President’s Blog.

In 2018 we started as board with a new approach with working groups and a survey to ask what you expect from our club. With the results of the survey we started to work on our club. Now we have a new website with a forum to discuss cases.

We also started communicate with you also via email

With my presidents blogs I will update you on the developments in our club. This all helps us to open our club for our present and potential members.

19 November 2020

Dear members,

It has been a while since you last heard from me.

I hope you are all well and coping with this difficult time we are all experiencing.

COVID 19 has made 2020 one of the most difficult years our sport has endured.  For some it has unfortunately affected them personally.  For others it has been challenging as the complete infrastructure of the sport has changed.  And, for many of us it is quite simply we miss Judging, Stewarding, Course building and of course meeting our friends!

New FEI Officials Education System for Jumping Officials

Recently the FEI launched a new Officials Education System for jumping officials.  After the introduction many of you have questions.  Therefore, on behalf of our members the board has written to the FEI to address our concerns.  If any of you have any further comments regarding the new system and would like them raised, please send by email to the IJOC Secretary General Teodor Sheitanov (sg@ijoclub.com)

We will then arrange a meeting with the FEI to discuss all concerns.

Vacant board positions

The IJOC elections for board members will take place in January 2021.  There are 3 positions to be filled. Kate Horgan and Charles Maudlin are not seeking re-election, Teodor Sheitanov is seeking re-election.

If you would like to contribute to our club you still have the opportunity to put your name forward for election.

IJOC webinars and General Assembly 2021

Due to the restrictions caused by COVID-19 the board will organize the IJOC seminars and General Assembly to be held online 2021.

The board is currently working on the program and you will all be notified in due course how the seminars will proceed.

Following the results of the surveys we held earlier this year which many of you participated in (thank you) we learnt most of our members enjoy discussing case studies.

Therefore, I would like to ask for your cooperation as members to share some of your case studies, in order that we can prepare an interesting IJOC Webinar to run during the IJOC seminar.  Of course, all case studies will remain anonymous.

Please send your cases to: sg@ijoclub.com.

I wish you all well.  Stay safe!

Willem Luiten

President IJOC

1 June 2020

Dear Members, 01-06-2020

Normally, as board of the IJOC, we meet once a year in person. Today would be this day.
But today no preparations to travel to Amsterdam due to the situation of COVID-19.
This virus puts a lot of things in a new perspective. I am working already 9 weeks from home instead of going to work, like a lot of you this is the new normal situation. Telephone and computer are essentials in these days.

This virus affects us all in our daily routine and decision making. Also for our club we had to make some tough decisions. Originally our In person maintenance course was planned in Rome. Due to the severe circumstances in Italy, we thanked the Italian National Federation and informed them about the decision that we will not use their invitation this year to give them the opportunity to recover.

As we do in a crisis situation, we tried to develop a plan B. In this plan first priority is the safety and health of our members. If it is possible to come in person we need an accommodation which meets our requirements to secure this health and safety. We found this conditions in Sofia in a new hotel on the same date, with a lot of space which makes it possible to meet these requirements. We will make a decision in our next online board meeting on this plan.
If it is still not possible on the specific date to meet in person, we will organize an online event and General Assembly instead.

The decision from the FEI to allow competitions from the 1st of July is the first step to start international competitions again. As club we are constantly in contact with the FEI to facilitate where possible this start within the priorities of health and safety of our officials.

We did send a survey to all our members who were in Prague. Thank you for the great response. It is good to read that most of you had a good time. This year we are sending you also a survey to get information for our strategic plan we are making.

The Board has also decided to start with a webinar Serie with stakeholders in the equestrian sport. We will communicate shortly about the progress.

Best regards,

Willem Luiten
President IJOC

19 March 2020

PRESIDENTS BLOG
Dear Members,
After our Club’s successful FEI in-person maintenance course and General Assembly in Prague, only 2 months ago, I did not expect to live today in a completely new reality.

