The American Farrier's Association has announced a new executive director will be taking the helm.
Martha Jones comes to the AFA having spent nearly her entire career in trade association management. Between her roles as the executive vice president of the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) of Indiana/Kentucky and the vice president of operations at the Building Industry Association of Greater Louisville, she brings with her a combined 14 years of experience in the day-to-day management of associations.
“I could not be more excited to join the AFA team,” Jones says. “To be able to combine my love of horses with my career experience is a unique and special opportunity that I feel fortunate to have been offered."
As the executive vice president of ABC, Martha was responsible for overall business operations, the annual operating budget, legislative advocacy, membership growth and retention, apprenticeship oversight, strategic planning, and brand awareness for an association of over 700 member-businesses in the commercial and industrial construction industry. Following a relocation to the greater Louisville area, she then assumed the vice president of operations position at the BIA, where she was responsible for staff operations, communications, membership and retention, business development, the Building Industry Charitable Foundation (which held a 501(c)3 designation), and strategic planning for an association of over 2,000 member-companies and individuals in the residential and commercial construction sectors. In both roles she was a staff liaison to the boards of directors and was responsible for volunteer management on both committees and task forces.
Jones will begin transitioning into the executive director role on June 24 and will officially assume her full duties on July 1.
The AFA represents farrier interests throughout the equine world. In addition to its primary concerns of promoting equine welfare and providing continuing education for working farriers and the equine community, the AFA stays abreast of the equine community and acts as an advocate for farriers in relations with veterinarians, breed and sport associations, and state and federal government agencies.
Jones succeeds Beth Daniels, who has led the AFA as executive director since 2014. Travis Burns, AFA president, expressed optimism for AFA's future under Jones, as well as gratitude for Daniels' leadership.
"This is a very exciting time for the AFA as we welcome Martha to our team,” Burns says. "We’re all very appreciative of the hard work and dedication from Beth Daniels over the last 5 years. I hope that everyone will take the opportunity to welcome Martha and thank Beth."
Jones graduated from Purdue University in 2000, and she was raised in Carmel, Indiana where her family owned Quarter Horses and Arabians. Further, she developed an early love for Belgians on a family friend’s farm where she spent most weekends of her childhood. She now resides in Floyd County, Indiana with her husband and two stepsons who are 14 and 17 years old.
"I look forward to helping grow and retain our membership, to continuing the great work that Beth and her team have done in expanding certification clinics and developing the premier convention for farriers in the nation, to growing and expanding our brand, and to working with our members to ensure the long term success and strength of our association,” Jones says.