Q&A: Meet the Coaches
Where do you coach and how long have you been there? I have coached the Purdue Equestrian Team for almost three decades. I founded the team in 1980. I was inspired after judging an IHSA show at Murray State. After the competition finished, I came back and talked to the people in the equestrian Physical Education class at Purdue about forming a team, and the next year we had one.
2014-2015 sees IHSA coach Tammy Sousa begin her fourth season as Hartwick College's head coach, bringing three decades of riding and 17 years of instructing experience to her role with the Hawks. In 2014, she coached junior Julia Ready to IHSA Nationals (becoming Hartwick's fourth rider to make its finals) and for five years has trained the Chensego Hunter Association Open Equitation Champion rider. Coach Sousa manages Hunters Rein Stables in Otego, teaching hunter/jumper and equitation riding, and coaching clients at open shows, and is an adjunct lecturer at Hartwick and Oneonta State Colleges. She earned a bachelor's degree in Equine Studies at Virginia Intermont College in Bristol in 1998 and competed IHSA.
Cindy started riding at age 11 at My Play Stables in Guilderland, NY and at 14, got her first horse, at Halloween and aptly named, Trick or Treat. After attending SUNY-Albany she rode and taught at Dutch Manor Stables for 19 years before joining Skidmore College in 1988 as its director of riding and as head coach in 1990. Coach Ford is a 2011 IHSA Lifetime Achievement Award winner whose Skidmore Thoroughbreds have proven hard to beat, with six national championships (including sharing the 2013 IHSA Collegiate Cup with Saint Lawrence University coach Mary Drueding), and countless regional and zone titles. In addition to her IHSA career, she has produced junior and amateur USEF winners and is a trustee of the Capital District Hunter Jumper Council.
In May 2014, Story coached CofC to its third IHSA Collegiate Cup reserve national title and over the course of his 30-year career has qualified two dozen teams for the IHSA National Championships. This year's reserve team championship marked the 30th anniversary since qualifying his first IHSA Nationals team – also to Harrisburg.
Where do you coach and how long have you been there? I am currently coaching Ferrum College's IHSA riding team which has made a come back this year after a 14-year hiatus from the school's athletic programs. We started riding this year and will begin competing in Fall 2014. Prior to Ferrum I was coach for Radford University's team.