The corona virus is leading to a loss of control over many aspects of our daily lives. We find ourselves having to adapt to new circumstances on a daily basis, and identify any actions we are able to take in order to successfully manage our lives. Life feels like a rollercoaster ride, and, like me, I am sure you are all asking ourselves: “Is this really happening?”

I want to express my feelings of sympathy to those of you who, either personally or whose loved ones, have contracted or will contract COVID-19. I realize that you have huge concerns, as personal health is our greatest asset.

In that light, I understand the measures that national authorities, National Federations and the FEI are being forced to take. These measures are essential in the battle to mitigate the risk to our personal health. There is no easy way out.

Last week when I went to ‘s Hertogenbosch as President of the Ground Jury for the Dutch Masters, there was still some small hope that it would have been possible to run the show without spectators. After our first sports meeting, it became clear that the new measures implemented by the Dutch government rendered this impossible and the event was called off. This was my personal experience, but I am convinced that most of you will have had similar experiences of cancelled shows. As officials, the impact on us is relatively low when compared to the enormous impact on organizers, riders, grooms and so many others whose world revolves around equestrian sport and activity.

In these challenging times, it is comforting to see that people are willing to help each other, as generosity, kindness and resilience are some of the characteristics that will help us to come through this crisis, and make us stronger.

We have to draw on these qualities in order to face the current and upcoming difficulties, and they will also assist us when the time comes to rebuild our world and our sport. Together we are strong. Regarding our Club, we have already started the initial preparation of our event that we still plan to hold in Rome next January. Our Vice President Eric Straus is heading a working group on the strategy of our Club for the coming years. We sent some proposals for rules changes to the FEI: one of the proposals is to increase our per diem. The impact of corona virus on the officials’ education system is also an ongoing topic in our communication with the FEI.

This is a time to set aside our differences and pull together, putting collective interest before our own.
Take care of yourselves, and each other.

Yours sincerely,
Willem Luiten, president IJOC

1 October 2019

Dear Members,

A little bit later than planned I write this blog. The last month I have been active as official in several shows and learned a lot. In almost every show I met members of our club acting with passion for our beautiful sport. During these events I experienced the important role our officials play to protect the welfare of the horse and the creation of a level playing field. Especially stewards who are working from early in the morning till late inthe evening.

As board we are very busy with the organization of our yearly FEI refresher course and General Assembly 17-19 of January 2020 in Praha. Preparations are running smooth. This year we are also organizing a refresher course on Sunday afternoon and Monday for our stewards. So a busy program with good speakers.

Based on all the input from our members on the rules revision 2019 we, as club, send direct proposals to the FEI.

You did read on our website/Facebook about the FEI roundtable discussion about Jumping in Lausanne. This was a constructive meeting with all the stakeholders. The FEI is more and more open to the stakeholders and we are also invited as important stakeholder by the FEI Jumping Committee in October in Barcelona.

After this meeting I will update you with a new blog.

Yours sincerely,

Willem Luiten, president IJOC

16 September 2019

Dear Members,

A little bit later than planned I write this blog. The last month I have been active as official in several shows and learned a lot. In almost every show I met members of our club acting with passion for our beautiful sport. During these events I experienced the important role our officials play to protect the welfare of the horse and the creation of a level playing field.

Especially stewards who are working from early in the morning till late in the evening.

As board we are very busy with the organization of our yearly FEI refresher course and General Assembly 17-19 of January 2020in Praha. Preparations are running smooth.  This year we are also organizing a refresher course on Sunday afternoon and Monday for our stewards. So a busy program with good speakers.

Based on all the input from our members on the rules revision 2019 we, as club, send direct proposals to the FEI.

You did read on our website/Facebook about the FEI roundtable discussion about Jumping in Lausanne. This was a constructive meeting with all the stakeholders. The FEI is more and more open to the stakeholders and we are also invited as important stakeholder by the FEI Jumping Committee in October in Barcelona.

After this meeting I will update you with a new blog.

