Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...

by EQUUS Foundation
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Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...
Can You Make A Horse Smile? You Bet! Here's How...

The Horse Stars Hall of Fame honors the contributions of amazing horses by sharing the stories of their athletic and humanitarian feats. It was established by the EQUUS Foundation and the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) in 2013 to celebrate the extraordinary talent of horses and their magical and powerful bond with people.

The USEF inducts the horses recognized annually as "Horses of Honor" for their stellar athletic performances. The EQUUS Foundation inducts horses who have had an inspirational impact on the public as companions, teachers and healers.

The 2022 Horse Stars Hall of Fame inductees are Aupollo's Midnight Marquee, Balou du Reventon, Big Shot, Elmer, Happy Thoughts, HS Daydream's Heads Up, Suppenkasper, and TDO Blackburn Hop. For the first time, the inductees included Elmer, the mule, to share the story about how all equines – not just horses – are stars and have a great impact on people.

EQUUS Foundation Inductees

Aupollo's Midnight Marquee
(2014-   )
Tara Needham

If ever there was a horse that was born to do therapy work, Aupollo's Midnight Marquee would be that horse. His sire, Lazy Days Midnight Lightning, impacted thousands of lives over the course of his 12-year career and was inducted into the EQUUS Foundation's Horse Stars Hall of Fame in 2019.

Owner Tara Needham, who founded and operates the therapy program Stampede of Love, was counting on "Kiwi" to follow in his father's hoofprints. The 25-inch American Miniature Horse has not let her down, even if he didn't exactly arrive in the package that Needham was expecting. READ MORE . . .

Elmer
(2016-   )
Shepard Meadows Equestrian Center, Inc.
Elmer doesn't fit the description of a stereotypical therapy horse. His ears are a bit longer. His stature is a bit different. His whinny doesn't quite sound the same. From time to time, he's even been known to make a noise resembling a whimper. But make no mistake - he is just as capable of facilitating a therapy session as any horse is.

"Elmie" is a mule and the first mule inducted into the Horse Stars Hall of Fame. When he arrived, the frost-bitten tips of his ears conveyed a winter of neglectful care, but in the two years since his arrival, he has blossomed. READ MORE . . .

Happy Thoughts
(2011-   )
Caroline Moran

2011 Hanoverian gelding Happy Thoughts was imported into the United States as a 6-year-old and had a successful career in the hunter arena before becoming a member of the team at Thorncroft Equestrian Center. The transition was a seamless one.

"When he retired from his hunter career, he was still sound and fairly young," said Moran. "I thought immediately of testing him out at Thorncroft for their therapeutic riding program. He passed every test, fits in their program perfectly and has become a fan favorite at the farm." READ MORE . . .

TDO Blackburn Hop
(1993-   )
Erika Berg

Erika Berg first met the Quarter Horse gelding named TDO Blackburn Hop - affectionately known as "Bronco" - in 2011, when he joined the herd at Riding on Angels' Wings (ROAW) as a therapy horse. When ROAW closed its doors in 2017, Erika was able to provide a home for two of the horses from the program. Bronco was one of them.

Later that year, a new equine assisted services program was founded at North Dakota State University - Bison Strides Equine Assisted Activities and Therapies. Naturally, Bronco was called upon to join its herd, where he has been an integral part of the team ever since. Erika described Bronco as the epitome of an equine assisted services horse. READ MORE . . .

United States Equestrian Federation Inductees

Balou du Reventon
(2006-   )
Ann Charlotte Thompson


Balou du Reventon is no stranger to success in the show jumping arena. He has punched his ticket to international events all over the world and has proven to be a top competitor under several international riders. Although "Balou" was successful in 4* and 5* events with rider Darragh Kenny aboard, the pairing between Balou and United States rider Brian Moggre seems to be a magical one.

"Balou is really kind and sweet at all times." she said. "For a stallion, it's rare. I can go a long time not seeing him and he still knows exactly who I am. In 2019, when I was going to a lot of horse shows, I would be in the crowd and he would look right at me as he was going by. I've never had a horse do that before." READ MORE . . .

Big Shot
(2011-   )
Dulcie Lou Morris

Big Shot was a sale horse at Far West Farms when farm owner Jenny Karazissis first met the 2011 Holsteiner gelding. She immediately recognized him as a special horse and reached out to Gaby Morgerman and Dulcie Lou Morris to invest in him. As luck would have it, the stars aligned and "Dude" became family.

