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☛ Letter from NCHA Director outlines problems with NCHA 3-25-18

FROM THE EDITOR

 

A LETTER FROM NCHA DIRECTOR OUTLINES NCHA PROBLEMS

By Glory Ann Kurtz
March 25, 2018

Recently I received a very revealing, “name-withheld” letter regarding the NCHA from a person claiming he (or she) is an NCHA Director. He (or she) said in the cover letter that he (or she) sent with this letter that he (or she) was “in hopes of addressing and correcting several problems within the Association that I hold dear to my heart.” The letter writer claims he (or she) is exposing issues within the association “for the betterment of the industry as a whole.”

 

He (or she) said he was in total shock when he read the article that I published on my site regarding Dennie Dunn, NCHA Past President and Grievance Board Chairman, who was charged with 10 felonies following two years of court cases. Dunn pleaded guilty on Oct. 10, 2017 to “Attempted Communications Fraud,” a third-degree felony. Dunn plea bargained following a sentence of “an indeterminate term of not to exceed five years in the Utah prison system and was placed on Court Probation for 12 months, meaning he could violate no laws and must complete 80 hours of community service at the rate of 10 hours a month beginning on Jan 1, 2018. The court also ordered Dunn to pay restitution in the amount of $95,047 to be paid at the rate of $150 a month beginning on Jan. 1, 2018.

http://allaboutcutting.net/?p=11031

The letter writer said, “I would have thought that by being a Director, I would have been informed of important association matters such as this. Unfortunately this is not the case.”

One incorrect statement:

However, there is one statement in this person’s letter (a link to the letter is below) that is not correct but it happened 10 years ago (Nov. 7, 2007) so he (or she) probably wasn’t a Director or even a member at that time. At the bottom of page 2 in the paragraph beginning “Another flagrant example of poor leadership … the writer says, “I may be wrong, but I don’t recall the NCHA EVER prevailing in ANY lawsuit that has been litigated.”

There actually was one lawsuit that the NCHA won after Bob Bouget and Millie Kay Walker sued them and the court granted a Plaintiffs Motion for Non-Suit. Court documents that I previously published show that the NCHA filed a judgment against them and put liens against the Bouget property that are still in effect today, as well as expelling Bouget from the NCHA.

Bouget Exhibit 1

 

Attached is the letter from the letter writer that, among other things, says, “I’m sending you an open letter to the NCHA, my fellow directors and our membership in hopes of informing as many people as possible about the deteriorating conditions of the NCHA. Not knowing any other avenue to get this posted, I chose you! I’m not a doomsdayer, but I am one of many directors who are concerned and alarmed by the leadership and decisions being made regarding the association that I love.  These poor decisions and lack of transparency is causing great harm to our industry. While I don’t always agree with you, I believe your intentions are noble. I hope you see fit to help inform others of our plight in seeing our association become prosperous again.”

Following is the letter from “Name Withheld” that was e-mailed to me regarding the NCHA to the NCHA Directors and members who are readers of Allaboutcutting.net. In the original attachment the sentences on the top of pages 3 and 4 were only half printed when I received the copy. This  new copy makes it possible for you to read all the pages.

New letter from name withheld 3-29-18

 

NCHA Super Stakes Sale cancelled:

One unusual thing that has happened within the NCHA lately is that the NCHA Super Stakes Sale that is usually included within the NCHA Super Stakes, which is scheduled to begin this Thursday (March 29), is not on the Super Stakes schedule. It is customary for Jeremy Barwick to hold his Western Bloodstock Super Stakes Sale during the event. I have been told that this sale has been cancelled. I checked the Super Stakes schedule and the sale is nowhere on the schedule, where it usually is. Also, there is no list of consignments on Western Bloodstock’s website.

