Carol Sazama


Since becoming a member of ATCA in 1975, Carol worked to grow our Parent Breed Club in nearly every office, including President (2 separate terms), Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary, and Director, as well as serving as Delegate to the AKC.  She has also served on many committees, including Newsletter Editor, Breed Standard Revision, Specialty Chair and Show Committee, Historian, and Judges Education. 

Like many ATCA members, Carol learned about the Australian Terrier and the sport of purebred dogs, about Clubs and club operations, through the mentorship of knowledgeable, conscientious and skillful “dog people”. In 1975, ATCA was the first dog club she knew.

Carol was a member of all-breed kennel clubs in Oklahoma (Town and Country KC), New Jersey (Burlington County KC, where she served as President as well as Show Treasurer and all-around show committee member).  Carol has been a Board member of the Flatirons Kennel Club as well as the Assistant Show chair and a member of this club. She learned how to steward as a member of the Oklahoma Stewards Club. Carol is a member and past Director of the Raritan Valley Australian Terrier Club, and a member of the Colorado Australian Terrier Club.

Carol's Aussies continue to bring joy to other breeders and owners.  At home her dogs were hardy, versatile, and loving companions from their youth right through their elder years

Barb Curtis

Barbera Curtis was a military wife until she and Ken and the children moved to Colorado.  Because they lived in military housing and moved around a lot, she looked for a smallish, active dog and found the Australian Terrier.


Barb became a master dog trainer and one of our breed’s most successful competitors.  At that time there were very few Australian Terriers competing in events other than in Conformation, which Barb also did successfully.  Only Obedience and Tracking titles were available to our breed in the early years, followed by Earthdog, Agility, and then Rally. Barb and her Aussies were successful at advanced levels in these venues. 


Barb was active in her local obedience club for many years, and she became one of the first AKC Rally judges.  Some of her breed accomplishments and “firsts” have not been equaled since, such as competing at the AKC Invitational in both Rally and Agility with the same dog in the same year and acquiring all of the AKC titles available to our breed at the time on one of her dogs. 


She was always there for others, as a mentor, by being the first to encourage those new to dog sports and always ready to congratulate a successful competitor, and by simply being a good friend and a good listener. 


She was a leader as well, serving as ATCA President, as President of the Australian Terrier Club of Colorado, as well as holding other positions as club officer, and with her longstanding personal commitment to helping our breed, founded Australian Terrier Rescue and became its first President also.


Ida Ellen Weinstock

Ida Ellen and her sister, Alice, first became members of ATCA in the early 1960's. Later they resigned either in 1972 or 1973 and renewed their membership again in 1981. Their first Aussie, Venetia was acquired in 1963 and it was shortly after that they joined ATCA which began in 1957 (first recorded minutes). In 1966 their import CH Redberry Comrade "Laddie" was shown at Montgomery Kennel Club.

Ida Ellen – wrote "David and Golith" for the 50th Anniversary of the ATCA. The article is very informative regarding the early years and the people involved in the establishment of the breed in America. In 1981 she was instrumental in the formation of the Raritan Valley Australian Terrier Club which is still in existence today.

Ida Ellen has judged several sweepstakes and was the first to judge the ATCA Futurity in 2014. She was instrumental in updating the breed standard. She has been a speaker at several National Education Days regarding our breed standard. Ida Ellen has also served on the Board of Directors for several years. She is and has been active in judges' education.

Ida Ellen has mentored many people in the breed. She is always willing to help people understand what an Aussie should look like and how it should also be able to perform its job. Ida Ellen is a lady that has dedicated most of her life to the Australian Terrier and to the Australian Terrier Club of America.

Mary Mead

Sydney Butcher

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Jennie Worthing

She was my friend and mentor. 

A lot of people knew Jennie Worthing from dog shows, but I met and knew her in a more personal way, sort of like a mom. By the way, when CB radios were popular, her handle was “Rent-A-Mom.” She enjoyed her children’s friends and would call them her “rent-a-kids.” 

I met Jennie in 1997 while trying to find an Australian Terrier breeder, as I had lost my two Aussies, which were pets.  My first dogs didn’t come from a breeder, but from my vet (which is another story), so I started searching for Aussies. I phoned a local Cairn breeder, not knowing she was good friends with Jennie’s daughter and a rent-a-kid. She told me she knew a breeder and her name was Jennie Worthing. She had no pups when I contacted her, but she invited me to come to a dog show in our area. I went to the show and our friendship started.  I was in awe over what I learned that day at the dog show and was so excited to have met her and many other people.  She was the president and founding member of the Australian Terrier Club of Greater Chicago Area. I hadn’t even known there were such clubs for the Aussie!

 After meeting Jennie and some other members of the ATCGCA, the search was on to find a pup. When I did find one from someone who was not with the Chicago group, Jennie came to my home to meet my pup. She then encouraged me to join the ATCGCA and to also think about showing him. I took him to a puppy match sponsored by the Chicago club, which he won! With that, I was hooked on showing him.

She wanted to celebrate his win, so on our way back to our hotel, we stopped and got a six-pack and a bottle of bourbon and a pizza. We celebrated!

 I remember driving to the national in Greeley, CO with her and 4 dogs in 1999. We stopped on the way to see a few sights, and enjoyed ice cream and great conversation at a Dairy Queen along I-80 in Nebraska. On our way home, we stopped at the same DQ; we laughed about that for many years. This year, when I drove out to Longmont, she told me to stop at that DQ and have some ice cream in remembrance of our time there together. I looked for it, but sadly had to call her and tell her it was not there anymore.

