Previous USEA Board of Governor and Vice President of Admin and Finance, Mike Winter, passed away yesterday due to complications from ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease).
Winter was born in St. Louis, Missouri to Woodie G. and Suzanne Winter. He married Rhonda Lynn Robinson in 1980. Winter graduated from the General Motors Institute and earned a Doctor of Jurisprudence and a Masters in Business Administration from Indiana University.
Winter didn’t take up riding until after his marriage to his longtime wife, Rhonda. They began taking beginner lessons together and hoped to have a few horses to trail ride on their farm in Indiana. A trip to the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event hooked Winter on the sport of eventing and in 1988 (just a year after his first ever riding lesson) Winter made his eventing debut.
Winter competed through the Intermediate level and at such prestigious events as the DeBroke Championships and the North Georgia Three-Day Event. All the while launching three different businesses including his most recent business, Financial Vision. Winter served as the chairman of the Dean’s Industrial Advisory Committee for the Engineering School at IUPUI and received their Spirit of Philanthropy award.
Winter’s spent countless hours giving back to the sport of eventing including helping turn the site of the 1987 Pan American Games – the Hooosier Horse Park – into an eventing venue for every level. He served as Area VIII Chair from 2005 to 2009, and in 2009 was asked to join the USEA Board of Governors as Treasurer. He eventually became Vice President of Administration and Finance and served on the Board until 2014. His leadership through the post-recession years was invaluable to the Association and the USEA staff.
Winter was awarded a USEA Governor’s Cup in 2013 and last December he was honored with the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award by Carol Kozlowski. In her speech, Kozlowski said about Winter, “To me, what makes Mike truly special and so deserving of the President’s Award is that his presence in the eventing community represents all that is so incredible about the amateur side of the sport. [Eventing] attracts remarkably interesting people with diverse professions, model work ethics, compassion, and love for people and animals, and value for rich relationships with people, dogs, and horses that seems to be unmatched. A sense of responsibility to give more than you receive and the desire to guard and protect what is good about the sport while working to improve where opportunity allows.”
The scoreboard was kept working at full tilt on cross-country today at The Dutta Corp. Fair Hill International as 24 of the 41 CCI4*-L starters picked up some sort of jump penalty on Derek di Grazia’s course. The leader position changed several times throughout the afternoon as 15 penalties were handed out by the ground jury, but Waylon Roberts and Lancaster kept their slate clean to take over the top spot.
Derek di Grazia’s cross-country courses at The Dutta Corp. Fair Hill International is the setting for all the action today in Elkton, Md. Here is what you need to know to follow along:
With 70 percent of the scores coming from the second day of the USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) East Coast Championships, the 4- and 5-year-olds had a big moment in front of them to impress the judges Chris Ryan and Sally Ike. The horses were judged over a set of show jumps (15 percent) then moved directly into the cross-country portion (30 percent) before finally showing off their gallop and earning an overall score for their jumping (15 percent) and general impression (10 percent).
At the end of a busy day wrapping up the dressage phase of The Dutta Corp. Fair Hill International Three-Day (FHI), two new riders took over the top of the leaderboards. Mara DePuy and Congo Brazzaville Z moved into first in The Dutta Corp./USEF CCI4*-L Eventing National Championship with their 28.6, while Alexa Gartenberg and Louis M claimed the pinnacle position in The Dutta Corp./USEF CCI3*-L Eventing National Championship on a 25.9.