While the gelding certainly lives up to his name inside the hunter ring, he has a big personality outside of the show arena, too. He is always hoping for treats – mints are his favorite – and he likes to be engaged in what is going on around him. READ MORE . . .

HS Daydream's Heads Up
(2009-   )
Hagan Saddlebreds, Inc.

Scott Hagan's American Saddlebred HS Daydream's Heads Up has proven his talent in the show arena since his debut in 2011 at the Kentucky State Fair. Winning World's Champion of the Two-Year-Old Three-Gaited Division II class, the fiery red gelding received the first of what would be many career championships.

"She was an ultra-tough and game show mare, known for doing things her way and Heads Up is definitely his mother's son. He is explosive, smart, charismatic and athletic beyond belief," Hagan said. "Very few thought an amateur could ever tame him." READ MORE . . .

Suppenkasper
(2008-   )
Four Winds Farm and Akiko Yamazaki

When Akiko Yamazaki and Four Winds Farm purchased Suppenkasper, the goal was to provide a mount for decorated American rider Steffen Peters, with the hope that he would qualify for both the World Equestrian Games in 2018 and 2020 Olympic Games teams. The 2008 KWPN gelding known as "Mopsie" played a vital role in making that goal attainable, and the partnership between Peters and Mopsie has proven to be a formidable force in the dressage arena.

Owner Akiko Yamazaki said that the 18.2 hand gelding is really just a humble, gentle giant who doesn't know how special he is. "He never quits," she said. "And he takes his job very seriously. He always gives 120% of himself." READ MORE . . .

"On behalf of the EQUUS Foundation and the United States Equestrian Federation, we wish to recognize the contributions of Jessica Lash in authoring the profiles of the 2022 inductees and to the many authors and photographers who have contributed over the years," said Lynn Coakley, EQUUS Foundation President.

"The Horse Stars Hall of Fame is a wonderful way to demonstrate the staying power of horses -- as athletes, companions, teachers and healers -- and their unique abilities to move us through a spectrum of experiences from thrill and exhilaration to pure joy. By sharing the stories of these amazing horses, we hope to build a more informed and compassionate America that values the impact of horses in our lives."

Visit the Horse Stars Hall of Fame here

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Volunteer Teresa Cendrowska with Bear
Volunteer Teresa Cendrowska with Bear

Volunteers are the lifeblood of charities. Equine charities are no exception. As part of the EQUUS Foundation mission to protect America's horses from peril and strengthen the horse-human bond, thanks to Ariat International, five deserving volunteers at equine charities across the United States receive a $270 Gift Card for Ariat Boots each quarter. Ariat International sponsors the EQUUS Foundation Champions program, which aims to stimulate and reward volunteerism on behalf of horses.

We would like to congratulate the winners for the fourth quarter of 2021: Teresa Cendrowska, Michelle Foss, Kaye Garland, Bonnie Plevel, and Sophia Soto. The EQUUS Foundation is grateful for volunteers like these who dedicate their time to keeping horses safe and healthy and aiding the charities and horses that serve people in need.

Teresa Cendrowska
Special Equestrians
Warrington, PA

Teresa Cendrowska has long known the sense of peace and fulfillment that horses can bring to our lives – she has loved them since childhood and often spent time with them on her grandparents' farm. 

"When I walk into the barn, everyday concerns recede," she said. "It's my form of relaxation and [it] reenergizes me." 

Teresa was introduced to the volunteer program at Special Equestrians through a family friend and jumped at the opportunity to join. 

She said that her time there has taught her a lot about horses, thanks to the patience and knowledge of the staff and volunteers that work there. As is often the case, she's learned plenty from the herd itself, too. 

"No matter the task, I enjoy the opportunity to help others," she said. "Most of all, I am thrilled for the opportunity to spend time with the horses.

Michelle Foss
Hope's Legacy Equine Rescue, Inc. (HLER)
Afton, VA

Michelle Foss has been volunteering with Hope's Legacy Equine Rescue (HLER) since 2016. During her time there, she has watched the program grow from a small, rented barn to its current location – a 172-acre site.

Michelle, who is a mother of three, recently became a grandmother. She said that all of her family members have, at one time or another, been recruited to help feed the horses at HLER.

