The Annual Convention and Membership Meeting of the American Paint Horse Association (APHA) took place Feb. 26–29 in Richmond, Virginia, where leaders of the Association met to select the group’s Executive Committee, decide on rule change proposals, recognize outstanding regional clubs and individuals, induct the fourth class of APHA’s Hall of Fame, attend various educational seminars and work within committees to continue to advance the popular breed registry and membership association.
APHA’s 2016-2017 Executive Committee now includes:
President: Susie Shaw, of Parsons, Tennessee
President–Elect: George Ready, of Hernando, Mississippi
Vice President: Dr. Craig Wood, of Owenton, Kentucky
Senior Committee Member: Mike Short, of Shiner, Texas
Fifth Committee Member: Casey West, of Abilene, Kansas
Sixth Committee Member: Karen Thomas, of Morganton, North Carolina
Immediate Past President: Ron Shelly, of Georgetown, Texas
Susie Shaw was sworn in as APHA President on Feb. 29. Karen Thomas, the newest member to the Executive Committee, was elected and sworn in as Sixth Committee Member on Feb. 29 as well. Involved in the horse industry for more than 30 years, Thomas is the manager of Double C Acres, a breeding, training and showing facility operated by three generations of her family in Morganton, North Carolina. A lifetime APHA member, she has been involved regionally and nationally, serving as an APHA national director since 2008, and has been a member of several committees.
One of the focal points of the APHA Convention was the opportunity for continuing education in areas of breeding, competition, leadership, communication and more. This year, attendees enjoyed an educational seminar on Paint Horse genetics presented by Dr. Samantha Brooks of the University of Florida, communication training presented by renowned motivator Dr. Rick Rigsby, the popular “Game Plan” seminar designed to foster exhibitor and judge education and several other informative seminars presented by regional clubs, APHA members and staff.
Attendees also had the opportunity to participate in several additional social activities while attending the Convention. Longtime APHA Corporate Partner Markel Insurance hosted a welcome reception on Feb. 26. Members enjoyed a complimentary reception prior to the Hall of Fame & Awards Banquet on Feb. 28 hosted by APHA Corporate Partner Farnam in celebration of the company’s 70th Anniversary. The 4-day Convention concluded with a tour of Colonial Williamsburg.
Regional Clubs Honored
Three APHA regional clubs were honored as part of the Gist Affiliate Awards program where they received substantial prizes courtesy of longtime APHA Corporate Partner Gist Silversmiths. Winners of the randomly selected drawing for 2015 were:
1st Place: Garden State Paint Horse Club – $2,500 in product certificates
2nd Place: Mississippi Paint Horse Club – $1,500 in product certificates
3rd Place: Paint Horse Club Germany – $1,000 in product certificates
Nine outstanding regional clubs were recognized Feb. 28 with two premier awards: President’s Club of Distinction and Gold Star Club honors. The Gold Star Club program is the first tier of regional club excellence – these clubs go above and beyond minimum regional club requirements, offering a variety of activities to encourage more participation from Paint enthusiasts who enjoy the camaraderie of their peers. The President’s Club of Distinction consideration is given to all Gold Star-designated clubs, and selected recipients embody the spirit of outstanding promotion and public service to their members, communities and APHA.
Award recipients continued on page 2