The Walking Horse Trainers' Association (WHTA) held its annual general membership meeting in Franklin, Tenn. on December 1, 2012.  The meeting is the precursor to the evening's horse of the year awards banquet and year end awards.  Winning election for 2013 were Mickey McCormick for the office of President, Bill Cantrell for 1st Vice President and David Landrum for 2nd Vice President.

The WHTA board had four three-year terms available.  Those were filled by Wayne Dean, Brandye Mills, Philip Trimble and Dale Watts.  Chris Bobo had to step down from the board after taking a full-time position with the postal service.  WHTA bylaws require board members to be full-time trainers.  Bobo's remaining two years on his term will be filled by Winky Groover.

The WHTA has led a lot of the change in the industry during 2012, including the industry-wide swabbing initiative.  The WHTA continued with its leadership role by mandating all trainers in 2013 use color-coated action devices instead of the existing action device.  The WHTA is continuing to pursue expert, objective veterinarian advice on how to move forward with the performance horse and improve its image in the show ring.

The WHTA also voted unanimously to support one HIO in the industry.  "The WHTA is committed to doing whatever is necessary to move the industry to one HIO.  We have been told on multiple occasions by multiple independent sources that we must take this step.  The WHTA is committed to one HIO," said outgoing President Jamie Hankins.

The WHTA general membership also voted to have the 2013 National Trainers' Show in the Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville, Tenn. March 14-16, 2013.