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TOPIC: Will the REAL AFA please stand up?

Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 24 Jun 2008 10:52 #1

  • Martin Kenny
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Looking at the past 4 days I see that the latest 4 threads involving the AFA; (1 about the President's blog, 2 about what you'd expect of leadership, and 1 on why anyone would want to put themselves in a position of AFA leadership) we have enjoyed a total of over 3,000 hits, with 136 posts made by about a dozen people. The majority of those posts are made by less than that.

So I have to ask. WHERE IS THE REAL AFA?

Has the REAL AFA become complacent? Has it be come intimidated by a few vocal individuals? Or does the REAL AFA think the same way as those who see nothing wrong with making it open season on our President and or individuals interested in rolling up their sleeves and saying "Hey, maybe I can help."

It has been said that the captain must go down with the ship. I believe that, as long as the ship is sinking because of battle from those not on the ship. But if the crew has sabotaged the ship, then one would have to question the wisdom of going down with it. You see, a great captain (Leader) must also know when the cause is not worth dying for and protect the ability to captain a ship who does not have malice within it's own walls. TO go down with such a ship is ignorant at best and foolish at worse.

I have a hard time believing that the few individuals that regularly post in this section (political section) of these posts represent the AFA masses. That having been said, though, reflecting back at how Ron K. and Rick B. were crucified last year, and the results of that crucification during and since the election) it makes me wonder. IS THE RESPONSE HERE REFLECTIVE OF THE AFA AS A WHOLE?

So I challange those who have sat on the sidelines. If you are an AFA member or past member, or one that would join if it were not for the rhetoric that you read on these posts. SIGN IN and let it be known that the few that attempt to ruin those individuals that step up with much sacrifice and expect nothing in return personally, do not represent you and the way you think.

Those individuals that are the hard working men and women that are out there saying, "I'm staying out of this mess, or maybe they will jump on me next. Those wonderful sensible farriers that see the madness and just walk away shaking their heads. The very fact that you don't stand up and speak out about how you feel, instead of letting others dictate how you should feel. are giving the few the voice for the masses.

So I am asking you to take a minute and jump in here and say these words. (or something like it .... what ever you feel needs to be said to the naysayers)

I am fed up with the garbage that I have seen and heard. I know that the AFA leaders are not perfect, because no one is. But I am standing next to those who desire to see the AFA not only continue, but THRIVE and I realize that if we allow the rampant few to overtake the organization, then the AFA will die. I am getting involved, even if by only taking the minute it took me to voice my disgust and say NO MORE WE ARE BETTER THAN THIS!!!!

I want to publicly say to our President and other officers, (and all those last Presidents and other officers). THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU DO AND HAVE DONE.
It is a thankless job, but then I know you did not do it for a desire to be thanked.

Regards;
Martin Kenny CJF AFA #178
If you feel shoeing horses is best served by how well you can work in the forge, you are missing the point!

It is how well you shoe a horse, so he performs at his best advantage, IN SPITE of his personal issues. Forge work is simply a tool that MAY be...
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 24 Jun 2008 11:50 #2

  • George Geist
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Martin Kenny wrote:
Looking at the past 4 days I see that the latest 4 threads involving the AFA; (1 about the President's blog, 2 about what you'd expect of leadership, and 1 on why anyone would want to put themselves in a position of AFA leadership) we have enjoyed a total of over 3,000 hits, with 136 posts made by about a dozen people. The majority of those posts are made by less than that.
As an ex-member I must ask how many are left to post? Or is it perhaps most are intelligent enough to know this is unproductive and will accomplish nothing?
So I have to ask. WHERE IS THE REAL AFA?
Your guess is as good as mine. Perhaps they don't hold cards anymore? Or maybe they'd just rather go shoe some horses.
Has the REAL AFA become complacent? Has it be come intimidated by a few vocal individuals? Or does the REAL AFA think the same way as those who see nothing wrong with making it open season on our President and or individuals interested in rolling up their sleeves and saying "Hey, maybe I can help."
Perhaps their muzzled by gag orders and censorship:rolleyes:
It has been said that the captain must go down with the ship. I believe that, as long as the ship is sinking because of battle from those not on the ship. But if the crew has sabotaged the ship, then one would have to question the wisdom of going down with it. You see, a great captain (Leader) must also know when the cause is not worth dying for and protect the ability to captain a ship who does not have malice within it's own walls. TO go down with such a ship is ignorant at best and foolish at worse.
Agreed. Majority of people who seek to hold office in that organization have an agenda. Usually some selfish interest of their own that their serving. If you also have one I warn you that it WILL be exposed if you keep campaigning here. You're trying to win over a tough bunch.
I have a hard time believing that the few individuals that regularly post in this section (political section) of these posts represent the AFA masses. That having been said, though, reflecting back at how Ron K. and Rick B. were crucified last year, and the results of that crucification during and since the election) it makes me wonder. IS THE RESPONSE HERE REFLECTIVE OF THE AFA AS A WHOLE?
Actually this section has been pretty dead for a long time. Lately the one trying to bring it to life seems to be you. As to Rick and Ron's campaign last year I didn't see them as being crucified. I thought the campaign was pretty tame actually. If I was to play armchair quarterback and reflect I think I'd say the lack of competing in their backgrounds was what hurt them the most. Nonetheless I thought they did very well for a first attempt.

