Our first judge for the weekend is none other than Sir Tug! I had the pleasure of meeting this fine Sir this weekend ... he is walking leatherclad SEX!
Sir Tug hails from Dallas, TX and is the current International LeatherSir representing International LeatherSir/boy-International Community Bootblack (ILSb-ICBB). Sir Tug loves to deliver sexual fantasies, and incorporates BDSM into almost all of his sexual play. He loves to use all of his senses to connect mentally, physically, spiritually, and sexually to his submissives.
Respecting the boy’s Bill of Rights, he believes that mentoring is an absolute honor and mentors whenever possible. He believes in Old Guard traditions and honors the tradition from where they come.
Tug is a member of the Leather Knights in Dallas as well as the Discipline Corps of Dallas. Sir Tug has helped raise money for a multitude of non profit organizations throughout the State of Texas. However, he is a firm believer in rolling up your sleeves, getting your fucking hands dirty, and actually doing the “hands on” charity work.
An avid rugby fan, he plays strong side flanker for the Lost Souls Rugby Football Club and serves as their Board President. Sir Tug spends much time mentoring and teaching homeless veterans to reenter the housing and job market. As a former Officer in the Us Army, Sir Tug believes that the oath taken to protect the country carries over into everyday life.
Our next judge for the weekend is Sir Tug's counterpart - our very own International Leatherboy Tim Hotchkin!
After more than a decade of vanilla play, Tim reclaimed himself and his kinkiness in 2012 with the help of a Sir. That Sir reminded Tim of who he was and pushed him towards his best. Tim is now a Full Member of North Star Kennel Club and Titans of the Midwest, an Associate Member of the Atons of Minneapolis, and has served on the Minnesota Leather Pride Board. He is also known by his pup name, ASH!, and is proud Alpha to three beta puppies.
Tim likes to help with kink-related classes and is equally comfortable moderating a submissive discussion group and getting beaten on in front of a room full of people. He is the current International Leatherboy and enjoys sharing his stories with others while encouraging them to embrace all the beautiful kinky things that make them who they are. When he's not traveling, he tries to convince his cat that he was never gone in the first place.
Sir Jason Zahlen
Our next judge for the weekend is Sir Jason Zahlen!
Sir Jason Zahlen is an engaged and active member of the local leather community. As a full member of the Titans of the Midwest and North Star Kennel Club and an Associate member of the Chicago Hellfire Club, he has built a network of connections throughout the region.
Sir Jason is an avid flogger and considers himself a ‘percussion’ player. Give him any sort of implement or a plain fist and he thoroughly enjoys hitting people – hard – often – and repeatedly. Along with flagging black on the left, Sir Jason enjoys fucking, piss-play, and is an experienced fisting top. His love of flogging has led him down the path of being a course instructor, and he has taught classes at regional Kink U events as well as CLAW. He also gives back to the community as a regular volunteer at events and is part of the staff for IML.
Finally, Sir Jason is the head of the Zahlen Leather family; a close-knit group of men spanning North America that he runs with his leather partner-in-crime Brad. He enjoys mentoring younger Sirs and newer members of the community and has earned his full ‘Daddy’ credentials as he is the father of a new baby girl.
Our next judge returns from last year ... Gator Bate!
Gator Bate – International Leatherboy 2013 – has been enjoying his adventures in the leather/kink world since 2001, when he entered his first leather bar in Kansas City, Missouri.
During his recently-completed title year, Gator was honored to meet new people and listen to their stories. He lives by the philosophy that everyone is trying to do the best they can with the tools they’ve got; he accepts each person he meets at face value. He hopes that he can encourage others to do the same by adopting a more “live and let live” attitude.
He calls Kansas City, Missouri his home. He is a strong supporter of the Kansas City Anti-Violence Project. He has been a judge at numerous leather contests throughout the country. He enjoys exploring a broad range of play, including leather, power dynamics, fisting, flogging, bondage, and much more.
When asked what he likes most about the leather community, he said “the acceptance, I just feel truly accepted. I have also found our community to have some of the nicest folks anywhere. And the family structures we form are a breath of fresh air in terms of the closeness, relationship freedom and variety they can foster.” When asked what he'd like people to remember most about him, he said “that I'm a really nice guy and a hot piece of ass.”
Our next judge is our neighbor to the south ... Lucket Kiche!
Ms Iowa Leather 2015 Lucket Kiche is a fluctuating and colorful daddy's girl/pup who has gone down a kinky path of no return! She is a member of the TItans of the Midwest and proudly volunteers for Big brothers big sisters of Johnson County!
Lucket advocates and represents the idea of individuality and living or thinking outside of the box. Eager to learn and experience new things, she spends many weekends traveling and meeting new people. Lucket has loved every minute of being in this community thus far.
In her ever-growing commitment to each interaction made, she hopes to push the idea of self-empowerment, and accountability!
Our next judge is none other than Wednesday ... er, Michael Downs!!
Identifying as boy, Michael Downs is a recent transplant to Minneapolis, but he is hardly what you would call new (or vanilla). You have seen boy most recently as a Pledge to the Atons of Minneapolis; he has also been affiliated with the Corn Haulers of Iowa and the Titans of the Midwest. Boy has also been working behind the scenes for various events, such as Mr. Minneapolis Eagle, Ms. Catastrophe, the Player's Auction, or any other event where he is "voluntold" to help.
His artwork has appeared at several regional events and is included in the permanent collection at the Leather Archives & Museum in Chicago.
Boy marks his introduction into leather with a collar he received in 1997 as part of a triad. Since then, he has experienced single life, monogamy, and polyamory. He has been in service to Sirs and truly adored a Daddy Bear. When asked about these dynamics, boy notes that it is, “all about trust, communication, and boundaries.”
As boy, Michael follows a tradition of service, and people would say that he has a service heart. However, when asked about this, boy will state, “That’s a lie. My heart is in a box.”
When boy grows up, he says that he wants to be like Wednesday Addams. We should also note that sometimes boy scares us.
Last but not least, it is my honor to introduce our head judge - PJ Knight!
PJ Knight has been a long-standing and distinguished member of the Minnesota Leather community.
She was the first official pledge with the Knights of Leather in 1985; she (along with her partner) reformed the club from a women’s club to a pansexual one. She is celebrating her 31st year as a member of that organization.
She is part of a strong family with her partner.
She was a contestant in the first International Ms. Leather Contest in 1987; she received the title of Ms. Minnesota Leather in 1991. She was on the board of directors for Minnesota Leather Encounter from 1990-1993; this organization was the precursor for our current Minnesota Leather Pride, for which she served until the early 2000s.
Although she stepped back from the community to raise a family for the past few years, she remains a loyal supporter of our local Minnesota community and looks forward to celebrating a fantastic Minnesota Leather Pride Weekend!