2010 NCHA Affiliate of the Year: 3.5 Amigos

Affiliate of the Year

Don Pooley accepts the Affiliate of the Year Award from Chris Benedict.

3.5 Amigos Cutting  Horse Association has been named NCHA Affiliate of the Year for 2010. Affiliate president Don Pooley accepted the award at the NCHA Convention in Oklahoma City on June 18.

Secretary Marcy Blanchard said they host four or five shows each year, with fresh cattle in every class. In addition to circuit awards at every show, they teamed up with Central Texas CHA, Bluebonnet CHA, Nueces Canyon CHA and Land of Leather Productions to award a truck to the person who earned the most points in 2010, with Mark Mills driving away in the prize. Money was riased through various silent and live auctions throughout the year.

“A person had to be a member of each association for their points to count,” Blanchard explained. “I think this helped all affiliates last year with participation.

“As secretary for 3.5 Amigos and Central Texas CHA, I chose to do something different this year. For 2011, a saddle will be awarded to the Open, Non-Pro and Amateur rider having the most points at the end of the year. Being a member of both affiliates is necessary in order for your points to count. This will allow all riders a chance to win a saddle, and should increase participation.”

3.5 Amigos plans to host a limited age event with a few weekend classes for their Labor Day show. Activities will include a cutters’ team roping, a bridleless/saddleless cutting, and a small bullriding.

“These extra activities should get the cutters to have fun by participating in and watching some extra events that we do not offer at regular shows,” Blanchard said. “Hopefully, the cutters will relax, mingle, and enjoy the company of each other!”

Reserve Affiliate of the Year

J.B. McLamb accepts the Reserve Affiliate of the Year award on behalf of West Central Texas CHA.

The West Central Texas Cutting Horse Association was named Reserve Affiliate of the Year. They have been an NCHA affiliate since 1961 and entries and memberships have doubled since president Kevin Parker and secretary Dana Parker began leading the organization a few years ago.

Like 3.5 Amigos, WCTCHA furnishes all of the year-end awards.

WCTCHA gives awards to three places in each class, including the limited age events, along with helper awards and sponsor gifts.

Lisa Johnson: 2011 NCHA Members Hall of Fame

Lisa Johnson

Lisa Johnson

Lisa Johnson is the first person from North Carolina to be inducted into the NCHA Members Hall of Fame.

To many members from the Southeast, she represents the very best qualities of an NCHA member: generosity, kindness, fairness, patience, and perseverance.

She’s a good hand with horses; she broke Haidas Little Pep to ride back in the early 1980s. She supported the Augusta Futurity from its very beginning. And she served as an NCHA Director for many years.

But when people talk about her, they always point out that she would be the first one to arrive at a cutting, and the last one to go. She was one the last rider in the last set of the day could always count on to hold herd.

Lisa Johnson has dedicated her entire life to horses and the cutting horse industry.

Dudley and Carolyn Schilling from Florida say, “Lisa has always shown good sportsmanship, and fairness, and has done more to promote cutting horses in the Southeast than anyone we know. She lived and breathed cutting horses and her enthusiasm infected everyone involved”

Charles Crawley from Georgia says he has “always seen Lisa display fairness and good sportsmanship. She has always been a good example for other trainers to follow.”

Becky Elliott says that Lisa “always gave unselfishly to the sport she loves so much, not only as a director, but also as an encourager of beginning riders. She was always at the show to the bitter end helping those in the late classes of the day.”

Judy Boozer from South Carolina says, “All through Lisa’s life, she has exhibited all the qualities that we look for in a candidate for the Members Hall of Fame. She did all she could possibly do to promote cutting on the east coast and to represent North Carolina on the NCHA Board of Directors.

Lisa survived a tragic accident in January of 2008, and her strength on the long road to recovery has been a further inspiration to all of those she has helped along the way.

Pat Jacobs: 2011 NCHA Members Hall of Fame

Pat Jacobs

Pat Jacobs

Last year, Pat Jacobs received the Distinguished Service award from NCHA’s Judging Department. Tonight, after more than 50 years of service to the sport of cutting, as a pioneering competitor and judge, Pat is being inducted into the NCHA Members Hall of Fame.

Pat’s devotion to horses and cattle began as a youngster. As far back as he can remember, he knew he wanted to be a cowboy. As a teenager, he helped drive cattle to the rail yards and helped load them on stock cars. The cattle drives provided him with pocket money, but the real reason he did it was because his heroes were cowboys. So he listened and learned.

As a young man, Pat broke colts, did day work on nearby ranches, and practiced roping.

But when he saw Buster Welch ride Marion’s Girl at a county fair in Kansas, he took a new direction. Until that day, he said he thought cutting was for old men and guys who couldn’t rope. But after that show, he wanted to cut.

Pat trained his best roping horse to cut, and had a train wreck the first time he showed him. But he was determined to learn more.

Pat got a job with a trainer named Jack Ray, kept his eyes open and started to learn what it was all about.

In his early years, Pat spent more time showing than judging. He got a reputation for speaking his mind about ways to improve the sport.

