I accepted the position of Chairperson of the Communications Task Force because I believe in the Tennessee Walking Horse and more importantly in the individuals who support this breed.

Each person involved in this industry at every level does so because of their love of this magnificent animal and also their love of the people in this industry. We often say we have the greatest horse in the world, but we also have the most dedicated people in the world. In times of crisis we realize we all must pull together to develop solutions.

People will always have a variety of opinions which we each respect, but the important thing we must remember is we must voice those opinions in a positive manner if we hope to move the industry forward and remain a great breed.

Everyone’s positive opinion is extremely important to the industry right now. As you know, some people have agreed to volunteer large amounts of their personal time, their expertise in a specific field, and often personal monies (staff, phone calls, trips, etc.) to assist this industry in accomplishing some daunting tasks. These people are working tirelessly for the industry, but their goals will never be accomplished unless everyone involved in the industry makes a commitment today to look at the efforts the industry is attempting and see the positive side of that effort.

We are in unchartered waters as the industry makes a complete commitment to rid our industry of horses which are not compliant. We are so proud of the commitment of the trainers and owners to work toward this common goal. Will there be mistakes along the way? Of course, but we will learn from those to continue to improve the industry.

This is not really difficult, because again, we have the most dedicated people in the world. Many people are working behind the scenes to support the breed because they fear criticism, and I know this is not what makes the Tennessee Walking Horse such a great breed.

We all want to continue to enjoy this great horse and the great people associated with this animal. Those working for the betterment of the industry want to thank those many people who are positively supporting their efforts. I hope each person will make a renewed commitment today to be a positive voice for the industry every time you have an opportunity. We need your help more than ever.

Janice Fostek
Communications Task Force