Skip to content

Celebration Judges Selected After Thorough Process



The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration annually crowns the breed’s World and World Grand Champions at The Celebration.  Each year, The Celebration selects the judging panel based on a set of criteria and after careful consideration.  In an effort to be as inclusive and transparent as possible, The Celebration would like to outline the criteria each judge must meet.

The Celebration currently affiliates with the SHOW Horse Industry Organization so each judge must be licensed by the SHOW HIO.  The SHOW HIO currently has 82 judges.  In order to judge the Celebration, the judge must be a Triple A or Quadruple A judge as determined by the SHOW HIO.  There are currently 72 Triple or Quadruple A judges with SHOW.

To be considered a Triple A judge with SHOW, the judge must hold a SHOW license for three years and have judged at least twelve shows during his or her lifetime. The AAAA must be certified and licensed in all divisions.  The AAAA judge must have judged a minimum of 5 shows in his or her lifetime to include each division of performance, pleasure, versatility, and equitation.  

The Celebration will contact each Triple A judge and seek their availability to judge this year’s Celebration.  In addition, the Celebration will seek input on those Triple A judges from the Executive Committee of the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders’ & Exhibitors’ Association, the board of directors of the Walking Horse Trainers’ Association, and the board of directors of the Walking Horse Owners’ Association.

The Celebration Board of Directors appoints a judges’ committee each year that analyzes the input received from the surveys returned, as well as other criteria, and then makes a recommendation to the full board for a vote.  The judges’ committee looks at each candidate’s history at previous Celebration events, other major horse shows, involvement in the industry, current employment as well as their overall character and honesty as a judge.

The Celebration is happy to consider input from exhibitors at its shows.  Any concerned exhibitor that would like to submit feedback on a particular judge is encouraged to do so in letter form with their signature included.  The Celebration encourages both positive input and concerns to be submitted if an exhibitor feels strongly.

The Celebration considers it an honor to crown the best in the Tennessee Walking Horse industry as World and World Grand Champions.  Every judge selected to judge this premier event should be honored and held to the highest possible standards.

The Celebration also incorporates the high-low Olympic judging system contained in the SHOW Rulebook that throws the high and low tie for each horse out and calculates their total on the three remaining cards.  The system is intended to provide the most equitable tie for each class.

The 78th Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration will be held August 24th through September 3rd.  For more information, please visit www.twhnc.com 

More Stories

  • Faces return after long absences

    This past show season saw the return of several new faces to the Tennessee Walking Horse industry — although, technically, they aren’t actually new. A few weeks back, the WHR reached out to horse enthusiasts via social media to hear the stories of any newcomers who decided to jump back in the saddle after a 10 or more-year absence... Read More
  • Latest Issue Dec 18 17

    Read More
  • Equine Obituary - The Land Shark

    World grand champion and multi world champion The Land Shark passed away on December 6, 2017. The five-year-old stallion was owned and loved by Larry and Pam Russell of Pontotoc, Mississippi... Read More
  • Walking For The Angels and WHTA give back

    The Walking Horse Trainers’ Association teamed up once again with Walking For The Angels and Christmas In July Horse Show to give back to those in need at Christmas time. Over 300 children across Bedford County received help this year... Read More
  • KWHA Ladies Auxiliary celebrate a great year

    The KWHA Ladies Auxiliary Christmas Luncheon was held on December 9, 2017. The event was held at Malone’s Event’s and Catering in Lexington, Kentucky. 18 members joined to celebrate a wonderful year in the horse industry and participation awards and ended the day with a dirt Santa gift exchange... Read More
  • Office Holiday Hours

    The office will be closed for Christmas holidays beginning Monday, Dec. 18, 2017, and will reopen Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018. We hope you enjoy that time with your families as we will be... Read More
  • Walking For Cancer show announces date

    The 2018 Walking For Cancer show will be held April 21 at the Champions Arena in Shelbyville. The start time is still pending however organizers are aiming for 5 p.m. Further details will be announced as they become available... Read More
  • Youth Council awards

    New this year for the Youth Council, a point system was put into place to help encourage all youth members to participate in different events and horse shows. Throughout the year members earned points by helping to raise money for the FAST Legal Fund and for assisting at horse shows... Read More
  • Two new faces join TWHBEA Executive Committee

    The Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders’ and Exhibitors’ Association’s annual meetings were held last weekend in Lewisburg, Tennessee with two new faces joining the Executive Committee (EC) following the annual elections, held Saturday... Read More
  • Birth Announcement - Knox Lucas Robbins

    Paul and Jennifer Robbins welcomed their second son, Knox Lucas Robbins, on December 4, 2017. He weighed 8lbs., 6.5 oz and measured 20 inches in length. Read More