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Meadows presents at seminar for SHOW judges

Dr. Doyle Meadows, a well-known judge and former Celebration CEO, presented an informative program to SHOW HIO judges during a seminar held at the Calsonic Arena Feb. 24. Approximately 75 attended.

Meadows began the presentation by asking the simple question: “What is judging?”

His to-the-point answer was that judging is recognizing differences. It is making a decision that’s based on the priorities of a particular class. He said it is both learned and developed judgment. 

“It’s not an opinion,” he said. “If it were, how many people could judge the last class of the Celebration? It’s got to be based on priorities and a learned judgment.”

Prior to the actual show, Meadows advised judges to always get a written contract by show management. He suggested the show bill, signed, as being sufficient. It should include the details of the job including the pay.
“I wouldn’t judge a hog show in Bell Buckle without one,” he said. 

The success of any show depends on the consistency, quick-decision making ability of the judge and integrity.
“Don’t be concerned about what exhibitors think,” he said. “I root for my friends, sure, but I’m going to put them where they belong. They can go to another show next weekend.”

Meadows encouraged judges to be thorough but not slow.  Be organized, keep your head out of your tablet, and don’t write too much, he said. 

“Find the good ones and place from the top down,” he said. “Never be concerned about how many times an exhibitor places first or last … Do not talk on your cell, visit with exhibitors or touch a horse. Judge only what’s presented.

“Remember, you are judging a show, not giving a clinic — answer questions only at the end of the show or an obvious break. Never talk to an exhibitor without a ringmaster present and never talk to a junior exhibitor without a parent or trainer present.”

Meadows encouraged trainers to not only know the rulebook, but keep it handy as a reference point if needed. 

“You are a mirror to reflect what you saw in the class,” he said. “Nothing more, nothing less.” 

Meadows said judges should attend seminars whenever possible and that even if they only pick up one thing it’s worth their while. He closed with the a simple reminder for judges:

“It’s not about who’s right, but what’s right.”

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