigious in the country. This year’s show is the 11th edition of the American family TV tradition.  The Kennel Club of Philadelphia shows have been around since the late 1800’s.

The event has become a Thanksgiving Day television institution, generating a total audience approaching 20 million viewers each year as part of NBC’s traditional Thanksgiving Day family entertainment block of programming, which begins with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Some 2,000 of the nation’s top dogs compete for Best in Show honors in a competition open to all registered purebred dogs. 

FORMAT:  The National Dog Show Presented by Purina is one of only five benched format shows remaining in the United States.  Benched format means that the show is open to the public and the canines are on display all day long so that attendees can see the dogs up close and meet their owners to learn about the breeds and about the responsible dog ownership. 


WHEN: The National Dog Show is set to broadcast on television on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, from noon to 2 p.m. to all time zones, following NBC’s coverage of the Macy’s Parade.  The actual event will take place on Saturday, Nov 17 at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center at Oaks/Valley Forge.

WHERE: The Greater Philadelphia Expo Center is located in Oaks, PA., adjacent to historic Valley Forge, PA, and just 15 miles west of Philadelphia. 

WHO: Purebred dogs from over 170 breeds, including many of America’s elite show dogs and their owners and handlers competing for Best of Breed, First in Group and the ultimate title of Best in Show.

NEW BREEDS: This year, the National Dog Show will introduce two new breeds to America’s TV viewing audience.  The new breeds are:
-    Russell Terrier – Terrier Group
-    Treeing Walker Coonhound – Hound Group

THERAPY DOG TEAM: A team of three dynamic young canines – Dogues de Bordeaux  named Li’l Abner and Stella and a Staffordshire Terrier mix named Vivian – will step forward this year to carry on the tradition of the National Dog Show Therapy Dog Ambassador program. The trio, all from the Philadelphia area, make regular visits to the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House where they actively participate in therapy work with patients and families.


TV COMMENTATORS:  Television personality John O’Hurley will again host the NBC special along with David Frei, America’s foremost canine expert and the co-host of USA Network’s coverage of the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.  The Broadway star and comedic actor, O’Hurley is best known for his work on the popular television show Seinfeld.  Frei, the director of communications for Westminster, also works as a judge and has owned/handled some of the world’s
top-ranked canines over the years.  Mary Carillo, best known for her work as an Olympics correspondent and tennis analyst for NBC and other networks, will be the sideline reporter.

ONLINE: www.nationaldogshow.com  The National Dog Show Presented by Purina website features additional video of the show, with breed and group judging, providing canine enthusiasts with a scope of coverage that includes all of the breeds in the show.

EVENT PRODUCER:    Carson International of Ketchum, ID, the world’s most prominent producer and packager of canine events for live audiences and television.


TV LISTING:    The National Dog Show Presented by Purina®
Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 22nd
NBC
Noon-2 p.m. in all time zones following coverage of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

This two-hour family entertainment special has become a major event in the dog show world, hosted by The Kennel Club of Philadelphia and sanctioned by the
American Kennel Club (AKC). The special spotlights the judging of the finest show dogs from over 170 breeds. The show is hosted by purebred dog owner John O’Hurley, with expert commentary by renowned expert David Frei, the dean of dog show commentators. Since the broadcast first aired 11 years ago, over 19 million viewers tune in each year for this tradition.

Before the dogs hit the Westminster floor...

In case there are any nerves, perhaps Debbie Zimmerman can calm your dog down with a massage.

"I still get a lot of people saying, ‘I wouldn't do that,’ but I push them and then they take dog upstairs and realize this made a difference,” said the pet masseuse.

A massage feels great to us pet parents so why not your pets too.

Charlotte Reed is a popular pet expert that routinely brightens up television screens, graces radio waves, appears on best selling authors' lists and can be found lecturing at sold-out seminars.

As the fore-most expert on everything pet related, Reed counts her unique entrance into the pet industry as a source for her excitement, knowledge and dedication. Feeling a bit under the weather one afternoon, Reed decided to cut her day short working as a securities attorney at a Wall Street firm. Upon returning to her apartment, Reed was surprised to find her friendly, male dog walker…wearing an expensive gown and voguing (highly stylized modern dance characterized by photo model-like poses integrated with angular, linear and rigid arm, leg, and body movement) in a full-length mirror as her dogs watched the dance performance for the loft above. It was right then that Reed decided that the care of her Katie and Kidder, two American Cocker Spaniels, was only to be trusted to a genuine pet professional, not a male, Madonna wannabe. After not being able to find one, Reed left her job on Wall Street and founded the ultimate pet care firm, Two Dogs & A Goat Incorporated.

Reed’s story did not end there but has been chronicled in pages of New York Magazine, Smart Money and others. Her story has grown to become an New York City legend. A few years ago, Reed was attending a lavish party at the Gramercy Park Hotel when a well-known agent launched into a crowd pleasing story. Unbeknownst to him it was about Reed’s run-in with the dancing dog walker. Reed promptly offered up a few corrections of the story, shocking both the agent and his entertained audience. When asked how she knew the details, she responded that she was the story’s canine champion. Hence, the laughter never stopped; but, neither has Reed’s pet-friendly career nor has she failed to hear her story told again and again.

From the day of the incident, Reed has advised, suggested and advocated on behalf of pets and their people. Whether it was an famous songstress wanting her Maltipoo styled for a woman’s magazine photo shoot; an owner of a lost pet seeking advice how to find his dog; an award-winning pianist needing expert training tips for his three Labradors; a favorite, court house waitress desiring a solution her cat’s constant scratching; or even, a global pr firm requiring help understanding pet consumer behavior, Reed continues to provide the solution-oriented and cost-effective answers to lead happier and healthier pet lifestyles.

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