Mr. Rafael DeSantiago
Rafael de Santiago
Rafael de Santiago, of San Juan, is one of Puerto Rico’s leading authorities on purebred dogs. In 1972, Mr. Santiago founded the immensely successful "Radesa" line of Afghan Hounds, in partnership with Roberto Vélez-Picó. A dog of particular note was Blue Boy do Vale Negro, campaigned by Mr. Santiago in the United States, Europe, and Latin America.
Mr. Santiago is president of the Federación Canófila de Puerto Rico and in that role has developed social programs involving canine therapy, search-and-rescue, and drug-control work. In 1997, he headed the organizing committee and judged Best in Show for the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) World Dog Show, in San Juan.
Mr. Santiago was a member of the FCI Standards Commission for eight years and in 1999 was elected to the FCI General Committee. He is an FCI all-breed judge and AKC-approved for 10 hound breeds.
He is a fixture on the international circuit, having judged on five continents and at 15 World Dog Shows. He has judged Dog of the Year in Portugal, Collare de Oro in Italy, the Supreme FCI Championship in Switzerland, and Westminster in New York City. He is returning to the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship after his debut in 2006.
Mr. Santiago is president of an advertising and public relations agency in San Juan.