New USDF Region 7 leaders Carol Tice, Cassidy Gallman and Regina Antonioli focus on communication and access.
Change is not only a factor in competition, but an element of administration in all sports. For 2107, USDF Region 7 (California, Nevada, and Hawaii) has an entire group of new faces at the helm.
To offer some quick clarification for our non-dressage readers, USDF, the United States Dressage Federation, is one of the eight International Discipline Affiliates recognized by equestrian sport’s governing body, the United States Equestrian Federation. USDF is divided into nine regions, supporting about 130 local or regional dressage clubs or “Group Member Organizations” throughout the United States and Canada.
Although new to their positions, Carol Tice, Region 7 Director; Cassidy Gallman, Region 7 Jr/YR Coordinator; and Regina Antonioli, Region 7 Fundraising Coordinator, bring a formidable wealth of combined knowledge and enthusiasm.
Carol Tice, based in Temecula, has been riding since she was a child and is a long-time equine equestrian professional, 30-year member and past president of the California Dressage Society. She is replacing Terry Wilson, who worked diligently as the Region 7 Director for 12 years.
When asked about her platform and goals, Carol was emphatic with a one word answer, “Communication!” She explained the challenges faced by Region 7 with the three Hawaiian GMOs geographically so far away, and the need for camaraderie to be created by our shared interest in dressage, even if we are not competing adjacent to each other as in the more compact Regions. While researching for her new position, Carol was excited to find a large number of tools and resources at USDF to assist the Regions and GMOs, and hopes through more fluid communication this information can be disseminated to all members.
(Carol is also a big Western Dressage advocate)
Cassidy Gallman, is a past NAJYRC Gold Medalist for Region 7, and Carol is thrilled at Cassidy’s (now aged out of the Jr/YR programs) acceptance of a new, more administrative role. “Region 7 is very fortunate to have Cassidy as our newly appointed Jr/YR Coordinator. Cassidy brings her enthusiasm and numerous wonderful ideas to this appointment. Her time spent involved with NAJYRC will be put to good use!”
Already, Cassidy has created a new Region 7 website to help facilitate accessibility to information and programs for all GMOs and members. With a personal focus on younger competitors and NAJYRC, she has some strong convictions. “With a history of gold, you would think Region 7’s legacy would be to win, but this is simply not the case. The North American Junior and Young Rider Championships is the most prestigious competition for youth riders on the North American continent. A team as well as an individual event, the NAJYRC creates a unique high performance atmosphere that fosters collaboration, organization and a mental toughness that young people will rarely find elsewhere. While we strive to be the best we can be, our legacy is our resounding team spirit. Dressage is a team sport. We rely on our parents, coaches, family, friends and our horses. The USDF Region 7 NAJYRC team is committed to fostering sportsmanship, team spirit and lifelong learning in the pursuit of preparing youth riders to compete at the highest stage of competition in the sport of dressage.”
Regina Antonioli, with a background in advertising and marketing, came to equestrian sports later in life as an amateur in the hunter/jumper world. Moving over to dressage, she has been managing shows for more than 20 years, including the prestigious Del Mar National CDI-W. (See story, page 24.) Through her company, Equestrian Concepts, she has done marketing, public relations and fundraising, not only for her own events, but for individuals and other organizations, including the California Dressage Society. An outspoken advocate for more focus on youth participation in dressage, Regina was thrilled at the chance to help Carol and Cassidy take these next steps with Region 7.
“There has always been a delicate line between the support and recognition given to amateurs and juniors in dressage,” Regina went on to explain. “Amateurs have clearly been the financial backbone of dressage, and while that must be applauded and rewarded, we cannot be so presumptuous in assuming younger equestrians will be attracted to this discipline. Without strong junior programs in both education and competition, we will not have enough influx of growth in the amateur ranks and will have fewer professionals to coach those amateurs.”
This new team is committed to providing Region 7 GMOs and members with the tools, information, and a path to gain the skills they need to achieve their goals. Whether that may be to enjoy a lifelong passion as an amateur, to boost college applications, or to one day become a member of the U.S. Dressage Team. Through access and communication they hope to foster the ideals of sportsmanship, team spirit, and lifelong enthusiasm for the sport of dressage.
For more information go to the new Region 7 website at www.usdfregion7.org.