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UPHA Sallie B. Wheeler Distinguished Service Award: Paulette Schroeder

Long before the United Professional Horseman’s Association was formed in 1968, our recipient was connected to the American Saddlebred. Public riding stables seemed to be everywhere in the area, on the main streets in the city, with the riding halls on the main floor and horses stabled in the basement or on the second and third floors.

The Chicago Sun Times held an annual horse show where lesson riders competed without complete riding habits. The stables held their own horse shows several times a year. Among the riders competing were Tom Moore and Dick Obenauf, noted Arabian trainer Bob Battaglia was also a competitor. 

There were many others who became owners over the years: Judy Marks, Muffy Sweeney, Joy Atkinson, Missy Palmer, Charlotte Chesrow, Jeanne Ferguson, Craig Penrith and Vickie Factor.

Some riders would find a place in the show horse industry as recording secretary/newsletter editor for the Town & Country Equestrian Association. To pay for her own show expenses our recipient taught riding lessons and helped manage stable horse shows.  

When the formation of the United Professional Horseman’s Association was announced in 1967 in the Chicago area, our recipient dreamed of one day working for them.

Tom Moore was the first president, with Chat Nichols as the vice president and Ben Sagalla as the secretary/treasurer. Bookkeeping and memberships were handled by the wives of the trainers and inn 1969 Don Brockman was added as the secretary. 

Fall 1970 saw our recipient working part time for president Chat Nichols. She had a full time career in an 8,000 member national organization. UPHA had only a file cabinet, a portable typewriter and a small desk in the corner of her apartment.

After writing the first UPHA Newsletter, Chat entrusted her with full responsibility for writing, editing and production of the bi-monthly newsletters which were typed on a mimeograph stencil before copy machines, printed, hand stapled, folded, inserted in envelopes and mailed.  

At the 1971 convention in Louisville, Kentucky, Chat and Tom presented her with a bouquet of flowers in appreciation for all the “behind the scenes” work. She designed and produced the convention invitations, programs and tickets, and recorded in shorthand the board meetings and forums.  

The official photographer Curtie Vaughn gave her many of the photos you are seeing this evening. She was now also responsible for the financial transactions and reports.

Redd Crabtree was elected President in 1973 with Dudley Abbott as Vice President. Our recipient was still working full time and scrambling to keep up with UPHA’s growth. Vacation days were used to attend board meetings during Tattersalls, Junior League and Kansas City.

When Charlie Smith became President in 1975, Paulette left her career to work for UPHA full time. The office was one room in her apartment, but UPHA now owned a full size desk and a typewriter.  

Her employment with UPHA permitted outside projects with the approval of the executive board. Carl Garner hired her as the secretary for the last Chicago International Livestock Exposition Horse Show.  

Judging and training clinics for the Mid-America Horse Shows Associations and special exhibitions along with UPHA Chapter 10 were examples of her dedication to the breed. Charlie was instrumental in developing the UPHA Colt Sale which entailed new office responsibilities.

Keith Bartz was elected President in 1977, with Art Simmons as the Vice President. In 1978 Paulette was appointed to the American Horse Council’s Show Horse Advisory Committee to represent UPHA.  

The MOS system replaced the high- low system for scoring the judges cards and she was hired to manually score the cards for the Kentucky State Fair, Lexington Junior League, Illinois State Fair, Pin Oak Charity, All American Exhibitor and the American Royal.

Richard Lavery was elected President in 1979, serving three terms. He was instrumental in getting the 501©3 tax designation for the organization. Paulette relocated to Lexington, Kentucky and maintained the office in her historic district home.  

In 1980 she organized the exhibitor of six American Saddlebreds at the Olympia International Judging Championships in London, England and was honored by the American Saddlebred Horse Association. In 1981 she directed UPHA’s group of Saddlebreds to the Salon du Cheval in Paris France.  

When Charlie Crabtree was President in 1983 the association established an office in Lexington, Kentucky with an answering service and copying facilities. Jim Anderson, a Morgan trainer was the vice president. An offer to work on a farm came in 1985 and it was time for our recipient to move on.

Life after UPHA included administrative stints with Triple Creek Farm Morgans and Dutel Saddlebreds, the International Arabian Horse Association and the American Hackney Horse Society. She was invited to judge the 4- H Horse Judging competitions at the North American Livestock Exposition in 1994 and 1995.

Currently she is involved with the Arthur Simmons Stables Preservation as well as the International Hall of Fame Master of Ceremonies. Paulette is also assisting Fritz Jordan’s daughter in writing his biography.
For her dedication to the United Professional Horseman’s Association we are honored tonight to recognize Paulette Schroeder as the 2019 recipient of the Sallie B. Wheeler Distinguished Service Award.  

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