Larry Smith, the owner and breeder of 1998 Texas Horse of the Year Thomas Jo, has been elected to serve as president of the Texas Thoroughbred Association. Smith's term began during the first meeting of TTA board of directors June 24.
A resident of Pilot Point, Texas, where he owns and operates Hidden Valley Thoroughbred Ranch, Smith served as an insurance executive for 40 years before he turned most of his attention to racing. In 1998, Texas-bred Thomas Jo won three stakes and finished third behind Victory Gallop and Real Quiet in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I). Smith previously served as secretary/treasurer for the TTA.
Other officers for the next year are Lee Ackerley, first vice president; Gene Palmieri, second vice president; and Bill Clifton, secretary/treasurer. Mike Barnett, Dr. Ken Quirk, and Bill Tracy will join the officers and John Adger, the immediate past president, on the TTA executive committee.
The TTA is governed by a 21-member board of directors. Each member is elected for a three-year term, with seven members elected annually by the general TTA membership through a staggered election process that offers both at-large and regional representation.