USET Foundation Establishes Karen Stives Endowment Fund for High Performance Eventing

March 17th, 2014 10:29 AM | Comments Off on USET Foundation Establishes Karen Stives Endowment Fund for High Performance Eventing

Press Release

The generous donations of the USET Foundation’s supporters are what provide the important funding that the U.S. Teams need to compete at the top national and international events. Karen Stives has made an incredible gift of $1 million to establish the Karen Stives Endowment Fund for High Performance Eventing. This fund will allow for a grant to be awarded annually for an Eventing High Performance activity, which will have a direct impact on the United States’ ability to win medals at International Championship CCI competitions.

“The team was my life for 20 years: the first 10 as a competitor and the second 10 as Chairman of Selectors,” explained Stives. “I wanted to give back to the organization that had given me so much, as well as inspire our young riders to excel and bring back the gold.”

Stives was a championship Eventing rider who was named the USCTA Rider of Year in 1981, 1987 and 1988. In 1982, she represented the United States at the Luhmuhlen World Championships, and in 1984 she anchored the U.S. Eventing Team that won the Team Gold medal at the Los Angeles Olympics, while also winning Individual Silver. Stives also earned the Leading Lady Rider title in 1981, the Mercedes-Benz Horsewoman of the Year in 1984, and the prestigious Wofford Cup. Following her retirement from international competition, Stives became an FEI judge and was the Chairman of the USET Three-Day Event Selectors’ Committee for many years.

The donation made by Stives will help the U.S. Eventing Team’s quest to achieve international success. “The International Championship CCI competitions are a key part of the international scene,” she explained. “We have the talent, the horsepower and the coaches, and if this can help us win then that is great.”


Stives has a deep passion for Eventing and stated, “I don’t think I am alone in saying it’s great to watch Show Jumping and Dressage because those horses are so amazing at what they do, but to work with a horse and do both of those disciplines at a lower level and add in the cross country that is so challenging and makes Eventing very special. Not every horse can do that.”


S. Tucker S. Johnson, President and CEO of the Foundation, said “Karen has been an important member of the “team” for decades. Her talent as an athlete, winning an Olympic Gold and Silver medal for the United States, and now her generosity and leadership in establishing the Karen Stives Endowment Fund will help future athletes have the opportunity to seek Olympic Gold too.”


With the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games this year in Normandy, France, the Karen Stives Endowment Fund grants will no doubt help in the quest to bring home top honors for the United States.

Karen Stives won Team Gold and Individual Silver at the 1984 Olympic Games.

The United States Equestrian Team Foundation ( is the non-profit organization that supports the competition, training, coaching, travel and educational needs of America’s elite and developing international, high-performance horses and athletes in partnership with the United States Equestrian Federation.

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