Dec 22, 2021

Recognizing the Two Silver Medal Volunteers and 12 Bronze Medal Volunteers of 2021

By Claire Kelley - USEA Staff
USEA/Leslie Mintz Photo.

The USEA Volunteer Incentive Program (VIP) launched the Volunteer Medal Program in 2020 to enhance the recognition of these resilient volunteers. The Volunteer Medal Program recognizes the volunteers who consistently volunteer year after year. Hours earned are cumulative over a lifetime of volunteer service. To earn a bronze medal, volunteers must record 500 volunteer hours; to earn a silver medal, volunteers must record 1,000 volunteer hours; and to earn a gold medal, volunteers must record 2,000 volunteer hours at

Last year in 2020, seven volunteers earned their bronze medal and in 2021, 12 volunteers earned their bronze medal and two volunteers earned their silver medal. These hours have accumulated since December 1, 2016.

Silver Medal Volunteers:

The leading volunteer featured on the Volunteer Medal Program leaderboard is Diane Bird who has accumulated 1,130 hours and 16 minutes. She has recorded over 100 volunteer hours every year since 2017. She was the 2019 USEA Volunteer of the Year presented by Sunsprite Warmbloods. Get to know more about Diane Bird by clicking here. Diane Bird’s path to a silver medal:

  • 2021: 282 hours and 55 minutes
  • 2020: 222 hours and 43 minutes
  • 2019: 307 hours and 31 minutes
  • 2018: 213 hours and 40 minutes
  • 2017: 103 hours and 27 minutes

The 2021 USEA Volunteer of the Year, Cynthia Smith also achieved her silver medal this past year. Since 2016 Smith has recorded 1,045 hours and 45 minutes. In 2021 alone she recorded an impressive 536 hours and 59 minutes, which is the most hours recorded in a single year since the creation of the VIP program in 2014. Cynthia Smith’s path to a silver medal:

  • 2021: 536 hours and 59 minutes
  • 2020: 264 hours and 21 minutes
  • 2019: 243 hours and 43 minutes

Bronze Medal Volunteers:

There were 12 volunteers who joined the already seven bronze medal volunteers in 2021. The seven bronze medal volunteers from 2020 were Diane Bird, Michael Smallwood, Art Bird, Paige Ervin, Leah Fleming, Angie Leihy, and Cynthia Smith. The 12 new bronze medal volunteers include David Slagle, James Newman, John Bandrofchak, Dick Owen, Dennis Davis, Susan Hart, TJ Costa, Joan Harper, Margaret Potorski, Todd Killalea, Doug Flick, and Cindy Jezerski.

David Slagle of Tennessee has accumulated 856 hours and 11 minutes since 2016. In 2021 he earned 471 hours and 36 minutes which ranks him #2 on the 2021 National USEA Volunteer of the Year leaderboard. David Slagle’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 471 hours and 36 minutes
  • 2020: 246 hours and 35 minutes
  • 2019: 138 hours

The 2020 USEA Volunteer of the Year, James Newman of Virginia, earned his bronze medal in 2021. He has recorded 764 hours and 24 minutes since 2016. To learn more about Newman, please click here. James Newman’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 471 hours and 36 minutes
  • 2020: 292 hours and 51 minutes
  • 2019: 171 hours and 8 minutes

The Georgia resident, John Bandrofchak has accumulated 702 hours and 54 minutes. John Bandrofchak’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 235 hours and 24 minutes
  • 2020: 119 hours and 4 minutes
  • 2019: 207 hours and 41 minutes
  • 2018: 52 hours and 8 minutes
  • 2017: 88 hours and 36 minutes

Dick Owen from Florida has logged in 596 hours and 38 minutes since 2016 to achieve his bronze medal. Dick Owen’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 282 hours and 8 minutes
  • 2020: 130 hours and 4 minutes
  • 2019: 138 hours and 50 minutes
  • 2018: 9 hours and 45 minutes
  • 2017: 25 hours and 30 minutes

The Maryland resident, Dennis Davis has recorded 585 hours and 40 minutes to earn his bronze medal. Dennis Davis’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 286 hours and 40 minutes
  • 2020: 32 hours and 4 minutes
  • 2019: 111 hours and 27 minutes
  • 2018: 113 hours and 15 minutes
  • 2017: 42 hours and 15 minutes

Susan Hart of Pennsylvania has recorded 557 hours and 15 minutes to earn her bronze medal in 2021. Susan Hart’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 272 hours and 17 minutes
  • 2020: 143 hours and 41 minutes
  • 2019: 132 hours and 16 minutes
  • 2018: 9 hours

Another Pennsylvania resident, TJ Costa has recorded 556 hours and 24 minutes to earn her bronze medal. TJ Costa’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 77 hours and 3 minutes
  • 2020: 6 hours and 30 minutes
  • 2019: 226 hours and 48 minutes
  • 2018: 125 hours and 57 minutes
  • 2017: 120 hours and 4 minutes

