MFHA Welcomes Leahy and Twiggs, Looks Ahead at Annual Meeting

At its Annual Meeting in New York City on Friday, January 27th, the Masters of Foxhounds Association (MFHA) welcomed new leaders, recognized the service of departing board members, and unveiled plans for a busy year ahead. A packed crowd of Masters and subscribing members filled every seat at the Union Club for the official meeting, followed by an entertaining presentation on hound breeding from featured speaker Tim Easby, executive director of the United Kingdom's MFHA.

Support the MFHA in Honor of Dennis Foster

As our Executive Director of more than 24 years steps down, consider honoring Dennis Foster's service to the MFHA through a donation in his name. Foster steps down on April 1 after decades of defending and strengthening mounted foxhunting in North America. This is an opportunity to contribute to the carefully planned renovations of our headquarters building in Middleburg, VA, and to perpetuate his work promoting our sport. Donations are tax-deductible and earmarked for the Headquarters & Museum Project. For more information on supporting this special legacy, visit our website here.

Welcome Our New Executive Director, David Twiggs

David Twiggs, who was selected to follow Dennis Foster as MFHA Executive Director, is now in residence in northern Virginia. He and Foster will work together for the next three months, to ensure a smooth transition in this important position, prior to Foster's retirement on April 1. David, his wife, and two daughters all enjoy riding and hunting, and he is looking forward to connecting with our membership in the weeks and months ahead. 

Make Your Contributions Count

As you consider your year-end giving, we invite you to support foxhunting through the many programs maintained by the MFHA. There are several ways to contribute at every level. The gift of a Subscribing Membership to the MFHA is just $35 and goes directly toward our goals to promote, preserve and protect the sport of mounted hunting with hounds. The MFHA Foundation educates the public about foxhunting, promotes conservation,and supports research on hound and horse health and welfare. The Hunt Staff Benefit Foundation offers critical financial support to professional staff and their families in times of need. Your contribution to our new headquarters will assist in the creation of a foxhunting visitors' center, educational facility and office space. Also, our Wall of Recognition is an opportunity to make a memorial gift or to acknowledge a foxhunter who has been a mentor or significant figure to you. A donation to our Legacy Program is a significant commitment to help preserve our sport for future generations. To learn more about each of these MFHA programs, please visit our homepage and review all of the options at mfha.com.

We are often asked about giving to nationally publicized groups such as the HSUS, ASPCA, and PETA. These organizations are not affiliated with and do not support your local animal shelters, and also advocate actively against legal hunting. If you wish to give to animals in need, please contact your community's shelter or humane society directly.

2017-2018 Professional Development Program Is Accepting Applications

Subscribing members of the MFHA who are employed as professional huntsmen, whippers-in, or kennelmen are invited to apply for the upcoming class of the Professional Development Program. Looking ahead to its 12th season, the PDP is a yearlong educational experience (May 1 to May 1) with the goal of encouraging professionalism, improving competence in the hunt field and the kennels and allowing hunt staff the opportunity to network through exposure to other hunts, other staff and their styles of hunting and kennel management. Each participant receives an extensive library of hunting books, audiotapes, DVD’s and pamphlets published by the MFHA & MFHA Foundation that may be kept for future reference. Professional staff participants receive a small monetary grant to assist with their expenses during the course (does not apply to honorary staff).

If you are interested, please complete the application found on our website: http://mfha.com/docs/forms/pdpapplication.pdf

British MFHA Director to Speak at Annual Meeting in NYC

Registrations are coming in for our annual events in New York City, and we are thrilled to have Major Tim Easby, director of the UK's Masters of Foxhounds Association, as our featured speaker at the members' meeting. New Masters will also benefit from a special seminar focusing on their concerns and responsibilities; Marty Wood, MFH Live Oak Hounds, will address this group. And as always, the Masters' Dinner at the Pierre Grand Ballroom will be a high-energy conclusion to the business meetings. Make plans now to reserve rooms at the best rate — see the full schedule on our website.

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Subscribing Membership to the MFHA is open to anyone who cares about the future of country lifestyles and wants their voice and vote to make a difference. You will also receive Covertside magazine 4x a year!

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