Message from incoming USASA President Jeff Margeson

Message from incoming USASA President Jeff Margeson 

As we quickly approach the end of 2016, I am humbled and grateful to prepare for my transition into the role of USASA President beginning in 2017.  Through my extensive experience in operational, financial, and project management, coupled with the insight I have gained as the USASA Treasurer and a Director, I hope to continue the long legacy of outstanding leadership that our club has enjoyed.

I am happy to formally announce to the membership the new USASA Club Officers and Directors for 2017.

Individuals continuing in their roles on the USASA Board are Sue Holtz – Vice President, Linda Grant – Director, Peggy Timm, DVM – Director, and Curtis Chlebeck VanLeur – Director.

Individuals transitioning roles on the Board are Kelley Catterson, moving from Secretary to Treasurer, and Joyce Siddall, moving from a Director to Secretary.

We are thrilled to welcome Robin Prouty and Jodie Weber as Directors to the USASA Board.  Both Robin and Jodie bring extensive experience in our breed and have a demonstrated history of hands-on leadership and involvement within various breed-related venues and activities.

In addition, the USASA Board is excited to announce that Nanette Newbury has been confirmed as the USASA Judge’s Education Coordinator (JEC).  Nanette is an AKC Breeder-Judge and served in the JEC role for over 9 years previously.  Under Nanette’s guidance, a Judge’s Education Advisory Panel has been formed.  This Panel will offer oversight to future projects based on their combined years of expertise as Breeders and Judges.  The 2017 Advisory Panel includes AKC Breeder-Judge Sheila Polk, AKC Breeder-Judge Judy Harrington, Breeder Alan McCorckle, and Breeder Leslie Frank.

I would be remiss if I did not take an opportunity to recognize outgoing Board members Terri Morgan – President and Lisa Leipold – Director for their time and service on the USASA Board.  Through their leadership and partnership, we have made significant strides in a number of our goals.

On behalf of the USASA Board, Thank You for devotion to our breed, our club, and its members!

In preparation for the transition to the role of USASA President, I have put to paper just a few of my initial objectives to be accomplished through close partnership with our Board, Committees and Membership:

  • Business Continuity Plan: The development of a formal Business Continuity plan such that as transitions occur, the history of the club, its accomplishments and milestones, and critical communication remains intact for many generations to come.  Another component of this plan is the development of a Mentorship Program, so that willing participants have the opportunity to gain the knowledge and skills required for succession and seamless transitions in critical roles.  Finally, a formal process for the routine review of policies and procedures to ensure that we consistently have the best interest of the membership and our breed front and center.
  • Program expansion, increased membership and participation: We have made great strides in the programs and recognition available to owners and breeders, and I would like to see continued expansion of these opportunities in all venues.  We are lucky to have many individuals that bring extraordinary talent and passion throughout our breed, and I strongly encourage ALL members to volunteer just a portion of those attributes in club efforts.  Through transparency and active engagement, I hope to have more members and productive participants in moving the goals of the club and membership forward.
  • Breeder and Judges Education: In collaboration with our Judge’s Education Coordinator and Advisory Panel, a renewed focus on proactive Breeder and Judge’s Education and the availability of associated resources in order to create a class-leading Education Program among AKC Parent Clubs.

On that final point, Nannette Newbury is announcing positions available on the Judge’s Education Team.  This should be of interest to any club members who wish to become a Breed Mentor and/or AKC Judge.  Please contact Nannette at: for details and a unique opportunity to give back to the breed.

In closing…during the hustle and bustle of the Holiday season, and in the face of the challenges you may have encountered throughout the year, I encourage everyone to find a moment of solitude to take stock in the many blessings around us, and all that is good.  Sincerely wishing everyone, a happy, healthy, and very productive New Year!


Jeff Margeson

United States Australian Shepherd Association