Kansas City, Missouri
Marketing Manager – USA for Hygain Feeds
How long have you been part of the horse world?
I’ve had horses my entire life. I grew up in Nebraska, and mostly competed in 4-H and open saddle club shows. I’ve done showmanship, halter, Western pleasure, Western horsemanship, trail, Western riding, reining, barrel racing and pole bending. My family has mostly had Paints, Appaloosas and Quarter Horses (and a few ponies sprinkled in the mix). After college, I bought a Paint gelding that I barrel raced with at local and regional jackpots around the Kansas City area. I’ve since retired Blue and he’s enjoying the pasture life and easy rides these days.
What part do you play in the horse world?
I’m the marketing manager for Hygain Feeds in the U.S., a position I started in November 2020.
What’s your favorite thing about what you do?
I’ve spent my entire advertising and marketing career working in the animal health industry for several large-animal species. My favorite thing about what I do is seeing firsthand that the products or services I’ve worked on behind the scenes actually fill a need for a customer. So whether it’s finding a healthy diet for a horse or keeping flies off of cattle, I enjoy knowing that I’ve helped provide a solution to a customer.
What’s your biggest achievement?
Since I’ve done barrel racing for several years, my biggest achievement has probably been getting my gelding to run in the 1D for the first time ever (the 1D is the horse/rider teams within half a second of the winning time). We started out in the 4D (2+ seconds slower than the winning time) and took years to get us through the 3D and even into the 2D. But some days, things just click all together and we were able to lay down a good run with smooth turns. Not only is it just practicing, but it took changing feed diets, chiropractic work and advice from friends on how to keep improving. In barrel racing, the prizes are usually good money, belt buckles and saddles. I’ve won some money here and there; never won a saddle, but I do have one belt buckle, and that was from winning the Open Category high-point for speed events at the 2006 World Wide Paint Horse Congress in Wichita, Kansas.
What are your goals for the future?
I’ve always loved working in the agricultural space, and I definitely see animal health continuing to be my career. I love to travel, so I’m always adding domestic and international destinations to my bucket list.
What’s the best thing about your life?
I grew up in rural Nebraska and have lived in Kansas City for 16 years now. I love living on the outskirts of the city to where I can still feel the connection to a rural, country lifestyle but with all the amenities of the city. I’ve got a great husband and my horse only lives two miles down the road from me, which is super convenient because I actually walk the two miles to the barn a lot, play around with the horse and then walk back home. I can work all day and then have the time to exercise myself and get my horse time in as well.
Best-kept secret about what you do?
Horse people always say you should fall off at least once a year; otherwise, you’re not riding enough. I’ve certainly got enough scars and broken bones to show I’m riding enough!