2021 CQHA Industry Development / Doris Heintz Award Recipients


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Our Canadian Quarter Horse industry simply wouldn’t exist without the many dedicated individuals a crossed Canada who have and continue to contribute to the development and sustainment of Quarter Horse events and businesses form coast to coast to coast!

Here are the 2021 recipients of CQHA’s Doris Henintz award for Canadian Quarter Horse industry Leadership and Development:

Larry Clifford

Larry Clifford - Manitoba

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William (Bill) Holiday - Saskatchewan

Bill Holiday was from Goodwater, Saskatchewan. He was a loving and devoted family man who remained a steadfast friend of many and was also a good, trustworthy, honourable, straight forward man. He was an accomplished fine rancher and knowledgeable lawyer. Bill served a number of terms on the CQHA. Bill’s contributions have been invaluable: he drafter the CQHA’s constitution sub sequential bylaw, amendments to the constitution, applied for CQHA’s trademarks, submitted not-for-profit returns to Industry Canada; maintained the official CQHA minutes book and corporate seal in his law office in Weyburn, Saskatchewan. Bill was a very generous cooperate sponsor for the 2008 AQHA Youth World Cup held in London, Ontario. He had a passion for preserving the history of quarter horses in Canada and promoting the ranch horse sector of the industry. These were high priorities on Bill’s list as a director. Bill could always be counted on to give his straightforward response that others could follow and understand. His friends in the quarter horse industry will always remember his enthusiasm for ranching and his love of his family.

Gaëtan Laroche - Quebec

Gaetan was a dedicated horseman who wore many hats in his decades long involvement in Canada’s Quarter Horse and Reining industries. For over 40 years, Gaetan was a fixture in the CQHA and reining community, as a competitor, and National Reining Horse Association judge, a show organizer, NRHA & AQHA show manager, and a board member for many equestrian organizations. He judged the NRHA futurity in Germany four times and served as president of the Association Quebecoise de Reining (AQR) in 1982 & 1991. In 1980 Gaetan’s creativity launched the Performance-Quebec, AQR breeding program, which is now firmly established. In 2009, he was inducted into the AQH Hall of Fame, and in 2014, Reining Canada recognized Gaetan as “Reiner of the Year”. Gaetan was a fixture at the AQH Reining shows in Blainville and Sorel, Quebec for decades, as well as acting as show manager of the QQHA, Eastern Ontario Quarter Horse Association for a number of years; he tackled organizational challenges, solved almost all logistical problems and learned nearly all the rules on reining (as well as other equestrian disciplines.)

Marnie Somers - Manitoba

Marnie has held many different positions throughout her career. She has worked in both the public and private sectors as well as becoming a very accomplished author. Her horse industry experiences expand over 35 years. During this period of time she took part in breeding fine quarter horses, training and showing her western pleasure horses, and volunteering at many of the shows and activities. From 2000 – 2001 Marnie was the driving force for re-establishment of the CQHA. She was finally able to get the CQHA affiliate approved by AQHA. This was no easy task. Marnie demonstrated superior leadership of the CQHA for over 11 years, and also over 20 year volunteering on different committees within the CQHA. She is also an AQHA Lifetime Director from Manitoba, where she represents many committees in the AQHA family; all of this, while belonging to other equine organization nationally, provincially, and local. Her leadership skills and knowledge were instrumental where ever she volunteered. Marnie is a wonderful friend, a hard worker and always supportive of the right cause. Her leadership styles and life experiences are communicated and modelled by many. Marie has been a true inspiration to all of us at the CQHA.

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