The Washington International Horse Show (WIHS), one of the most prestigious equestrian sport and entertainment events in North America, is pleased to announce Katherine F. McCoy, 16, of Arlington, Va., as the 2016 Youth Ambassador, and to welcome 24 local teens attending schools in Virginia, Maryland, and D.C. to serve on the 2016 WIHS Junior Committee.
“Now in its eighth year, the WIHS Junior Committee and Youth Ambassador Program represent the heart of the show,” said WIHS President Vicki Lowell. “These hardworking teens are passionate about horse sports and that’s what brings them to us, but they’re also actively involved in giving back to the local community throughout the year. We’d like to congratulate and thank each one of them for their commitment to this special event and their support of the local community.”
As WIHS Youth Ambassador, McCoy will serve as the organization’s youth spokesperson and chair the WIHS Junior Committee, which initiates and works on volunteer activities, horse-related youth programs and community-focused educational events, like WIHS Kids’ Day, Barn Night, Military Night and Breakfast with the Mounted Police. The first group project is a volunteer day at the Northern Virginia Therapeutic Riding Program, a WIHS Charity Alliance partner, later this month.
“We have a great group of students joining us this year with an astonishing breadth of accomplishments, interests and dedication to service,” said WIHS Executive Director Bridget Love Meehan. “We’re very fortunate to have these future leaders help produce our one-of-a-kind horse show in the city and bring fresh ideas and energy to our community events.”
McCoy is a rising senior at Yorktown High School in Arlington, where she developed an interest in photography leading to recognition this year as a Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Gold Key Recipient for Digital Art Photography. She is a volunteer at The Institute Farm in Aldie, Va., a hunting preserve for beagle and basset packs owned by the National Beagle Club, where she prepares meals for work weekends and has progressed to managing kitchen logistics. In addition she is a junior steward at the Bryn Mawr Hound Show.
As a fifth generation rider, McCoy says horses are in her blood. She competes in equitation, hunter and jumper classes at rated and local shows in Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, and made her first trip to the winter circuit in Ocala, Fla., this year. She trains with Adrian Ford at Big Easy Farm in Boyds, Md. In 2013 she rode at WIHS and looks forward to qualifying again.
“WIHS is one of the most prestigious and unique horse shows in the world,” said McCoy. “The girls and boys that make up the Junior Committee bring their creativity, teamwork and energy to develop new ideas on how to spread the word about the show and how to keep it interesting for the younger audience. They are the future leaders of WIHS.”
Members of the 2016 WIHS Junior Committee:
Jocelyn (Jacey) Albaugh, 16, McLean, Va., The Madeira School
Madison Allen, 15, Alexandria, Va., Hayfield Secondary School
Hayley Antonelli, 15, Bethesda, Md., K12 International Academy
Ana Bertozzi, 15, Leesburg, Md., Stone Hill Middle School
Thea Bitar, 14, McLean, Va., The Langley School
Emma Bishop, Washington, D.C., The Madeira School
Charlotte Burch, 16, Raleigh, N.C., The Madeira School
Lauren Dean, 15, Great Falls, Va., Flint Hill School
Bailey Doloff, 17, Sykesville, Md.,Glenelg Country School
Adam Edgar, 16, Leesburg, Va., Loudon County High School
Cari Farmer, 15, Arlington, Va.,HB Woodlawn
Erin Gill, 14, Reston, Va., Langston Hughes Middle School
Grace Hetherington, 14, Great Falls, Va., Cooper Middle School
Ciara (Cici) Jackson, 16, Chantilly, Va., Foxcroft School
Olivia McCarren, 15, Chevy Chase, Md., Bethesda Chevy Chase High School
Katherine (Katie) McCoy, 16, Arlington, Va., 2016 WIHS Youth Ambassador
Yorktown High School
Madeline McManus, 16, Glyndon, Md., McDonogh School
Elizabeth Parent, 17, Leesburg, Va., McDonogh School
Holden Rafey, 16, Bethesda, Md., Walter Johnson High School
Jenny Searles, 17, Gaithersburg, Md., Home Schooled
Jennifer Taylor, 15, Odenton, Md., Mount De Sales Academy
Louise Whitner, 14, Middleburg, Va., Hill School
Kendall Ann Youngblood, 15, Great Falls, Va., Langley High School
Jenna Zimmerman, 15, Great Falls, Va., Langley High School
The WIHS Junior Committee & Youth Ambassador Program was created in 2009. Members are selected through an application process that begins in March. For more information, visit WIHS Youth Ambassador & Junior Committee Program.
The 58th Annual Washington International Horse Show will be held October 25-30, 2016, at Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. For more information, please visit www.wihs.org.