Skip to Content

NYCHA Awards & Programs


Produced Events

Local Shows and Events




NYCHA Levels of Excellence Award Program, (LEAP)

LEAP (Levels of Excellence Award Program) is a "levels" program created in 1994 that allows youth members to accumulate LEAP points throughout their Youth career, earning awards and recognition as they climb the ladder of success. LEAP points are earned through participation in NYCHA, writing an article, giving a speech, or helping with fundraisers. Youth also earn points based on their performance in the cutting arena. The program was designed as a reference for youth participation overall in the NYCHA and to also recognize youth in the cutting horse family for participation in youth activities and even if they were not showing cutting horses.

LEAP Awards:

LEAP awards are given for:

  • Initial (1,000 points)
  • Bronze (2,500 points)
  • Silver (5,000 points)
  • Gold (7,500 points)
  • Platinum (10,000 points)
  • Diamond (15,000 points)

These awards are presented individually to the youth during their NYCHA Awards Banquet held at the Summer Spectacular Cutting in Fort Worth, Texas, usually in July. A six-year-old member could potentially reach the first level of accomplishment (1,000 points) and accept a LEAP award without ever competing in the cutting arena.

Why Join?

It is mandatory for youth to participate in LEAP to reach the NYCHA Hall of Fame; in addition, LEAP gives all youth members a way to be recognized for their educational, leadership and competition participation in the NCHA's youth organization. It gives youth from all levels of experience and ability a chance to reach the NYCHA Hall of Fame by participating in many activities. LEAP points also play an important role in selecting recipients of the NYCHA Scholarships.

How to Participate?

To participate in LEAP a youth must first become a member of NYCHA. Dues for the NYCHA are currently $25 a year per member. Youth may join NYCHA at any time during the year by filling out the Membership Form found in the Chatter Magazine or on the NCHA website. To participate in LEAP the youth member simply needs to fill out and submit a LEAP form each year. Youth may participate starting at any age once they become a member and start participating in educational clinics and fun events like horse anatomy clinics, belt-making clinics, contests, and other youth activities, such as the Easter Egg Hunt at the Super Stakes.

LEAP Forms

LEAP forms are available online, so it is important to pay your dues early!
Forms must be submitted NO LATER than June 1st of each year. LEAP forms will NOT be accepted after this date.

2021-2022 LEAP Form (Fillable Form) 


NYCHA Hall of Fame

The NYCHA Youth Hall of Fame inductions are important because they connect the past with the present. They serve to recognize the best of the best and give current youth and families a blueprint for success.

The NYCHA Youth Members Hall of Fame was established to recognize those youth who have made outstanding and unusual contributions to the NYCHA basic purpose, which is the public exhibition and constant promotion of the Cutting Horse. We are proud to honor these individuals who have exhibited a high moral character, good sportsmanship, fairness, and an exemplary contribution of time, effort, and interest in NYCHA and its basic endeavors. To nominate a deserving individual to the NYCHA Youth Members Hall of Fame, a nomination form must be filled out online. 

The NYCHA Hall of Fame selection shall consist of education, leadership, and competition. The online form will be reviewed by the NCHA Director of Youth to verify that all the criteria have been met. Once the criteria have been met nominees will be notified by letter of their expectance. 

In an effort to make this year's Youth Hall of Fame inductions as seamless as possible, the NYCHA, in conjunction with the Youth Committee has created a Hall of Fame application form.

Applications are due no later than April 1st.

Standards adopted by the Youth Board of Directors/Youth Committee at the 2019 NCHA Convention To be considered for the Youth Hall of Fame, a youth must:

  • Out of High School for one full year and must have a high school diploma or GED equivalent (Prior to July Youth Convention)
  • Have accumulated 150-lifetime youth points
  • Have been in Top Ten Youth World Standings or Finalist at Eastern, Western, or Summer Spectacular at least once.
  • Served as NYCHA Officer/Director for at least three terms
  • Must be enrolled in LEAP to be eligible
  • Must have achieved at least the Gold LEAP Level (7,500 points) to be eligible 
  • Applications due April 1st 

