The National Cutting Horse Association held its annual convention June 22-24 at the Nashville Loew’s Vanderbilt. New officers were elected, and Hall of Fame inductees were recognized at the event.
Three new executive board members were installed at convention. Ernie Beutenmiller Jr.,of Union, Mo. will serve as NCHA President for the next year. Beutenmiller is taking over the position following Keith Deaville, Covington, Louisiana, who was the 2011-2012 President.
President-elect Barbara Brooks, Nashville, Tenn., is next in line for the presidency and will take the position at the 2013 convention.
Mike Rutherford Jr., Buda, Texas, was recently elected as vice president by a vote of membership.
The open At-Large position was filled in an election between Brett Davis, Texarkana, Texas, Lloyd Cox, Fort Morgan, Colorado, and Frank Merrill, Purcell, Oklahoma. By majority vote, Davis accepted the At- Large position.
Members Hall of Fame:
The NCHA Hall of Fame was created to honor those who consistently exhibit high moral character, good sportsmanship, fairness, extraordinary commitment to the cutting horses in the NCHA, and an exemplary contribution of time, effort and interest in the NCHA and its basic endeavors.
New inductees to the NCHA Members Hall of Fame were honored at a reception Saturday night. Inductees for 2012 comprised Rufus Hayes, of Milton, Fla.; Bob Joy, of Cresson, Texas; Jim Milner, of South Lake, Texas; Mary Jo Milner, of South Lake, Texas; Terry Strange of Houston, Texas.; and the late Dan Evans, of Canal Winchester, Ohio.
Cutting horse trainer Rufus Hayes has been involved with horses since he was a child. At the age of 15, Rufus saw his first cutting competition in Montgomery, Alabama. Rufus immediately fell in love with the horses and sport, and knew that it was something he wanted to be a part of. For over five decades, Hayes has been training, riding, and showing cutting horses. While he doesn’t train for the public anymore, Hayes still enjoys training his own and raising young horses.
Hayes has been a member since 1977 and has NCHA earnings of $197,222. He has also introduced countless people to the sport of cutting and to the National Cutting Horse association. “I have always made it a point to put anyone who comes to my place and shows interest, in the saddle,” said Hayes. “That has been the way I got a lot of people hooked on cutting over the years. I let the horses be the sport’s ambassador. The experience of riding a cutting horse will stick with you forever.”
Bob Joy isn’t known for his cutting accomplishments, but what he is known for is his help in making champion runs happen and making the NCHA produced cuttings happen. For more than 30 years, Joy has overseen the selection, procurement, sorting, and management of the NCHA-sponsored cuttings. Dedicated to his job, Bob joy spends countless hours to ensure every cutter has fresh cattle to best show off their horse.
In addition to his work for NCHA, Joy and his wife also manage Helen Groves’ ranch in Cresson, Texas. Joy doesn’t plan on retiring anytime in the near future. Joy still enjoys his work and says, “The best deal is the people I work with. The people on the cattle committee, they will stand behind you, or go in front of you.”
Few are more accomplished than Jim Milner, but key to his success is his wife, Mary Jo. The couple has become cutting icons, and their involvement and influence has been tremendous. Jim rode his first cutting horse in the 1960s and since then has won every major NCHA aged-event and has been a Non-Pro World Champion. Miler was the Non-Pro World Champion in 1974, Futurity Non-Pro Champion in 1980, Super Stakes Non Pro Champion in 1987, 1992, and 1993, and the Summer Spectacular champion in 1987.
With more than $1.3 million in NCHA earnings, Milner has also been involved on the management side of NCHA as well. Milner has served as the Chairman of the Finance committee and has served on the Non-Pro, Limited Aged, and Non-Pro/Amateur Review committees. In addition, Milner was the association’s president from 1999-2000. Jim Milner has been involved in all aspects of cutting and has been instrumental in helping the NCHA evolve into what it is today.
Mary Jo Milner
Behind every great man is said to be a great woman, but in the case of the Milner’s, Mrs. Mary Jo Milner stands beside her husband as they support each other. Mary Jo is a seven time NCHA Non-Pro World Champion and has won over $2.1 million in the cutting pen. Her accomplishments in and out of the pen have earned her the 2011 Bill Freeman Award, NCHA Non-Professional Hall of Fame, and a spot in the Cowgirl Hall of Fame.
