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USEF Youth Sportsman’s Charter Award Debuts in 2006

Lexington, KY - On December 2, 2005, the United States Equestrian Federation® (USEF) announced the debut of the USEF Youth Sportsman’s Charter Award. This new program is designed for junior members who are current members of both the USEF and their recognized national affiliate. The youth candidates are to demonstrate an ongoing commitment and dedication to the USEF and their affiliate through the promotion of the horse. This person is to serve as a role model for their peers.

The program’s goal is designed to develop leaders in the equine industry from all breeds and disciplines. This program provides an opportunity for the USEF to give back to the outstanding youth members and recognize them for their achievements. It is intended to educate the youth. The establishment of this program is far reaching and will benefit competitions, members, recognized associations and the USEF, as well as the applicants.

This new award, entitled the USEF Youth Sportsman’s Charter Award, named after the Sportsman’s Charter in the front of the USEF Rule Book, has created quite a stir of excitement around the inaugural honor. The first presentation of the overall winner will take place at the Pegasus Awards Banquet at the USEF Annual Meeting in January 2007. The award winner will receive a career opportunity workshop at the USEF national office, a trophy, a $1,000 scholarship to be paid to the educational program of their choice and a lifetime membership to USEF, valued at $2,500.

Recognized associations have been provided with the program parameters and will assist with the administration of the selection process. The association should select a nominee from each USEF district, region or zone. From that list, they will choose a national nominee. (The breeds and disciplines that do not have districts, regions or zones will choose a national nominee from their memberships). Each national nominee will receive a certificate of honor, lapel pin and exclusively designed hat from the USEF. The national recognized nominees will be submitted to the USEF National Affiliates Working Group as well as being nominated for the USEF Junior Equestrian of the Year Award.

To be considered for the award, the following criteria must be met:

• Active membership in good standing with the USEF and a recognized national affiliate
• At the time of application, the youth must be age 17 or under
• Demonstrate an ongoing commitment and dedication to the promotion of the horse
• Serve as a positive role model for peers
• Participate at any level of competition, including local, regional or national events
• Exhibit characteristics that exemplify positive sportsmanship principles

Nominations are now open and entries will be accepted through October 31, 2006. A sub-committee of the National Affiliates Working Group will review the resumes during their November meeting, and a final selection will be made by
November 10, 2006. The honor will be presented at the USEF Annual Meeting in January 2007.

The first career opportunity program will take place
June 23-29, 2007, at the Radisson Plaza Hotel in Lexington, KY. Each recognized national affiliate nominee will be granted a six-day expenses paid “workshop” at the USEF national headquarters in Lexington, KY. This “hands-on” experience will provide a window of learning to the youth who will become familiar with the inner workings of the Federation, and its various departments. The youth will have an opportunity to visit and learn what each department at the USEF office does. They will meet the USEF staff; learn about a wide range of opportunities within the horse industry and meet many professionals, such as, lawyers, accountants, veterinarians, CEOs, business managers, harness makers, etc. The youth will have an opportunity to see the sights of Lexington, visit area horse farms and be part of the June USEF Board of Directors meeting. They will also have an opportunity to meet both national and international level riders and drivers.

“The USEF Youth Sportsman’s Charter Award is going to bring the youth face-to-face with exciting and unique learning opportunities,” said USEF Chief Executive Officer John Long. “Meeting the many Federation professionals and business people across the industry will be an insightful experience, and an invaluable one at that.”

For more information, please contact Karen Homer-Brown, Managing Director of National Affiliates, via e-mail at or call (859) 225-6958.

Courtesy of the US Equestrian Federation

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