NYCHA Hall of Fame - Qualifications

NYCHA Hall of Fame – Interview Questionnaires


Outstanding Area Director Award 



O.A.D. stands for Outstanding Area Director. The O.A.D. The program was designed in order to increase motivation amongst directors to accomplish their duties as an NYCHA Area Director. Year after year the requirements of the NYCHA Director are taken lightly, and out of 50 area directors, only a few fulfill their duties. Since the program is designed to increase motivation at the area director level, NYCHA Senior Officers and Senior Regional Directors are ineligible.
An O.A.D. Program Checklist is online for all NYCHA Area Directors. For points to be considered, it is the responsibility of the area director to email the O.A.D. Program Checklist for the prior year term of service June 1st – May 31st. The program checklist should be emailed to the NCHA Director of Youth no later than June 1st. Award recipients will be recognized at the NYCHA Awards banquet in July of that year.


Once an Area Director has fulfilled all of their regular director duties, they can go about earning points towards the O.A.D. Program Award. It is up to each area director to keep up with any additional points collected for such things as recruiting members, collecting stallion services for the NYCHA Stallion Service Program, selling raffle tickets, attending NYCHA meetings, and submitting articles to the Chatter Magazine or NYCHA Newsletter to the NYCHA Youth Department.
The O.A.D. point system is as follows:

  • Each Stallion Donation Obtained - 10 points
  • Each Raffle Ticket Sold - 10 points
  • Each New Youth Member Recruited - 10 points
  • Each NYCHA Meeting Attended - 10 points
  • Each Article Submitted to Chatter - 10 points

Application due no later than June 1st

Outstanding Area Director Award


A Friend of the NYCHA Award

"Some people want it to happen, some wish it to happen, and others make it happen." - Unknown

The Friend of the NYCHA Award is a recognition program for donors and supporters of the NYCHA who have made a significant financial or personal contribution to NYCHA.

There have been many people who have played an important role in the continued growth and success of the youth association; the creation of the Friend of the NYCHA Award will provide much-deserved recognition to those individuals and NCHA corporate sponsors who have "made it happen" year after year. The award will be given annually during the NYCHA awards banquet to youth supporters who have exhibited a long-term commitment to the success of the youth program. If you would like to nominate someone who has made a significant contribution at the national level - either financially or through personal effort - please go online to nominate (a brief summary of the nominee's contributions) to NCHA no later than June 1st each year. For more information, please contact the NCHA Director of Youth.

The honoree must contribute to NYCHA at a national level that potentially benefits all youth members.
Examples of potential honorees:

  • Scholarship Donor
  • Long-time stallion donor
  • NCHA Corporate Sponsor
  • Youth Committee members
  • Trainers who work with a large number of youth members
  • Show secretaries that make a significant contribution to the youth activities
  • NCHA Executive Committee Members

Nominations must be made online and received in the NCHA office by June 1st each year. The nomination forms are fillable online. 

Applications due June 1st

NYCHA Friends of the NYCHA - Application




Todd Drummond Memorial Award

The Todd Drummond Memorial Award is presented annually to an outstanding youth member nominated by an NCHA Affiliate. The youth member will be recognized for:

  • Scholastic Achievement
  • Extracurricular Activities
  • Cutting Horse Involvement

 The recipient of the Todd Drummond Memorial Award receives a trophy buckle, presented during the NCHA World Championship Futurity each December in Fort Worth, Texas.
We encourage everyone to participate in the nomination process.  *** Affiliates must send their nomination and information to the NCHA office.
If you know a youth member that you think deserves this award, please contact your Affiliate President or Secretary right away. Todd Drummond Memorial Award applications must be completed and postmarked no later than October 1st. If you have any questions about the award, please contact Cathy Marie Aleff at the NCHA office at (817) 244-6188 ext 121.

Todd Drummond Nomination Form

Past Recipients Include:

