The United Suffolk Sheep Association recently honored the Bud and Julia Westlake Family, of Union County, as inductees into the inaugural class of the Suffolk Hall of Fame. The Westlakes, along with 25 other inductees from around the nation, were selected as pioneers of the Suffolk breed of sheep, and commended for their efforts in promoting, raising and selling Suffolk sheep at the North American International Livestock Exposition.
Bud Westlake has devoted his whole adult life to the breeding, managing, and promoting of purebred Suffolk, Hampshire, and Shropshire Sheep and the entire sheep industry. During this period, he has developed his Suffolk flock to National prominence at shows and sales throughout the nation. He has also coordinated export of United States sheep into foreign countries, such as Canada and South America. Throughout this time he has always approached the sheep industry with integrity required of a purebred livestock producer.
Along with farming 700 acres of soybeans, corn, oats, and hay, Bud showed and judged across the nation. In addition to exhibiting many champions in both breeding and market divisions at the Ohio State Fair during his 58 years, he has also been selected by his peers to judge many breeds of sheep at the Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, New York, Michigan, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Iowa, and California State Fairs. He has also judged the Chicago International Livestock Show, North American International Livestock Exposition, Eastern States Exposition (Springfield, MASS), Nugget All American Suffolk Show in Reno Nevada, Keystone International Livestock Exposition, Cow Palace (San Francisco CA), Los Angeles County Fair, Midwest Stud Ram Show, Saskatoon Saskatchewan Fair, Canadian Royal in Toronto, and Expotiba Internacional in Curitiba, in the state of Parana, Brazil.
Bud and his family have received much recognition for their work pioneering the Suffolk breed in the Midwest, including the 1988 Ohio Master Shepherd Award in honor of Charles B. Boyles — the highest honor of the Ohio Sheep Improvement Association. Bud was on the board of the National Suffolk Sheep Association for two terms and received their Distinguished Service Award in 1991, in Kansas City. He was inducted into the Ohio State Fair Hall of Fame by then-governor George Voinovich in 1994 for his 40 years of exhibition and judging in Ohio. He has also been involved as president and director of the Ohio Suffolk Sheep Association, vice president and director of the National Suffolk Sheep Association, and Ohio Lamb and Wool Committee Member.