Four eventers and Pony Club alumni were inducted into the U.S. Pony Club Academy of Achievement last week in Louisville, Ky. According to the Pony Club website, “The USPC Academy of Achievement recognizes Pony Club alumni for being outstanding in their chosen fields of expertise. Individuals are nominated by members, leaders, and other alumni.”
The alumni were selected by a national committee comprised of dedicated graduate Pony Club members and volunteers. This year the USEA’s own CEO, Rob Burk, along with Dorothy Crowell, Kat Drake, and Tim Leithead were invited to join this distinguished group. The four new inductees participated in the National Youth Congress at the USPC Convention and Equine Symposium as members of the USPC Academy of Achievement. They brought the voice of experience into the discussions and helped the youth delegates with personal development.
About the 2018 Academy of Achievement Alumni:
Rob Burk has been CEO of the USEA since December of 2015. Prior to his appointment he was the Chief Operating Officer and Senior Director of Programs. Previously Rob served as an Executive Director and Senior Adviser within the U.S. Department of Agriculture and with the Maryland Department of Agriculture. Burk competed throughout his life in various equestrian disciplines and had notable success as a young rider in California. He is a graduate H-A of Pony Club from the Middle California Region.
Dorothy Crowell along with her legendary horse, Molokai, were WEG silver medalists, two-time Olympians, the first U.S. champion at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event and top-10 finishers at both Badminton and Burghley. Crowell is a USEA ICP Level IV instructor and a C-3 Traditional graduate from the Keenland Pony Club.
Kat Drake graduated as an H from Portola Valley Pony Club while completing her Masters in Epidemiology from the University of California Berkeley and Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Science and Pharmacogenomics from the University of California San Francisco. Drake currently works as the Director of Informatics at Cytobank, Inc. and continues to event at the Preliminary level.
Tim Leithead is a former eventer and graduate H-A from Eastern PA Region. He comes from a well-known Pony Club family as his mom was President of USPC, his dad was a USPC Vice President and National Examiner and his brother was also inducted into the Academy of Achievement. Tim now is involved in the start-up Moven as well as a consultant for Finvention and is a major advocate for the March of Dimes.
A full list of USPC Academy of Achievement inductees is available here.
In 2000 and with the support of Joan Iversen Goswell, the Worth the Trust Scholarships were established to provide financial assistance to amateurs to pursue their education in eventing. The funds from the Worth the Trust Educational Scholarship may be used for training opportunities such as clinics, working student positions, and private or group instruction, or to learn from an official, course designer, technical delegate, judge, veterinarian, or organizer.
The spring eventing season in the Midwest is always a toss-up due to unpredictable weather. Will it rain, will it be sunny, or will it be a snowstorm? No one knows! Mid-America Combined Training Association’s (MACTA) first cross-country schooling of the season was cancelled in March due to extremely muddy footing conditions and by the time our April dates came around, COVID-19 was in full force and we were unable to host our cross-country schooling and schooling show.
The FEI has published its Policy for Enhanced Competition Safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, aimed at assisting organizers and national federations with the safe resumption of international equestrian events in line with national and local restrictions.
The United States Eventing Association (USEA) has approved additional modifications to the qualification period for the 2020 USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds. The AEC is scheduled to take place August 25-30, 2020 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky, and the USEA is doing everything possible to ensure a safe and successful Championship, while also ensuring fair opportunities for all.