Roark, a native of Texas, has a private law practice in Temple, Texas. He became involved in horse racing in 1985 when he and Dr. E.R. Burkhalter started the Finish Line Stable near Louisiana Downs. Roark began racing horses in Texas in 1994, at which time he was active in the effort to form the Texas Thoroughbred HBPA.
John Roark, chairman of the management committee of the Texas Horsemen's Partnership, and president of the Texas Thoroughbred Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, was elected president of the National HBPA during its convention Aug. 12-14 in Boston, Mass.An HBPA official who attended the convention said Roark won by 10 votes over Rick Hiles, who had been National HBPA president. When the two squared off last year, Hiles, a Kentucky-based trainer and former president of the Kentucky HBPA, won in a very close vote. This year's vote tally was 49-39.