Victoria Gillenwater

 

  
Statement / Bio:

It has been a privilege to serve for the past six years on the ASHA Board of Directors, and I hope that I will be selected for my final term of eligibility.  I bring experience as an amateur competitor, farm owner, breeder, and a former ASHA staff member.

Education:  Centre College (BA in Government, English minor), London School of Economics (International Relations Program), University of Tennessee (Master’s Degree Communication, emphasis in Public Relations)

Professional Experience:  My first job before beginning my Master’s program was with the ASHA Office.   I worked on Grand National, show records, Charter Clubs and assisted with virtually every project.  I have a unique perspective from having been a member of our staff.

Senior Staff Member - Special Assistant to Congressman (Washington, DC) – Congressman John J. Duncan, Jr. – Worked on press, drafted legislation, addressed constituent inquires and represented Congressman at speaking engagements and events.

Communications Director to the Chancellor of the University of Tennessee - Directed all internal communications and press statements from the Office of the Chancellor.

Instructor, College of Communications University of Tennessee - Taught graduate and undergraduate classes ** named by students as one of the 50 most influential faculty members at UT, one of only two in our department to receive this honor.

 

Dedication to the American Saddlebred:

My greatest accomplishments are being honored with:

The 2001 ASHA Lurline Roth Award, recipients of this award are chosen for their sportsmanship and contributions to the breed

The 1988 Frank Ogletree Award, presented to a youth who has exhibited a sportsmanlike attitude throughout his or her show career and has demonstrated participation and achievement within the show ring, exhibited positive personal characteristics, as well as having served as true role models for their peers.

The addition in 2005 of the Paul and Dorothy Gillenwater Family Award, where the honoree shall be recognized for its sportsmanship and dedication as an entire family to the advancement of Saddlebreds, as amateurs and purely for the love of sport, whether for recreation, competition, breeding, or otherwise.

 

Horses

I own and operate Scenic View Farm in Knoxville, Tennessee where I have 22 horses including show horses, broodmares, foals, prospects and retired champions.  My parents and I enjoyed more than 30 years in the industry, without a doubt it brought my family together, and I treasure those memories.  I have worked hard to continue our legacy since my parents passed away two years ago.

Breeding:  We raised our own stallion that sired most of my show ring champions.  As those who breed Saddlebreds know, there is nothing quite like the feeling of breeding, raising, training and showing a winner.  Since our stallion died in 2002, I have bred my winning show ring mares to different stallions to follow the next path of Scenic View Farm’s breeding operation.

Training: Scenic View Farm opened in 1980, and we hired Bobby Wolfenbarger as our trainer.  We considered him a member of our family and he worked with us until his death in 2000.  Since then, Jacques VanNickerk has presented my horses to countless wins at every level.  We have shown with Jimmy Robertson, Lisa Heres-Rosenberger, Anne Judd, Chris Reiser, Mitch Clark, Charlie and Helen Crabtree and Anne Stafford.  I have understanding of running my own operation as well as having horses in training.  I know what an amazing influence trainers and instructors can have on the lives of those they assist.   I also know the distinct challenges running your own operation.

Show Ring Accomplishments:  I have been fortunate enough to win World Championships and fortunate enough to be last at White Pine, Tennessee.  I am fortunate enough to have the ability and the opportunity to own and show American Saddlebreds.   I support Devon by traveling 14 hours, and I support our local one day shows in Tennessee.   I want there to be horse shows where all levels of competitors can find a place, and also where our breed is showcased to bring new people to our industry.  I was Captain of the first United States equitation team to travel to South Africa, where I won each individual competition and led Team USA to the win.  I enjoy the opportunity to see Saddlebreds as an international breed, to see how they are perceived in other countries. I returned to South Africa to ride on a US Invitational Five Gaited Team and as Vice Chairman of the US Saddleseat World Cup.

 

 Saddlebred Volunteerism:

·         Current  Second-Term Board Member - ASHA

·         Executive Committee - Second Vice President - ASHA

·         Co-chairman Advancement Committee - ASHA

·         Standards and Rules Committee – ASHA

·         Youth Scholarship and Auction Committee – ASHA

·         Chairman Nominating Committee – ASHA

·         Vice Chairman – US World Cup Committee

·         President – Charter Club ASHA of Tennessee (7 years)

 

I promote the breed at every opportunity.  Scenic View Farm and my horses are used frequently by national media production companies.  Carson Kressley and I filmed a show Celebrity Hobbies which aired on the DIY Network and on in-flight segments for Delta and United.  Recently, shows were filmed for CMT. Always wonderful promotion for the Saddlebred, especially nice when it is free.

I also put together a project with Joy to the World Collectibles in which ASHA received $25,000 from Fortunoff Department Stores for a Christmas ornament endorsed by Carson.  I am working on another project similar to this type of fundraiser.

 

Member:  AHHS, ARHPA, UPHA Associate Member, East Tennessee Saddlebred Horse Association, Trot.org

 
 


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