Polish Pioneer

2019 ARBA Convention

Kathi Groves

The APRC Hall of Fame

Polish Pioneer Award

By Grant Olson

The Polish Pioneer Award was purposed at the 1990 ARBA Convention in Tampa, Florida.  Stan Freed made a motion as follows: “The APRC begin giving a special plaque in amount of $15.00 - $25.00 to honor deceased Polish Pioneers only. The names to come from anyone in the membership the membership who would like to submit a name to the BOD and that the BOD select that that individual for as many years as we decide to keep continued: and to be presented at each annual ARBA Convention.” The name of the individual will be solicited from the membership. The Secretary will send the names nominated to the BOD for their decision. A decision was made at the 2000 ARBA Convention in Columbus, OH on a request from Secretary Betty Strathman to remove the word “Deceased” from the award. This was approved by the membership in attendance.


The award is to honor those individuals who have demonstrated their dedication to promoting the Polish rabbit by raising, showing and improving the quality of the breed. They are promoters and supporters of the APRC for many years and have shared their knowledge of the Polish breed with others. They would also show good sportsmanship, honesty and integrity in these endeavors. 


The first award honored Walter Hawkins(CA) in 1991 then “Mr. Polish” Carlton Gaddis(IN), Floyd Tobias(PA), Charles Henry(MA), W.H. Kennedy(PA), James Blyth(PA), Frank Pandina(NY), Mac McConnell(PA), Wilson Everhart(OK), Gil Scheef(NE), George Judy(OH), Bob Strathman (OH), Grant Olson(GA), Betty Strathman(OH), Genny Gentry(AZ), Carl Lape(OH), Mabel Tobias (PA), C.M. Carroll(OK), Sissy Dennison(CO), Erik Bengtson(MN), Madelyn Beckstrom(MN), Richard and Judy Krebs(KY), Trevor Sypnieski(MN), and in 2019 Kathi Groves is the latest honoree for her support and promotion of the

The Little Aristocrat”.

Courtesy of Jill Schmitt