After a show, Pat and the others would kick around ways they might make things better. More often than not, Pat would be elected spokesman for the group.

Most Monday mornings, Zack Wood would get a call in the NCHA office and listen to their consensus.

On the rare occasions when Zack’s phone didn’t ring, Zack would call Pat to find out about the weekend’s deliberations.

Pat Jacobs has made a lot of contributions to NCHA, but two that he can be proudest of are the five-judge system, and the judge’s rating system, which he began calling for as far back as the 1960s.

Pat is an author, and he has appeared on radio and television and taken part in charity events to help spread the word about cutting.

Today, NCHA is very happy that Pat Jacobs didn’t pursue a career as a roper half a century ago, and decided to concentrate on cutting instead.


Outcasts, Outlaws, and Second Chance Horses: The Pat Jacobs Story For anyone wanting to know what cutting looked like when it still had the hide on, when it was still an outdoor sport, before it was an “industry” and before its roots in the range livestock industry were obscured, reading Pat Jacobs’ book is obligatory.

Wayne Hodges: 2011 NCHA Members Hall of Fame

Wayne Hodges

Wayne Hodges

For cutting veteran Wayne Hodges, the sport and its equipment have come a long way in the 50 years he has been riding to the herd.

Wayne’s passion for the sport and the people in the business has not only kept him involved shows, but has also led him to become a corporate sponsor for the NCHA. Through his company, Wayne Hodges Trailer Sales & Outlaw Conversions, he has sponsored numerous events and has tried to encourage people starting their careers.

He has been an innovator in the trailer industry and has been a long-standing supporter of cutting, both as a contestant, and as a sponsor of shows and special promotions. One of his latest contributions has been to provide a deluxe trailer for this year’s $50,000 Amateur World Champion.

Wayne didn’t grow up cutting, and wasn’t raised with horses. But in high school he got involved and has been cutting actively since about 1961, beginning in California. The Pacific Coast Cutting Horse Association still fills a large part of his heart.

While Wayne hasn’t shown for awhile because of a badly broken leg, he is starting to ride again and plans to do more, as his old injuries get stronger.

Through the years, he has enjoyed helping other people get started in cutting. He has trained his own horses and hauled with good friends.

Wayne says he’s  an NCHA corporate sponsor because he wants to be, because cutting has been good to him.

He has seen major developments in trailers over the years. and feels there is no comparison to what they were like 40 years ago. As people get better ideas the equipment naturally gets better. Wayne remembers that folks laughed at him when he first asked for drop-down windows on a trailer

He’s also seen the standard of competition rise over the years. Where once there might have been 15 or 20 top Non-Pros competing, nowadays, he sees hundreds who could win at any given time. And he’s played a big role in helping them down the road.

Wayne has been supported and encouraged by his wife, CarolAnn, a talented cutter in her own right. Together, they continue to breed great hosres horses and are active in a Therapeutic Riding program.

Don Bussey: 2011 Members Hall of Fame

Don Bussey

Don Bussey

Don Bussey’s leadership and love for cutting have been evident during his almost 40 years of involvement with NCHA. His passion for the sport, his service, and his desire to preserve cutting for future generations all contribute to his induction in the NCHA Members Hall of Fame.

Don became an NCHA Director in the 1980s. He served as the president of the North Alabama Cutting Horse Association for several years where he worked to promote fun activities for the affiliate’s membership.

They put on an Amateur Cutting Tournament for a few years that offered Rubbermaid buckets for prizes. The popularity of the event reinforced Don’s belief that fun and love for the sport can be the biggest motivators of all.

He also promoted a team cutting at NCHA Day, where each team consisted of an Open, Non-Pro, Amateur and Youth rider who competed together for prizes.

In an effort to provide a big event East of the Mississippi, Don and his friends James Hooper and Pat Earnhart revived the Memphis Futurity after it had dropped from the calendar for a few years. Over the years, the show has moved to Tunica, where the three men continue their partnership in hosting the show and promoting cutting in that area with the help of a few other individuals. This year, cutters came from as far as California and even Italy, as well as a good representation from the East Coast.

Don has been a member of the NCHA Executive Committee for many years, becoming NCHA President in 2004.

During his campaign for the vice presidency, he said, “I want to do all that I can to insure that my children and yours, my grandchildren and yours, can enjoy the thrill and excitement that I have while participating in cutting.”

Don first developed an interest in cutting after visiting a friend in Oklahoma who rode cutting horses in the early 1970s. He had spent years in the horse business showing western pleasure horses, and he had rodeoed in high school. But the challenges of cutting attracted him to the sport. After trying his hand at it, he knew that was where he wanted to be.

Cutting has always been a family affair for Don and his wife Brenda. They have been married for over 53 years and have two sons, Buck and Bret. They have six grandsons and one granddaughter, who followed his footsteps into cutting.

He is still actively involved, as a Lifetime Director for NCHA and as a current member of the Executive Committee. He continues to ride, breed and show cutting horses and he said recently,  “Win or lose, I still get a thrill when I walk across that time line. I can’t think of anything I’d rather do than cut.”