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From The Desk of Marty Schaffel: A Boost for Business

When I decided to start my business, I didn’t know what I was doing. I had no idea how to set it up properly. My accounting system was designed by a friend who just graduated college with a degree in accounting, but had no practical experience. My legal structure was built by a tennis buddy who happened to be a practicing divorce attorney and had never set up a company before.  

Needless to say, both of them got it wrong. But that was all I could afford at the time. I had no mentors or advisors to help me. I made many mistakes and failed numerous times while on the road to success.

What’s different for ASHA members than what I had? The answer is the gracious generosity of ASHA board member Owen Weaver. Owen has donated thousands of dollars to start a very important initiative for our ASHA members – a mentorship program for four young businesses in the Saddlebred world. This program is designed to help these businesses succeed.  If it works, it can be scaled to help many more members. 

Owen has the vision to see that if we can help more businesses be successful in our industry, we all will be more successful and derive greater enjoyment in what we do. If this program helps us make our members financially stronger and secure, we all win. The success of our Saddlebred trainers and instructors is key to ASHA’s mission to promote and protect the breed – it is our industry professionals who in large part introduce their students to the thrill of the American Saddlebred, which leads to the desire to show, which often evolves from the academy ranks to the purchase of a client’s own show horse, and so on.

This is one of the toughest industries in which to make a living – long hours, hard work, and many skills beyond good horsemanship are needed. ASHA believes that if we help provide our professionals with the right tools and knowledge, we all will enjoy a more robust industry. We believe our efforts to promote the breed by helping our members be successful means more success for everyone!

For more information on the program and link to the application available here.

Marty Schaffel
ASHA Interim President

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