TTHBPA Director and Former THP Chairman John Roark Resigns Post as National HBPA President

At its meeting in Lexington, Kentucky on Wednesday, April 13, the National HBPA’s Executive Committee unanimously voted to accept resignations volunteered by National HBPA President/Chairman John O. Roark and Midwest Region Vice President Tom Metzen Sr., subject to ratification of the National HBPA’s full board of directors. Roark is a current longtime director of the Texas Thoroughbred Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (TTHBPA) and is a former chairman of the Texas Horsemen's Partnership (THP).

According to the National HBPA’s bylaws, Secretary/Treasurer Joe Santanna will immediately assume the office of President/Chairman until the next semi-annual meeting of the Board of Directors in July, 2006. At that time, a special election will be held to elect a new President / Chairman and any other vacated National HBPA seats.

The National HBPA will endeavor to continue moving forward many innovations and initiatives begun under the able leadership of Roark to enhance horsemen’s rights and programs. Since he became president in 2001, Roark has led the fight for horsemen to obtain their fair share of all dollars wagered and has worked tirelessly to strengthen the organization’s relationships with other industry leaders around the globe. Under Roark’s leadership, National HBPA has twice been selected by Thoroughbred Times magazine as one of the racing’s “Top 20 Industry Leaders.”

During Roark's almost five years as National HBPA president, he did an exceptional job of representing and serving Texas horsemen. In his roles as a TTHBPA board member and as National HBPA president, Roark's passion,drive, and proactive nature have been instrumental in protecting and improving horsemen's rights.

According to new National HBPA President/Chairman Joe Santanna, “As longtime horsemen and HBPA members and in their roles as National HBPA officers, John Roark and Tom Metzen Sr. have personified the National HBPA’s motto ‘horsemen helping horsemen.’ I can only hope to live up to the high standards they have set.”

Santanna, a former president of the Pennsylvania HBPA, has served as National HBPA Secretary/Treasurer since 2001.

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