"We get to know so many horses and always fall in love with someone," said Michelle. "Watching them leave to forever homes is the best, even if goodbyes are hard!"

"HLER is a magical place of love, hope and kind people, as well as precious, stubborn and funny critters," said Michelle. "I have truly been blessed to be part of a great community at HLER and we are so grateful for our sponsors."

Kaye Garland
Roanoke Valley Horse Rescue Inc.
Hardy, VA

Kaye Garland has been around horses off and on for her entire life and thought that she knew them – that is, until she worked with rescue horses.

"They are a totally different breed," she said. "Seeing them come in so abused and [with] no life in their eyes tugged at my heartstrings. The desire to help was instant!"

It was this desire to help and let the horses know that they were safe that led Kaye to her volunteer work at Roanoke Valley Horse Rescue (RVHR), where she wears many hats.

She grooms, mucks stalls, mixes grain, chops hay and helps put hay bales in the paddocks. As is true in any equine program, there is always work to do, and Kaye said that she will do whatever needs to be done, including hosting open house tours, office work, and fundraising. Of all the things that Kaye does at RVHR, feeding the horses is her favorite.

"I love feeding time," she said. "That's my opportunity to see and speak to each and every horse. My special time."

One of her favorite horses, Reese, passed away recently. Even though losing Reese was hard for her, she knows that there is still important work to be done and hopes she can continue volunteering for years to come.

"It broke my heart," she said of Reese's passing. "But I know he would want me to continue caring for the others. So, I'm still here doing what I love best."

Bonnie Plevel
Hope for Horses, Inc.
Galt, CA

Bonnie Plevel credits retirement with rekindling her interest in horses. As a horse owner in the past, upon her retirement, she gravitated back to horses. She was volunteering at a horse rescue that has since closed when she met her namesake – a mare who was also named Bonny - a Belgian draft who stole Bonnie's heart.

When she became available for adoption, Bonnie knew that she wanted to be a horse owner once again. Since she wasn't yet prepared to tackle horse ownership on her own, she reached out to Anita Markiewicz, President of Hope for Horses, to ask for help. Bonny has been a resident there ever since.

At Hope for Horses, which seeks to help both humans and horses find a better future, Bonnie soon found herself helping with the other horses, too.

"I realized the opportunity was there to again help other horses in addition to caring for my mare," said Bonnie. "I do what I can to volunteer. It is a privilege to do so."

Sophia Soto
Girl Scouts Carolinas Peaks to Piedmont Circle C Equestrian Center
Sophia, NC 

High school sophomore Sophia Soto was first introduced to horses when she attended the Circle C's summer camp at Keyauwee Program Center and has been volunteering through the Circle C's Riding Instructor in Training (RIIT) program since 2019.

Soto said that she became more confident during that first horse camp experience and fell in love with the barn. The knowledge that she has gained through both weekend and summer programs has allowed her to build skills, bond with the horses, and serve the community. An Honor student at a magnet school for the Arts, Soto sometimes draws the horses of Circle C.

Her favorite horse is a Mustang gelding named Ritz. She described him as "the sweetest boy in the world."

She explained that the confidence that comes from working with the horses is what she hopes to give to younger members who are participating in the RIIT program. Confidence, and maybe the knowledge that their work is making the world just a little bit better.

"The best feeling is when you have a child that is a little hesitant or nervous, and by the end of the ride, they don't want to get off," said Soto.

 ____

The EQUUS Foundation is deeply grateful  to Ariat International for sponsoring our Champions program.

Volunteer Michelle Foss with Hilly
Volunteer Michelle Foss with Hilly
Volunteer Kaye Garland with Reese
Volunteer Kaye Garland with Reese
Volunteer Bonnie Plevel with Bonny
Volunteer Bonnie Plevel with Bonny
Volunteer Sophia Soto with Ritz
Volunteer Sophia Soto with Ritz

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The EQUUS Foundation announced today the award of over $631,000 in grants, including awards of new and gently used riding apparel, valued at $313,864, to individual riders in need, scholastic riding programs, pony clubs, equestrian camp programs and equine charities through The Rider's Closet program.

