And then there were nine ….

A vote for Jason Leitch is now a wasted vote.

With the withdrawal of Jason Leitch from this years round of Board Members elections, there are now nine nominees vying for the three available positions. So lets take a closer look at the nominees bios as posted on the NCHA website. What I will attempt to do is just get the essence of what each nominee would like to bring into the NCHA as part of their tenure on the board. This info has been taken straight from what each nominee has submitted and can be found on the NCHA website here.

“More of the same”
The incumbants.
Peter Shumack is the current NCHA President and has filled this position for 5 years now. So if you think cutting has progressed under his leadership then he probably has your vote.
James Dixon is the other incumbant vying for re-election, he mentions his corporate experience as a strength. Currently Chairperson of Finance and investigatiing officer. If you think the NCHA is moving forward in his department then give him a tick.

“Past Experience”
Incuding the two nominees previously mentioned Brett Johns fits this description. Mr Johns was chairman of finance between 2010 and 2014, and is currently and chairman of the disciplinary committee.

“Business Accumen”
According to their bios James Dixon, Brett Johns and Stuart Thompson think this is an important issue. Stuart Thompson ” would like to see a business plan put in place for the next three to five years, with an annual budget structure to follow, with expenditure being the main priority. This would be one of my main focal points, as this organisation cannot continue with neither sponsorship and its retained membership”.

“Professional Trainer experience”
Two applicants are currently training cutting horses professionally, they are Phil Dawson and Casey Tones. Phil Dawson states “I speak with owners/breeders/nonpros on a regular basis as these people are the core of my business. I feel I have a good insight into the current issues in the industry and with my experience and commitment to the sport of cutting I can be an asset to the board”. Casey feels the same way.

“Communication and Accountability”
Stefan Wielibinski would like to see “better comminication between the board and the members. Important decisions and changes need to be explained and justified. Between the Chatta, Facebook and the NCHA website, there should be plenty of opportunity to keep members updated, and gauge opinions about proposed changes, before they are made”.
Paul Poole also has similar wants “Some key points I would address if elected would be Accountability by members, trainers, judges, affiliates, office staff and directors. We all should be accountable for our actions! Transparency through all aspects of the Association, we’re all members so why aren’t we more informed?
Flexibility creativity and discretion, at board level is important in any Association.
Rules, we need to look at amending the rule book to reflect the majority of members views.
Some specific points being;
Non Pro and Amateur card application requirements.
Judges qualifications, limitations, training and support.
Professional Trainers code of conduct.”

“Support at a Grassroots Level”.
James Dixon indicates that he is a big supporter of the “Grassroots” cutting concept. What that is exactly remains to be seen but apparently the rules for this new concept is a work in progress. Paul Poole has implemented a “Rookies Programme” into his training facility in a quest to encourage new blood into the sport.

“Professionalism and empathy”
Lynda MacCallum states ” as a mother and wife, will enable me to approach the position as a Board Member of the NCHA with both empathy and a high professional standard. I believe the Performance Horse Industry in Australia is gathering momentum and unique opportunities exist to enhance the NCHA’s position as the major player into the future. I look forward to my continued involvement in our exciting and fulfilling sport, and sharing my passion with both new and existing members.

So there are your nominees don’t forget to vote you need to ensure your membership has been paid and you fill in the ballot paper as per instructions. If you have not recieved your ballot paper by now I would suggest contacting the NCHA office.