Message From The Chairman
Christopher Reeves once said, “By reaching out, more comes back than you can possibly imagine.” When I think about the NSBA Foundation, I am overwhelmed with what the Foundation has accomplished over the years. The Foundation evolved from the simple act of reaching out to a fellow member in need to supporting a vast array of programs that have reached a variety of individuals in the horse community.
As our mission states, we function to enhance the well-being of the horse show community through various charitable programs that benefit horse people, horses, and the relationships they create. The 5 Pillars of the Foundation have been strategically created in order to achieve the goal of enhancing the lives of individuals in the horse show community. Specifically, the Champion Fund allows the Foundation to stretch our goals and reach out with new ideas and new ways of doing more.
I welcome you to support and walk alongside the NSBA Foundation in 2023 as we reach out and imagine the possibilities. Our goal is simple; continue to grow so that we may reach more, to allow others to experience more, and to embrace the horse that connects us all.
Although not getting involved in horses until later in her life, Beth Hartman, of Ocala, FL has seen not only success in the show pen, but how horses can change people's lives.
As an active volunteer of the Cheff Therapeutic Riding Center based in Richland, MI, Beth has had the opportunity to help children, teens and adults make great achievements while aboard the therapy horses. "There are no words to describe the feeling I get when I see these people aboard a horse, loving every minute of it. I really want to see the Heroes on Horses and Equestrians With Disabilities programs grow because I've seen with my own eyes how horses can change a person's mood and outlook on life," Beth said.
Beth and her husband, Curt, have offered specific support to the NSBA Foundation in the creation of the Coaches Summit in an effort to continue to educate the therapy community about the benefit of horses and horse showing. Beth has watched her daughter compete for the last seven years, and is now enjoying the success of her own horses showing and winning at AQHA and NSBA events across the country.
Board of Directors
Passion for the horse industry and passion for serving other seems to rise to the forefront for this year's leaders on the National Snaffle Bit Association's Foundation board of directors. This team is tasked with assisting the Foundation in administering its core programs, including Equestrians With Disabilities Grant Program, Trainer Crisis Fund, Heroes On Horses, Animal Welfare Fund and the Youth Scholarship Program.
With over 25 years of horse show industry experience, Ryan Cottingim and Amanda Gately, welcome riders of all ages to their facility based on a 30-acre farm outside of Nashville in Shelbyville, Tennessee. There, they have established a very successful program, earning multiple world show and Congress championships in the Open divisions, as well as coaching amateur and youth riders in both the English and Western all-around events.
Ryan brings a professional horseman’s perspective to the NSBA Foundation Board of Directors. His personal experiences as a competitor, an educator & clinician, assistant trainer and now as a business owner allow him to offer unique insight of the industry for inclusion and diversity.
He also experienced first-hand the profound effort of the Foundation to make an impact in someone’s life. In 2017, Ryan was involved in a horse accident that severely compromised his business and livelihood for a period of time. He was a recipient of assistance directly from the NSBA Trainers Crisis Fund. He is determined to add that perspective to the continuation of that program in addition to the others for fellow NSBA members.
After being introduced to the NSBA Foundation through the Equestrians with Disabilities and Heroes on Horses programs at the NSBA World Championship Show, Laurel Champlin, of Pilot Point, TX, has watched the Foundation grow, and observed the impact fundraising efforts have had on riders who face challenges. She stated with her children now grown, she now has the time to match her desire to help others and get involved.
Additionally, Champlin has always been a steward of her animals and their welfare. She believes the NSBA Foundation programs, and mission to serve others in the horse community, as well as their animals, align nicely with her own values. Champlin is a tremendous asset to the Board of Directors bringing her kind heart and her “Let’s Do It” attitude to inspire those around her.
Laurel has been involved with NSBA since it began it 1983. She served as a horse trainer, coach, judge and breeder, before becoming an Amateur exhibitor later in her show career. In addition to the NSBA Foundation, she has been involved with other non-profit groups including the Desert Club scholarship program, volunteered at Kids and Horses, and as a board member of Pet Network.