Primary support is awarded to equine charities nationwide that save and re-home increasing numbers of horses from abuse, neglect, and slaughter and charities that partner with horses to improve the well-being of people through the Foundation's Transparency Awards program. The EQUUS Foundation awarded small grants ranging from $500 to $5,000 to 142 charities that earned the EQUUS Foundation Guardian Seal of Transparency by completing the EQUUS Foundation's comprehensive and unique verification process.

EQUUS Foundation Horse Whisperers Horse Whisperers are a select group of individuals and organizations who are committed to ensuring that America's horses are safe and live with dignity throughout their lives and are recognized by the EQUUS Foundation for their extraordinary kinship with horses by the establishment of an award in their names to honor deserving equine charities.

The EQUUS Foundation Board of Directors honors those charities from among the grant recipients that best align with the interests of the Horse Whisperers with a Horse Whisperer Award.

Horse Whisperer Perpetual Awards

Michele E. Arnhold Memorial Horse Whisperer Award
Established in 2008 in memory of Michele Arnhold's life-long passion, her pursuit of excellence, and her commitment and contribution to the equestrian sport.
High Hopes Therapeutic Riding, Inc., Old Lyme, CT

Daniel D. Barkan Memorial Horse Whisperer Award
Established in 2013 in memory of Daniel D. Barkan, a quiet philanthropist and gentleman, in recognition of his life-long love of horses.
Brook Hill Farm, Forest, VA

Horse Whisperer Annual Awards

Augusta Mills Equestrian - Matt Metell Horse Whisperer Award
South Florida SPCA, Homestead, FL

Linda Berley Horse Whisperer Award
Project Horse Empowerment Center, Purcellville, VA

Emma and Georgina Bloomberg Horse Whisperer Award
Omega Horse Rescue and Rehabilitation Center, Airville, PA

Marguerite Brennan Memorial Horse Whisperer Award
Mitchell Farm Equine Retirement, Inc., Salem, CT

Giant Steps - Next Steps Horse Whisperer Award
Loudoun Therapeutic Riding Foundation, Inc., Lovettsville, VA

Gore Family Memorial Foundation Horse Whisperer Award
Colorado Horse Rescue, Longmont, CO
Lucky Orphans Horse Rescue, Inc., Dover Plains, NY

Jackson Family Horse Whisperer Award
Days End Farm Horse Rescue, Lisbon, MD
Prancing Horse, Inc., Southern Pines, NC

Kay Family Foundation Horse Whisperer Award
BraveHearts Therapeutic Riding & Educational Center, Harvard, IL

Lafitte De Muze Horse Whisperer Award
Gerda's Equine Rescue, Inc., West Townshend, VT

Lannie Lipson Horse Whisperer Award
This Old Horse, Inc., Hastings, MN

Mighty Nice Horse Whisperer Award
Kentucky Equine Adoption Center, Lexington, KY

Newstead Foundation Horse Whisperer Award
Thoroughbred Athletes, Inc., Guthrie, OK

Otis Booth Foundation Horse Whisperer Award
Drifter's Hearts of Hope, Franktown, CO
Saving Horses, Inc., Encinitas, CA

Richard L. Parish Memorial Horse Whisperer Award
Central Kentucky Riding for Hope, Inc. (CKRH), Lexington, KY
Charleston Area Therapeutic Riding, Inc., Johns Island, SC
Green Chimneys, Brewster, NY

Robin Cleary Parsky Horse Whisperer Award
Mini Therapy Horses, Calabasas, CA

Ellen R. Pearl Horse Whisperer Award
Happy Trails Farm Animal Sanctuary, Ravenna, OH

Split Rock Farm/Bobbie & Derek Braun Horse Whisperer Award
Giant Steps Therapeutic Equestrian Center, Inc., Petaluma, CA

As the only national animal welfare charity in the United States that is 100 percent dedicated to protecting America's horses and strengthening the horse-human bond, the work of the EQUUS Foundation begins each time the career of a horse comes to an end. Too many of America's horses are needlessly subjected to abuse and neglect, and the threat of slaughter when their owners cannot, or no longer wish to, care for them.

"It is only through engaging passionate supporters and collaboration that we are able to identify and invest in effective programs that are finding homes for at-risk horses and horses in transition, providing a safe haven for aged horses, and increasing opportunities for more people to benefit from the magic and power of horses," said Lynn Coakley, EQUUS Foundation President.