 

 

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17 Comments

  1. Yes, I would like to read all of the letter, so I can understand more, thanks

  2. Rex Tillerson is free now! As a first-rate international business leader, former Secretary of State, NCHA member. Texas ranch owner and cutting horse owner/breeder; perhaps Rex would consider taking on the top job and whipping the NCHA into shape!
    Pat

  3. Wow!!!
    John

  4. Thanks for the information. I had heard many issues with the board but no confirmation.
    Alicia

  5. While we’re calling for transparency why not lift the “gag” agreement between Allen Stein and the NCHA.
    I for one would like to know the real reasons he resigned. I don’t know him personally but several friends do and they regard him as a first rate guy.
    I doubt anything will come of this; we’ll muddle on for the foreseeable future.
    I’m betting the NCHA is aware Dufurrena got some cash out of the settlement and can’t afford the lawsuit which is almost certain to follow if they suspend him and his pack.
    Lots of dark secrets known only to the select few running the NCHA. The Divine Rights Of Kings are still intact and I’ve gotten to the point where I really don’t care very much
    anymore.
    Henry

  6. I would think that if the NCHA doesn’t suspend Mr. Dufurrena, that Bob Bouget could sue the NCHA as I think Dufurrena was doing the same thing that Bob was and Bob got suspended for life. Also, since Bob’s no longer a member, he doesn’t have to sue the NCHA in Tarrant County.I think he lives in Louisiana.
    Colleen

  7. Yes, all of this is true, last December at the futurity, I personally asked chuck smith 3 questions about ncha and his response was I just work here, if that’s a answer from exc. director we are in bad shape

  8. I was very glad to visit with you today about my experience with the NCHA. This goes back a very long way into the 90’s. I have shared it some with others but the piece today made me want to share it with you. As I said I was very involved from the early 80’s in through 01 and 02. I stayed a member until last yr. when they put Lewis Wray as president. I could not believe the NCHA were that stupid and I no longer wanted to be a part.

    This all started in the late 80’s when I was a Judge and a director for my area. I served 2 terms and was AAA judge with trainer status. I had showed cutters as a Non Pro in mid 80’s and went pro first part of 90’s. The first thing that happened to me was the executive board changed our vote on futurity fees. We as directors voted to lower fees but it was changed by executive committee so right then I knew we were just a figure head for our area. The next thing was when Zack Wood rigged the election against me in Ark. Gale Allen and I tied at first. In the run off 1/2 of ballots were not sent north of I 40 interstate. I called to check why and talk to Zack but he would not talk to me. He told Barbara Anderson to tell me to let it go or a Black Cad. would come to Ark. and ruin me. He also said my career in horse world would be over.

    The next thing happened in 91 and 92 while I was taking care of my parents with Cancer in Little Rock we had a judges’ clinic come up that we were supposed to attend. I found out that some people did not have to attend and would just move from Triple A to Double A so I asked Mike Kelly to let me do that but he refused so I told him to just stick my Card you know where. I had paid a retainer fee about the first deal from the election but dropped it because my parents were more important.

    Also around this time I had done a clinic from a Judges’ point of view in Iowa as a non-pro and AAA judge because the job I did at one of their shows. K. Galyen had me written up because of jealousy. I lost my non-pro status for a month until the non-pro committee review. I had been at Tom Lyons for a week and Tootie and J White, a Non-Pro, trained just like Tom. J told me Tom trained 3 or 4 horses a year for them for his pay. I called Mr. Jim Reno and explained what I saw. Also Dick Gaines was called and he knew I did no wrong in Iowa. Jim Reno and Dick Gaines went to the Non Pro-meeting and stood up for me so I got my card back but had to pay 1/2 of my judges fees back for judging two shows at the Iowa Clinic.

    The other thing happened from the Judges director Mr. Russel McCord. I went back later to get my card and failed the exam because I reversed the winners on one set of horses. There were some others that had the very same Judges’ sheet answers but they got their card. After that happened, we were at the Convention and Russel called me aside and told me they messed up. He offered for me to come back again and said I would get my card. My answer was I was not interested and to stick it.

    Also while I was a judge, I went by the rules no matter who was there. I tried to keep the practice pen right and also in front of me in the arena. I found out the hard way that was not the way Zack wanted it because he made an example out of me in a meeting about this. He said I was just suppose to take care of judging the show and that only. I had made some important people put their hats and long-sleeve shirts on, which was not suppose to happen.

    There is probably more but I will stop at this for now. It is so sad that this could be a great sport and has gone the way it has. We are losing our weekend cuttings a lot of places. It seems to be all about aged events which I think is wrong. There should never be a weekend cutting with an aged event. It is very sad when people can ride an unlimited number of horses in these.

