A board of directors is only as strong as the members who comprise it; MSEDA has taken on new directors this year, each bringing something unique to the table. This issue will introduce Rachael Rosendaul of Crestwood.
By Sarah E. Coleman
The owner of Kentucky Tack Exchange in Crestwood, KY, Rachael Rosendaul is new to the MSEDA Board of directors, but no stranger to horses: She has long been immersed in the equine industry both personally (her daughter rides) and professionally. Deeply passionate about engaging junior members in MSEDA, Rachael said when she was first approached about being on the MSEDA board that she laughed—really hard.
“Honestly I had never considered anything like this before. I’m a nobody in the riding world. My resume doesn’t include equine accomplishments or high-profile jobs. I don’t ride; I’m a mom who happens to own a little shop in a tiny white house in Crestwood,” she explains.
So what pushed her to accept the nomination and take a seat on the MSEDA board? “I may not be qualified from a resume perspective, but I do have a passion about getting juniors involved in MSEDA,” Rachael says. “And I have some ideas to back it up.”
One of her main concerns: Why so few juniors are MSEDA members. And, “more importantly, why the ones who are MSEDA members don’t complete their volunteer hours to be eligible for prizes.”
“As parents, we should be teaching our young riders to get involved and help out--especially since so many [parents] do that for them at shows they attend. I am shocked that since Ruth [her daughter] and I have been members, there have been no more than 4 or 5 juniors qualified for prizes at the end of the year. I will change that,” she vows.
Share the MSEDA Love
MSEDA is not new to Rachael; she’s attended multiple awards banquets and loves all of it. “It’s fun for me to meet people who I don’t normally get to be with,” she explains of her enjoyment of the evening. “Cathy Wieschhoff was a great emcee for the evening [in 2018]--too funny! Also, I enjoyed the clinic on Sunday. I clearly wasn’t riding, but got to talk to other members as we watched.”
Rachael takes her role on the MSEDA board seriously. With a daughter who rides competitively, she is no stranger to the show ring and the ins and outs of the competition world. “My desire for MSEDA is to be a great starting point for juniors in their show careers,” she explains. “USEA is important, too, but there are so many kids who may never ride in USEA shows due to funding, proximity to shows, training, transportation, et cetera. MSEDA is a perfect first step for some of them to challenge themselves, as well as earn points for awards they might not be able to receive in USEA.
“I have so many parents and kids through my shop each week who are frustrated with exactly this problem [the expense of showing],” she notes. “I’m excited to start working on sharing the benefits of MSEDA membership to those who aren’t yet familiar with the organization.”
Understanding the strain competitive riding can place on family finances, Rachael is looking to make sure equestrians truly understand the benefits of MSEDA membership. “I’m really excited to watch the membership of juniors increase: This is my No. 1 goal,” she says.
However, she’s personally excited to become more involved with MSEDA as it will deepen her personal equine community as well. “I’m really excited to meet more people in the horse community! My shop, Kentucky Tack Exchange, caters to just about all riding disciplines and I love learning about each.”
Connecting the Dots
Rachael’s passion for horse people runs as deeply as her passion for engaging the younger generation. “My husband has stopped asking me how much money I made that day and instead asking who did I get to talk to!” she says. “I find that mostly I connect people within the horse community to instructors, products, barns, shows, et cetera. So the way I see it, the more people I know in the riding community, the better my customers will be!
Rachael understands that a role on the MSEDA board is not one to be taken lightly and she’s prepared to give it her all. “The commitment of the board of directors for MSEDA is real. These men and women work very hard to produce quality shows and events for riders and their membership,” she explains. “I’ve been so impressed with their dedication and work ethic inside the committees. I hope to be able to work that hard and contribute as they do.”