Distinguished Service Award winner Karen Kennedy
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Karen Kennedy is APHA’s 2022 Distinguished Service Award winner

Karen Kennedy of Fort Smith, Arkansas, will be honored June 30 as APHA’s 2022 Distinguished Service Award winner.

An APHA member for 25 years, Karen is passionate about Paints and APHA. She has served as an APHA state director and advisory committee member since 2011; furthermore, she’s taken on roles within the Arkansas Paint Horse Club, Zone 6 Committee and APHA nominating committees.

Karen knows how to produce a fruitful event that keeps exhibitors coming back year after year. She has managed the World Wide Paint Horse Congress and Tulsa March Mania events, and has been the go-to event secretary for the Breeders Halter Futurity since 2013.

Karen Kennedy, with Seems Like Heaven & Red Solo Cup
Karen Kennedy (right), with Seems Like Heaven & Red Solo Cup

In addition to earning more than 600 APHA points herself, Karen is also a successful breeder. Her champion Paint Horses include the following offspring of her mare Shesa Real Pleasure:

  • World champion VS Kolor Koded
  • World champion Hide Your Crazy
  • World champion Red Solo Cup
  • World champion Seems Like Heaven
  • World champion Real Fancy Footwork
  • Reserve world champion The Pleasure Code
  • Reserve world champion VS Code Victoria
  • Reserve world champion VS Code Ted

The Distinguished Service Award honors APHA members who unselfishly contribute to the success of Paint Horses and the association.

“I’m honored I was nominated and chosen for the Distinguished Service Award,” Karen said. “We’ve bred a ton of horses and that’s fun, but I’ve really enjoyed my show management involvement, too.”

A Night of Honors

Start making plans now to join us in celebrating Karen and other 2022 year-end award winners as well as the latest class of the APHA Hall of Fame:

  • Lynn Simons
  • Fred Tabor
  • Pat Trebesch
  • Craig Wood
  • RH Mr Imprint
  • Un Zip Me

The 2023 Hall of Fame Induction & Awards Ceremony takes place June 30 at 6 p.m. in the Round Up Inn in the Amon Carter Building at Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth, in conjunction with the APHA World Championship Show.

Other year-end award winners include:

  • Breeders’ Trust Leading Sire: Zippos Sensation
  • President’s Gold Star Award: Southwest Washington Paint Horse Club
  • President’s Clubs of Distinction:
    Dutch Paint Horse Club
    Michigan Paint Horse Club
    Ontario Paint Horse Club
    Paint Horse Club Slovak Republic
  • President’s Clubs of Distinction – Honorable Mention:
    Ohio Paint Horse Club
    Eastern Nevada Paint Horse Club



It’s sure to be a night to remember! Come honor these trailblazers with your APHA family.

Tickets are going fast—reserve your spot here.


[Reprinting all or part of this news release is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provided back to apha.com.]


About APHA

The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded in 1962. APHA promotes, preserves and provides meaningful experiences with Paint Horses.