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DNB Recognized as Dressage Volunteer of the Month by Equestrian Canada

We could not do it without all of our fantastic volunteers and membership. You guys rock! Thank you!!


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Equestrian Canada Recognizes Dressage
New Brunswick with November
Dressage Volunteer of the Month Award

Ottawa, ON, Dec. 14, 2016 – Equestrian Canada (EC) is thrilled to recognize Dressage New Brunswick with the Dressage Volunteer of the Month Award for November.

Twelve years ago, dressage in New Brunswick was facing a decline. Then two things happened that profoundly changed the face of the sport. The tiny, centrally located town of Sussex finished construction of an indoor arena at the Princess Louise Show Park, which provides amenities and stabling for 200 horses. At the same time, Fredericton’s Renee DeGarie, along with her sister Michelle and mother Diane, marshalled a handful of other dressage enthusiasts to rekindle the Dressage New Brunswick (DNB) organization. The new Board of Directors not only sought to support the growth of the sport, but also decided to organize sanctioned competitions at the show park in Sussex.

The first competitions in Sussex were attended by an average of 25 horse/rider combinations, competing mainly at Training and First level. The face of competitive dressage in the province is now unrecognizable compared to those early days. Thanks to the unflagging enthusiasm of the DNB Board and the volunteers who come out year after year to help, dressage has become the strongest and fastest-growing discipline in the Maritimes.

DNB runs as many as five full three-day EC Bronze/Gold competitions annually from May to October. This year, they expanded to two competition rings running simultaneously, and entries numbered as many as 62 horses. Every program offers tests from Walk-Trot through FEI, and para-equestrian classes, Give It A Go opportunities and musical freestyles are now show schedule norms. In addition to competitions, DNB works with stable owners and the provincial sport organization to help run competitions, offer educational clinics, manage an active social network and actively seek and promote sponsors.

This growth and development of the sport has provided the ladder that has allowed riders to progress from Training through to FEI levels, including Grand Prix. DNB has gone on to have riders compete with success at the biggest shows in Quebec, Ontario, New York, and Florida. The organization has developed teams earning bronze and gold medals at the Canadian Interprovincial Equestrian Championships and has proudly fostered riders selected to represent Canada on multiple FEI North American Junior and Young Rider Championship (NAJYRC) teams. It even provided the venue for a Grade 1a para-equestrian athlete to become long-listed. The overall quality of riding and horses competing in New Brunswick compares to anywhere in North America and yet, the grassroots riders who are happily working away at Training and First level feel as welcome and supported as any others.

While the DNB Board of Directors has seen a good many people join and take their turn as a director, a core group has been the backbone for the long haul. In addition to Renee DeGarie, they include Debbie Zinck, Treasurer, Nancy McAlinden, Secretary, Renee Gaudet, Committee Chair and Donna McInnis, Chair. A small army of dedicated show volunteers is always at the ready to fill the roles required to run competitions smoothly.

EC is delighted to recognize the achievements, countless volunteer hours and dedication of the DNB Board of Directors. As such, the entire Board of Directors and volunteers are worthy recipients of the Dressage Volunteer of the Month Award for November 2016.

If you know of a volunteer who deserves recognition, nominations are quick and easy through the EC website. Nominations for the award are accepted until the 20th day of each month, making Dec. 20, 2016 the next deadline to submit the name of a volunteer who has made a difference to the sport of dressage. Questions and comments on the Dressage Volunteer of the Month Award can be directed to Christine Peters at

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Renee DeGarie spearheaded the rekindling of Dressage New Brunswick in 2004 and remains active on the Board today.


Donna McInnis – Dressage New Brunswick Chair


Renee Gaudet – Dressage New Brunswick Committee Chair


Debbie Zinck – Dressage New Brunswick Treasurer


Nancy McAlinden – Dressage New Brunswick Secretary

Courtesy of Dressage New Brunswick