Sandy Eccker, President
From the moment I saw a working border collie, I was hooked. That was over 25 years ago when a friend invited me to a local trial in Southern California.
Like many others, I quickly changed my life to include moving to a farm in Oregon, acquiring a flock of sheep, and owning working dogs. Currently, I live on a 28-acre farm in Yelm, Washington with about thirty sheep and five border collies. Three of my dogs are senior retirees and the other two are young and up-and-coming.
To this day, I am still in awe of the dogs' ability to work in partnership to manage livestock. What I have also learned through the years is a great appreciation and respect for the sheep.
Trialing is challenging, frustrating and rewarding at the same time. When a good run comes together, it is one of the best feelings ever. I have had the opportunity to trial several highly talented dogs and run in national level events. My greatest successes were winning the Colliding Rivers Classic, finishing third at the Lacamas Valley Sheepdog Trial and making the semifinals at the U.S. National Finals.
I also find judging very rewarding. It requires tremendous focus and a commitment to impartiality. I believe judging makes you a better handler because it trains you to visualize the course and pay attention to the sheeps' demeanor.