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Beard Resigns as Celebration Judge



Rollie Beard has resigned as a judge for this year’s Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration. Celebration Chief Executive Officer Ron Thomas met with and accepted Beard’s resignation shortly after noon today.

The Celebration issued the following statement regarding Beard’s resignation.

BEARD RESIGNS FROM CELEBRATION JUDGES PANEL

 

            SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. – Celebration CEO Ron Thomas announced that Rollie Beard has submitted his resignation from the 2004 Celebration judging panel.

            Beard is currently involved in a hearing process with the National Horse Show Commission that could result in his suspension from active involvement in the industry prior to the start date of The Celebration.  If that happens, he would be ineligible to judge.

            “There is no doubt that this is an uncomfortable situation for all involved,” said Beard.  “While I go through this appeal process, I feel it is best that I resign from the judging panel.  The integrity of The Celebration is of the utmost importance.  I don’t want my personal situation to cast a cloud upon this outstanding institution.”

            The hearing and appeal process stems from a citation Beard received at the Gulf Coast Charity Horse Show and Music Festival in April.  The citation was written by an NHSC inspector (DQP).  It was appealed and the case will now go before the full NHSC board August 16.

            “I want the NHSC board to look at the facts of my appeal, period,” said Beard.  “My resignation from the judging panel today will allow them to view my case with a clear vision knowing that their decision, either way, will not put The Celebration under any undue duress.”

            “We appreciate the manner in which Rollie is handling this situation,” stated Celebration CEO Ron Thomas.  “His decision gives us an opportunity to find another quality judge for this world championship horse show…and we will.  Once this situation is behind him, I’m sure Rollie will be considered to judge our show again.”

            Beard has been on the Celebration judging panel on three previous occasions, 1988, 1994, and 2002.  The other judges this year include Bob Cherry, Joe Fleming, Tommy Loid, and Huck Moss.

            “This action is an example of how the SHOW initiative works on an everyday basis and should be viewed as such,” said Thomas.  “Sound horses, honest judging, objective inspection, and winning fairly are the four principles of that program.  Today, Rollie Beard made a pre-emptive decision that lives up to these principles and looks out for the best interest of the walking horse industry and The Celebration.”

            The decision on a replacement for Beard on the judging panel will be announced when it becomes available.

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