Judge Biographies

Judge Biographies


Mrs Ester Joseph (Vic)

General Specials - Royal Canberra Show

Esther has been involved in the world of purebred dogs since 1970 when she shared her home with Gordon, English and Irish Setters, together with a Saluki and a Borzoi. Currently, Esther lives with her husband Michael in a beautiful country area outside of Melbourne, where they have over an acre for their dogs to run free on their property.

Esther has bred Gordon Setters under the Triseter” prefix for 50 years and more recently, over the last 20 years, she has bred and exhibited Pugs. She has bred English Setters, Irish Setters and owned and shown American Cockers Spaniels, Pointers and Tibetan Terriers. Esther has handled most breeds in the Gundog group and many in the Toy and Terrier groups together with other groups over the many years of her showing dogs.

Esther has shown many Gordon Setters and Pugs through to Best in Show at both All Breeds Shows and Speciality Shows. The pinnacle was handling her homebred Gordon Setter bitch, who resided and was owned in Finland, to Runner Up In Show from an entry of 291 Gordon Setters at GORDONS2000, a Gordon Setter Speciality in the UK. In Australia, Esther’s highlight was breeding, owning and handling the BEST IN SHOW winner at the 2012 Royal Adelaide Show, with the Gordon Setter Supreme Ch Triseter Celtic Ice.

Esther gained her All Breeds Licence in 2009.  She has judged widely throughout Australia and New Zealand, together with many countries through Asia, Europe and North America. Countries in which Esther has adjudicated include Denmark, Finland, Italy, Sweden, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland, Indonesia, Japan, China, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, South Korea, Norway, Greece, USA, Canada and South Africa. In 2019 Esther had the honour of awarding CCs at the British Gordon Setter Club Championship Show UK

Esther is currently the Deputy Chairperson for Judges Training Dogs Victoria, Australia. She was the Utility Group Coordinator in the Trainee Judges Scheme for a number of years and the Assistant Coordinator for the Gundog Group. She is a past President of the Gordon Setter Club of Victoria and a current committee member of Sunbury Canine Club – which conducts the largest one day show in Australia.

Judging the pure-bred dog has become a passion, and Esther has met many wonderful people in Australia and around the world with like interests.

Mrs Annabel Gunn (SA)

Toys - Royal Canberra Show
Hounds - Group Show

I have been involved in the dog world for approximately 50 years. I first began exhibiting and breeding Cairn Terriers under our prefix, Skyeway along with my mother, Betty Hart, then later West Highland White Terriers.
Whippets then became my first love, firstly shown and bred in partnership with my mother, then with my husband Jon. We have exhibited our Skyeway progeny quite successfully recording a number of Best in Show wins, particularly at breed specialty shows with Whippets and Cairn Terriers.
Chihuahuas joined our Whippet clan about 14 years ago and we have successfully campaigned several champion Chihuahuas in partnership with Kylie Tilley.
Being licensed to judge Groups 1, 2, 3 & 4, I have judged extensively throughout Australia and New Zealand, including Specialty shows.

Dr Emma Greenway (Vic)

Terriers - Royal Canberra Show

My involvement with dogs stretches back over a number of decades, principally with Dandie Dinmonts, although I have also lived with Miniature Schnauzers, Norwich Terriers and Cairn Terriers.

I have exhibited my dogs in many countries, including the USA, UK, Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Thailand and New Zealand and have bred over 50 Champions, here and overseas.

Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to have won many BIS awards, most notably Melbourne Royal, Adelaide Royal and Sydney Royal.

I have a keen interest in Terriers and Miniature Schnauzers and have been judging for over ten years.

I am very much looking forward to my judging appointment at Canberra Royal.


Mrs Marie Merchant (SA)

Gundogs -  Royal Canberra Show
Terriers - Group Show

An All Breeds Judge, have judged in over 20 Countries including FCI CACIB Shows and the World Dog Show in Finland 2014.
Originally started my involvement in the Dog World with Labrador and Golden Retrievers and competed in both the Show Ring and Obedience.
I have had a successful Kennel of English Springer Spaniels breeding around 70 Champions and am now breeding and exhibiting with success Smooth Fox Terriers.

Miss Louise Hickie (NSW)

Hounds - Royal Canberra Show
Toys - Group Show

Louise was born into the dog show world, with both her parents being highly successful breeders and exhibitors of English Cocker Spaniels.

As a child in the late 1960’s she began to show some of the Cockers and soon owned her first show dog , which was a Beagle. The family went on to breed & show Beagles. successfully for a number of years, with Louise handling most of them at the shows

In the 1970’s Afghan Hounds were added to the kennel and were extremely successful, and by the 1980’s the family discontinued breeding Cockers.

Louise took great interest in the Afghans and enjoyed the preparation as well as the exhibition of this glamorous and competitive breed. She successfully showed Afghans from that time until her retirement from the breed in 2013 after achieving some spectacular wins, including the top winning hound in Australia with 105 Best in Shows. A record which still stands today.

In 2010 Louise took on the challenge of revitalising a different breed in the show ring, the Tibetan Terrier. This too, has been another success with over 60 Best in Shows in the breed to date.

Additionally, Louise has handled many other breeds including Saluki, Dachshunds, Chihuahua, Italian Greyhound and Bichon Frise , as well as having handled winners for others in the United States, Sweden, and the U.K.

