USHJA Announces Outreach Competition and Medal Program for Affiliates

March 4, 2009

Lexington, KY – The USHJA is pleased to announce the debut of the Outreach Competition and Medal Program for its affiliate organizations. Both programs are designed to encourage increased participation from hunter/jumper groups of every level across the United States.

Created by the USHJA’s B/C/Local Task Force and the Affiliates Committee, the new programs will set a minimum standard for local competitions that want the right to refer to the USEF rulebook for governance without the USEF or USHJA having any regulatory function regarding their association or horse show. Included in the Outreach Programs will be four Outreach Medal Classes that are designed to give riders who compete at un-rated or schooling shows the ability to achieve national recognition. “We’re hoping to broaden the base and build a bridge to the upper level for our local organizations,” co-chair of the Affiliates Committee, Skip Thornbury explains.

Since its founding, the USHJA has provided support and created programs for hunter jumpers at all levels of the sport, and the Outreach Program will add to its efforts. “We are putting together a “horse show in a box” with important information for groups that host horse shows to keep them informed of current trends in the industry,” Affiliate Committee member Marcia Bobek says. “There are also helpful suggestions on running horse shows and contact numbers to talk to people that are experienced in the management of shows.”

Affiliate Committee co-chair, Shelby French, explains that the new programs are designed to help shows provide an extra benefit to their participants. “There are shows that aspire to improve their competitions and the Outreach Competition Program provides them with a set of minimum standards that should help them improve the quality and safety of their competitions without a lot of additional expense or complicated rules,” she says. “All of the Outreach programs, including the Outreach Membership, are designed to provide education, recognition and support to the grassroot level of our sport.”

The committee hopes the creation of the program will help hunter/jumper groups across the United States make their voices heard and demonstrate that the USHJA welcomes participation in awards programs, governance and program development from everyone who is passionate about the sport. “Un-rated shows and groups need to know the USHJA is their organization and we’re interested in listening and learning about what works in their area of the country,” Marcia says. “We want to know their ideas and wishes for the future from their unique perspective.”

For additional information and applications to participate visit the Medal Program websites.

Questions regarding these programs may be addressed to Christine Kennedy or 859-825-6009.

Contact: Rachelle Wilhelm 859-825-6005

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