Voting opens at 12:01 AM on Monday, November 17 and closes at 11:59 pm on Friday, December 5 (Eastern).
Dear AHS members:
Due to the hard work of the 2014 AHS Nominations and Membership Committee, a slate has been set and voting is now open for the 2014 elections. As in the recent past the election will be held solely online and is conducted by an organization totally independent of the AHS. Voting opened Monday, November 17 and will close on Friday, December 5. The membership will be asked to vote for three Regional Directors, representing the West, Midwest and East regions of the country, regions having been determined by the Board. In addition, the membership has the opportunity to choose from seven well qualified candidates for the three open Director At Large positions. The successful candidates will each serve a six-year term, 2015 through 2020. The results of the Board elections and also for the Finance Committee and Nominations and Membership Committee will be announced to the membership via e-mail and social media on Monday, December 8. The AHS Board believes that the democratic functioning of the society is one of its greatest strengths and we encourage every eligible voter to participate in this aspect of society governance.
Ballots will be mailed to eligible AHS members for the election of Regional and At-Large Directors to the AHS Board, in addition to certain committee members. The willingness of the candidates to run for office has been determined by the Nominations and Membership Committee. Candidate-supplied biographies will be listed below as they are submitted.
The 2014 election slate has been set and is as follows:
West Regional: Volker Ehlers
Midwest Regional: Doug Langer
East Regional: Kate Palmquist
At Large: Renee Bambach, Rachel Ehrlich, Sandy Hunt, Cheryl Johnson, Meredith Michelfelder, Rick Toering, Cathy Tucker-Slaterbeck
Finance Committee: Cheryl Johnson
Nominations Committee: Sandy Hunt, Cheryl Johnson, Mary Lou Winn
Candidate Biographies (Alphabetically):
Rachel Ehrlich is a lifelong horsewoman who followed in the steps of her grandmother and mother, with her first pony rides on family horses at the age of 3, and her own pony at age 9. As a child and young adult Rachel pursued the hunt seat discipline and was an active member in her 4-H group through High School. At University, Rachel began to explore Dressage and was the co-president of Clark University College riding club through her Senior Year. At this same time, combined driving competition became a passion for Rachel and she was many times Champion and Reserve with her Morgans on the New England circuit. For Rachel, her introduction to Hanoverian horses came from the trainer working to help with the carriage horses Dressage. A visit to River House Hanoverian inspection began a the passion with breeding Hanoverians that resulted in Greengate Farms program today.
A lifetime member of the American Hanoverian Society, Rachel Has owned Hanoverians since 1987 and has owned and operated Greengate Farm with her husband Warren for 25 years, since 1989. The USA farm has included a breeding program with imported mares, the Celle Stallion Werbellin and American offspring from this breeding program. Greengate has produced 2 licensed Hanoverian breeding stallions, DonarWeiss ggf and Sternlicht ggf, as well as DonarLicht ggf & Cadbury ggf that went to other registries. Home farm mares include EM Shalimar, EMC Serenade, EM Rhapsody, and SPS Rendezvous. Our small New England Hanoverian breeding program has been successful in producing offspring who have gone on to top levels in Dressage, hunters & jumpers through new owners and breeders to our stallions. Our German program most recently produced the Top Dressage Foal of the prestigious HOYA foal show, 2014 colt by Dancier out of SPS Rendezvous ggf.
The farm Hanoverian program has earned the USEF Breeder of the year award in 2004 and the USDF Reserve Champion Breeder of the Year award in both 2006 and 2009. Numerous USDF HOY awards, NEDA breeder awards and shows recognition has also been garnered over the years for the program. In addition, Rachel has been a volunteer within the Sporthorse Venue starting with NEDA breed show in 1997. She served on the USDF Sporthorse committee for 7 years and is a current member on the NEDA Sporthorse Committee, serving since its inception. For the American Hanoverian Society, Rachel served as Vice-President, then President of the North Atlantic Hanoverian Breeders club for 4 years. Additional volunteer activities have included sponsoring Hanoverian Awards & classes for NEDA and coordinating or volunteering at the AHS booth at Equine Affaire for over 10 years.
Sandy Hunt owns and operates Spruce Glen Farms in Williamston, Michigan with her husband Ron. Sandy a lifetime horsewomen, has owned Hanoverian horses for more than 20 years both in the US and in Germany. First as a competitor herself and then as the parent of a daughter who actively competed in the USDF advanced young rider program, now as a breeder.
