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Morgan standing in a foggy field

A Message from the AMHA President

March 13, 2017

Below is a letter to the American Morgan Horse Association's membership from its new president, Vicki Bennett.

Dear Fellow Members,

As your new President, I would like to take a few minutes of your time to introduce myself, talk a bit about the duties of your Board, and what’s in store for 2017.

However, before I do that, I want to compliment the outgoing Board and President Gove for its accomplishments on our behalf. The instigation and implementation of a strategic plan, along with the acquisition of a new software platform, leave us in a great position to improve services to us--the current members--and take advantage of the opportunities to gain new ones in what seems to be an improving economy. This has already been evidenced by eight consecutive months of growth in all of our Registry statistics!

This Board is a diverse and strong one. There are long time show folk, Western and carriage competitors, owners of family farms and ranches, large and small. All of us are long term members who have volunteered our time and experience to guide the Association and its activities, enforce the rules and assure its financial integrity. Our fiscal responsibility is to all the members, current and future. We are all equal shareholders of AMHA.

We are all also customers and we are improving our customer service this year. The implementation of the automation of member services will certainly do this for us. We all owe a huge debt of gratitude to member Sara Foy, who has initiated and guided this work from the beginning. There will be staff training in April and live testing in July. We will all need to be patient as we go through this important transition that benefits us all.

My background is 30 years as a small business owner and as an AMHA amateur member, showing in both our breed shows and open competition. I have been a show mom, competitor, boarding barn owner, and small breeder. I grew up in Massachusetts and learned to ride, along with my daughter, at Orcland Farm in the 1980s. We showed in New England and at Nationals in those years.

In the early 1990s. we relocated to Texas where I began to participate in competitive driving, and in a partnership with Dr. Hughes, bred some lovely sport Morgans. In the early 2000s I also evented with a Canabar gelding, who won several working hunter events at Nationals.

In 2013, I was a founder of Morgan Safenet, a 501C3, which to date has recovered and returned over 200 Morgans to show, driving, endurance, and family homes.

Today I am retired and live with my husband and several rescue dogs and horses in a small community East of Dallas. Morgans are still my passion, and I feel privileged to be able to devote much of my time to them and our members and the Association.

Remember that every member is invited to call in to Board meetings and to ask questions, speak on topic, or raise new business. We will publish the dates, phone-in and agenda information, so that you can listen in and participate. 2017 has been designated as focusing on "Moving Forward"--let’s all work together and keep moving forward in this positive direction!

I encourage you to contact me with anything you’d like to share; suggestions and ideas, and comments and complaints.

Vicki Bennett