Lexington, KY – At their semi-annual meeting yesterday, The Board of Directors of the United States Equestrian Federation unanimously re-elected David O’Connor as USEF President. His new term will run from January 2005 to January 2009. O’Connor has served as USEF President since July, 2003. The USEF was created by the joining of the former USA Equestrian and the United States Equestrian Team and O’Connor has been instrumental in the transition to the new organization. He has an extensive list of international and national championships to his credit in the sport of Eventing, including the individual gold medal at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.
The Board of Directors also voted to designate the United States Hunter Jumper Association as the partner with which the USEF will strategically plan a new hunter-jumper affiliate. After presentations from Bill Moroney, President of the USHJA and Gary Baker, President of the National Hunter Jumper Association, followed by comprehensive discussion by the Board members, the vote of 21-2 was in favor of the USHJA. The strategic plan for the new affiliate will be presented at the January, 2005 Board of Directors meeting in Louisville, Kentucky. President David O’Connor said after the vote, “That’s a historic step. It’s the first time the hunter-jumpers from within can look to control their own field and direct it.” He praised the board for taking a “brave decision, a step to start the conversation going forward.”
“We’re very excited for the entire hunter-jumper community,” said Bill Moroney. “We look forward to having a national affiliate of our own and a strong voice in our own destiny. Our first goal is to work with Gary Baker and the NHJA, and all of the hunter-jumper groups, to create an organization that represents us all, from high performance to the grassroots.”
The Board addressed an extensive agenda that also included a presentation by USEF Chief Executive Officer, John Long, on the Competition Date Approval Task Force. The task force made recommendations on how to revise the licensing of dates. The board voted that they should move forward to the next phase and develop a comprehensive plan to be voted on at the January, 2005 Board meeting.
The Board also voted on a large number of proposed Bylaw Amendments and extraordinary rule changes which will be posted on the USEF website, www.usef.org, under the Rules and Bylaws areas by Monday, July 12th.