June 22, 2018
CHA Honors Anne Brzezicki as 2015 Instructor of the Year
By LA Pomeroy
Fairfield, CT, November 9, 2015 – At the 2105 Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA) Awards Banquet, October 24, 2015, six prestigious awards were handed out to those who idealize the Certified Horsemanship Association standards and are leaders in their field. Among the best instructors honored this year was Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) coach, Anne Brzezicki of Murfreesboro, TN with the CHA Instructor of the Year Award.
“Our individual certified instructors are the life blood of our association. Without you, we would not exist,” said Christy Landwehr, CHA’s Chief Executive Officer, as she prepared to honor Anne Brzezicki with the CHA Instructor of the Year Award.
Brzezicki has been dedicated to her students for several decades, andwas nominated for the award by her students. Those student nominations carried comments such as: “She is constantly pushing for her riders to become better at their craft—from creative teaching techniques to out-of-the-box exercises to drive home a concept or theory” and “Anne has taught me to embrace my strengths and weaknesses. She has taught me that I am a very strong, smart, and ambitious individual that has nowhere to go but up. She has taught me that regardless of where I have come from and whatever struggles may have been or may arise that I can handle it.” These comments exemplify that teaching horseback riding is not just a “job,” and it doesn’t always involve only teaching the mechanics of riding. Brzezicki has “coached it all” as one student wrote.
Brzezicki is the Director of the Equestrian Program at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) and the coach of the equestrian team. Brzezicki has coached countless Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) teams, as well as individuals, to success at the regional and national level.
Brzezicki began her ISHA career when she started an IHSA team as a second-year student at the University of Connecticut, and then she and her team went on to win the IHSA National Championship.
After graduation, she coached the team to the 1972 National Hunt Seat Championship title. She and Kenny Copenhaver introduced the western horsemanship divisions to IHSA in 1977, the same year she started the IHSA team at MTSU. Later, she started a third team at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA, and served as its coach while she attended graduate school there.
Brzezicki has competed in USEF and AQHA shows, and some of her students were winners at the All-American Quarter Horse Congress and at the AQHA World Championships. Brzezicki has been an active member of the IHSA Board of Directors, AQHA, and a supporter of 4-H. In fact, her background includes teaching at 4-H horse camps in Connecticut and Tennessee. She was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from IHSA in 2003 and IHSA Regional Coach of the Year in 2004. Brzezicki is a CHA Master Instructor, a CHA Assistant Clinic Instructor, a member of the CHA Executive Committee, and Co-Chair of the CHA Education and Training Committee.
“Recognition by fellow professionals who share a lifetime of striving for excellence in teaching is humbling,” said Brzezicki. “When the recognition is the result of student input across many places and many years, it is joyfully affirming as well. We have travelled some long, hard roads together with our horses and survived a lot of trials and triumphs on the journey. This award says it meant as much to my students as it did to me.”
The mission of IHSA, which celebrates 50 years in 2017, is to promote competition for riders of all skill levels, individually and as team members, at regional to national levels. It is based on the principle that any college student should be able to participate in horse shows regardless of financial status or riding level. Learn more at www.ihsainc.com.
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