Like TJ Costa, Joan Harper has also recorded 556 hours. Harper of North Carolina has recorded 556 hours and 17 minutes to earn her bronze medal. Joan Harper’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 184 hours
  • 2020: 144 hours
  • 2019: 137 hours
  • 2018: 91 hours and 17 minutes

Margaret Potorski of Massachusetts has recorded 537 hours and 26 minutes to earn her bronze medal. Margaret Potorski’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 233 hours and 50 minutes
  • 2020: 45 hours and 14 minutes
  • 2019: 184 hours and 57 minutes
  • 2018: 62 hours and 55 minutes
  • 2017: 10 hours and 30 minutes

The California resident, Todd Killalea has accumulated 514 hours and 22 minutes to earn his bronze medal. Todd Killalea’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 128 hours and 51 minutes
  • 2020: 123 hours and 34 minutes
  • 2019: 124 hours and 28 minutes
  • 2018: 94 hours and 44 minutes
  • 2017: 42 hours and 45 minutes

The third bronze medal volunteer from Pennsylvania is Doug Flick who has logged in 514 hours and 18 minutes to earn his bronze medal. Doug Flick’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 138 hours and 35 minutes
  • 2020: 64 hours and 3 minutes
  • 2019: 144 hours and 19 minutes
  • 2018: 125 hours and 51 minutes
  • 2017: 41 hours and 30 minutes

Rounding out the 12 new bronze medal volunteers is Cindy Jezerski of Florida who has recorded 500 hours and 31 minutes to earn his bronze medal. Cindy Jezerski’s path to a bronze medal:

  • 2021: 149 hours and 22 minutes
  • 2020: 68 hours and 34 minutes
  • 2019: 227 hours and 20 minutes
  • 2018: 45 hours and 15 minutes
  • 2017: 10 hours

**These volunteers mentioned above will receive their bronze and silver medal awards in the mail in January 2021.

Congratulations to all the volunteers! The USEA looks forward to seeing you next year.

About the USEA Volunteer Incentive Program

Volunteers are the lifeblood of our sport, the unsung heroes, and the people who make it possible to keep the sport alive. In efforts to recognize the dedication, commitment, and hard work that volunteers put into eventing, USEA formed the Volunteer Incentive Program (VIP) in 2015. In 2017, an online management portal was designed for volunteers, organizers, and volunteer coordinators at (available as an app for iOS and Android).

Volunteer incentives include national and area recognition, year-end awards with ribbons, cash prizes, and trophies, a top ten USEA Volunteer leaderboard, and a Volunteer of the Year award which is given to the volunteer who tops the leaderboard by accumulating the most volunteer hours over the USEA competition year. Click here to learn more about the USEA Volunteer Incentive Program.

The USEA would like to thank Sunsprite Warmbloods for sponsoring the Volunteer Incentive Program.

Dec 04, 2022 Sponsor

Section 1031 Tax-Deferred Exchanges of Farms, Ranches & Investment Real Estate with Capital Square

Are you on the hunt for your next farm, ranch or investment property? USEA sponsor, Capital Square, has all of the information that you need to know about the tax advantages for investing in this type of property. Capital Square is an investor-centric firm and leader among tax-advantaged real estate investment sponsors with more than $2 billion in equity raised. Owners of farms, ranches and investment real estate enjoy several tax advantages, include the rules governing Section 1031 that defer taxable gains on the sale of real estate.

Dec 03, 2022 Classic Series

Looking Back at the 2022 USEA Classic Series

The USEA is so incredibly proud to allow the thrill of the 'chase to live on for those who want to experience the unforgettable rush of the classic long format three-day event through our USEA Classic Series events. Long-format events from the Beginner Novice to Preliminary levels are still a reality with the USEA Classic Series and include roads and tracks, steeplechase, and cross-country on "endurance day," as well as horse inspections. In addition, educational activities are offered at the USEA Classic Series Events to help prepare competitors, especially those who are contesting their first-ever long format event.

Dec 02, 2022 Convention

Awards Presentations and Special Functions at the 2022 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention

The 2022 United States Eventing Association (USEA) Annual Meeting & Convention in Savannah, Georgia is a time to celebrate the incredible achievements and memories made by our members throughout the year. During the convention, the USEA will shine a spotlight on the national awards winners, grant recipients and eventing legends during three separate events: the USEA Year End Awards Luncheon, the USEA Annual Meeting of Members Luncheon and the 8th edition of the USEA’s Eventing Hall of Fame Gala. With so many celebrations taking place in one packed weekend, it may be hard to decide which you want to attend. Keep reading for all you need to know to on these three uniquely special events!

Dec 02, 2022 Sponsor

Ride iQ Renews Partnership with the USEA

The United States Eventing Association, Inc. (USEA) is pleased to announce the return of an official USEA Educational Collaborator, Ride iQ. Ride iQ is a mobile app that allows riders to take audio lessons with top coaches while they ride, an opportunity that hasn’t existed before. In 2023, the USEA will partner with the company to offer exclusive content in collaboration with the USEA’s Eventing Coaches Program (ECP) and the EA21 program, as well as creating other unique educational opportunities.

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