Yours sincerely,

Willem Luiten, president IJOC

16 April 2019

Dear Members, I am writing this blog to you on the airport of Genève
on my way back to home. As promised I will write this report about my experiences.
The first day was had interesting topics. The first session was about gender equality in our sport. The second session was about the preparations of Tokyo 2020. I learned that we have a challenge in the climate. There was a presentation with statistics that the climate will be a challenge in Tokio. Preparation off the event is on schedule. Also, information was shared over climate mitigation planning & optimizing of the performance of horses and athletes.
Different disciplines can learn from each other to improve performance in severe climate conditions.
In the afternoon, we were informed about the proposed changes of our legal system.
One of the proposals was to stop with the appeal committee as institution. For Jumping this now mandatory for the very big events and since 2016 the appeal committee was only 2 times in action. The proposal is that the Ground jury should deal with a protest as final institution. The second proposal was to give the FEI headquarter the authority to handle minor offences with an administrative procedure (so not every case goes to the FEI tribunal) this decision is appealable to the FEI tribunal. The upside is that procedures will be shorter and the workload of the FEI tribunal will only be for the severe cases.
The second day was about the reshaping of Endurance in the FEI after an introduction it became clear to me that this discipline has specific challenges, and that part of the solution lies in the applying and maintaining our FEI Code of Conduct for officials.
In the afternoon, I had a nice talk in person with our new FEI Director Officials & Education Frank Spadinger.

The announcer of the airport is doing his last call for boarding to Amsterdam so I must end this blog with the promise that I will write my next blog after the IJOC board meeting on the 3 of June in Amsterdam.

Yours Sincerely
Willem Luiten
President IJOC

26 March 2019

Dear Members,
When I start writing this blog I have wonderful flashbacks on our event in Amsterdam.
High quality of speakers and beautiful entertainment. Meeting old friends and making new friends. After our General Assembly on Sunday we had our first board meeting with our new team. A warm welcome to Anna and Eric. In this meeting, we assigned the different board positions. Jon Doney will be the vice president of the club, Anna Lindqvist will take over from Carsten Sorlie as treasurer and Teodor Sheitanov will stay our Secretary General.

Our first challenge as club was to respond on the invitation of the FEI regarding the rules revision 2020. As important stakeholder, we were asked to send our input together with the National Federations. We asked our members to send us proposals. We discussed these proposals in a new formed working group and discussed the proposals in our skype board meeting end of February. I want to thank the members, and the members of the working group who took the effort to react in a short time.

The working group on rules will be permanent and chair of this group is Jon Doney the members are Maria Hernek (steward), David Distler (steward/judge), Rene Billardon (judge) and myself (steward/judge). If you have ideas to make our sport more beautiful do not hesitate to contact one of the members of this working group.

One of the activities in our plan for 2019 is the organization of webinars for our members around the globe. To realise this we also formed a working group for webinars with members. The chair of this working group is Teodor Sheytanov and the members are our regional representatives, Radovan Salek and Na’ama Achmon Licht.
We already started the preparations for our FEI refresher course and General Assembly in 2020 in the beautiful city of Prague. The first contact and ideas are promising!

I will write my next blog to you after the FEI Sportsforum in April to inform you about the topics we discussed in Lausanne.

Yours sincerely,
Willem Luiten, president IJOC

2 December 2018

CLOSER TO OUR MEMBERS

The end of the year is coming and I feel the need to look back and trying to see things in perspective.

In February, I was elected as President of our club in Lausanne. Holding this position is a great honour but also a big challenge to guide our club in this transition.

This transition is only possible if we all contribute as members. We started direct with working groups on the most important topics with the help of you. The most important questions to start with was: Who are our members and what do they expect from the IJOC? More than two third of our members made the effort to share their opinions and expectations with us in a survey. Members did also support the working groups with their expertise. Thank you all !

All this input resulted in 2018 in the first steps of the transition:

  • A better knowledge on what our members want. We will share the results of the survey so that you can see that our activities in 2018 and coming years are a contribution to the needs of our members. We could implement the most important suggestions regarding Refresher and General Assembly in the program of AMSTERDAM in January 2019.
  • A proposal to change our Statutes to make it possible for FEI veterinarians to become member of our IJOC as promised in the General Assembly 2018 in Lausanne.
  • Updating our Statutes to modern time and principals of good governance.
  • The developing of a new website for our IJOC as most important communication channel with our members, the Beta version will be open in December.

