Smith Elected Race Track Chaplaincy President

Edward Smith was elected president of the Race Track Chaplaincy of America at the organization's five-day Annual Convention and Chaplains' School, which ended Jan. 10 in Anaheim, Calif.

Smith is a Dallas-based travel executive who grew up in Hawaii and has business interests around the globe. He has been a lay missionary for several international ministries, served as an RTCA Regional Director and sits on the Chaplaincy Council at Lone Star Park.

The RTCA recently opened outreach ministries to track workers at two Canadian locations and has others planned in Jamaica and Puerto Rico.

Smith succeeds Don K. Dean, a Maryland-based owner-breeder who served as the RTCA's chief executive for three years. Dan Fick, Executive Vice President and Executive Director of The Jockey Club, was elected Director-Emeritus and will serve on the Board of Directors. Fick was instrumental in the revitalization of the RTCA over the past several years.

Elliott Walden, private trainer for WinStar Farm, was re-elected vice president and Sam Ed Spence, chaplain at Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, was re-elected secretary. Margaret E. Landreth, a racehorse owner and president of the Chaplaincy Council at Sam Houston Race Park in Texas, was elected treasurer, succeeding Phyllis Bunch.

Both Dean and Bunch will continue to serve on the RTCA's Board of Directors. Dean will serve as the representative of the Chaplaincy Council presidents, and Bunch, a horse owner from Guthrie, Okla., will represent the regional directors.

The 2005 Chaplains' School featured training on crisis intervention. Teachers included Dr. Barbara Ann Wilmes, executive director of the Backstretch Employee Assistance Team (BEAT) for the New York Racing Association, Peggy Goetsch, executive director of the Racing Industry Charitable Foundation in Chicago, and Dr. Eva Tricules Klostreich, who holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychotherapy and is the daughter of retired RTCA Chaplain Homer Tricules.

Among the featured speakers was Rev. John Boyers, the Executive Director of Score (Serving Sports through Chaplaincy). The Manchester, England based non-profit places chaplains with the nation's sports teams and assists England's lone horse racing chaplain.