The Canine Legislation Department is pleased to announce that Charlotte
McGowan has been named a recipient of the AKC Community Achievement
Award for her diligent work on legislative matters of interest to the
dog fancy. The award recognizes outstanding public education and legislation
efforts of AKC-affiliated clubs, AKC-recognized federations, and their
members. Each honoree receives a certificate and a $1,000 check payable
to the club or federation to support public education and canine legislation
Charlotte received this recognition for her outstanding service as
Legislative Liaison for two parent clubs: the Papillon Club of America
and the American Shetland Sheepdog Association. She was also recently
named legislative chair for the Massachusetts Federation of Dog Clubs
and the legislative point person for the National Animal Interest Alliance
Trust, an association dedicated to promoting animal welfare, supporting
responsible animal use and strengthening the bond between humans and
“Charlotte’s steadfast commitment to protecting the rights
of purebred dog owners has had a profound effect on the sport today,”
said Noreen Baxter, AKC's VP of Communications. “Using her own
time and money, she researches and monitors those issues effecting the
fancy nationwide, and in her home state of Massachusetts, works tirelessly
to petition lawmakers about the dangers of breed-specific and breeder
licensing legislation. We are proud to recognize all of Charlotte’s
efforts by honoring her with the AKC Community Achievement Award."
A firm advocate for the rights of dog owners, Charlotte spends a great
deal of time and effort monitoring and distributing canine legislation
information to interested parties. She reviews national and international
news related to animal rights extremism and alerts the AKC Canine Legislation
department and other interested groups of impending legislation. She
then posts legislative news from all over the country to email lists
informing the dog fancy and dog owners of current legislative issues
in their locales.
Charlotte also regularly attends hearings on Boston’s Beacon
Hill. In 2004, for example, McGowan spent three days in Boston lobbying
against a proposed bill that required anyone who bred more than one
litter a year to be licensed. She lobbied all 40 members of the Massachusetts
State Senate, and recruited other fanciers to join her efforts. The
breeder-licensing bill in question died in the conference committee.
Unfortunately, this same proposal is back this year, but no doubt Charlotte
will be working once again to help defeat this legislation.
The Port Chester Obedience Training Club (PCOTC) also received an AKC
Community Achievement Award for its public education efforts throughout
the greater New York metropolitan area. PCOTC members have worked diligently
to promote responsible dog ownership and basic obedience training whenever
possible. PCOTC’s agility, obedience and rally demonstrations
at “AKC Responsible Dog Ownership Day’s” 2004 flagship
event in New York City were among the most popular with the audience.
for the AKC Community Achievement Awards are accepted year-round. Up
to three honorees are named each quarter. They receive a certificate
and a $1,000 check payable to the club or federation’s public
education and canine legislation efforts.