Kelly Francfort Presented Lifetime Achievement Award

Other Awards Presented include Sportsmanship, High-Point Hunt Seat Horse
and Most Popular Hunt Seat Horse

Kelly Francfort - Lifetime Achievement Award - Credit EQ Media
Kelly Francfort is pictured with other Lifetime Achievement Award winners Sally Batton, Mary Drueding, Eddie Fedderwisch, Ollie Griffith, Anne Brzezicki, Francfort, CJ Law, Peter Cashman, Jerry Steinmetz, Bob Cacchione and Carla Wennberg. Photo by EQ Media

IHSA Vice President Kelly Francfort was awarded the IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award during the IHSA board meeting in January 2020. However, because there has been no postseason since 2019, Francfort had yet to be officially presented with the honor.

"It was wonderful to be recognized," Francfort said. "I was grateful that they were able to put it together and allowed me to have a moment in the ring. It meant a lot. It's an acknowledgment for the work that I very thankfully put in, but it means that your contemporaries and some amazing professionals acknowledge that commitment. That means a lot. I'm not a big-time professional. I don't have a competitive resume. My resume is the time I've given to the organization. So, it's humbling to be in that group." 

Francfort is the coach of the Rutgers University Equestrian Team. Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. She has been a member of the IHSA Board for more than 20 years, serving as 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.

"I look forward to starting a fresh year with COVID in the back window, having much more participation, getting everybody reengaged in the fall and striving forward,” she said.

VOLUNTEER – Hannah Desrochers from Albion College
Hannah always puts others before herself, not only people, but horses, too. She has volunteered to give out first place award for the entire show, and at the end of the day she comes back to the stalls to help take care of the horses.

Desrochers was described as a "ray of sunshine and "the first person to lend a hand." Even when she is exhausted from a long day of volunteering, Hannah has a warm smile on her face and a kind word for anyone who needs it.

Thank you, Hannah, for your helpful and positive contributions to IHSA Nationals.

COACH  – Phillip Williamson, University of Lynchburg coach, Centenary University alumna
Philip has been a tremendous asset to the IHSA National Championship Horse Show. In addition to coaching his own student and caring for the horse he provided, Phillip has selflessly donated his time and energy to schooling several horses each day, schooling for no less than six colleges. He is an empathetic rider and sets the horses up for success. Phillip is commithed to learning, good horsemanship and sportsmanship. He is the first to offer help or encouragement to anyone in need, and we thank him for everything he has done for us.

RIDER – Elliette Baker, Midway University
Elliette offered to come to the IHSA National Championship Horse Show two days early to help set up. Since arriving, she has helped with everything from feeding volunteers, to running the re-ride table to jump crew, paddock picking and being Bob Cacchione's assistant  – which she has already volunteered to do for next year's Nationals. Elliette even helped out the same day she competed, Thank you, Elliette, for all of your help.

The High-Point Hunter Horse Award was presented to Houdini, a 16.1-hand bay gelding from Centenary University in Hackettstown, New Jersey. He was ridden in nine classes over three days with two firsts and other placings to include second through eighth giving him 40 overall total points.

Houdini - Centenary University - Cacchione Cup Work Off - High Point Horse - Credit EQ Media
Houdini with Grace Jackson (Marion, Massachusetts) of St. Lawrence University in the USEF/Cacchione Cup Work-Off round. Photo by EQ Media

My Way, an uphill 16.1-hand bay gelding from Hollins University (Roanoke, Virginia) was presented with the 2022 Most Popular Hunt Seat Horse Award.

My Way - Hollins University - Judges' Choice Horse - Credit EQ Media
My Way was the Most Popular Hunt Seat Horse. Photo by EQ Media