Chuck Smith, of Canal, Winchester, Ohio, is the newly elected National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Vice President. NCHA announced the voting outcome today that favored Smith with 1,240 votes over his opponent Dick Mulligan, a Jackson, Wyo., attorney and non-pro cutter, who received 719 votes. There were 12 abstentions.
An hour after learning of the voting outcome, Smith said he already had received about 50 congratulatory calls, and he’s looking forward to serving NCHA in this leadership role.
“I will do the best I can to serve the entire NCHA membership,” Smith said. He will serve a three-year term that includes a year-long reign as association president starting in June of 2016.
Smith, 65, has served 23-years as cutting chairman for the All American Quarter Horse Congress in Columbus, Ohio. He started competing as a cutter in 1982 after he earned a non-pro national championship in reining. The Ohio State University (OSU) graduate learned how to ride reining horses while in college, then worked as a horse specialist at OSU for two years. He later served as director of the University of Findlay’s equestrian program in Findlay, Ohio. It was there that he rode his first cutting horse while working with National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) Hall of Fame member Dale Wilkinson. Later, he also worked with NCHA Hall of Fame Open Rider Larry Reeder in Stephenville, Texas.
In 1988, Smith became an NCHA board of directors’ member. He’s served consecutively in that capacity since then. He has also served on the NCHA Executive Committee from 1993-2000 and again from 2011 through the present.
Smith said he wants to help the association focus on bringing in new members and helping the sport grow. The NCHA has done a great job attracting funds and promoting its high-profile limited-age and any-age events in recent years, Smith said. It has not done as much recently, he added, to help entry-level affiliates.
“What I want to do is focus on that part of the program and bring that more into balance,” Smith said during the campaign. “There has to be a development of meaningful programs that the NCHA can afford to make happen.”
Bill Richerson, reigning NCHA president-elect, will become the association president during its upcoming June 20-22 NCHA Convention in Salt Lake City, Utah. Current vice president Jo Ellard, of Whitesboro, Texas, will become the NCHA president-elect and Smith will take office as association vice president.