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News

Walker Joins Paso Fino Horse Association as Executive Director

RELEASE: November 16, 2012
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: Paso Fino Horse Association

Lexington, KY
- President Lee Vulgaris announced this week that the Paso Fino Horse Association (PFHA) has officially named Sally Walker as its new Executive Director. The association president stated that Walker was chosen to serve as the organization’s Director from over 70 candidates elicited through a nationwide search.

Walker comes to PFHA with extensive leadership experience in the nonprofit, corporate, and private business worlds. She is also a lifelong horsewoman.

Most recently, Walker served as the Executive Director of conservation organizations in New York and North Carolina, where she was tapped for regional and statewide roles representing the industry on television and radio, and at community and civic events. During Walker’s land trust tenure, protected lands tripled, support more than doubled, and many key alliances were built that enhanced protection strategies, education, and results. Walker’s regular newspaper columns, “Saving the Places We Love” and “Conservation Corner,” provided a blend of personal observation, information, and humor which attracted a new fan base to her organizations’ missions. She is particularly proud of the fact that she was able to initiate a successful “Saving Horse Country” campaign which resulted in more than a thousand acres of permanent horse farm protection.

Before turning her efforts to conservation work, Walker served as the first Field Director of the Virginia Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association (VHBPA) in Warrenton, VA. There she helped establish programs, protocols, and public relations for the association representing race horse owners and trainers. In addition, she helped advocate for Horsemen’s issues throughout the year and for those living on the backside during the summer meet at Colonial Downs Racetrack. Walker wrote regular VHBPA articles for “The Mid Atlantic Thoroughbred” featuring member Horsemen and focusing on events such as the Virginia Derby.

Walker’s early career began as a Publications Editor for the Liberty Corporation in Greenville, SC. She rose rapidly to Creative Director and then to Advertising Director responsible for a creative staff and a $1 million advertising campaign.

In 1984, Walker combined her promotional skills with her love of horses to start a company called “Time to Fly Video Marketing,” which later became “The Big Picture.”  Beginning with a demo tape and a novel idea of showing and promoting summer sale race horse yearlings in motion, Walker soon amassed a loyal client base which included the Fasig-Tipton Company, Virginia Thoroughbred Association, Virginia Gold Cup, Dogwood Stables, and many top thoroughbred breeders such as Peggy Augustus and Heronwood Farm. She also produced promotional videos for The Welsh Pony & Cob Society of America, Pony Stallions of the Mid-Atlantic, the Virginia Horse Center, and the Upperville Horse Show.

“I am especially pleased to merge my professional career with my personal passion for all horses,” states Walker. “I have been fortunate in my life to have owned three extraordinary horses in the hunter-jumper show discipline–two which ultimately became national junior and amateur-owner champions, as well as an amateur-owner hunter which went on to successfully represent the US Show Jumping Team at the Pan Am Games. My handful of race horses was, however, quite undistinguished. Now I simply trail ride for fun.”

“The PFHA Executive Director-ship presents a wonderful new day for me, and I am thrilled to become part of the world which centers on these beautiful, versatile and charming horses with the smooth ride and ‘fine step!’”

The Paso Fino Horse Association is dedicated to maintaining and preserving the Paso Fino breed standard, registry, and regulations, as well as promoting the benefits of the Paso Fino horse. Headquartered at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY, the PFHA is made up of 24 Regions, 55,000 registered Paso Fino horses, and 4,000 members. For information about the association or breed, visit www.pfha.org.