All these achievements are just the first step in the transition that we are making as IJOC.

Refresher Seminar & General Assembly Amsterdam 2019

Most activities of the Board are these days focussed on our Refresher Seminar and General Assembly of our IJOC in Amsterdam. Deadlines have to be met and processes have to be started. Based on the outcome of our survey we have decided to have more time to socialize and network, by having longer breaks and starting a little later in the morning. We also invited our strategic partners in sport such as the FEI, EEF, IJRC (Riders), IEOA (Organisers). The relationship with these partners is very important for our club, if we want to realise changes in the sport in general and more specific working conditions of officials. In this weekend I will have a meeting with the FEI to address issues living in our official group like appointments, remunerations, rotation and exchange program.

Elections

We have also started the process of the election of Board members to fill in the vacancies in the Board. It is good to see that a lot of members are interested. It gives me the confidence that members want to be involved in the transition of our IJOC. Because I stepped in the term of our former President Stephan Ellenbruch my one year mandate ends in January 2019. After consultation and full support of the Board in our Board meeting in Barcelona I have decided to seek re-election as your President for the coming three years.

I thank you all for your support in 2018 and ask you to support me in this election so that we as Board can finish the transition of our IJOC, together with you.

Yours Sincerely,

Willem Luiten, President IJOC

26 June 2018

Dear Members,

Hope you are enjoying your work as official acting at shows. I certainly do. The last month I had lovely shows where I had the opportunity to work with club members in the field.

On the 5th of June we had our first board meeting after our General Board meeting in Lausanne. It is good to see that the Board members and members did a great job with the working groups. The most interesting part were the results of the survey. I should make a big complement to our members with a very good participation rate: 73% of our members did the survey!

The results of the survey will be used to start with improvements and making proposals for our next General Assembly. However, I would like to share the main topics of the survey with you.

First some statistics: 59,80 of the respondents are female and the biggest age group is between 55-64 years closed followed by the age group of 45-54. This sounds logical regarding the starting age of FEI officials in general. Most of our members are judges or stewards or a combination of judge/steward.

The most important reasons why respondents joined the club are: the club facilitates the discussion about rules with other jumping officials, updates of rule changes and the network opportunity. The respondents rate the current communication as average/above average. A strong majority of the respondents prefer to communicate by email 89,29% followed by Facebook and website. The respondents also clearly indicated the they appreciate a forum on the website with, after discussion, a definitive answer. The exchange program is highly appreciated by our respondents. One of the suggestions was to develop activities to involve our non European members.

All this information and the new communication strategy we discussed during the Board meeting will result in a revival of our website with email notification system. On this website, we will set up a forum to discuss cases on a regular basis. Our Vice President Jon Doney and his team will be moderating the discussions.

In the Board meeting, we also discussed the results of the working group on Statutes. Most of the changes are minor and will result in a proposal for our General Assembly in Amsterdam next year.

During this General Assembly, the Board will also come with a proposal to make our club open for Veterinarians. This proposal and the statute changes this requires will be separately on the agenda.

As you can read a lot work has been done, but there is still a lot of work to do !

In 2018 we will start with a strategic plan for our club to determine our value proposition and activities for our members in the different types of officials and the way we want to cooperate with our key partners as the FEI and organisers. In my opinion this cooperation should be based on mutual respect and cooperation rather than cheap tuning.

Thanking all of those who have worked on these groups I am ending this blog with wishing you all the best and nice shows.

Based on the outcome of the survey on communication I will send this blog by email to all members. You can find this blog also on the website and facebook.

Kind regards,

Willem Luiten
Your President

10 March 2018

Dear Members,

Together with more than 115 members I look back on a successful weekend in Lausanne. I would like to thank everyone who was there and made it possible to have such wonderful days. As already mentioned in my motivation with my candidacy 2018 will be a year of transition. We started as Board direct after our General Assembly with our first board meeting of our club. The main issue of the board meeting is the distribution of tasks within the board.