As a lifelong equestrian advocate, Lance Bryson, of Ocala, Florida, has been involved in numerous aspects of the equine industry. Growing up, Lance spent most of his years supporting competitors behind the scenes as well as encouraging horse enthusiasts to participate in NSBA events. Most recently serving as Chief Financial Officer of National Cutting Horse Association and Treasurer for the NCHA Charitable Foundation, Lance has an experienced understanding of how a foundation operates.
Lance also serves as a mentor for Pathfinders of Tarrant County, Texas, a non-profit organization that was established to help families become financially self-sufficient, by bridging the gap between poverty and self-sufficiency. As a mentor, he assists program participants in basic financial coaching, personal budgeting and setting financial goals.
Lance currently serves as the business manager for Ryan Painter Show Stables LLC. As a NSBA Foundation board member, his hopes are to expand awareness and recognition of Foundation programs and increase horse enthusiast participation in support of Foundation initiatives. Additionally, he hopes to further expand the scholarship programs for youth.
Barbara Crawford, of Folsom, California has a passion for education and giving back to her community. Growing up in a military family, her first experience with horses was at a military base during the Vietnam War, where she realized the therapeutic benefits of horses for both herself and her military friends. After sponsoring a veteran rider in 2020 for the NSBA World Championship Show, she realized that her experience, both personally and professionally, could help further the NSBA Foundation and give back to the horse industry.
With a passion for diversity and inclusion, Barbara chose a career in healthcare as a registered nurse. She became the senior executive as a clinical quality and improvement leader for an organization that is recognized as a national leader in healthcare and led the organization into top decile performance in almost every clinical area of healthcare.
With over 40 years of experience, a passion for creating equality and opportunity for people to grow and progress with guidance and mentorship, Barbara is enthusiastic and eager to learn more and to bring her professional views to the foundation board. She hopes to create mentorship opportunities for all members and to give back to the equine industry in a way that will benefit all members alike.
Barbara is thrilled to be “back in the saddle” and actively showing again with her all-around horse in a variety of western events.
Bob Kennedy, of Ocala, Florida has long admired the work of the NSBA Foundation and the work that has been accomplished through the hard work of this Board. He has contributed to the NSBA Foundation in many ways over the years, including aiding the fundraising for the Susan Scott Memorial Scholarship Fund and he hopes to continue to pursue the mission of the NSBA Foundation.
NSBA has been a big part of Bob and his family’s life since its inception in 1983. Bob has served on the NSBA Board and has also been involved as an Advisory Member on several committees. Additionally, Bob served for the Ontario Quarter Horse Association for over three years as a Youth Advisor with his wife, Kathie, as well as the Futurity Chairman, as well as serving on the Board of Directors.
Quarter horses are a family affair for the Kennedys. Both of Bob’s daughters, Kortney and Kelsey grew up showing at weekend horse shows and accumulated numerous Year End Awards both regionally and nationwide.
Bob is excited to learn more about the work of the NSBA Foundation and he hopes to bring some of his personal attributes to the board and aid in the development of the Animal Welfare Fund as well as NSBA’s education programming.
A lifetime equestrian, Devon Martin, of Newport Beach, CA, looks forward to contributing to the NSBA Foundation’s goals through her experience as an exhibitor, equine business owner and philanthropist.
After a collegiate hiatus following a successful youth career, Devon rekindled her love for quarter horses as an active competitor in AQHA and APHA events. She now owns 5M Ranch and Blenheim Equine Rehab. 5M Ranch is a premier training facility specializing in quarter horses. Blenheim Equine Rehab is a state-of -the art facility with modern rehab equipment and professional staff that provides expertise in the care and rehabilitation of sport horses.
Devon was inspired to get involved with the NSBA Foundation because of its diversity of reach to the equine community. She is excited about the Champion Fund and the new programs and events that can grow into large-scale impact on the community. She is also passionate about the Animal Welfare Fund as a natural extension of her focus on equine rehabilitation and its influence on the health and well-being of horses.
