Each year, the American Saddlebred Horse and Breeders Association recognizes its members age 21 and under on the basis of academic success, financial need, involvement with ASHBA youth programs, and extracurricular activities. The purpose of the scholarships is to encourage, support, and recognize participation in all aspects of the American Saddlebred industry, as well as to strengthen the American Saddlebred industry through education. For 2021, ASHBA is presenting four scholarships in the amount of $2,500 each.
ASHBA has announced the following scholarship recipients this year:
COLBY HOOVER, Louisville, Ky.
Colby Hoover has been involved with the American Saddlebred her entire life. Her mother, Sarah Hoover, is a trainer and instructor at Signature Stables, where Colby can be found working in the barn, helping with lessons and supporting their robust academy program. Colby would like to become a horse trainer and has worked hard to obtain opportunities with some of our industry’s best including but not limited to: Nelson Green, Stachowski Farm, Joan Lurie, Darrell Case, and Steve & Tiffany Wheeler. In the fall, Colby plans to attend the University of Kentucky and will be majoring in Business Management. Colby hopes to continue to give back to the industry and be involved with the American Saddlebred the rest of her life.
HARRISON GOODE, Winston-Salem, N.C.
Harrison Goode took his first riding lesson at Cash Lovell Stables when he was 10 years old. “I was in awe of the grace and beauty of each horse,” Harrison said and shared that he still is in awe today. Harrison moved to Lexington in 2020 to chase his dreams of being more involved in our industry and to attend the University of Kentucky. At the University of Kentucky, he is studying Equine Science and Management and is involved in multiple leadership groups including minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences and the Wildcat Wranglers. This year, Harrison is serving as a member of ASHBA’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, where he is excited to share insight on topics that he is passionate about. Harrison’s career aspirations are to create happy horses and lead by example to promote new technology to promote equine health. “I am reminded every day that the horses come first, and without them, our sport would be nothing. I would love to continue working with the show horse breeds, grow the academy division because of the foundation it laid for me, and coach equitation at the high levels,” Harrison said.
Emma Townley, Bland, Va.
At the age of 8, Emma Townley took her first riding lesson. Emma fell in love with the American Saddlebred that day and has never looked back. Emma, who currently works at Stonebrook Farm, hopes to pursue studies in veterinary medicine and utilize the practical knowledge in a career as a horse trainer. Emma said, “I want to make a change and build the upcoming generation of riders and horses. It is not all about winning and proving you’re the best. It is about the bond between horse and rider and all the hard work and love behind that bond. I believe that if love and hard work are there, winning will follow.” Emma also is an active member of her local charter club, Future Business Leaders of America, Future Farmers of American, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and the local Bland County Fair Association. In these organizations, she has served many roles, but the most outstanding being her serving as vice president of her school’s chapter of Future Farmers of America.
Matthew Worzalla, Cedarburg, Wisc.
Raising American Saddlebreds is a family affair for Matthew Worzalla. His family owns Spring Creek Farm and they are involved with the American Saddlebred from their first steps to showing on the green shavings at the World’s Championship Horse Show. His mentors describe him in the following way, “[He] understands the demands of the sport and commits himself to each opportunity with a maturity that few kids his age exhibit. That being said, Matthew also knows how to have fun...Being one of ten kids, you need to learn to stand out... He is light-hearted, charismatic, and has a good heart!” As a competitor, Matthew has competed in every division, brought home a World Championship title, and shown 2-year-olds against some of the best professionals in the industry. Matthew also is active in his local charter club and 4-H Club. He has been inspired by his childhood to become a veterinarian and attends the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
-- via ASHBA