It was decided that Jon Doney will stay as Vice President of our club.

Frances Hesketh-Jones will stay as Secretary General and Jane Pelly will stay in charge of the Exchange program. The new treasurer of the club will be Carsten Sorlie.

We also started a few working groups on topics we want to address in 2018. The working groups work with a responsible board member and members of our club.

Update of Statutes

This working group will look at the Statutes of our club with Enrique Rey as responsible member.

The world has changed a lot and we had several changes of our statutes over the last years. The working group will report to the board a complete update of our Statutes so they are fit to compete for the coming years.

IJOC and Vets

After the discussion we had during our GA we also started a working group on the topic of vets with Jon Doney as responsible board member. Topic of this workgroup is working out the pro and contras of having the vets in the club.

Communication

The third working group is about communication with our members. Teodor Sheytanov is the responsible board member. How will we communicate in the future with our members. Which channels will we use.

Club Survey 2018

As Board we feel the obligation to add value to the members of our club. To add value you have to know what our members expect from the club. To gather this information we will start a survey among our members. The board member in charge is Kate Horgan.

These working groups will report to the board. Based on the results the Board will make proposals for the next GA in Amsterdam in 2019.

I will keep you informed on the developments with this blog.

Kind regards,

Willem Luiten
Your President

30 March 2018

Dear Members,

SPORTSFORUM

I am home again after 2 wonderful days in Lausanne attending the Sportsforum 2018. The Sportsforum was very well organized by the FEI and we had several interesting topics to discuss. The most interesting topic was of course the report of the working group on Officials the second day. Since the working group started 2 years ago, 13 recommendations regarding officials were made. The most important one, the Code of Conduct for officials, is already in our rules. The presentation was almost the same as the one we had during our refresher course in February in Lausanne. You can find the recommendations here.

The recommendations are a good first step. The FEI is already taking the next steps. One of these steps is to hire a person in the FEI headquarters who will be responsible for the management and implementation of the recommendations.

WORKING GROUPS IJOC

IJOC SURVEY 2018

As I already mentioned in my first blog we started with working groups in our club. I am very proud that I can announce that this week you will receive the Club Survey 2018 made by Kate Horgan and Jane Pelly. Please invest a little time in the survey. This is a unique possibility to let us know what you think of our club and how we can add value to our members. The survey will be open for one month. We will use the information also in our communication strategy which is in progress.

Kind regards,

Willem Luiten
Your President

10 March 2018

Dear Members,

Together with more than 115 members I look back on a successful weekend in Lausanne. I would like to thank everyone who was there and made it possible to have such wonderful days. As already mentioned in my motivation with my candidacy 2018 will be a year of transition. We started as Board direct after our General Assembly with our first board meeting of our club. The main issue of the board meeting is the distribution of tasks within the board.

It was decided that Jon Doney will stay as Vice President of our club.

Frances Hesketh-Jones will stay as Secretary General and Jane Pelly will stay in charge of the Exchange program. The new treasurer of the club will be Carsten Sorlie.

We also started a few working groups on topics we want to address in 2018. The working groups work with a responsible board member and members of our club.

Update of Statutes

This working group will look at the Statutes of our club with Enrique Rey as responsible member.

The world has changed a lot and we had several changes of our statutes over the last years. The working group will report to the board a complete update of our Statutes so they are fit to compete for the coming years.

IJOC and Vets

After the discussion we had during our GA we also started a working group on the topic of vets with Jon Doney as responsible board member. Topic of this workgroup is working out the pro and contras of having the vets in the club.

Communication

The third working group is about communication with our members. Teodor Sheytanov is the responsible board member. How will we communicate in the future with our members. Which channels will we use.

Club Survey 2018

As Board we feel the obligation to add value to the members of our club. To add value you have to know what our members expect from the club. To gather this information we will start a survey among our members. The board member in charge is Kate Horgan.

These working groups will report to the board. Based on the results the Board will make proposals for the next GA in Amsterdam in 2019.

I will keep you informed on the developments with this blog.

Kind regards,

Willem Luiten
Your President