December 23, 2020

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

When we close the door on 2020, some will do so with a sense of relief and others with a sense of hope that the pandemic, with all of its challenges, might be marching toward an end. In some ways, 2020 has been exhausting. In other ways, 2020 painted a picture of our true selves—a rich, vibrant picture of how our Paint Horse family rallied during one of the worst public health disasters of our time.
So as the year comes to a close, I want to thank you for being a part of APHA. Despite this year’s challenges, it was truly our pleasure to serve our more than 40,000 members worldwide, and it’s our passion to carry on the legacy of the majestic American Paint Horse. Even in an uncertain year, we have continued to provide our members with uninterrupted service and with innovation that has made the entire equine community sit up and take notice.

2021 Virtual Convention announced

With a view toward the health and safety of state directors and members and maximizing participation, the APHA Board of Directors has elected to conduct its 2021 Convention & General Membership Meeting virtually. Set for February 26-28, members and state directors will participate in  Zoom-styled discussions with voting details to follow.


“For state directors, the general membership meeting is mandatory. We don’t want to risk the health and wellbeing of our members who may have underlying health conditions,” APHA President Casey West said. “We also don’t want to unnecessarily contribute to the spread of COVID-19 by meeting in close proximity where social distancing will be difficult, if not impossible, to maintain.” In addition, some states are beginning mandatory quarantine and testing for those who leave their respective states and then return, adding another challenge for State Directors. Reports of a vaccine in the near future put the date at widespread distribution at sometime in the spring, lessening the chances that a February convention can safely occur.


APHA will work through its committees to initiate some pre-Convention training to minimize the potential for technical problems. Attendees will use an enterprise version of Zoom that will give easy access and viewing of the addresses from Executive Director Billy Smith, CFO Jenny Mathis, President Casey West and President-Elect Alison Umberger.
Why don’t we postpone it?
At this point COVID cases are increasing in many areas of the country. Postponing doesn’t give us much assurance that we will be COVID free and able to confidently and safely host a live meeting like Convention.
Postponing would likely mean the Convention would be either on top of the World Show or our Fall event or during critical planning for those events in the weeks prior, as well as falling during peak showing times, making it difficult for staff to produce/coordinate and for members/directors to attend.
Why don’t we wait until January to make this decision?
Canceling within a certain period creates a substantial penalty from the host hotel. These kinds of cancelation penalties are standard in the hotel industry. By making this decision now, we are exercising financial responsibility to our membership.
Will we be able to speak during the Convention?
Yes. Committees will deliberate in advance of the Convention. Staff, director and board candidates will present pre-recorded presentations during the Convention. Committee chairs will make live reports and State Directors and members will be able to participate. These meetings will be publicized to the membership.
Won’t this represent the end to a live Convention meeting in the future?
Not at all. We know the importance of face-to-face deliberation, but with COVID cases spiking, some states not allowing reentry into their state without quarantine and a vaccine unlikely to be widely available until the spring, it doesn’t make sense to put our State Directors at risk when there’s an alternative for 2021.

Standing Committee term limits approved by the APHA Board of Directors

Aiming to open more leadership positions and increase opportunities for State Directors to expand their association knowledge, the Board of Directors approved a term-limit policy that will allow committee members to transition to other committees after six consecutive years of service.


“This allows us to retain the institutional knowledge of our long-time State Directors and spread that knowledge to more committees,” said APHA President Casey West.


The policy states that committee members can serve no longer than six consecutive years on a committee without a three-year hiatus. When members leave a committee, they must wait three years before returning to that committee. The policy will also be retroactive, so committee members who have reached or surpassed six consecutive years of service will either move to another committee or suspend committee service at the discretion of President-elect Alison Umberger.


Here are additional benefits of the new policy:
  • <> New committee members bring their skills, talents and abilities to the table.
  • <> New perspectives emerge by encouraging diversity of background, age, gender, ethnicity and equestrian discipline.
  • <> Committee members who have experience with multiple committees bring a richer breadth of knowledge and are better prepared to take on the duties of Board of Director members.
  • <> APHA retains the institutional knowledge that keeps committees strong by allowing members of one committee to share that knowledge with another.

I have been on one committee for many years, I don’t want to move.
The President has the option of appointing you to another committee where those years of experience will be prized. At the same time it will provide room for someone with a different background and perspective to join the committee that you were on.
My background is only as an amateur. If I can’t serve on the amateur committee, I don’t want to serve?
State Directors represent the entire association. It’s important that every State Director has the broadest understanding of the APHA community. Experiences serving on multiple committees as a State Director helps make that happen.
Can I just set out until I’m eligible to serve on the committee that I served on for the last several years?
You can, but there’s no guarantee that the President will appoint you to that committee, especially if you’ve been idle for three years.
Can I leave a committee on my fifth year and return the next year?
The policy says that committee members must serve no more than six consecutive years. If they are reassigned by the President or choose to leave
prior to the sixth year, they must wait at least three years to return.

AjPHA National Director Nomination Forms Due January 1

The 2021-2022 AjPHA National Director nomination forms have officially been posted! To apply, youth can either nominate themselves with five signatures from other AjPHA members in their area, or a regional club can nominate their youth members.  Nominations must be submitted or postmarked by January 1, 2021. To apply, please go to https://apha.com/ajpha/forms/.

Check out the next E-Show deadline!

Director Resources

State Director List
Leadership Code of Conduct
State Director Minutes


24-25th  APHA office closed
31st      Third Weanling Registration Deadline (Yearling fee is higher)
Breeders’ Trust Foal Nomination
Breeders’ Futurity – Platinum Division Stallion Enrollment (for 2021 and 2020 foals)


Membership List
Sample Financial Report

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See you down the trail.

APHA Executive Director
Billy Smith
(office) 817/222-6401
(cell) 806/679-9412
(email) billy@apha.com
(Twitter) #billyAPHA