Milner’s immense success in the pen mirrors her successful contributions to the association. Mary Jo has served on numerous committees including the Open Show, Non- Pro, and Youth Committee, as well as the World Series of Cutting Task Force. Milner was also a co-founder of the Cutters in Action organization. Mary Jo’s reason behind her involvement is best summed up with this quote, “When you care about anything that much, you get involved. I care about it, and I care about the effectiveness of it. I care about it being good for every member.”
Terry Strange did not start his involvement with cutting horses at a young age, but when he did join the sport, he immersed himself in it. Strange first time on a horse was during his time in school at the University of North Texas. Years later, while living in Houston, Strange was introduced to cutting when he attended a round of the NCHA World Finals at the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo.
Strange has owned and shown cutting horses since his discovery of the sport, but one of his most significant contributions has been working on the Finance Committee for 9 years. He is a former vice chairman of an international accounting firm, and currently serves on the board of directors of several large firms, in addition to his work with NCHA. Terry Strange has earned his spot in the NCHA Members Hall of Fame from his love of horses and the sport of cutting, as well as his dedication and expertise of the financial stability of the association.
Though he did not compete extensively as a cutter, Dan Evans worked to grow cutting in the Northeastern part of the United States. Evans was an employee of Bob Evans Farms, Inc. where he climbed the ranks from working in a slaughterhouse to becoming the Chairman and CEO in 1971, a position he held until he retired in 2001. A successful businessman, Evans used his creative business skills to showcase cutting in a wide variety of settings, including schools and political fundraisers.
Dan Evans worked alongside friend and trainer, Chuck Smith, to hold over 120 cuttings and 13 limited aged events. Evans worked to create a positive environment to keep people coming back to cutting. Dan Evans support, encouragement, and participation in the National Cutting Horse Association earned his a spot in the Members Hall of Fame.
Affiliate of the Year
The Affiliate of the Year award recognizes an outstanding organization based on entries at the affiliate’s shows, innovations, awards and sponsorships, cooperation with other affiliates, and other activities.
The 2011 Affiliate of the Year award went to PK Cutters. Dee and Jessica McLauchlin and Clay Johns were in attendance to accept an official NCHA trophy, a printer, and check for $2,500 on behalf of PK Cutters.
The 2011 Reserve Affiliate of the Year was Montana Cutting Horse Association. Theresa Nelson accepted a plaque on behalf of Montana CHA.
Each year, AQHA recognizes the top breeding horses based on money earned by their offspring in NCHA competition during the calendar year. Each winner received an official AQHA trophy from Charlie Hemphill, AQHA Senior Director of Shows.
Oh Cay Shorty was the 2011 leading dam. Owners Patrick and Laura Collins accepted the award. Oh Cay Shorty’s offspring won $281,851 in 2011
Sophisticated Catt earned the 2011 leading freshman sire trophy. Owner Keith Feister, Brightsone Ranch, was on site to accept the award.
High Brow Cat took his ninth leading sire award. Jack Waggoner, Waggoner Ranches, accepted the award.
Horses Hall of Fame
Cutting horses are inducted into the NCHA Hall of Fame based on their earnings or by winning at least two designated major events or World Championships. Four horses qualified in 2011. Each received an official Hall of Fame certificate.
Don’t Look Twice, owned by Waco Bend Ranch, Graham, Texas; Just Playin Smart, owned by Gray Quarter Horses, Fort Worth, Texas; Rey Down Sally, owned by Iron Rose Ranch, Carbondale, Colorado; and Reys Desire, owned by H.B. Bartlett of Pike Road, Alabama.
Non-Pro Hall of Fame
Non-Professionals are inducted into the NCHA Hall of Fame based on earnings of more than $500,000 or on having won a combination of designated events. Three Non-Pros were inducted in 2011. Each received an official Hall of Fame certificate.
Jo Ellard, Addison, Texas; Glade Night, Richmond, Virginia; and the late Jill Long, of Gardnerville, Nevada.
Open Rider Hall of Fame
Open riders are inducted into the NCHA Hall of Fame based on earnings of more than $1 million or by winning a combination of designated events. Two riders were inducted in 2011. Each received an official Hall of Fame certificate.
Dirk Blakesley, Augusta, Kansas; and Kory Pounds, Lipan, Texas.
The National Cutting Horse Association has more than 20,000 members from a wide range of backgrounds. Each year more than 2,200 NCHA-approved events are held throughout North America, with more than $40 million in prize money awarded. For more information visit www.nchacutting.com or call (817) 244-6188.
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