Irina “Pina” Pinkusevich immigrated from the Ukraine in 1989. She realized her passion as a Pet Stylist while working part-time as a bather. In the earlier part of her career Irina worked as a Pet Stylist at some of the most high-end grooming salons in New York. Looking to improve her skills & expand her horizons, Irina entered the world of Competitive Grooming in 2006. In her competitive career Irina has won multiple BIS & Best All Around Groomer awards. She is a two time recipient of the Lynne Carver Award for most Best All Around Groomer wins in 2008 & 2010. Irina was also honored to win the Liz Paul Memorial Award for the most Best in Show wins in 2010. She is the winner of the Winner’s Circle Jackpot 2011 where she won $32,500 for grooming Lucas, her champion American Cocker Spaniel.
Irina was a member of GroomTeam USA from 2008 through 2013. She competed in the World Championships for the United States in 2009, 2011, & 2013 helping the U.S.team bring home a Silver & two Golds. Currently, Irina is a national & international judge & lecturer as well as an ambassador for Oster Professional Grooming Products. Irina was recently awarded the Cardinal Crystal Award for Judge of the Year 2014 & the Barkleigh Honors Award for Up & Coming Speaker of the Year 2014.
Irina is a National Certified Master Groomer (NCMG) with the National Dog Groomers of America. She is also a Certifier for their company.
Dedicated to improving the industry, Irina teaches at Merryfield School of Pet Grooming in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. She travels the world educating through conferences & seminars.
Irina is associated with Kiyara Poodles. Owned by Michael Lamb & Bill Jividen Jr., Kiyara, is one of the top Miniature Poodle kennels in the United States. With Kiyara, Irina has bred & co-owned numerous champion Poodles.