Christy Landwehr has been active in the horse industry for over 35 years. Hunter/jumper, dressage, side saddle, western pleasure, hunter pleasure, barrel racing, endurance riding and saddle seat equitation are just some of the disciplines Christy has competed in at the local, regional and national levels in multiple breeds. She has been teaching children and adults how to ride for over 30 years. Christy is a Master Level Riding Instructor and Equine Facility Manager through the Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA) and has taught students in 4-H and Pony Club. She is Past President of the American Youth Horse Council and past board member for the Colorado Horse Council. She also founded, competed on and coached the University of Colorado at Boulder Intercollegiate Horse Show Association equestrian team. Christy is an AQHA and APHA Professional Horseman and on the AQHA National Marketing Committee and the APHA Professional Horsemen Committee.
Christy sits on the Colorado State University Equine Sciences Advisory Council and is the current Treasurer for the Interscholastic Equestrian Association Board. Christy also used to work for Medieval Times in California as a “stable wench” and rode sidesaddle in the 100th Annual Tournament of Roses Parade on a prancing Andalusian! Christy has an undergraduate degree in public relations and speech communication from California State University Fullerton and a graduate degree in mass communication and journalism from University of Colorado at Boulder. She was the Sponsorship and Youth Programs Manager for the Arabian Horse Association, a trainer for Skill Path Seminars, and the Development Director for The Urban Farm that works with at-risk youth in Denver. Currently, she is the Chief Executive Officer for the Certified Horsemanship Association, a non-profit 501(c)3 association whose purpose is to promote excellence in safety throughout the equine industry. She is also a certifier and site accreditor for the organization. Christy does facilitation and mediation through her company CJL Training, Inc. for organizations and is a Real Colors Personality Trainer. Christy has spoken at numerous equine events, breed and discipline conventions throughout her career.
What do you do?
- Trainer or Instructor
- Marketing Manager
What is Your Equine-Related Business?
CJL Training Inc. and Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA).
When did you begin your business?
2001 and CHA was founded in 1967.
Why did you begin your business or pursue your passion?
I have taught riding for over 30 years and now do facilitation, etc. through my company – CJL Training. I am also staff for Certified Horsemanship Association
What is unique about you or your brand?
I truly do know people in all breeds and disciplines and love networking and making sure that the equine industry does not keep reinventing the wheel, but that we all partner with one another to make our industry better.
How does your brand or business positively affect other equestrians or horse welfare?
CHA is the largest certifying body of equine professionals in North America and our reason for existence is to Change Lives Through Safe Experiences with Horses.
What challenges have you faced in life or business?
Many! COVID-19 as the most current for sure. Normally CHA does 80 certifications a year and we did 23 in 2020. I am back on the track to getting them up and running again. We had to pivot and do a virtual conference, annual meeting, awards banquet and silent auction all last year as well. Crazy times for sure.
What keeps you motivated or inspired?
Change. I love constantly learning and improving. CHA did a brand new website last year and that was a great experience. I love horses and people and want everyone to be able to have the connection that happens between a horse and person, that is why I love teaching riding and love being the CEO of an association that also believes how important this is.
Who has influenced you and why?
Many folks. Gary Carpenter as he has been a staff leader of so much in our industry. AQHA Foundation, Jockey Club, Colorado State University and now National Reining Horse Association. My first riding instructor, Eldona Reasoner Arns who taught me to ride hunt seat on Arabians and show them. I learned so much from her about life. How could your story benefit others?I would love to talk about internships and how important they are in our industry to get that hands-on experience. Also, how to network and why. Join board and volunteer, it will benefit the group you like and you! Leadership and how to be a compassionate leader.
What advice would you give to someone starting on a new adventure or business?
Have these folks in your stable of friends. Equine lawyer, equine CPA, equine insurance person and financial planner and bounce everything off of them!
Are you working on anything currently?
So much! Diversity training partnership, marketing ideas, new host sites, an in-person conference in Fort Worth this fall and more!