In early March 2022, the National Reining Horse Association headquarters played host to 20 men and women who took the first major step to becoming NRHA-accredited judges by participating in the Judges Applicant Seminar. The Applicant Seminar was then followed by a Judge’s School, which boasted 15 additional participants.
“Consistent and fair judging promotes a healthy association, and it’s exciting to have new talent coming into the reining industry,” noted Patti Carter, NRHA’s Sr. Director of Education and Officials. “I look forward to watching this group continue through the accreditation process.”
There is one Judges Applicant Seminar held in the United States each year, and during the Seminar, attendees are walked through and instructed on every aspect of judging, from equipment use to maneuver evaluation and more. Seminar attendees must pass testing requirements, and once that’s accomplished, they are eligible to attend an NRHA Judging School, which is held three times a year in Oklahoma City and multiple times internationally. Only after passing the testing requirements of an NRHA Judges School will prospective judges’ names be submitted to the NRHA Board of Directors for consideration for final judging privileges.
Three members of the NRHA Judges Committee, who also serve on the Teaching Panel, were on hand to give instruction at both the Applicant Seminar and the Judges School. That included Chairman Dean Latimer of Marietta, Okla., Doug Allen of the United Kingdom, and Kelly Sapp of King, N.C.
“The education over the entire five days was outstanding and provided a lot of great information. The Seminar and School were both well-thought-out and well taught, and I commend the Committee and Panel for putting together a thorough curriculum for both the applicants and the already-carded judges. I am very proud to be part of such a knowledgeable group of horsemen and horsewomen on the Judges Committee and the Teaching Panel,” Carter said. “I also have to commend Kristen Liesman, the NRHA Staff Liaison for the Judges Committee. She does a great job of organizing the content and coordinating the entire event to ensure it runs smoothly.”
Other members of the Judge’s Committee include Liesman, Bob Kail, Bub Poplin, Maik Bartmann, Margaret Fuchs, Matt Lantz, Nick Baar, Sebastian Petroll, Todd Sommers, Manuela Maiocchi and Patrick Wickenheiser. Teaching Panel members include Mike McEntire, Bub Poplin, Dean Latimer, Doug Allen, Eugenio, Margaret Fuchs, Manuela Maiocchi, Ollie Griffith, Maik Bartman, and Kelly Sapp.
“The NRHA Judges Program is an industry leader in education for its judges. The members of the Judges Committee and the Teaching Panel look forward to expanding that education to all exhibitors, and to provide insight into the thought process behind the judging,” Carter shared. “On behalf of the Judges Committee and Teaching Panel, I thank NRHA’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee for recognizing the importance of these schools and educational opportunities for all members.”
Find more information about NRHA’s Judges Program at NRHA.com/judges