At the heart of our mission is our commitment to ensure that donor dollars are invested in effective programs that are finding homes for at-risk horses and horses in transition, providing a safe haven for aged horses, and increasing opportunities for people to engage and partner with horses in new and innovative ways.

Informed giving has never been more important. Only equine charities that have undergone a rigorous review of their horse care and business practices are eligible to attain the EQUUS Foundation Guardian designation and to receive financial support from the EQUUS Foundation.

Grant recipients from the last three years can be viewed here

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2021 Horse Stars Hall of Fame Inductees
2021 Horse Stars Hall of Fame Inductees

The Horse Stars Hall of Fame honors the contributions of amazing horses by sharing the stories of their athletic and humanitarian feats. It was established by the EQUUS Foundation and the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) in 2013 to celebrate the extraordinary talent of horses and their magical and powerful bond with people.

The USEF inducts the horses recognized annually as "Horses of Honor" for their stellar athletic performances. The EQUUS Foundation inducts horses who have had an inspirational impact on the public as companions, teachers and healers.

The 2021 Horse Stars Hall of Fame inductees are Dolton, FWF Undercover, Gazelle, Kiss Me Quick, Pritchard Hill, Sir Gus, Tango and Vivaldi De Besilu.

EQUUS Foundation Inductees:

FWF Undercover
(1998 - 2020)
Taya Workum-Byers
FWF Undercover, known fondly as Sherman, a Georgian Grande born in 1998 and passing in 2020, was a 'once in a lifetime horse' for Officer Taya Workum-Byers and the thousands upon thousands of people he impacted during his life of public service. When Officer Taya Workum-Byers purchased him as a mounted police prospect, she had no idea what she had really found. READ MORE . . .

Kiss Me Quick
(1995 - )
Loudoun Therapeutic Riding, Inc.
Kiss Me Quick, known as Gnomeo, is good at everything he does. A seasoned horse show veteran with literally a million miles under his girth, Gnomeo joined the therapy horse herd at Loudoun Therapeutic Riding, Inc., at 14 years young in 2011. Gnomeo's quiet demeanor is the perfect introduction to the wonderful world of horses for even the most timid participant. READ MORE . . .

Sir Gus
(1995 - )
Brook Hill Farm
When Gus arrived at Brook Hill farm he was skin and bones. He had been left on a farm to fend for himself and after being alerted by local law enforcement, Gus arrived at Brook Hill as a neglect case at the age of 17 in 2012. So began a long physical and mental rehabilitation. READ MORE . . .

Tango
(2006 - )
The Equus Effect
Jane Strong, Founder of The Equus Effect, met Tango for the first time in a pasture where he had been retired by his young owner. Tango had been at the top of his game as an eventing horse but his life, as he knew it, came to an abrupt halt in 2013 when he had a severe accident that injured his shoulder. That is when both of their fortunes changed. READ MORE . . .

United States Equestrian Foundation Inductees:

Dolton
(2012 - )
Flintwoode Farms LLC and Karin Flint
The partnership between Dolton, a Hanoverian Gelding born in 2012, and Para Dressage Rider, Roxanne Trunnell, clicked from the start. Their bond and Dolton's incredible temperament carried them to success at the 2018 FEI Longines World Equestrian Games, including becoming the first U.S. horse-and-athlete pair to medal at a para dressage world championship. READ MORE . . .

Gazelle
(2006 - )
Robin Parsky & Kent Farrington
Gazelle’s many triumphs come as a result of her incredible partnership with Kent Farrington Developing together over the years, they share a desire to win and a competitive spirit that instills confidence in everyone around them, including co-owner Robin Parsky. "She has proven to us time and time again that she wants to win it all," said Parsky. "All my life I have dreamed about having a horse as amazing as her."  READ MORE . . .

Pritchard Hill
(2012 - )
Balmoral
Known familiarly as "Quinn" around the barn, Pritchard Hill, a 2012 Oldenburg gelding, was named after Pritchard Hill -- the best hill in the Napa Valley to grow wine grapes. Like many of the great ones, the incredibly talented gelding required some extra time to develop and truly shine. "He's really intelligent, so you have to let him learn his lessons and leave him alone until he digests it, " said Carleton Brooks, known throughout the hunter/jumper industry as CB.  READ MORE . . .


