Kraeck Named PATH Intl. James Brady Professional Achievement Award Recipient

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The Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl.) is proud to announce that Ainslie Kraeck is the recipient of the 2014 James Brady Professional Achievement Award. The annual award, presented in the name of former White House Press Secretary James Brady, recognizes the contributions made to the field of equine-assisted activities and therapies (EAAT) and is presented to a professional who has made a contribution to the industry. Contributions have been in, but are not limited to, areas such as research, publication, public relations or program development.

Ainslie’s forward-thinking has made lasting contributions not only to the EAAT field, but to PATH Intl. She is a talented thinker, organizer and leader, with a passion for superior performance, pushing centers and the organization, not only to be better, but to be the best.

Ainslie, a PATH Intl. Certified Advanced Instructor, has volunteered her time endlessly to PATH Intl. and is always willing to take on a task and carry it through to completion. She has served in numerous capacities: evaluator, site visitor, instructor, committee member, and has chaired several committees and task forces. She has helped the organization's volunteer pool grow by recognizing talents in new members and pulling them into volunteer positions. She recognizes leaders and has worked to bring members from the general membership to lead committees, and to be chairs and state representatives.

PATH Intl. continues to be an industry leader in part because Ainslie has promoted best practices in the field and has been a driving force in shaping the PATH Intl. Standards for Certification and Accreditation. As one of her friends states, “If you look at the heart of PATH Intl., you see the standards. They are the soul of what makes PATH Intl. work for our centers. All PATH Intl. members use the standards for our daily center activities, but Ainslie lives and breathes the standards.”

Ainslie is an ardent supporter of PATH Intl., has an unsurpassed work ethic and strives to help the association move forward with innovative ideas.

In 2013, Ainslie, her committee and the PATH Intl. staff led the reorganization of the standards manual from idea to project completion in less than a year, thus constructing a platform for long-term growth, recognition and professionalism in each of the specialties. Similarly, the reorganization of the standards led to the idea of a new standards course that was piloted a year later.

Sandy Webster, the 2012 James Brady Professional Achievement recipient, said, "Thank you Ainslie for being a person who is not afraid to say what you mean and mean what you say, for being able to hold on to history for the good it has served and yet embrace change for the good it will do. You are truly an agent of change and incredible contributor to our industry. Thank you for your dedication, wisdom, friendship and fearless ability to do what is right, ethical and in the best interest of us all."

Thanks to her dedication, and that of previous James Brady Professional Achievement Award winners, PATH Intl. offers better centers and better certified professionals to serve participants. Ainslie is the perfect choice to demonstrate professional achievement and lasting contribution to our organization, and we are honored to bestow on her the James Brady Professional Achievement Award.

James Brady was the press secretary to President Ronald Reagan and was shot during an assassination attempt on Reagan in 1981. The failed attempt left Brady paralyzed. To make his physical therapy more enjoyable, Brady began therapeutic riding with his horse. He said that the riding helped him improve his balance and muscle control more than traditional physical therapy. Brady was an ally of PATH Intl. (then NARHA) and subsequently the association named its most prestigious award in his honor. Mr. Brady passed away this past August but he will long be remembered for his bravery and enthusiasm.

Click here for more information on these winners as well as all the region winners.

The Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl.) was formed in 1969 to promote safety and optimal outcomes in equine-assisted activities and therapies (EAAT) for individuals with special needs. At 852 member centers, more than 58,000 children and adults may find improved health, wellness and a sense of pride and independence through involvement with horses. Therapeutic horsemanship at member centers may include hippotherapy, equine-facilitated mental health, driving, interactive vaulting, trail riding, competition, ground work and stable management. Through a wide variety of educational resources, the association helps individuals start and maintain successful EAAT programs. There are nearly 53,000 volunteers, 4,544 instructors, 7,733 equines and thousands of contributors from all over the world helping people at PATH Intl. Member Centers.