Vice President candidate Dick Mulligan

As a child I always wanted a horse. It didn’t happen. As a young man, through my family’s involvement in the Thoroughbred horse racing industry, I had the opportunity to observe the equine athlete and the people who owned, trained and rode those superb athletes.

When I moved to Wyoming 37 years ago, I discovered the cutting horse on which the owner could compete. I was hooked! I wanted to show, which led me to become a member of the NCHA. Eventually, at the urging of friends, I was nominated and elected as a Director of the NCHA representing Wyoming. My commitment to the NCHA has been and continues to be as follows:

  • Member of NCHA since 1983.
  • Lifetime NCHA member.
  • Director representing Wyoming since 2007.
  • Member of Long Range Planning Committee for 6 years.
  • Chairman of Long Range Planning Committee 2012 to 2014.
  • Vice Chairman Long Range Planning Committee 2010 to 2012.
  • Nominating Committee for Selection of Candidates for Vice-President 2013.
  • President’s Governance Task Force Member 2014.
  • Member of Wyoming Cutting Horse Association since 1983.
  • Director, Past President and Past Vice President of WCHA.

Some accomplishments during my tenure as a member of the LRPC include drafting and presenting several Amendments to the Constitution and By-Laws which were adopted by the members of the NCHA in two successive years. The amendments include additional confidentiality protections to the election process and attendance requirements for Directors at the annual convention.

If elected, I would continue to support:

  • NCHA Constitution and By-Laws.
  • The Rule Book.
  • World Finals.
  • Grievance and Appeal procedures.
  • Youth Program and Scholarships.
  • Triple Crown Events.
  • Affiliate Organizations and Weekend Events.
  • Protection of the equine athlete through the Horse Welfare Task Force.
  • Transparent and Open Management.
  • I would be open to a revision to the following:
    • Restructuring of the NCHA approved classes.
    • Restructuring the Governance System.
    • Realignment of the Decision Making Process.

If elected I would bring my past experiences as a judge, lawyer and mayor of a major city to assist the NCHA and its members in furthering the goals of the membership and the NCHA.

My wife, Brenda, and I live in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Our five children also live in Jackson Hole and we are the proud grandparents of 5 grandchildren. My commitment to family—both personal and the cutting family of friends—is of primary importance to me.

It has been an honor to serve the members of the NCHA and if elected, I will continue to dedicate my efforts to strengthen the NCHA. I would appreciate your vote. Thank you.

—Dick Mulligan

Vice President candidate Chuck Smith

Reasons why I am interested in serving as NCHA Vice President: I think there are three components to being an effective association leader.

  1. Know the history of the association
  2. Have a vision of what it takes to make it better.
  3. Know how to work within the system to accomplish established goals.

I have made a living in the cutting horse business as a trainer, show producer, director, judge, and teacher of cutting over the last 30 years.

Here at my cutting facility located just outside Columbus, Ohio, I have introduced hundreds of new people to our sport. Many have stayed with me for over twenty years. I have produced over 150 weekend shows at my location and 35 limited aged events at the Ohio Expo Center. I have been a director for 25 years and am also a AAAA judge. I am serving my fourth term on the Executive Committee, and have chaired the Long Range Planning and Limited Aged Events Show Producers Committees. Therefore, I have a thorough knowledge of our association, its past, and how it works.

My vision is to help our entire association maintain stability and grow.
I see the association basically in three parts; major limited aged events, seasoned hard-core weekend cutters, and others doing it just for fun (where most new people enter the sport). Each group is motivated by different goals, but all three must be functioning well for the association to grow. I think we are currently out of balance. The first two groups are solid but the third group (the new people and those doing it for fun) need attention. This group is where our future riders and horse owners come from.

A lot of work has gone into creating the great association we have. Let’s not tamper with the parts that are working. Triple Crown events, Major Events Trust Fund, Premier LAEs’, Mercuria events, and World Finals at Fort Worth during the Futurity have all been great successes. Let’s make sure we continue with their improvement and needs, but let’s now focus on our affiliates who are struggling to stay solvent and who need help in maintaining membership and recruiting new members.

Each area and even affiliates within the areas deal with different sets of problems. A few of the problems range from cattle availability and cost to show facility availability, and distance to shows. We need to listen more to the affiliate needs and try to become as flexible as possible without giving up the standards that set us apart from other associations. I think the grassroots program we started last year is a step in the right direction, but is by no means the only step.

We should do what ever it takes to give new people a good first experience, make them feel like there is a welcome place for them in our organization, and that we recognize and reward achievement and advancement.

My proudest moment in NCHA was back in 1998 when I spearheaded the Achievement Buckle program and it became a reality. Winning a buckle seems to define us as a true cutter whether at the Triple Crown level or as a grassroots cutter. The achievement buckle has been the first step for many in a long cutting journey and hopefully a first step for many yet to come.

I would appreciate your vote for Vice President and will do my best to help keep us in balance.

–Chuck Smith

“NCHA Super Stakes”

The National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) will host the second jewel of its “Triple Crown” March 27 through April 19 when the NCHA Super Stakes and Super Stakes Classic kicks off in Fort Worth, Texas, at the Will Rogers Memorial Center.

This year, NCHA is excited to announce the number of entries has surpassed that of the 2013 NCHA Super Stakes, proving that cutting is alive and well worldwide.

“As the second jewel of the NCHA Triple Crown, the NCHA Super Stakes highlights the best horses of the world and continues the journey they started at the Futurity,” said Jim Bret Campbell, NCHA Executive Director. “Last December, we saw one of the deepest sets of 3-year-olds ever, so I know we can look forward to a great cutting in the city of Cowboys and Culture.”

