Bill White, one of South Florida's all-time leading trainers, has been elected president of the Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association for the 12 months that began April 1.
White succeeds Phil Combest, a trainer and owner who had been the Florida HBPA president since 2011.
Members of the Florida HBPA 15-member board of directors chose White as president at their annual electoral meeting, held March 26 at Gulfstream Park. The Florida HBPA didn't release results until April 2.
White could not be reached for comment April 3-4. He has been a Florida HBPA board member for several periods since the late 1990s.
White has won 16 trainer titles at Calder Casino & Race Course in Florida, 11 at Calder meets and five at Tropical meets. He won eight consecutive Calder meet titles between 1997 and 2004.
Combest declined comment on the change. He remains a Florida HBPA board member and officer with the new title of vice president for legislative affairs.
Each March the Florida HBPA members elect five directors for three-year terms. This year, the membership elected three owners and two trainers to terms that will end early in 2018.
New owners on the board are Daryl S. Clark, Adam Lazarus, and Stephen Screnci. Clark and Lazarus have been board members in the past.
Ralph Nicks and Barry Rose were elected to trainer seats. Trainers Joseph Orseno and Larry Pillotti were elected as alternates to the board, both for one year.
In addition to Combest, the vice presidents for 2014-15 are owners Chester Bishop and Tom Cannell and trainer Kathy Davey. Rose will continue as treasurer and Davey will remain secretary. Florida HBPA executive director Kent Stirling also is a director and officer of association.