Skip to content

Celebration Executive Committee Appointed



SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. – A three-person Executive Committee has been appointed by the Celebration Board of Directors to assist Interim CEO Virgil Johnson, according to board chairman David L. Howard.  The committee will consist of board members Charles McDonald, John T Bobo, and Howard.

McDonald is the current vice-chairman while Bobo is the past-chairman and Howard the current chairman.

“Our board has complete confidence in Virgil’s ability to run the everyday operations of The Celebration®, said Howard.  “This executive committee will be a group he can lean on for advice on any particular issue, or issues, he feels necessary.”

Johnson was appointed to the interim post last Friday and began his duties on Monday, December 3rd.

Johnson has a long relationship with The Celebration®.  He was elected to the TWHNC® Association in 1991 and Celebration Board of Directors in 1993.  He served as its chairman in 2002-03, before reaching the board’s mandatory retirement age.  He was also inducted into the Celebration Hall of Fame in 2004.

A native of Minnesota, Johnson and his family moved to Shelbyville in 1970 to manage the Jostens manufacturing facility.

A search committee is currently being formed to find a permanent replacement for Ron Thomas.  The board is hopeful that a new CEO can be named in 60-90 days.

The Celebration® is the longest continually- running event in the state of Tennessee, dating back to 1939.  The 70th Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration® is scheduled for August 20-30, 2008 at the Historic Celebration Grounds in Shelbyville.

More Stories

  • **Updated Horse Show Schedule

    The Walking Horse Report will provide daily updates to the list of canceled and postponed horse shows... Read More
  • 2021 WHOA Banquet plan

    The Walking Horse Owners Association would like to announce that due to restrictions for Covid-19 the WHOA Banquet scheduled in February of 2021 has been cancelled... Read More
  • Equine Obituary – Mr. Trump

    The Walking Horse Report has recently learned of the death of Mr. Trump. The 2xWGC, WC and 2xRWGC passed away unexpectedly following a routine workout on October 15 coming as a shock to owners Molly and Taylor Walters as well as to trainer Edgar Abernathy. Read More
  • Online entry system available for Alabama Jubilee

    The Alabama Jubilee, scheduled for October 23-24, will take online entries up until noon on Friday, October 23 and 11:30 am on Saturday, October 24. Entries can be made at  Read More
  • Obituary – Christy Kakassy

    The Report recently learned of the passing of long-time walking horse owner and exhibitor, Christy Kakassy, on Monday, October 19, after a difficult battle with acute myeloid leukemia... Read More
  • Latest Issue 10 19 20

    Read More
  • Equine Obituary – Pride's Jubilee Encore

    Sometimes a horse is destined for greatness and with the right group of people and a lot of hard work and determination, that level is reached. This was the case for 2001 World Grand Champion Pride’s Jubilee Encore... Read More
  • Dix River Fall Classic update

    The Dix River Fall Classic, scheduled for October 23-24, at the Brodhead Indoor Facility in Brodhead, Kentucky will be a SHOW–HIO show. The entry fee for flat-shod classes will be reduced from $30 to $15.  Read More
  • Thomas Seymore injured

    Thomas Seymore was injured during the Saturday evening performance of the Trainers’ Show. He was taken to Vanderbilt Medical Center with a broken ankle and other minor injuries... Read More
  • Larry Wheelon hospitalized

    Larry Wheelon is in the hospital in East Tennessee battling pneumonia and several other health issues. We extend our prayers to Larry and his family.  Read More