Jennie always looked forward to the ATCGCA specialty held in Grayslake, IL every year in June. She enjoyed seeing the people and their dogs come from other states. Visiting with everyone who attended meant the world to her.

Jennie would do anything for an Aussie and was always willing to assist with rescues, driving to O’Hare to pick them up, helping me groom them and find them homes. I enjoyed all the shows, dinners, and travels I had with Jennie. There are so many good memories.


I love you, Jennie—thank you.  Carole Larsen

Esther Krom

Sad news for those of us who knew her...our long-time friend and breeder of Shastakin Australian Terriers passed away on Tuesday, Aug 5, at her home in Clifton NJ with her dogs by her side.  I am so grateful for the opportunity to speak with her recently when she called to say she would not be able to make the trip to the ATCA Specialty 2014 in Longmont.  These recent conversations with Esther were just like no indication that she was growing as vulnerable as she may have been, and that some may have reported.  True to herself, Esther continued to participate with her dogs and to envision breeding plans for the future.  Her friends never failed to assist her at shows, helping put her dog on the table, and even helping her show her dog.  


Esther was a doer.  She became a member of the ATCA in 1981.  In those early years she was the first Aussie breeder in America to travel to a World Show in Europe (even Nell herself traveled only as far as Bermuda for World competition, if my memory serves me right).  Esther returned with her dog, Shastakin Chucko-Jo (known as “Junior”) a World Champion!  Her Shastakin Australian Terriers were among the most typey dogs I have ever seen.  Grooming may not have been her forte, but breeding sound bodies, beautiful strong heads and dogs brimming with type revealed her fine eye for a dog.  It was such fun evaluating puppies with her.  

It appears Esther expected she had conquered the Big-C when it struck her several years ago; she certainly made a valiant effort to do so and to continue her life with her dogs uppermost in her actions and plans.  Truthfully, none of us expected to lose her so soon despite degrees of incapacity she so bravely endured.

Esther will be missed by the many long-time friends and collaborators, breeders, exhibitors in the New Jersey-New York-Pennsylvania triangle, among them Alexa Samarotto, Ida Ellen Weinstock, Carol Jablonski and members of the Garden State Terrier Club and many others.    She will be missed by her friends in other countries, Maureen Bottinga and other breeder/fanciers in Canada, and Lynn Bell in the UK, not to mention myself, Kerrie Bryan among other members of the Australian Terrier Club of America.  Esther had earned the respect of many through the years since acquiring her first Aussie, “Shasta”, with whom she hunted to develop Shasta's terrier instincts.  She appreciated the working terrier as much as the well-bred terrier, and her dogs’ measured up to this ideal of Esther’s over the years.

Rest in peace, dear Esther.
Carol Sazama

Joan L. Parr Holbert , age 77,  on July 31, 2012 .
Joan was a true lover of the Canine family. She was a trainer in Obedience and Confirmation and showed Australian terriers while winning a wall full of trophies and ribbons. Later in life she fell in love with Therapy Dog Training and became an instructor and examiner for graduation of therapy dogs as to be able to enter hospitals to bring joy to patients. She was an active member & officer of the Clermont County Dog Training Club for many years Joan was a great friend of Australian Terrier Rescue.

Leslie Fisher
passed away peacefully on Sunday, October 23, 2011, after a courageous battle with cancer.
Beloved wife of Bryan, loving and devoted mother of Alexander and Kristof. Survived by her brother, Drew (Lisa) Farkas, daughter of Lester and the late Eleanor Farkas, along with relatives and friends.
Leslie attended the Peabody Institute of the John Hopkins University (violin), the University of Michigan (BA History), and Marquette University Law School (J.D., 1988). She was the 1987 champion of the Marquette University Law School moot court competition, and after graduation became an Assistant District Attorney in Rock County.
She loved her dogs Fox, Sophie and Teddi. She was an active member in the Australian Terrier Club.

Sharon Adams
Sharon L. Adams, 61, passed away Saturday, Aug. 7, 2010. Sharon was born Mar. 8, 1949A graduate of Harding HS, OKC, she was a longtime state employee. Sharon was a member and instructor for the OKC Obedience Training Club and the Australian Terrier Club in which she was very active. She fostered and trained many Rescue aussies.

Katherine Barnes
Dr Katharine Barnes, along with her husband Dr Eugene Barnes, acquired their first Australian Terrier and established Sprite Lea Kennels in the 60’s.  Katharine said from the day they saw their first Aussie they were hooked! Katharine and Gene enjoyed many years of breeding and exhibiting dogs that they had imported and bred. Through the years they had numerous top winning dogs that had an impact on the breed. 

Many of the top winning dogs, past and present, have Sprite Lea Kennels represented in their pedigrees.

In October of 1970, Katharine imported Australian Ch Taralee for Fame just after winning his Australian championship. He finished in the U.S. in four shows without defeat and then swept to his championship in Canada also without defeat. Winning his championships in 3 countries in less than 6 months! Katharine referred to “Fame” as their founding “father” due to his superb breeding record.


The Barnes previous import, Ch Taralee Sekelutu, was also among the top stud dogs but was best known for his Best in Show wins, including the first Best in Show in the United States. 


Sprite Lea Kennels went on to produce a Best in Show winner, Ch Sprite Lea Nevil v. Knockland and sire another Best in Show winner, Ch Jeralen’s Christopher Tobin. Through the years they produced hundreds of home bred champions and many top winning dogs.  This evidenced through the many Sprite Lea dogs represented on the ROM lists.

In later years, Katharine’s interests turned to obedience and in her 80’s have managed to finish a UD on an Australian Terrier. Dr Katharine Barnes remained a friend to the breed through her entire life.  She will be missed by all who knew her.