Articles Index, In Memoriam, People
Some called her Anne or Annie. Others referred to her as Annieclark (as if both first and last names were one). Most of us probably called her Mrs. Clark ... at least if we were showing a dog to her. Whatever our relationship, to have known Anne Rogers Clark was to have known an icon. She was a huge force in the world of dogs and her Surrey prefix is found in many Norfolk pedigrees today. She was physically imposing, yet even the smallest dogs seemed to melt at her touch. When judging, she was kind to beginners, always, yet she was also a stern taskmaster when it came to keeping her ring in order. Anne Clark passed away on December 20, 2006 following a long battle with cancer. She was 77 years old.
A native New Yorker and a second generation dog person, she became the first woman professional handler to win Best in Show at Westminster in 1956, handling the Toy Poodle, Ch. Wilbur White Swan. She handled two more Westminster BIS winners, in 1959 and 1961.
Mrs. Clark bred English Cocker Spaniels, Standard and Miniature Poodles, and Whippets, in addition to Norfolks. A past President of the Poodle Club of America and the English Cocker Spaniel Club of America and a member of Ladies Dog Club, she won just about every prestigious award in the sport, including Handler of the Year, Judge of the Year (three times), the Mark Morris Lifetime Award, and Dog Writer of the Year. A frequent contributor to the AKC Gazette and co-author of the International Encyclopedia of Dogs, her most recent book was "Annie on Dogs" a compilation of her monthly columns written for Dogs in Review magazine.
Mrs. Clark was predeceased by her husband, James Edward Clark, and had no surviving family. In tribute to her, we are reprinting an interview conducted by Debby Pritchard and first published in ANTIC in June, 1997.
Contributions in Mrs. Clark's memory may be made to Take the Lead, PO Box 6353, Watertown, NY 13601, or to the Poodle Club of America Foundation, Inc. 2945 Jamestown Road, Long Lake, MN 55356.
ANTIC, March, 2007
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