Vice President Kelly Francfort Presented with IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Jan. 27, 2020 – Kelly Francfort, vice president of the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) was awarded the IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award during the IHSA board meeting.

2020 IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award winner Kelly Francfort with IHSA founder Bob Cacchione and Executive Director Peter Cashman. Photo by EQ Media.
2020 IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award winner Kelly Francfort with IHSA founder Bob Cacchione and Executive Director Peter Cashman. Photo by EQ Media


“No one is more deserving of the Lifetime Achievement Award than Kelly,” said Peter Cashman, IHSA executive director. “She gives her all for this voluntary position. The organization has benefited from her diplomatic style and her leadership.”

Kelly Francfort IHSA Vice President
IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Kelly Francfort

Francfort is the coach of the Rutgers University Equestrian Team. Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, chartered in 1766, is one of nine colleges founded before the American Revolution. Francfort has been a member of the IHSA Board for over 20 years, serving as both a regional president and zone chair, and currently leads the public relations committee. In June 2017, Francfort was elected vice president of the IHSA. She also oversees the Intercollegiate Equestrian Foundation, an organization that awards scholarships to deserving collegiate equestrians.

Ruters University IHSA Team 2019Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Kelly Francfort coaches the Rutgers University Equestrian Team

The Rutgers University Equestrian Team, which has a membership of around 45 athletes, has had success under Francfort’s leadership. They earned Regional High-Point Team honors five times for IHSA Zone 3, Region 4 and Francfort was named IHSA Region Coach of the Year twice. Under her leadership, individual members have routinely qualified for the IHSA National Championship Horse Show. In 2006, Francfort coordinated IHSA Nationals and that same year was awarded the IHSA Sportsmanship Coach of the Year.

Rutgers University has also acknowledged Francfort for her efforts. She served as a volunteer coach from 1992-2009 and was twice named Volunteer of the Year by Rutgers Recreation Sports. She was honored as a Loyal Daughter of Rutgers in 2011 by the Rutgers University Alumni Association. The Loyal Sons and Daughters of Rutgers are comprised of individuals who have made a meaningful and long-standing contribution to the betterment of the university by performing extraordinary volunteer service or who have made a significant impact on university life and culture.

The daughter of a United States Air Force officer, Francfort spent much of her youth in England and Germany, where she had exceptional equestrian opportunities. She earned both her undergraduate and master’s of business administration at Rutgers University and brings a wealth of knowledge from her career in international finance. Francfort has been an active participant, both as a student competitor and a coach, on the Rutgers University Equestrian Team for more than 25 years.  "I am incredibly grateful to have been recognized by the IHSA in this manner,” Francfort said. “I love this organization and I am not only grateful for the opportunities it has afforded me but I am proud to continue to serve it.  Looking at the list of previous winners, I am so humbled to be included amongst this list of distinguished equestrian professionals."  

Francfort lives in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, with her husband, two teenage sons, and two rescue dogs and competes on the local jumper circuit with her Irish Sport Horse.

2019   Carla Wennberg
2018   Megan Taylor
2017   Peggy McElveen
2016   Lori Cramer
2015   Patte Zumbrun
2014   Eddie Federwisch
2013   Sally Batton
2012   Mary Drueding
2011   Cindy Ford
2010   Peter Cashman
2009   Teresa McDonald
2008   Jon Conyers
2007   Nancy Peterson
2006   Janice Callahan
2005   Jim Arrigon
2004   Ollie Griffith
2003   Anne Brzezicki
2002   Jerry Steinmetz
2000   Sue Payne
1999   Naomi Blumenthal
1998   CJ Law
1997   Jane Flynn
1996   Claiborne and Tom Bishop
1995   Bob Cacchione
1994   George Lukemire
1993   Joan Johnson


The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) welcomes men and women of all riding levels and offers individual and team competition in hunter seat equitation, Western horsemanship and reining at more than 400 member colleges and universities. Membership in IHSA means that college students can participate in horse shows regardless of their experience or financial status. Students compete at eight levels from beginner through advanced with suitable, provided horses, eliminating the expense of horse ownership.

Founded in 1967 by Bob Cacchione, it is the oldest and largest intercollegiate equestrian organization with 10,000 members in 47 states and Canada. IHSA college and university team participation is represented through a variety of programs including varsity athletics, academic departments and club sports. IHSA offers valuable hands-on experience and professional development in multiple facets of the equine industry. Many IHSA teams participate in service projects, giving back to their communities. Through the IHSA, students enhance their college experience and develop the tools that help build successful careers.