Former international showjumper Mark Samuel has been elected the new chair of the FEI’s Group IV.
Samuel, a founding member of the Jump Canada Committee, was elected during the recent FEI General Assembly held in Istanbul, Turkey. He replaces outgoing chair Michael Cherry, of Bermuda, effective immediatly.
In his role as Chair, Samuel, of Toronto, will represent Group IV on the FEI Bureau, which is comprised of the countries of Canada, United States, Antigua, Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Haiti, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and the Virgin Islands. Regional Groups, such as Group IV, are established to promote and coordinate the development of activities within the equestrian sport in the Group area. Group IV is responsible for the general direction of the FEI and for all relevant matters not consigned to the General Assembly.
“It is a distinct honour and privilege to be representing Canada and the Group IV nations to the international equestrian community,” said Samuel, who is the first Canadian chair of Group IV.
“Group IV is a diverse collection of developed and developing countries and our voice is an important one in the FEI. I am thankful for the support that I have received and for this opportunity to serve our country, our Group and the FEI organization.”
As part of his four-year-term, he will be a member of the FEI Bureau, which oversees the operations of the FEI. The Bureau is composed of the FEI President; the First and Second Vice Presidents; the chairs of the Technical Committees for Dressage, Jumping, Eventing, Driving, Endurance and Veterinary Technical; the other Regional Group Chairs; the Chair of the Audit and Compliance Committee; and the Chair of the Athletes’ Committee.
Samuel has earned success in many endeavours including business, sport and volunteering. His family owns Sam-Son Farms in Ontario, which has owned many top winning thoroughbred racehorses and show jumpers. One of the most notable was the great show jumping horse, Canadian Club, a member of Canada’s gold medal team at the 1968 Olympic Games.
As a rider, Samuel represented Canada at the 2002 World Equestrian Games in Jerez, the 2003 Pan American Games in Santo Domingo, and as a member of the 2002 Wellington Nations Cup silver medal winning team. During all competitions, he was aboard Darios V.
Samuel is also very involved in the administration of equestrian sport. He was the co-founder and former Chair of the Jump Canada Board and a director of the Canadian Equestrian Federation (now known as Equine Canada). At the provincial level, he was the co-founder and past-president of the Ontario Hunter Jumper Association.
In his professional life, he is the Chairman of Samuel Son & Co. Limited, one of North America’s largest Metals Distribution and Industrial Products companies.
Canada has representation on several FEI committees including Ian Allison, member of the Jumping Committee; Robert Thompson, Chair of the Reining Committee; and Dr. Yves Rossier, as the Deputy Chair of the Veterinary Committee. Equine Canada would also like to thank Ruth Carlson for her service on the FEI Bureau from 2008-2012 as the Chair of the Endurance Committee.