Showsight - November 2017

The Cheerleaders BY ALLAN REZNIK

Interviews with the Partners of Our Better-Known Judges, Breeders and Professional Handlers GREGORY J. PAVEZA, MSW, PH.D, HUSBAND OF AKC JUDGE SULIE GREENDALE-PAVEZA

What is your profession? Right now, I’m semi- retired. I’ve been a clinical social worker, an agency supervisor, a university fac- ulty member and a universi- ty administrator during my professional career. I’m cur- rently serving as the Dean of Libraries at Central Washington University on an interim basis for a year.

Who does most of the cooking? Me. Sulie readily admits that she has not cooked a meal (not entirely true) in the 39 years that we have been together. Sulie tells a great story about the first night she invited me to dinner. She burned the steak, boiled the water out of the pot for the boil-in-the-bag vegetables, thus causing the bag to stick to the pot, and failed to turn on the toaster oven to bake the potatoes. I said we needed to get married or she was going to starve to death! Of course, we went out to dinner. Who does most of the grooming? Now, Sulie. I do the clipping when we need to trim the dogs down. When she was showing I generally groomed the dogs in terms of getting them show ready. Sulie is famous for singing the National Anthem at dog shows. Any strange places where she vocalizes? She sometimes vocalizes in the shower, but more often

Where, when and how did the two of you meet? We met when we were both working at Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s Institute of Psychiatry. Sulie was a music and art therapist on one of the locked in-patient units, and I was the senior social worker in the crises and

she will get ready by singing to songs as we are driving up to the shows together. Do you attend many shows? Probably between 20 to 30 a year; maybe a few more. I stew- ard regularly so when I’m back in Connecticut, I steward for most of the clusters held at the Big “E” and other shows in the area. I know you are an AKC dele- gate for the Elm City KC. Do you have any desire to judge at some point? Not really. While I have a decent eye, it is not in the same category as Sulie’s and I refuse to

emergency psychiatry unit. We met briefly during a staff meeting and the next time I saw her, I crossed the street and asked if she wanted to go out. She said yes, and about a month later I proposed. We were married in September of 1979. How was it to marry into the dogs? Did you know anything about the dog show world prior to meeting Sulie? I’m not sure that I married into dogs. My family had always had a dog when I was a kid but we were not into the world of purebred dogs. Sulie also had dogs when she was growing up.

Photo: James P. Taylor, Herding/Working Dog Digest

be just another mediocre judge hired because a club thinks I need to be hired in order to have Sulie come and judge. How does Sulie decompress when she gets home from a show? She always unpacks first. We will talk some about the shows but we often spend just as much time talking about the trip home and the hassles associated with current air travel. If the shows are local, we will often go together, in which case I drive. Depending on the time she gets home, I will either cook something or go out and get us some- thing for dinner. She partakes in the libation of her choice. What hobbies and interests do you enjoy together? Actually, dogs and dog shows are the thing we enjoy together, just from different points of participation. Is there much dog show “pillow talk,” rehashing the weekend’s events? Much? Depends how you define much. Do we talk about the weekend? Of course. But we also just spend time catching up on what has happened while she’s been away. ■

We actually got into dogs together. Sulie’s aunt Naomi was a Sheltie breeder and had a small boarding kennel. While we were living together before getting married, Naomi ended up with a purebred Cocker Spaniel that had been abandoned by its owners at her kennel. She asked if we would be interested in having this little guy as a pet. We said yes. After that, we took a greater interest in looking at acquiring a purebred dog from Naomi for show purposes. We got a tricolor Sheltie from Naomi that we named Benson and started to show him. Over time, Sulie got into showing professionally, while I stayed home and did my thing as a faculty member at the University of Illinois, and took care of the other dogs in the kennel. We would occa- sionally travel together and then I served as the groomer. I was a terrible handler. I have probably delivered as many litters as Sulie over the course of our time in purebreds. How many dogs do you currently own? We currently have three dogs: two Dachshunds (Wrigley, a small standard, and Olivia, a mini) as well as a Pumi, Jolie, who is Sulie’s walking companion. We also have six cats.


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