Do you know a farrier or equine veterinarian who performs much-needed hoof-care work for a therapeutic riding center without charge? Maybe someone who provides free footcare clinics for 4-H Club youngsters or works closely with local Pony Club members? If so, here is your opportunity to celebrate this person’s volunteerism.
To recognize the dedication and volunteer efforts among hoof-care professionals, the Delta Mustad Hoofcare Center and American Farriers Journal are again sponsoring the “Summit Achievement Award.” Started last year, this award honors members of the hoof-care community who have freely given their time and expertise to help horse owners and groups in dire need of assistance.
“Delta Mustad Hoofcare Center is once again honored to be part of this program that recognizes outstanding individual effort in giving back to the industry,” says Glenn Hause, Director of North American Marketing. “The Summit Achievement Award is the pinnacle of recognition for farriers contributing their time and talents back to the equine industry. The award represents the hallmarks we embrace as part of our mission statement and core values as a company.”
The 2010 award winner will receive $2,000 to use toward future volunteer efforts, as well as free registration and travel expenses to the February 2010 International Hoof-Care Summit in Cincinnati, Ohio. A plaque will be presented to the winner during a ceremony at the Summit. The group for which the volunteered services were provided will also receive a plaque.
The 2009 Winner
Last year’s nominees included a shoer who drives more than 100 miles twice a year to handle the footcare needs of summer camp horses, another who visits foreign countries to train farriers and veterinarians on basic hoof-care techniques and a third who trims and shoes 27 horses at a local therapeutic horsemanship group.
Last year’s winner, Bob Smith, volunteers his time at the Grace Foundation, a horse rescue facility in El Dorado Hills, Calif. Smith and the students from his Pacific Coast Horseshoeing School in nearby Plymouth work on severely mismanaged or ignored equine feet.
“Winning the Summit Achievement Award was quite an honor,” says Smith. “I used the $2,000 cash award to purchase an X-ray machine, plates and lead aprons for the veterinarian at the Grace Foundation. This purchase will greatly enhance their ability to triage horses and help those that can be helped and confirm decisions on other animals for humane euthanasia.”
Grace Foundation veterinarian Michael Russell believes that Smith’s impact is immense. “We are able to maintain an extremely high standard of hoof care for horses living in this sanctuary type of environment at essentially no cost,” says Russell. “Unfortunately, many horses coming in from animal control seizure situations often have severely neglected hooves. He and his students have never failed to provide the best possible care for these horses. While not every horse has always been able to be saved, Bob’s efforts have saved many more.”
Nominate A Volunteer
Anyone may submit a nomination for the 2010 Summit Achievement Award before November 27, 2009.
Visit www.americanfarriers.com/ff/givingback on the American Farriers Journal website to obtain further details and the entry form for this recognition program. In addition to completing this form, please write a 1- to 2-page summary explaining why your nominee should be honored for his or her exceptional volunteer hoof-care work.
A panel comprised of hoof-care professionals will select a winner based on the amount of time, money, other contributed resources, the innovation of the contribution in terms of creativity and uniqueness. The judges will also evaluate the impact of the volunteered efforts to the equine community, the level of contribution on the local, regional, national or global level, the results of the volunteered work and the amount of required skill and knowledge.
This is your chance to nominate a well-deserving colleague and show them how much you appreciate their volunteered dedication and commitment to the equine industry.