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United States Equestrian Federation

When it comes to promoting innovation and showing vision in the equestrian world, there are few people who are as adept at it as the United States Equestrian Federation’s own president, David O’Connor. And for his years of excellence as an equestrian athlete and his service to not only the Federation, but the equine industry as a whole, O’Connor was presented with the 2007 Equine Industry Vision Award in Albuquerque, NM, on Friday morning, June 22, at the kick-off of the 2007 American Horse Publication’s “Fiesta del Caballo” seminar.

Sponsored by Pfizer Animal Health and the American Horse Publications (AHP), the award is presented annually. For 2007, 13 nominees represented a wide array of the industry’s movers and shakers, in addition to individuals and programs that supported the industry in their own special ways. O’Connor was chosen to receive this year’s award for “innovation, leadership and service.”

“I would like to thank you all very much,” began an emotional and grateful O’Connor. “I’ve been fortunate to live a life with horses. And to be able to step into their lives and learn from them has been has been something that I try apply to the other things I do in my life. The equine world has given us all so much.”

The Equine Industry Vision Award Committee narrowed the pool of candidates to seven finalists: Stacy V. Bearse; G. Marvin Beeman, DVM; Charlotte Brailey Kneeland; the Louisiana State University Equine Health Studies Program; Matthew Mackay-Smith, DVM; Linda Tellington-Jones and O’Connor.

Finalists were judged on their attributes and qualities in relation to being a true pioneer for the industry, leadership, commitment, dedication and willingness to serve, original and effective ideas, in addition to a high moral, ethical and professional set of standards.

“I would like to thank the media for all of its involvement. It is such an important part of the sport and industry,” continued O’Connor. “I would also like to thank Pfizer and the AHP for this incredible honor.”

Pfizer Animal Health and AHP developed the Equine Industry Vision Award to create the first major award to showcase innovation across the equine industry. In presenting this award, it is the hope of both organizations that others will be inspired to contribute in their own ways to make the equine industry as a whole even better.

Previous recipients of the Equine Industry Vision Award are Stanley Bergstein (2006), John Ryan Gaines (2005), the American Quarter Horse Association (2004), Don Burt (2003) and Alexander Mackay-Smith (2002).

American Horse Publications is a non-profit professional association dedicated to promoting better understanding and communication within the equine publishing industry. Visit the AHP website at Pfizer, Inc., discovers, develops, manufactures and markets leading prescription medicines, for humans and animals, and many of the world’s best known consumer products. Visit the company’s website at

Photo: David O’Connor accepting the 2007 Equine Industry Vision Award at the American Horse Publications seminar in Albuquerque, NM, on Friday, June 22, 2007. Credit: Diana DeRosa

As the National Governing Body (NGB) of Equestrian Sport, the United States Equestrian Federation®, Inc. (USEF) is the regulatory body for 28 breeds and disciplines, including our country’s international teams competing in the disciplines of dressage, driving, endurance, eventing, para-equestrian, reining, show jumping and vaulting. With over 89,000 members, it is the country’s largest multi-breed organization and annually license more than 2,800 competitions nationwide. The USEF governs all aspects of competition, including education and licensing of all judges, stewards, and technical delegates who officiate shows.

Vision Statement: The vision of United States Equestrian Federation® is to provide leadership for equestrian sport in the United States of America, promoting the pursuit of excellence from the grassroots to the Olympic Games, based on a foundation of fair, safe competition and the welfare of its horses, and embracing this vision, to be the best national equestrian federation in the world.