PROFILE: W. L. “Bill” Harris attended school in Miami, Florida. In 1940 he became a surgical assistant to J. H Yarborough, D.V.M who was known as one of the world’s greatest authorities on greyhound health. Harris served in the United States Army in the Pacific Theatre for two years during World War II. Harris and his wife, Judy, have two sons. William L. Harris Jr. who worked as a track veterinarian at Biscayne, Flagler and Miami Beach before going into the service and starting private practice, and Rodney P. Harris, a chief with the Miami Beach fire department.

HISTORY: Harris began his career in the greyhound business working at Flagler Kennel Club as a ring boy and quickly progressed to lead out, then scale clerk and finally paddock judge, a position he held at both Flagler and Miami Beach Kennel Club. He joined in partnership with Yarborough’s son and the two owned several of the finest sires producing in the early 1960’s. In 1964 Bill and his wife, Judy, opened Arista Kennel.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Harris bred for their owners some of the great dogs in this industry including Hall of Famers, RURAL RUBE, BEACH COMBER, JOHNNY LEONARD and MIXED HARMONY. His first stud dog acquired in 1953 was KELVIN YET, a producer who out lived all his littermates and was still at stud at age 14. Among the proven sires Harris co-owned were KOOLATONE, KARAJET and GULF FISHERMAN, all of whom commanded impressive fees. At Arista Kennel, his greyhounds included SANDY PRINTER, BIG WHIZZER, MAR DILLY, MONALEE, DOC’S MOONSHADOW, WAYSIDE FROSTY, COUSIN’S ELETE, HOUGHTON TANTO* and BUSHNELL MICKEY. He also was known as an outstanding paddock judge who often knew the greyhounds by sight.