Tom Early, who has championed Louisiana's Thoroughbred industry for three decades, was unanimously voted president of the board of directors of the Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association.
"As a lifetime lover of horses, this is truly an honor to be elected by my fellow board members," said Early, who led the organization for nearly 30 years, said in a statement. "I look forward to facing the challenges of the horse racing and breeding industry in Louisiana."
Early first joined the LTBA in 1974 as a field inspector and served as the secretary-treasurer and chief executive officer from 1985-2012. He was elected to the board of directors last year.
While at the helm of the LTBA, Early saw the implementation of off-tracking betting in Louisiana in 1987, the formation of the group's sales company in 1988, the arrival of video poker in 1991, and the passage of enabling slots legislation in 1998. Since 2005, a breeders' showcase day for Louisiana-breds has been held at each of the state's four racetracks.
"With a unified effort on the part of the whole industry, we can make it better," Early said.
The LTBA's first vice president is retired NFL quarterback Jake Delhomme, who served as president last year. He and his family own Set-Hut Stables in South Louisiana.
Second vice president is Brett Brinkman, who owns Le Mesa Stallions in Carencro, La.
Also joining the board of directors for the first time is Bobby Duhon, while Jim Montgomery rejoins board.
Continuing on the board are Jay Adcock, Charlotte Clavier, Jeff Delhomme, Michelle LaVoice, Neal McFadden, Val Murrell, Keith Myers, and Michele Rodriguez.