Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director to Retire

The Kentucky Horse Council (KHC) board of directors announced May 15 that Ginny Grulke, executive director of the council since 2005, will retire July 1, 2013. Grulke will assist with the transition of the new executive director and continue to volunteer on some of the many projects in which she has an integral part.

Grulke has been known as the "face of the Kentucky Horse Council" to many industry groups, Kentucky state government agencies, trail and saddle clubs, legislators, and others in the Kentucky horse industry. Through her leadership, KHC has become a provider of industry education and programs to improve the lives of Kentucky horse owners and the horses themselves.

During Grulke's tenure as executive director, KHC has developed:

  • Livestock Investigation Training for Animal Control Officers;
  • The "Safety Net" program for owners who lose their jobs;
  • Geld and euthanasia vouchers for low income owners;
  • The "SoHo" and "Disaster Relief" funds to help owners and horse rescues in times of need;
  • The Kentucky Equine Networking Association in partnership with the University of Kentucky, for education and networking among professionals;
  • The annual Kentucky Trail Summit, a conference to educate trail riders;
  • The Kentucky Round-Up, an all breeds horse event for owners and the general public;
  • Membership programs including affordable equine liability insurance and trailer safety programs;
  • The Kentucky Breeds and Discipline Council to provide communication among different sectors of the industry and KHC; and
  • A weekly "Kentucky Horse eNews," which delivers equine enthusiasts current news on Kentucky horse activities.

In addition, KHC played a key role in the development of the Kentucky Proud for Horses program and secured a large Kentucky Agriculture Development Fund grant to enable a comprehensive survey of the Commonwealth's horse industry.

"The Kentucky Horse Council will miss Ginny, and we wish her the best in her retirement," said Anna Zinkhon, KHC president. "Ginny has lived and breathed Kentucky Horse Council 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Her relentless energy and commitment to our mission was one of a kind. She has been key to the Kentucky Horse Council becoming the industry leader that it is and will be very hard to replace."

The board of directors will conduct a search for her replacement immediately; details will be announced in Kentucky Horse eNews and other media outlets.

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