Vivaldi De Besilu
(2010 - )
The Besilu Connection, Ltd - Benjamin Leon
Vivaldi de Besilu (Bribon de San Isidro x La Ley de Cuatro G, Mandato de La Luisa) is regarded as one of the most exciting stallion prospects of the modern Paso Fino era. Born with a gait unique to the breed and considered among the smoothest riding horses in the world, the origin of “Los Caballos de Paso Fino” — the horses with the fine step - goes back to the Spanish conquistadors. READ MORE . . .

* * *

"The Horse Stars Hall of Fame is a wonderful way to demonstrate the staying power of horses -- as athletes, companions, teachers and healers -- and their unique abilities to move us through a spectrum of experiences from thrill and exhilaration to pure joy. By sharing the stories of these amazing horses, we hope to build a more informed and compassionate America that values the impact of horses in our lives," said Lynn Coakley, EQUUS Foundation President.




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Samantha Calzone (1996-2019)
Samantha Calzone (1996-2019)

On Sept. 16, 2019, Samantha Marie Pritchard Calzone passed away doing what she loved most in this life - riding horses. Equipped with passion, the knowledge arising from her BS in equine studies from the University of Connecticut (UConn) and her Masters from Hartpury University in England, and the leadership skills she gained from serving as Captain of the UConn Equestrian Team, Samantha hoped to dedicate her life to improve the lives of horses.


The EQUUS Foundation is honored to announce the inaugural recipients of the Samantha "Sam" Calzone Memorial Award established in tribute to the life of Samantha Calzone and her everlasting passion for horses. The two 2020 recipients are the University of Connecticut and West Virginia University.

The award recognizes an institution of higher learning offering equine studies and/or equine athletics programs that ensures that the quality of life of its equine partners is paramount.

"While the loss of Samantha will always be unimaginable to Samantha's family and those who deeply loved her, we hope that Samantha's legacy will be to inspire others to seek the knowledge that is needed to elevate the equine profession and to create a reality to ensure that safe solutions exist for both horses and people," said Lynn Coakley, President, EQUUS Foundation.


University of Connecticut (UConn)
The University of Connecticut (UConn) Department of Animal Science's Equine Program is dedicated to educating the next generation of equine professionals and enthusiasts with coursework and experiential learning opportunities covering the entirety of the lifespan of the horse - from responsible breeding to training to end of life decisions. The University of Connecticut offers multiple opportunities for students interested competition -- for those in their first years of riding as well as students with previous show experience, including the disciplines of Dressage, Hunt Seat, Western, and Polo.

UConn's 85 horse herd is primarily comprised of Morgan Horses descended from the US Calvary, but also Thoroughbreds, Quarter Horses and Warmblood crosses. UConn raises horses for its teaching and riding programs and retires them usually to the alumni who have helped to raise and train them. Other horses, such as the polo ponies are donated by alumni and supporters of our programs.

West Virginia University
The West Virginia University Equine Studies (WVUES) program offers a well-rounded equine studies curriculum with diverse student opportunities in and out of the traditional classroom. This includes hands-on laboratory courses in equine handling & training lab, riding theory & techniques, and advanced horse management as well as English and Western Equestrian Teams affiliated with the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA).

WVUES maintains a herd of 8-10 horses for its hands-on courses and working student program. The teaching horses are generally retired show horses in their teens that are both owned and leased by WVU. WVUES ensures that all the horses receive outstanding veterinary, dental, and farrier care and also veterinary acupuncturists/chiropractors and massage therapists as needed.In appreciation of the physiological demands that teaching students with varying skillsets places on our herd, the horses participate in only one riding lab and one handling exercise per day for no more than four days per week.

When the time comes to retire a teaching horse, WVUES places the horse on a lifetime lease with an alumni or friend of the program - retaining lifetime ownership of the horse. The lease agreement can be terminated at any time and the horse can be returned to our care if the circumstances change. A returned horse remains in the care of WVUES until another proper retirement option is found. When the time comes, at the recommendation of the WVUES clinical veterinarian, WVUES horses are humanely euthanized.

University of Connecticut
University of Connecticut
West Virginia University
West Virginia University

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EQUUS Foundation

Location: Westport, CT - USA
Website:
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Twitter: @EQUUSFoundation
Project Leader:
Lynn Coakley
Westport, CT United States
$129,112 raised of $250,000 goal
 
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