Convention Video Preview

Monday, December 5, 2011

Awards and Honors

From the governance of USDF, most notably the vote by the USDF Board of Governors to institute a US national dressage championships in 2013, convention-goers turned their attention to something more glamorous: awards.

At the Salute Gala and Annual Awards Banquet, plenty of Hollywood-style glitz was on display during the cocktail reception. ("In southern California," a colleague observed, "the heels are higher, the skirts are shorter, and the necklines are lower.")
Trophies on display before the awards ceremony at the Salute Gala and Annual Awards Banquet

They had gathered to collect USDF rider medals, Adequan/USDF Horse of the Year awards, All-Breeds awards, and many others. They had also gathered to honor some dressage VIPs, most notably USDF Volunteer of the Year Miki Christophersen and Roemer Foundation/USDF Hall of Fame inductee Lendon Gray.
Proud friends and family members eagerly captured their loved ones' moment in the spotlight. Yahoo founder Jerry Yang wields the camera as wife Akiko Yamazaki receives a USDF year-end award.

In her acceptance speech, Gray thanked the people who had given her a leg up along the way.
Roemer Foundation/USDF Hall of Fame inductee Lendon Gray addresses the banquet audience
"I want to apologize," she said, "to all the horses on whom I made mistakes." She acknowledged the many great horses and ponies who trotted through her life and who enabled her to have a wonderful equestrian career. It was a heartfelt and touching moment -- a fine note on a night entirely made possible by the horses we all love and cherish.

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