Message from MNRC Past President John Blackbird

My fellow hunt test enthusiast
As I contemplate the last five years as a member on the Master National Retriever Club Board of Directors, and now as past president, my thoughts are filled with many fond memories.
JB_NewsletterWatching Handlers and their dogs compete in challenging National level test, designed by some of the best judges in our game is a personal highlight. I have been fortunate to compete in 10 Master Nationals, and in 2012 for the first time with 2 dogs and remember every first series of every test. The anticipation, anxiety, the rolling stomach and jitters are all part of the excitement when competing at the Master Nationals.
I have shared with many of you the gratitude of a pewter plate but also the disappointment of not completing what we came to do. But whatever the outcome, it’s the friendship between all of us that is most important to me. I value the lifelong friends this sport has given me.
I am grateful for their support, their wisdom, and their genuine friendship. I extend a special thank you to my dear friend Ray Muth, Thanks Boss.
The 2012 Master National held in Demopolis Alabama made history of being the largest AKC performance event ever. I am proud to have been part of this grand event. On behalf of the Master National board we thank the Master National judges for their time, energy, and dedication. As a team you successfully accomplished the challenge of the first four flights Master National, not an easy task. Your commitment is beyond appreciation!
To my fellow Board Members,
A heartfelt thanks for your commitment to dedicate your time, and knowledge, and for your personal sacrifices to assure that the 2012 Master National would be the grand event that it was! To Chief Marshal Janet Wood, thank you for your leadership, and organizational skills.
Gloria Mundell your 2013 Master National President and her board are already busy with the logistics for our 2013 event to be held in Kansas.
With the closing of the 2013 event I will no longer be a Master National board member. After achieving a personal goal of judging a Master National in 2006, I felt the need to do more to support this volunteer organization that has given my family, my dogs, and me so much. These last six years of service has only enriched my life, and I am grateful and honored for the opportunity to serve the hunt test community.
See you in the field — John Blackbird

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