New Jersey – The American Kennel Club (AKC) presented New Jersey Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle with the AKC Legislator of the Year award in recognition of her valiant advocacy for ensuring responsible grooming practices in the state on June 10th.
The AKC recognizes Assemblywoman Huttle for her leadership on pet grooming safety issues. Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle introduced the “Pet Groomers Licensing Act;” also known as “Bijou’s Law,” which established health and safety certification requirements for groomers. Sheila Goffe, AKC Vice President, Government Relations, commented, “appropriate grooming to ensure health and wellbeing is part of responsible dog ownership. Health and safety should always be primary considerations when grooming a dog. We commend Assemblywoman Huttle on her important and balanced work on this issue, which protects the health and safety of pets and advances the industry through educational resources.”
Upon receiving the award, Assemblywoman Huttle remarked, “It is an honor to be recognized by the American Kennel Club as the Legislator of the Year. Our pets are beloved members of our families, we must continue to do everything in our power to keep them healthy and safe. I look forward to a continued partnership with the AKC as we look to further advance animal rights in the state of New Jersey.”
The award was presented by Jeffrey Ball, President of the New Jersey Federation of Dogs (NJFDC), noting
“the Assemblywoman looks to address any problem or issue head on, and not only has shown concern for her constituents in her district but the entire state of New Jersey as well. Those constituents included all members of the households, including our four-legged family. The AKC and NJFDC would like to thank Assemblywomen Huttle for all she has done and recognize her as 2018 Legislator of the Year."
About the Award
The Legislator of the Year award was established to honor legislators who demonstrate a commitment to promoting responsible dog ownership, the well-being of dogs, and protecting the rights of dog owners, exhibitors, and responsible breeders.
About Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle
Assemblywoman Vainieri Huttle was elected to the New Jersey General Assembly in 2005. She is now serving her seventh term representing the 37th District. She served four terms as the Chair of Human Services prior to her new appointment as the Chair of Homeland Security and State Preparedness. In 2015, she was named Deputy Speaker of the General Assembly. Assemblywoman Vainieri Huttle is also the Vice Chair of the Labor Committee. In addition, she is a member of the Tourism Gaming & the Arts Committee and serves as an ex officio member of the New Jersey State Council of the Arts. In 2003, she helped establish the Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood. Since 2012, Ms. Vainieri Huttle has hosted the District 37 Young Women’s Leadership Program aimed at introducing high school students in her district to government and public service. Assemblywoman Vainieri Huttle attended Rider University and graduated from Fairleigh Dickinson University with a B.A. in English. Since 1981, she has served as president and director of Vainieri Funeral Home, a family owned business in North Bergen. She served on the Bergen County Board of Chosen Freeholders from 2001 to 2007, and as chair from 2003-2005.
Valerie Vainieri Huttle resides in Englewood with her husband, Mayor Frank Huttle III and has 2 daughters, Alexandra and Francesca.
About the American Kennel Club
Founded in 1884, the American Kennel Club is a not-for-profit organization which maintains the largest registry of purebred dogs in the world and oversees the sport of purebred dogs in the United States. The AKC is dedicated to upholding the integrity of its registry, promoting the sport of purebred dogs and breeding for type and function. Along with its more than 5,000 licensed and member clubs and its affiliated organizations, the AKC advocates for the purebred dog as a family companion, advances canine health and well-being, works to protect the rights of all dog owners and promotes responsible dog ownership. More than 22,000 competitions for AKC-registered purebred dogs are held under AKC rules and regulations each year including conformation, agility, obedience, rally, tracking, herding, lure coursing, coonhound events, hunt tests, field and earthdog tests. Affiliate AKC organizations include the AKC Humane Fund, AKC Canine Health Foundation, AKC Reunite and the AKC Museum of the Dog. For more information, visit www.akc.org.