With an artist father and a grandmother that was a professional seamstress, Shon grew up with an appreciation for art in many forms-fiber art is in her DNA. Her love for horses found her in Lexington working through college at the racetrack. After obtaining a Journalism degree from the University of Kentucky, Shon worked in communications at various racetracks and Breeders’ Cup Ltd., while her husband Jerry ran the farm and trained the racehorses. After co-founding and growing a Thoroughbred adoption program to nationwide status, she stepped back to create U Dirty Dog, a successful pet and farm watch business. In 2012, the Wylies made the decision to bring sheep into the mix and in 2019, she teamed up with Kathy to launch Kentucky Wool Works.
Growing up a ‘city girl’ but intent on living the farming life, Kathy graduated from the University of Kentucky with an Animal Science degree that began a 40-year adventure in the sheep industry. Following a job managing a central KY farm housing 1000 sheep and 200 cows, she started her own flock that continues today with 100 head of Texel crossbred ewes. Her extensive teaching experience includes working with sheep producers and 4-H youth as a UK Cooperative Extension Agent and at Morehead State University as the program manager for the ‘Sheep Re-Introduction to Appalachia’ initiative. Kathy has been a Mentor in the successful Small Ruminant Profit School, a joint effort between the University of Kentucky and Kentucky State University to educate new small ruminant producers and pair them with experienced shepherds.