What is your committee’s mission?
Summarizing, to develop and encourage all Youth Dressage riders to participate in the sport, regardless of what level.
How long have you been on this committee?
How long have you been the committee chair?
How did you get involved in the sport of dressage?
I’m a former USPC member and the sport always interested me. I went to a very well-known riding camp when I was 16, and saw FEI-evel riding for the first time and was hooked.
How did you get involved with USDF?
As a competitor for a long time, but as an active volunteer, when our Region 2 Director asked me to be the Region 2 FEI Jr/YR Coordinator in 1997.
How did you get involved in the committee?
My very dear friends, George and Roberta Williams asked if I would be interested in chairing the committee. I said, “I’ve never chaired anything before, but now seems like a good time to try!”
What is your favorite part of being involved with this committee?
I’m always happy to hear from kids who have been through the various programs and how those programs have sparked their interests.
What unique qualifications made you an expert in the committee’s area?
Maybe because I teach many youth riders on less than ideal horses, I have a strong soft spot for the underdog.
What has been your committee’s greatest accomplishment, or what do you hope to accomplish during your tenure?
One thing I’m very proud of is the USDF/USEF Young Rider Graduate Program. It’s grown into such an important program helping our “graduating” youth move into the adult dressage community and be successful.
Please share a little bit about yourself and your background.
I’m originally a New York City girl. I’ve always been passionate about horses and managed to make it a career. I’ve always had to work hard to keep riding as my folks didn’t support it, and really, that was a benefit. I’ve been an active professional for a long time and I’m still excited to keep at it.
Do you currently compete in dressage, or have you competed in the past?
Yes, I’ve competed steadily over my career. I rode in the Insilco Championships when they were in Kansas City and now have also competed at the US Dressage Finals presented by Adequan®. No plans to stop competing!
Please share a favorite dressage-related memory.
When I rode at the US Championships(Insilco), we had to ride up a very narrow and somewhat rickety ramp up to the competition level of the facility. I remember feeling my poor horse’s heart pounding through the tack, he was so frightened! I was sure I’d never be able to coax him to work, but when we got up there, bless his heart, he was all in. He was my first horse, a Canadian hunter I brought from Training Level to FEI-Level, so he kind of started the whole thing for me!
What horse impacted your love for the sport the most?
Again, hard to pick one. I’d have to say a superb Trakehner Stallion named Horatio. He was the first warmblood I ever rode, and was truly exceptional. Very sadly, he died at eight years old, but the few years I was able to ride him were absolutely a high point.