    Also it is all about the the trainers and we have forgot about the beginners and new people in the sport. Jim Reno said when we lose the weekend cutter, we have lost the Assn. I agree with this 100 per cent. In Texas today there are about 20 or so winning everything. I can see them picking cattle and fixing the runs. If they have a customer in the Non Pro events, they can pick cattle for them and not help the others that they help the same. This happens on the weekend level also and it is not true cutting to me. The cutter should not be able to even see the cattle settled so no picking cattle would change the playing field. Mr. Olan Hightower and I talked about this some because he was done wrong also. I think Faron felt the same as his dad and I would talk about this picking cattle deal at times. I am probably not ever going to get to be involved in cutting again so if this helps the sport to change, that is my goal.

  9. Glory Ann,
    I just wanted to thank you for once again keeping us all informed! I read the letter you posted that was authored by a director and found myself nodding in agreement. Unfortunately, I’m well aware of the numerous issues…financial and otherwise….. that currently plague the NCHA. I was hoping things would improve with new leadership and direction but sadly, that has not been the case. My wife and I have formed and will soon be launching a business devoted to promoting, celebrating, and providing education and valuable resources for the cutting horse industry that will complement -NOT COMPETE-with the NCHA. I didn’t need or particularly want another business venture at this point in life, Glory Ann, but it’s time to take the reins and do something to help the cause. I’ve tried in vain to speak to executive committee members and others in power over the years, including some of the big dogs on Bailey Avenue. Lip service at best was all I ever received. My greatest fears once shared are now becoming reality. (But what would this “old guy” know;)

    Apart from the obvious need to promote the sport, attract new members in an inviting, friendly way, keep costs down, show accountability, and generally operate the NCHA like the business/corporation that it is, the following are issues that simply MUST be addressed:
    1. Implement a Code of Ethics-Every other association among the Western disciplines has a strict and enforceable Code of Ethics. There should be a separate and more stringent version for trainers. It’s difficult to enforce rules, regulations, and matters concerning lack of integrity or moral turpitude without a Code of Ethics in place. (See Dunn and Dufurrena matters)

    2. Standard of Professionalism: A standard needs to be established. Not just as a supplement to #1, but in general. Most glaringly, see the NCHA Rule Book. Example: Trainers may be “delirious” at times in the loping pen. Lopers should keep a sense of humor………and so forth. It’s too unprofessional for me to expound on further and actually, an outright embarrassment. Besides the obvious liability and other legal issues, the current NCHA Rule Book conveys messages throughout that are neither professional or a good reflection on the sport, the association, or it’s members.

    3. Background Checks and Vetting of Exec Committee Members: This is a no brainer and a necessity. Dennie Dunn is the poster boy for all that is wrong with the current election process and behind the scenes decisions and activities of the past. Enough said!

    4. Transparency and Accountability: There may never be either to the degree any of us would like to see or feel comfortable with; however, without something akin to a “State of the Union” address for the NCHA there will be even more talk. Quite frankly, the Dufurrena matter is an outrage. Once the NCHA was made aware someone in power had a duty to the membership to act. Temporary suspension???? Nope! Ed is still showing. How is that fair? Although I have been assured by an Exec Committee member that there is, in fact, an investigation currently under way and there are over 3,000 documents being reviewed that were obtained through the Open Records Act, I am certainly not alone in my concern or anger. Supposedly, efforts have been made to ensure that “things are done the right way THIS TIME” and that all the i’s will be dotted and t’s crossed (to avoid lawsuits) before the matter is finally resolved, that it will take longer than anyone wants it to but that it will be done “right.” In the meantime, the billable hours pile up, the Dufurrena family continues to show their horses, gossip escalates, and the membership suffers as a result of related costs, reduced entries and bad publicity – none of which it can afford.

    5. Rebranding: The NCHA needs a makeover. The elitist attitude and atmosphere of affluency must be left in the dust. It’s not difficult to sell the Western lifestyle and culture-most everyone likes it. The NCHA was formed to provide the rules and regulations for competition, to provide a level playing ground and to maintain records. None of that matters without members that support its function and efforts. Alienation isn’t inviting!

    Keep up your earnest efforts and know that without you we would all remain forever in the dark, Glory Ann.
    A Concerned Member

  10. We should add to the list of NCHA crimes to include – Defrauding TEXAS tax payers out of millions of dollars due to Jeff Hooper’s misrepresented impact studies, Rick Ivey removing and hiding computer hard drives before an audit, NCHA Dollars in Don Bussey’s Bank in Georgia and Alabama, Craig Morris’s conflict of interest in ride TV, black balling and suing members who disagree with or question how the association is run and where the money goes along with enormous salaries and expense accounts for the director of judges and others.
    Phillip

  11. This letter is right on the money. In addition to the management issues out lined in the letter you attached, there are many “self serving” high profile members that are in positions of influence and are only motivated by there own ego and or financial gain. It is impossible to institute changes that will grow the membership, improve the experiences of new and existing membership, and expand the horizon of the future.

