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John & Kathy Alden
John was equally at home competing in Western Speed events as he is in the corporate offices of the business world. John's corporate life which was mainly spent with IBM where he held a variety of positions as a Customer Engineer supporting large mainframe computers, a technical instructor responsible for training Hardware and Software Support Reps and managing the design and implementation of a cross Canada real time Customer Service support system. John retired from IBM in 1992, and returned to IBM on an occasional basis as a "ROC" (Retiree on call). He has also helped to organize and maintain the computer lab at the local primary school on a volunteer basis.
In the horse world, John was well known both as a competitor and club organizer. Among the highlights of his competitive career were Ontario Barrel Racing "A" Division champion, Ontario Equestrian Federation Heritage Circuit Champion for three consecutive years along with numerous barrel racing championships and futurities. John held a CEF Level 1 coaching certificate, trained his own horses and teaches speed events to small student groups.
On the organizational side, John has been President of the local "Boots'n Saddle" club, VP of both the Ontario Barrel Racing Association & the Ontario Equestrian Federation and served as a director for the Ontario Trail Riding Association. His involvement with Canada's largest breed show, Quarterama, was extensive, from being a winning competitor in the 1980s, performing announcer duties for speed events, managing Commercial Exhibits, to finally Vice Chair in 1998 of this prestigious show.
Combining his extensive equine knowledge, coaching experience, management and business skills, he built and ran the very successful "Windquest Trails", which offered upscale trail riding to both an English & Western clientele.
Kathy has worked as an elementary school teacher for the York Region District School Board for the past 10 years and more recently the Simcoe Board. In her free time, she used to trail riding and boating. Originally a 'Western' rider, she has shown futurity horses in trail, western pleasure, and hunter classes. When she stopped riding, Kathy was successfully showing her Appendix Quarter Horse mare Daisy at level II at the national level.