Open to horses ages 4, 5 and 6, the NCHA Super Stakes attracts the industry’s most talented competitors, all vying for more than $2.9 million in prize money and a prestigious NCHA Triple Crown Championship title. This premier equine event will offer a second shot at stardom for the horses that made their debut at the NCHA Futurity in December as 3-year-olds. Among the most watched at this year’s Super Stakes will be Dual Smart Kitty, who earned $200,000 the last time she walked to the herd in the Will Rogers Coliseum. Ridden by Clay Johnson and owned by Rusty and Shelly Simpson of Nemo, Texas, Dual Smart Kitty has already won more than $35,000 as a 4-year-old.

The thrilling cutting competition will be accompanied by numerous activities throughout the show, including an Easter egg hunt for kids, the Cowdown Throwdown party at Magnolia Motor Lounge and the ever-popular Cajun Cutters Crawfish Party. For a full list of special events during the NCHA Super Stakes, click here.

The Amon G. Carter Exhibit Hall will serve as headquarters for the Best of the West Premier Shopping Experience, beginning Saturday, March 29. The exhibit hall opens daily at 9:30 a.m. and contains exhibitors featuring clothing, jewelry, home décor and more!

Admission to the Best of the West Lifestyle Show is always free, while admission to the NCHA Super Stakes cutting events are free with the exception of the Open finals April 19. For more information about the Super Stakes and to purchase tickets online, visit

Also high on the agenda is the NCHA Super Stakes Sale, presented by Western Bloodstock on April 19. Click here for more information and to see the consignments.

Time to Ride “100 Day Horse Challenge” to launch June 1

The American Horse Council’s initiative offers $100,000 in cash and prize incentives for engaging newcomers in horse activities.

Time to Ride, an initiative of the American Horse Council, today announced an aggressive grassroots effort designed to engage 100,000 new people with horses in a 100-day period.

The “100 Day Horse Challenge” is a nationwide campaign that will expose at least 100,000 new people to horse activities while providing $100,000 in cash and prizes to participating stables, organizations and businesses. The program will enlist 1,000 stables, horse clubs, venues, organizations, or individuals to register as an official Time to Ride “Host” and compete in the 100 Day Horse Challenge, which kicks off June 1. Participating hosts will be divided into small, medium, and large divisions by size, and challenged to provide an interactive horse experience to as many new participants as possible. Entry-level activities may include riding, grooming, learning about horsemanship, and more.

“This program incentivizes the segment of our industry that can truly open the doors to a first-ever horse experience for thousands of people,” explained Patti Colbert, a Time to Ride spokesperson. “It will also educate our hosts on some best practices in growing their businesses.”

Individual cash prizes up to $25,000 as well as stable equipment, feed, veterinary supplies, and more will be awarded to the hosts that garner the greatest number of new, verified horse enthusiasts.

The Challenge is open to the first 1,000 hosts capable of growing the horse industry – including stables, instructors, clubs, events, recreational riders, equine service professionals, veterinarians, racetracks, and more. Registered hosts will receive extensive marketing support from Time to Ride, including listing on the Time to Ride Map with special denotation as an official Time to Ride Host.

Hosts can register starting in April for the Time to Ride “100 Day Horse Challenge” at  Registration deadline is May 15. For more information, please visit or e-mail

About “Time to Ride”
Time to Ride is an initiative of the American Horse Council’s marketing alliance, formed to connect people with horses. It is designed to encourage horse-interested consumers to enjoy the benefits of horse activities. The AHC marketing alliance is made up of the following organizations: the American Horse Council, the American Association of Equine Practitioners, Active Interest Media, the American Quarter Horse Association, Dover Saddlery, Farnam, Merck, Merial, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Purina Animal Nutrition LLC, Platinum Performance, United States Equestrian Federation, and Zoetis.

About the American Horse Council
The American Horse Council is a non-profit organization that includes all segments of the horse industry. While its primary mission is to represent the industry before Congress and the federal regulatory agencies in Washington, DC, it also undertakes national initiatives for the horse industry. Time to Ride, the AHC’s marketing alliance to connect horses and people, is such an effort. The American Horse Council hopes that Time to Ride will encourage people and businesses to participate in the industry, enjoy our horses, and support our equine activities and events. The AHC believes a healthy horse industry contributes to the health of Americans and America in many ways.

Make your Convention reservations now

Make your plans to attend the 2014 NCHA Convention in beautiful Salt Lake City, Utah. The dates are June 20 – 22 at the Little America Hotel. You may make your hotel reservations on-line or by calling 1-800-437-5288 and identifying yourself as attending the NCHA Convention. You can find more information on the beautiful hotel here. Make your hotel reservations before May 29 to ensure getting the lower NCHA rate.

The hotel is conveniently located in downtown Salt Lake City. The light rail system TRAX offers a $2.50 fare from the airport to the Little America Hotel. TRAX stops half a block from the hotel entrance. Once at the hotel, most downtown attractions can be reached by riding the TRAX for free.

You can register for the Convention by downloading the form or by contacting Pam Robison (email) in the NCHA offices. Please make sure your registration reaches the NCHA office before June 16 to pay the lower fee of $100. After that date, and for on-site, registration will be $125.

Be sure and arrive in time to participate in a bus tour on Thursday, June 19 for a fee of $75/person. The bus will depart from the hotel at 11:00 a.m. and head to beautiful Park City. You will spend time there to visit the shops and find the perfect restaurant for your lunch. You will board the bus again for a short ride to Olympic Park – site of many of the competitions during the 2002 Winter Olympics and now a training facility. You will have the opportunity to tour the facility and the museum. Additionally, for those adventuresome souls, you can ride the bobsled reaching speeds of over 70 mph and experience 4 Gs of force. The bobsled is an additional fee of $75 and space is limited so sign up early! You can find out more about Olympic Park here and the other fun activities that you may enjoy.

Register now!