Devon has been impressed by quality of commitment the NSBA Foundation holds for our industry she is excited to be about of NSBA’s mission to cultivate an inclusive community.
Jennifer Leavengood competes as an Amateur in the Hunter Under Saddle classes at AQHA, APHA and NSBA shows. Jennifer got more serious competing with horses a little over 10 years ago and has earned a handful of World and Futurity titles while juggling her role as a CFO within a family business in Florida. She grew up on a family farm with a boarding stable and showed in 4H. A lifelong love of horses and showing keeps her pursuing new goals with her horses.
Jennifer was introduced to the NSBA Foundation Heroes on Horses and Equestrians With Disabilities programs in 2018 and has since stayed involved. She looks forward to serving on the Foundation Board with a strong financial background and ability to provide a Non Pro point of view.
She also serves as President of Blume Family Foundation, a Charitable Trust. In addition, she has previously served as President of Citrus Green Owner's Association, a Board member for HEP Homeless Empowerment Program, and President of Meow Now, a feral cat rescue program.
Jennifer is a graduate of the Fisher School of Accounting at the University of Florida. She received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting with a Minor in Economics and started Blume Mechanical, a Florida commercial HVAC and Plumbing firm, with Stephen G. Blume in 2005. In January 2017, Jennifer became the Chief Financial Officer. Jennifer lives with her husband Steve in Belleair Shore, FL.
As a United States Army veteran, John Halpin has experienced the NSBA Foundation first-hand as a Heroes On Horses exhibitor. From Corinth, Texas, John has participated in Heroes On Horses events through the NSBA Foundation for the past two years.
John is the Senior HR Director for a large construction company in Texas and so as a company they are involved in many charitable events and donating both time and monetary funds to better our community. John himself has served many hours at volunteer events.
As someone who has experienced equine therapy programs, John has a deep knowledge of the unique needs and challenges these types of facilities face. John began in a Veterans program through STEPS with Horses and has now volunteered hundreds of hours to various equine programs in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.
John brings a unique perspective and strong passion to the Equestrians With Disabilities and Heroes on Horses programs and he hopes to create opportunities for other veterans and Equestrians With Disabilities riders to be able to ride and connect with an equine partner.
With a lifetime of experience in the equine industry, Nancy Ditty of Ocala, Florida, owns and operates Coast to Coast Truck and Trailer Sales, Nelsons Trucks and Trailers as well as Ditty Up Farm. Nancy has been an NSBA exhibitor since her youth and her family has raised multiple NSBA World Champions and Breeders Championship Futurity Champions.
Nancy is excited to put her experience in the equine industry to use as a NSBA Foundation Board Member. She is especially passionate about the programs that the foundation offers to its members; including the Crisis Fund, Heroes On Horses, and Youth Scholarships such as the Susan Scott Memorial Fund, which she helped to organize in her mother’s memory. Her hopes are to raise awareness of the foundation’s programs as well as reaching out in other areas to further develop and grow the Foundation.
A goal of Nancy’s as a member of the board is to continue her mother’s legacy of love for the animal and exhibitors of the equine industry.
Robin Sowell of Denver, North Carolina was introduced to the NSBA Foundation through her sponsorship of Equestrians With Disabilities and Heroes on Horses exhibitors for the last two years through the NSBA Foundation Sponsor A Rider program.
Robin’s equine involvement has been extensive on the trail riding/horseman’s club level and Endurance Riding leadership level, where she participated and led activities in both. For the past three years she has engaged in the show side of the industry after having personally raised and bred horses for enjoyment purposes only.
A long-standing business professional educated in math, computer science and business administration, Robin now manages all aspects of her home and supports her husband as a business professional. She has served on the local horseman’s association as a Membership Director and currently leads the Architectural Review Committee for her homeowners’ association in Denver, NC.
Within the NSBA Foundation, her personal area of interest is the Equestrians With Disabilities and Heroes on Horses programs, she is interested in learning more about other Foundation programs and support needed there.