Since 2005 Sandy has bred one to three Hanoverian mares a year. This small select breeding program has produced three elite mares, two stallion prospects, several top foals at inspection and two USDF and Hanoverian yearend award winners. Sandy is an active member of the American Hanoverian Society hosts the Michigan Inspection tour, is a member of the AHS Nominations Committee, regularly attends the AHS annual meeting, and hosted the 2013 AHS annual meeting in San Diego. Because of her career in the travel industry she was fortunate enough to travel to Germany frequently and gain firsthand experience owning a horse in Germany and attending many Elite auctions.
Now retired from the Travel Business, Sandy enjoys working at Equine Fertility Specialties and being involved in the most up to date procedures in the equine breeding industry. For many years Sandy owned and managed a series of USEF/USDF approved dressage shows, Dressage at Copper Creek. As a member at large on the AHS board Sandy will bring her unique blend of Hanoverian breeder, competition manager and lifelong horse enthusiast to help promote the Hanoverian breed and meet the needs of our AHS members.
Cheryl DeRoche Johnson
Cheryl DeRoche Johnson has been involved with horses since 1961 and has been a member of the American Hanoverian Society (AHS) since 2002. In her youth she competed on the "A" hunter and jumper circuit and participated as a rider in the “Junior Olympics” held in Chicago. Cheryl also taught young riders and rode and competed in three day eventing and dressage.
Since 2002 Cheryl and her husband Eric have been successfully operating a Hanoverian breeding farm. Their moto is “imported from Germany, assembled in Michigan”. Their HiddenAcresFarm.Net business model has been to breed and sell foals. Cheryl and Eric have successfully sold their foals each year to riders and trainers with multiple repeat customers including in-utero sales. The Hidden Acres Farm broodmare herd represents a dam line of 7 direct generations of “Elite Mares”. Cheryl and Eric have successfully bred and raised multiple AHS Mare Performance Test Champions.
Cheryl holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Illinois State University and was a teacher of mathematics. She attended Roosevelt University for her post graduate education to attain an MBA. Cheryl holds the designations of “Master Certified Mortgage Banker” and “Six Sigma Green Belt”. Cheryl is employed as a Managing Director for an international banking company.
Dr. Douglas L. Langer
Dr. Douglas L. Langer, DVM, MS is senior vice president of The Wisconsin Equine Clinic and Hospital where he has practiced for the last 20 years. He serves as director of the departments of Surgery and Advanced Diagnostic Imaging. While specializing in Sport Horse lameness and surgery he incorporates the latest diagnostic and treatment modalities to improve long term health and soundness of the equine athlete. Along with his wife Shannon they own Maple Run Farm, LLC a Hanoverian breeding farm in southeastern Wisconsin. He currently serves as Midwest Regional Director for the American Hanoverian Society. Prior education includes a Masters Degree in Nutrition-University of Kentucky in 1985, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine-University of Minnesota School in1989, Large Animal Internship-University of Guelph in1990 and an Equine Surgery and Lameness Residency-University of California-Davis in 1993. He continues to be actively involved in advancements in Equine Lameness, Surgery and Advanced Regenerative Therapies.
Meredith, along with her husband, Chris, own and actively manage Midway Farms, located on 34 acres in north central Alabama in the city of Moulton, where they also live with their 2 sons, Sam and Eli. Midway Farms has been breeding, raising, and selling Hanoverian sport horses since 2002, foaling an average of 2 to 3 foals each year, and are extremely excited to be expecting 6 foals in the Spring, 2015! One of which is their first ET from their CCI** level Hanoverian eventing mare, Calysta MWF (Contucci/Kalypso), owned and raised by Midway Farms and ridden/competed by Jessica Shull. Meredith has always enjoyed breeding horses, and is very proud to watch the youngsters grow and show.
Meredith has been an active member of the American Hanoverian Society since 2002, has attended annual meetings since 2010, and has been the Silent Auction Coordinator for the Annual Meeting since 2011. Meredith is also a member of the AHS' Fundraising Committee as well as their Annual Meeting Committee.
When not "horsing around," Meredith loves to spend time with her family boating, traveling, and relaxing.
A lifelong equine enthusiast, Kate turned her attention to Hanoverian breeding on a small scale in 1997 after years in the administrative end of the boarding, showing and TB racing industry, and was the Director of Operations for the Virginia Thoroughbred Association. Her small, two-broodmare program has focused on the production of true all-rounders. This approach has produced several decorated fillies, and the approved, Class I stallion “Fielding”, who was the top-placed North American-bred stallion at the 2007 100 DT.