2021 Tori Shaw, Mount Vernon, IL

2020 Tia Collins, Monroe, GA

2019 Cash Carpenter, Silverton, TX

2018 Colton Cogdell, Tulia, TX

2017 Nicole Pietrafeso, Elbert, CO

2016 Maddison Murray, Lindale, TX

2015 Morgan Griggs, Watkinsville, GA

2014 Kolby Moore, Williston, FL

2013 Ryan Howell, Preston, GA

2012 Cheyenne Johnson, Pine Level, AL

2011 Katherine Hall, DeKalb, TX

2010 Kevin Murray, BECHA

2009 Justin Marcello, SECHA & SSCHA

2008 Kassi Pinion, Stanfield, NC

2007 Paige Kincaid, Peoria, AZ

2006 Grant Smith, Grand Island, NE

2005 Matthew Blewitt, Wingate, NC

2004 Courtney Sokol, Brenham, TX

2003 Joshua Hopkins, Batesville, AR

2002 Heather Raftery, Green Valley, AZ

2001 Kerri Fenimore, Bend, OR

1999 Josh Wells, Sulphur, OK

1998 Roianna Hawkins, Ruston, LA 

1997 Ian Welles, Buffalo, WY

1996 Michael Laxague, Gardnerville, NV

1995 Austin Manning, Las Vegas, NV

1994 Lyndy Montgomery, Montrose, CO

1993 Jason Burbage, St. George, SC

1992 Nancy Elizabeth Moses, Houston, TX

1991 Carie James, Daniel, WY

1990 Chad Bushaw, Deer Island, OR

1989 Melissa Lowry, Salt Lake City, UT

1987 Julie Hollar, Brenham, TX

1986 Denise Adams, Ogden, UT

1985 Chris Atkins, Augusta, GA

1984 Wendy Nelson, Scottsdale, AZ


Whitney & Greg Welch Memorial Sportsmanship Award

Established in 2000, this award is presented to a National Youth Cutting Horse Association member who exemplifies the qualities of sportsmanship, responsibility, and respect for fellow competitors.

The annual award was established in honor of NYCHA member, Whitney Welch, daughter of Greg and Pax Welch. The award is presented at the NYCHA Awards Banquet during the NCHA Derby each summer. Whitney and three of her friends were killed on December 19, 1998, the result of an encounter with a drunk driver. It was a devastating loss to all who knew and loved her. Whitney exemplified the true meaning of sportsmanship; she was a quiet girl, always friendly, courteous and respectful to others. Whitney was gracious in winning, as well as losing.

Whitney's father, former National Cutting Horse Association President, Greg Welch, passed away on July 4, 2004, after a brief illness. Greg was a much-loved supporter of young cutters and served as a positive force in the lives of many youth members. Prior to his death, he presented the Whitney Welch Memorial Sportsmanship Award during the NYCHA Awards Banquet each summer. After his passing, Greg's name was added to the sportsmanship award in honor of his dedication to children.

To be eligible for this award, the nominee must be:

  • A member of the NYCHA
  • Nominated by an NCHA Affiliate
  • Submitted by an NCHA Affiliate Secretary

Each Affiliate may determine its own process for selecting a nominee. Each Affiliate may nominate one youth member each year for this prestigious award.

Nomination forms must be submitted by July 1st each year to:

Whitney & Greg Welch Memorial Sportsmanship Award Committee
P.O. Box 516
Pilot Point, TX 76258
Phone: (940) 536-8572

Questions regarding the award can be directed to Havey Manion 940-536-8572 or Kisten Jackson 940-782-9126

Click to download the Whitney & Greg Welch Scholarship Award Application


Whitney & Greg Welch Memorial Sportsmanship Award Recipients


2021 Dylan Sinclair

2020 Carson Ray

2019 Colton Cogdell

2018 Alyssa Dvorak

2017 Derek Waters

2016 Kolby Don Moore

2015 Samray Hooper

2014 Doris Lane Wood

2013 Amanda Morris, Burleson, TX

2012 Cheyenne Johnson, Pine Level, AL

2011 Marli Claytor, OK

2010 Justin Richardson, Reading, KS

2009 Jessica Bagley, SC

2008 Cooper Cogdell, Tulia, TX

2007 Elizabeth Brumbaugh, Weatherford, TX

2006 Lindsey Weander, Valentine, NE

2005 Samantha Biller, Tulare, CA

2004 Denver Jo Williamson, Archer City, TX

2003 Mica Motes, Weatherford, TX

2002 Keri Garrison, Ridgeland, MS

2001 Ty Chambers, Wichita Falls, TX

2000 Mandy Williams, Grantsville, UT

We Are Here To Help

Visit Us

National Cutting Horse Association
260 Bailey Ave.
Fort Worth, TX 76107

Office Hours

Monday thru Friday 8:30am - 5:00pm CST