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Former Celebration Show Manager Sam Gibbons Honored



Former Celebration Show Manager Sam Gibbons was honored Saturday night for his 37 years of service to the world's largest Tennessee Walking Horse show.  He was presented with a proclamation from the current Celebration Board of Directors by Directors Emeritus who were on the Board while Gibbons was Show Manager.

The text of the proclamation is as follows:

A RESOLUTION to honor Sam Gibbons on the occasion of the 65th Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration and the twentieth anniversary of his retirement.

WHEREAS, it is fitting that the Celebration recognizes those who in their years of work have performed their duties with extraordinary devotion and conscientiousness; and

WHEREAS, Sam Gibbons is clearly one such outstanding person who has served with enthusiasm and insight when he was selected as the Show Manager of the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration ; and

WHEREAS, he began his career as Show Manager in 1949 and continued in that post for the next thirty-seven years, becoming one of two men who have held this most important post for a combined 57 of the 65 years the Celebration has been in existence; and

WHEREAS, during his tenure as Show Manager of the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration, the world championship horse show of the breed grew in stature and respect throughout the country; and

WHEREAS, he is a man who added a level of Esprit de Corps to the Celebration and took great pride in starting each performance on time and having each class run with military precision; and

WHEREAS, his development of center ring policies and procedures for entries, judging, and logistics help ensure accuracy, fairness, and expedience on all levels; and

WHEREAS, upon his retirement from the Celebration, virtually all of the policies and procedures he developed, remain in place today, with no significant changes; and

WHEREAS, throughout his career as Show Manager, he worked with six different announcers, numerous ringmasters, and a myriad of judges; and

WHEREAS, he can be given a large amount of credit for the vast expansion of the Tennessee Walking Horse breed and the value of its animals; and

WHEREAS, in his final year in an official capacity with the Celebration, he worked as a consultant, guide, mentor and friend to the current Show Manager; and

WHEREAS, upon his retirement from The Celebration, he was inducted into the Celebration Hall of Fame in 1987; and

WHEREAS, he and his wife, Fern, continue to live in Athens, Alabama; and

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CELEBRATION, on August 23, 2003, that we extend to Sam Gibbons our best wishes for a happy and fulfilling life and continued success in future endeavors.

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