Kate has been a member of the AHS since 1998. She is a past Board member and Treasurer of the Virginia Dressage Association, and served for many years on the Board of the Mid-Atlantic Hanoverian Breeders Club (MAHB), and has been their webmaster for 13 years. She is currently the Chair of the AHS Education Committee, and administers the New Breeder Mentor Program. As a mareowner and former stallion owner, she brings a balanced and empathetic approach to needs of many segments of the AHS membership.
Kate lives with her husband Don on their farm near Lexington, Virginia.
Rick Toering, with his wife Jayne and their two daughters, operate Bent Hickory Farm (www.facebook.com/BentHickoryFarm), a small breeding operation in Northern Virginia. The Toerings strive to produce all-around athletic Hanoverians with superior temperaments for the hunter/jumper market. In 1998, the Toerings purchased their first Hanoverian jumper-bred mare as a yearling. In 2014, the first granddaughter from this mare achieved the second highest mare performance test score in the country. The Toerings’ daughters actively ride and successfully compete many of their homebred Hanoverians, including Coquette BHF in the childrens jumpers and Premonition BHF in childrens hunters.
Rick has served on the AHS Board since 2007 and was active in the AHS for many years prior to that. For the last several years, he has served on the Executive Committee as Vice President. An attorney by profession, Rick serves as the chair of the AHS Corporate Regulations and Grievance Committee, where he has spent the last several years rewriting the AHS’ bylaws and breeding rules in an effort to make them streamlined and more user-friendly. In addition, he has assisted the AHS in successfully resolving various sensitive membership matters.
Rick was one of the initial driving forces behind the organization and implementation of the North American Hanoverian Jumper Breeding Program and has served on and off over the years as the chair of that committee. Rick also serves on the Education Committee.
Rick is also very active with the Mid-Atlantic Hanoverian Breeders Club (“MAHB”). Rick has organized several free-jumping clinics for the MAHB, most recently at Hilltop Farm as part of the AHS Annual Meeting. Several times throughout the year, the Toerings host free-jumping training sessions for mares getting ready for their performance tests. In addition, Rick and Jayne host the MAHB’s annual Mare Inspection and Performance Test at their facility in Waterford, Virginia.
Rick continues to believe that the key to the future success of the AHS lies in educating its breeders (both new and existing ones) and in the marketing and sales of Hanoverian horses. If given the opportunity to remain on the Board, Rick will continue to focus his efforts in these key areas so that the AHS will remain at the forefront of warmblood breeding in the U.S.
Cathy Tucker-Slaterbeck has been interested in warmbloods since the 1980s, and bought her first Hanoverian mare as a two year old in 1990. She has a small breeding operation in Reisterstown, Maryland where she breeds occasionally, as her mare are also riding horses, training in dressage. She has been on the AHS Board since 1996 and is Chairperson of the Awards Committee, which has greatly expanded under her stewardship to include a wide variety of disciplines, among them Hunters, Jumpers, Eventing, Young Event Horse, and Hunter Breeding, as well as many divisions within the Dressage and Dressage Sport Horse Breed categories. This Committee tracks Hanoverians in these many sports and she tracks AHS members’ horses for Year End Awards; and handles organizing various other awards for Hanoverians at individual shows during the year. A retired Montessori pre-school teacher, Cathy has also been an USEF “r” Dressage Judge and a ”r” Eventing Judge for many years. Between her own farm and horses, the AHS Board, the Awards Committee, and judging at shows and events, she keeps very busy and interested in many aspects of the horse industry.
Mary Lou Winn
Mary Lou Winn is a life long horse person, enjoying her first pony ride pony at age three. She was instrumental in founding a USDF Group Member Organization in Florida in 1975 and rode enthusiastically from then until 1997 when a back injury sidelined her. Her first Hanoverian was a wonderful G-line gelding that she bought in 1986 for dressage work and with whom she had more fun than can be covered here. That horse cemented her love for the Hanoverian breed. In 1995, she became an active member of AHS and bought her first breeding mares. Her first foal was born in 1996. Since then she produced small foal crops on a yearly basis until this year when her last foal Finale was born. Mary Lou and her husband John hosted many AHS inspections from the fist in 1998 to her last in 2012. Mary Lou retired from breeding horses this year, but remains passionate about the breed and the progress of the AHS. She is a strongly committed member of AHS and wishes to repay just a tiny bit of what AHS has given to her by helping in any capacity for which she is qualified.