Group Member Organizations (GMOs) are the foundation of USDF and integral in bringing dressage and dressage education to the masses. Stay connected with your local dressage community and support dressage at the local level by joining a GMO in your area today!
USDF GMO Established: 2015
Locality: USDF Region 5, New Mexico
How many members does your GMO have annually, on average?
Tell us about your GMO.
The Santa Fe Dressage Association (SFDA) was founded in September 2015 with the firmly stated mission to support the sport of dressage by holding recognized shows and offering educational opportunities. New Mexico is a large state with dressage enthusiasts spread throughout. It is the goal of SFDA to grow the focus on the sport within the state.
Driven by the successes of its first four years of existence, in 2019 SFDA doubled the size of its Board of Directors. It has held an annual member dinner-meeting and year-end awards presentation each year since its inception. SFDA maintains a dedicated and active membership of 50 – 60 people. It keeps its members informed through its website and other calendars, and encourages volunteerism and participation in all activities.
Does your GMO offer unique classes or activities that cater to youth, adult amateurs, or professionals? If so, please provide a brief description.
The first recognized show in 2016 was held at the newly refurbished Hipico Santa Fe, a world class equestrian venue with Grand Prix show jumping, as well as dressage clinics and recognized dressage shows.
Since that time, SFDA has held four recognized shows, the last two of which have been the only Level 3 competitions in the state. SFDA will present three days of Level 3 recognized competitions in July 2020. This show will be the last opportunity for riders in the southwest to qualify for the Young and Developing Horse Championships.
What type of educational events does your GMO offer?
SFDA has provided several popular educational opportunities. In 2017, it supported two-day symposia with Beth Baumert, author of the popular book, When Two Spines Align. That same year, SFDA produced a freestyle workshop with Cynthia Collins at which many riders received their first tunes to show off their horses’ two-steps!
In 2019, with the introduction of USDF’s new dressage tests, SFDA hosted the well-attended symposium Riding Through the Levels with instructional commentary by Bill McMullin and Bill Warren, as riders performed the new tests. With generous support from The Dressage Foundation and the USDF GMO Education Initiative, this symposium counted for USDF University Credit and Continuing Education credit for USDF L Graduates.
On March 8, 2020, SFDA will initiate a series of non-mounted symposia, Tools of the Dressage Trade, focusing on the care of dressage horses and the many innovative aids being brought forth in the increasingly technical world of dressage. This first event will feature research veterinarian Anne Hale, DVM, BodeVet Inc., on Regenerative Medicine: new tools for injury and wound repair, and Dominic Lombardo, co-founder / CEO, equla: This Is Happening! Equine Technology 101.
In April 2021, SFDA will produce another mounted symposium for which it will continue to reach out to participants throughout Region 5.
What type of “fun” events does your GMO offer?
To foster a spirit of collegiality and collaboration among regional dressage enthusiasts, SFDA hosts group meals at its events, at which the interaction among the many attendees from this large state and region has helped to establish dressage as a dynamic presence in the New Mexico world of equestrian sports.