Louise commenced her Championship judging career in the late 1980’s with the Hound group and became licensed to judge Toys at Championship level in the mid 1990’s. She has judged in New Zealand, Sweden, United States and Japan as well as throughout Australia.

Dr Karen Hedberg (NSW)

Working Dogs - Royal Canberra Show
Utility - Group Show

Karen Hedberg graduated from Sydney University in 1975 and has been a practicing veterinarian, dog judge and breeder for many years. She set up her practice in North Richmond in 1976 and has been there ever since. Karen was a breeder of German Shepherds for many years and is now with with French Bulldogs and has been very successful in both breeds. 
Karen has a strong interest in many aspects of canine reproduction, breeding and genetic diseases. She has been involved with dog breeding at all levels and has written numerous articles as well as the highly successful book, “The Dog Owners Manual” , now in its third edition. 

Karen has been judging since the early 1980’s and holds a GSDCA Specialist licence. She has just past her final group this month and is now an All Breeds Judge. Karen has judged in several different countries and enjoys seeing the quality available in different areas.

Mrs Faye Crooks (Vic)

Utility - Royal Canberra Show
Non-Sporting - Group Show

Together with my late husband David, in 1985, we were introduced to the world of canines with the gift of our first Boxer.    Over the years our Boxers have attained success, acquiring numerous, Supreme, Grand and Champions both here and in New Zealand.   We were also introduced to the breeding of Pointers from which many also attained success and titles. 

Since obtaining my Judges Licence for the Utility Group in 2008, I became passionate about extending my knowledge on other breeds, thus following on with my Group 7 Licence.  I have been invited to Judge at Championship Shows and Specialty Shows in most States of Australia, New Zealand, U.K. and U.S.A.  My interest and passion for the various breeds resulted in my travel to Crufts and World Dog Shows to gain a broader knowledge.

I look forward to Judging at the 2022 RNCAS Royal Canberra Show.    

Ms Lisa Carpenter (Qld)

Non-Sporting - Royal Canberra Show

I was born into the wonderful dog world with both my parents breeding and showing Welsh Corgi Pembrokes and Shetland Sheepdogs under the successful kennel prefix Yona in Sydney, and then later in Brisbane.

My heart breed - the Boston Terrier soon found me and I was lucky to have some of the legends in the dog world take me under their wing to: help me learn so much; achieve wonderful results; and ultimately my own breeding program, first with my parents and then under the Talkon prefix.  

Over the years, I have been extremely fortunate to have shown a number of breeds with great success; and now along with my husband Brian, we are continuing to successfully show our Boston Terriers and enjoy helping newcomers into our dog world and give back to this amazing hobby.

I started judging in 1990 after my father suggested I join him and my mother in their love of judging. Both my father, Ray and mother, Pam were All Breeds Judges, and they instilled in me a passion for breed type, and the pursuit of that ultimate dog.  

My very first appointment was a British Bulldog specialty show and I have since enjoyed many great judging appointments. I’m licensed to judge both Non-Sporting and Working Dogs at Championship level.

Very much looking forward to being part of the panel for the Canberra Royal show and judging the Non Sporting group. 


Miss Diedre Crofts (NSW)

Gundogs - Group Show
Working Dog - Group Show

I began showing Shetland Sheepdogs in the early 1970’s and since that time I’ve handled Borzois, Afghan Hounds, Whippets, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Welsh Corgis (Pembroke), Australian Cattle Dogs, Jack Russell Terriers, Bedlington Terriers, Cocker Spaniels & Collies (Rough), a number of these dogs achieving top honours in the show ring.

I first started judging in 1984 & since that time have progressed to be ANKC and FCI licensed to judge All Breeds and Best in Show.

Although the number of dogs I keep has always been kept low, I’ve owned/bred and campaigned some of the most successful Shelties in Australia, with several being Best in Show winners at both Specialty & All Breeds level. A number of my dogs have been extremely successful producers with descendants in New Zealand, Asia, Scandinavia & Europe.

My most notable dogs have been:

  • BISS Ch Sheltreena Aquarian (1st Champion blue merle bitch bred in NSW),
  • MBIS MBISS Ch Deerod Witchery (Best Opp Sex in Show Melbourne Royal 1984, almost 7,000 entries),
  • MBIS MBISS Grand Ch Peerielee Tri It My Way,
  • RUBISS Ch Deerod Aint Miss B Haven,
  • MBIS MBISS Grand Ch Deerod Give Me The Night ‘ROMA’,
  • Ch Deerod The Bitch Is Blak,
  • BISS Ch Deerod Frost My Socks,
  • MBIS MBISSS Supreme Ch Deerod Rich Reward ‘ROMA’,
  • BIS Ch Deerod Etoile Brillante
  • MBIS Supreme Ch Deerod Dont You Know Its Magic

some of the most influential Shelties in the breed.

I have assisted through many judges training schemes, my educational material used not only in Australia but in Scandinavia and Asia.

I have judged throughout Australia, New Zealand as well as Finland, Sweden, South Africa, Japan, South Korea, Philippines, Thailand and China.  


Contact Details

Chief Dog Steward
Canberra, ACT, Australia
Phone : 0402 847 687 or (02) 6288 2221
Email : [email protected]