After 35 years of service, Blair retired from the Fire Service in 2001 and now continues to spend his time ranching. He was also a Hockey Scout for the Boston Bruins! Blairs background with horses is extensive, extending back to grade one when he rode his horse to school and by the age of 10 was driving a team picking up oat sheaves. Blairs Dad and Grampa both hayed and farmed with horses, giving him a vast amount of time to learn.
Blair was a volunteer with the Medicine Hat Stampede board from 11 years old, feeding and roping calves as well as sleeping in the mangers to prevent the city kids from turning the calves loose (a common prank). He watched as quads and machinery soon replaced horses and manual labor while kids started leaving the ranches to work in the oil patch and Blair started to become worried about losing our western heritage.
In 2012, after about 60 years working with Murray Leonard trying to get an Indoor Arena and being told that the Stampede Board would not be able to build on their site; he started researching the possibility of building a Facility at a different location than the Stampede grounds and if there was enough interest. Blair stopped in and talked to managers of approximately 150 different facilities across western Canada and the USA to find out what worked and what didn’t for them and with this knowledge in hand started pursuing a location with Highway visibility. After knocking on countless doors, Blair stopped to talk to Lance and Dan Cavan and after a couple of informative meetings, they decided it was something that their Dad (Warren) would approve off as well. The Cavans offered to donate 5 acres for the building site and create a lease to purchase agreement on another 20 acres; resulting in the beginning of Dunmore Equestrian Society.
Vice President - Justin Kraft
Justin Kraft is the HSE Manager for Pine Cliff Energy and lives on a farm west of Redcliff with his Wife, Janet, and 2 boys (Mason 10 & Levi 8). Justin grew up on a community pasture north of Medicine Hat, giving him the experience of roping and riding since an early age as well as being responsible for raising horses. As well as raising his boys, one of Justin’s favorite hobbies is team roping. He has been a Chinook Rodeo Association Team Roping Champion (Heading and Heeling) as well as a CCA Final Team Roping Qualifier.
Justin became director if Dunmore Equestrian in early 2018 and understands the longstanding need for a year round agricultural facility in the Medicine Hat area. He enjoys the challenge of trying to make it happen as well as engaging with the users and groups that attend functions held at DES. In the next decade Justin envisions that DES will offer southern Alberta a multiuse agricultural event center for all area residents to enjoy.
Treasurer - Joyce Stuber
Joyce Stuber lives with her husband, Darwin on a ranch north of Redcliff where they raised their sons, Austin & Wyatt. She taught home ec and spent 29 years teaching at Crescent Heights High School where she would bake a cake for all her students’ birthday (sometimes being the only birthday cake they ever saw). Now, Joyce loves to garden and has a small embroidery business in her home. Joyce’s family does team roping and rides horses on the ranch to manage cattle, however she does not personally ride. Joyce prefers her small animals; her favorite being her donkeys (Envy and Ivy), a pot-bellied pig and dogs.
Joyce has been on the Dunmore Equestrian board since they started, recognizing the need for the community to have a public riding facility. She loves how each one of the board members bring a talent or skill to the group and together maintain a dedicated, hard-working team. Joyce would love to see DES have an indoor arena, a general manager, and regularly scheduled events.
Secretary - Corie Schock
Corie has been involved in farming & ranching most of her life and currently, alongside her family, runs a commercial cow/calf and grain farming operation. She is retired from the City of Medicine Hat Electric Engineering Division following a 34-year career there.
Corie has been involved with many facets of the agricultural industry from an early age and believes it is imperative to volunteer time to provide a facility for all ages to utilize. She has been involved with Dunmore Equestrian Society (DES) since 2015 and has concentrated her efforts on facility development, administration, 4-H, youth activities and rodeo. The DES has already built a first-class outdoor riding facility and she believes they could greatly benefit with the addition of an indoor multi functional agricultural facility to host equestrian, recreational & community events. Corie is passionate about making this goal a reality and would like to see the DES host or accommodate more events such as High School Rodeo, 4-H events, Equine Clinicians for Horsemanship, Ranch Roping, Starting Colts, and the list goes on.
Director - Catherine Schnell
Cathy is a 10th generation Canadian who has lived in Cypress County for 20 years, raising 3 kids with her husband Randy. She has a vast array of life experiences including being a machinist at the foundry, Judicial Clerk at Queen’s Bench, operated a home based drapery business with her mother and taught drapery night classes at the Medicine Hat College. Even though her passion is with massage (she is a certified massage practitioner), her favorite role is being Grandma to her 9 grandkids.
When it comes to her experiences within the equine industry, Cathy’s background with the sport is reining. If you are aware of her property, you have probably seen the beautiful horses she has bred; AQHA reining horses, Norwegian Fjords and Gypsy Vanners. Cathy is also an Equine Canada Western Riding Coach and taught lessons off and on for the past 20 years.
Cathy has been involved with Dunmore Equestrian since the beginning (2014) and has taken on roles of administration, grant writing and helps with program development and delivery. If you have phoned, chances are you have talked to Cathy. She is determined to get a public indoor arena built to preserve and share western heritage and culture through year round equine events/programs; most importantly, offer a place for people to experience the healing quality of horses.
Director - Eugene Erick
Eugene is a full-time Professional Photographer and works part-time as a Occupational Health & Safety officer for Medicine Hat Catholic Board of Education (although, if you can imagine, he has been working more than just part-time hours lately). Prior to these positions, Eugene spent 28 years working for the Federal Government as a Journeyman Millwright and then as the Base General Safety Officer, at CFB Suffield (where he first met Blair). He has also spent 40 years as a ski patroller, mostly on a volunteer basis, but a few winters as a paid Professional Patroller.
Eugene was raised in the small town of Palmer, Sask but spent plenty of his time out on farms with his friends growing up in the area, which was mostly dryland grain farming, along with some mixed farming with cattle and horses. His dad volunteered with the local Lions Club and instilled this value in Eugene at a young age and he has been volunteering with one or more organizations his whole life. He lived in Regina prior to moving to Medicine Hat and has now lived here since 1980.
Eugene always liked horses but only purchased his first horse when he was 45 years old. He has learned a lot about horses since then and enjoys western pleasure riding, trail rides and helping his friends with cattle. Eugene became a Board Member for Dunmore Equestrian Society in 2016 and his roles include helping with safety precautions, physical labour, maintenance and helping out wherever he can. Eugene is happy to contribute his time to DES, as he sees it as more than just an arena, but a way to preserve western heritage & culture of the region, as it supports and encourages equine activities and helps draw more people into our community to help it grow. He is hopeful to eventually see a year-round, self-sufficient indoor arena for the public to enjoy.
Director - Kelly Creasy
Kelly works in the oil and gas industry, and he and his family have lived in the Medicine Hat area for 14 years. He has been riding for most of his life and enjoys team roping, calf roping, breakaway roping, and ribbon roping with his wife Sandy. He takes pride in helping local ranchers out with branding and moving cattle as well as his position as Director for the South Prairie Team Roping Association and the Senior Pro Rodeo Association.
Kelly joined the Dunmore Equestrian Board of Directors in 2020 because he strongly believes in the importance of a public indoor equestrian facility easily accessible to the people of this community.