    Over the years I have presented several ideas to accomplish the above at the annual convention to different committees that obtained a standing ovation from the membership in attendance. In every instance they have been instantly, behind closed doors, been discarded. They would have challenged some of the power players personal agenda. The facts are that the only rule changes that have been made in the past few years are those that will benefit certain personal agendas in o0ne manner or another. Most of those changes made, are made without membership involvement, and are to the benefit of the few rather than the many.

    It has deteriorated to the point that many of the capable, experienced management and leadership members that loved the sport have simply thrown in the towel, moved on and forgot about trying. I know I have, and I feel a great sense of remorse as the sport has so much to offer the equine world. Unfortunately to me, the future is grim and I hope that those that are voicing their opinion can make a difference.

    Thank you for continuing to at least spread the word. Without some serious change, I believe the future of the NCHA has without a doubt, a questionable future.

    Harley

  12. Thank you so much for posting this letter I sincerely hope it does some good. I have not renewed my membership for the first time in 24 years. I am disgusted with what has been done to me in the past and other friends. It has become embarrassing to say I am a cutter.
    Tony

  13. I have spoken with a number of people who work with the Triple Crown events and they are very negative about the management, judges, etc. Also, I hear the numbers are going south and I don’t know this to be the truth. When a group (ie.) the Executive Committee holds all the power in a volunteer organization, things can easily go south. Keep writing the articles and I urge you to dig deeper with contacts and give more information to the membership.
    Bill

  14. I have been a member of the NCHA over 30 years and a club affiliate director at one time. We all rely on our directors to have a positive image because they represent the best sport in the equine industry. If, like in this case, it truly violates business conduct and he was legally found guilty and if they hold a current position within the NCHA, a board of meeting should be called and they should be removed from that position and never allowed to hold another position within the NCHA for their lifetime. Business conduct is everything. If they have their NCHA membership revoked and are not allowed back into the NCHA or compete at NCHA shows, this is the price you pay for misconduct within our industry as a whole. If they have misconduct in business, how can we trust them to run our assoc. correctly.

    We all have to be accountable for our actions in this life. That is the reason we have rules and regulations to follow; when we don’t then there is the legal system.

    Just a opinon.

    Regards,
    Lew Miler
    NCHA # 12177

  15. Today, I read a FB post by James Bankston complaining about the free washing service at the Super Stakes was no longer. He was ranting about he was not contacted, etc. It cracked me up. There are bigger problems with NCHA than a washing service. James was the one that ridiculed so many including Glory Ann about legitimate issues with NCHA.
    To take it a step further- Sponsored NCHA event, Eastern Nationals at Jackson, MS was a pig sty. Shavings and manure were outside of the barns. When it rained, it flooded and mud was everyone. The stalls had holes in them. Not one person from NCHA every looked at the facility. I guess the participants were lucky to get a cold catfish plate.
    It is so evident that NCHA could care a less about the Eastern Nationals. With the attitude of management, I am certain they wish it were gone.
    Lisa

  16. Yes, all of this is true, last December at the futurity, I personally asked Chuck Smith 3 questions about ncha and his response was “I just work here.” If that’s an answer from exc. director, we are in bad shape.

    That’s the way the N>C>H>A> has done things all the time, it`s not what you do but who you know. That is fact. We are in bad trouble just look at the numbers. They change the box seat for the futurity so that the people who have been buying the seats for years with the hope of getting better seats when someone lets them go but to the list which dates back to 1998. they’re trying to be like professional ball teams; wish we had the money backing us as they do. we are history, yet the executive comm decided to change whats been in place for years long before Zack left. Bad deal exc. comm; you are wrong in this move
    DJ

  17. I have one question regarding Non-Pro entries: Why can a youth have a Non-Pro card, show any day of the week, but youth classes are only scheduled on weekends? There entry fees are paid by their parents and in some cases, the expenses are paid by the parent’s customers.
    Charles Gennaro
    NCHA amateur member

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