KEEP Board Endorses Staff Changes

Edited press release

The Kentucky Equine Education Project board of directors officially endorsed staff changes, including the naming of Jim Navolio as executive director.

The KEEP board voted May 11, but chairman Brereton Jones indicated May 5 the organization's operating committee had approved the staff shuffle.

Claria Horn Shadwick, who has served as executive director since July 2004, has been named to the new position of director of strategy and research. Navolio had served as operations director. Gene Clabes, the equine director, will assume all responsibilities for KEEP's overall grassroots programs.  

In a release, Jones said the changes reflect the progress KEEP has made.

"We have had an extraordinarily successful first year under Claria's stewardship and the KEEP "dream team"--with over 6,400 new members, the recruitment of 109 team leaders, and raising over $4 million," Jones said. "As we begin our second year, it is clear that we want to keep this team in the field, but we also need to add emphasis to strategic initiatives and research, including keeping a watchful eye on competitive and innovative state programs.

"Jim Navolio was a logical choice for us to move into the executive director position. With his prior experience with the state Economic Development Cabinet and Kentucky Racing Commission, we're confident that the transition will be seamless. Gene Clabes, a true horseman and esteemed journalist, is a perfect fit to lead the grassroots effort."