The issues that occured earlier this year were a different story though.
So I challange those who have sat on the sidelines. If you are an AFA member or past member, or one that would join if it were not for the rhetoric that you read on these posts. SIGN IN and let it be known that the few that attempt to ruin those individuals that step up with much sacrifice and expect nothing in return personally, do not represent you and the way you think.
Refer you to the Ron K thread. The ones who piled on were his fellow AFA members. Why should anybody want to be associated with a group like that?
Those individuals that are the hard working men and women that are out there saying, "I'm staying out of this mess, or maybe they will jump on me next. Those wonderful sensible farriers that see the madness and just walk away shaking their heads. The very fact that you don't stand up and speak out about how you feel, instead of letting others dictate how you should feel. are giving the few the voice for the masses.
Is that right? What about the survey of the membership that had a nearly 2/3 plurality in favor of them exploring and discussing the issue of licensing? Will you lift this gag order so it can once again be freely discussed?
I am fed up with the garbage that I have seen and heard. I know that the AFA leaders are not perfect, because no one is. But I am standing next to those who desire to see the AFA not only continue, but THRIVE and I realize that if we allow the rampant few to overtake the organization, then the AFA will die. I am getting involved, even if by only taking the minute it took me to voice my disgust and say NO MORE WE ARE BETTER THAN THIS!!!!
Will you also finally bring an end to the CJF appellation being necessary for participation in various programs as well as holding office so that all members can enjoy all rights and benefits? Or will you continue this horseshoers "apartheid" that is contributing to and causing much of the divisiveness that is hurting this industry?
I want to publicly say to our President and other officers, (and all those last Presidents and other officers). THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU DO AND HAVE DONE.
It is a thankless job, but then I know you did not do it for a desire to be thanked.

Regards;
Martin Kenny CJF AFA #178
I would especially say that more than anyone else to Walt Taylor. If elected would you have him in an advisory capacity? Or will you continue the shameful disrespect that has been shown him recently with a wink and nod?

Have a good day
George
For another fun place to play........
www.horseshoersforum.invisionzone.com
Come over and say hello.
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 24 Jun 2008 12:16 #3

George Geist wrote:
?


I would especially say that more than anyone else to Walt Taylor. If elected would you have him in an advisory capacity? Or will you continue the shameful disrespect that has been shown him recently with a wink and nod?

Have a good day
George

Thanks for saying that George.
Norman E. Foley CJF AFA #733
Make haste.... slowly.
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 24 Jun 2008 22:54 #4

  • T.N. Trosin
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Martin Kenny wrote:
So I challange those who have sat on the sidelines. If you are an AFA member or past member, or one that would join if it were not for the rhetoric that you read on these posts. SIGN IN and let it be known that the few that attempt to ruin those individuals that step up with much sacrifice and expect nothing in return personally, do not represent you and the way you think.
Martin Kenny CJF AFA #178

As one of the few that has an AFA job, I have to wonder who the heck you are and where the heck a guy with a number under 200 has been? Further I have to question why exactly after all these years the AFA is suddenly important to you again?

On Subject though, why does what I think about my association need to be out in public domain. Sure I was one of the worst offenders when it came to voicing my opinion on this board about AFA stuff, but I have learned that nobody really cares they just want to be in on the rumor mill. Forget it, if you want to know what I think of the AFA ask me in a setting where the horse owning public isn't going to peek in and derive an opinon about it. There is a lot of politics in every orginization USEF, AQHA, but you don't see their membership hanging it out on a public buliten board for the world to see and think "boy what a mess".

George Geist wrote:
As an ex-member I must ask how many are left to post? Or is it perhaps most are intelligent enough to know this is unproductive and will accomplish nothing?
George

What George said. If I want to get soemthing acomplished i'm going to deal with the appropriate party through a phone call, an email or a private message of some sort.

Finally I want to say something about you back handed compliment towards Walt Taylor the other day, I was going to address it on the other thread but it got locked down before I could. If you were indeed a guy who was "fed up with the garbage that I have seen and heard" how can this pass your lips
"The AFA was started by Walt Taylor. Now I've known Walt for 35 years. He was not a particularly great farrier back then." It's that kind of statement that makes me question who Martin Kenny is really? Just another intollarant? Another Fiskian "my way or the highway" kind of guy? Statements like that just show you haven't leared as much from your fancy leadership seminars as you claim. You are right about one thing though, I can always check the "abstain' box.
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Just a piece of advice, think to yourself is this something I would say in front of a client, before your click the submit button.
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 04:16 #5

  • Gary_Miller
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I'm currently on my last year as a member of the AFA.

For the last two years I have been told by those in leadership postions to just hang in there that things will get better. Only to see unethical behavior from the leadership. A leadership structure that ensures that a president can't get anything done because he only can serve as president for one year. How do you get any continuity with a stucture like that.

I thought the new BOD restructure was a good idea and I still do. Except now I have lost touch with whats going on because no one will provide the information to the membership in a timely manner. I asked the current Pres Elect on the AFA boards for a copy of the agenda for the last BOD meeting. All I recived was NOTHING.

Then I saw two hard working individuals rail roaded by the current Pres. Until they resigned from the postions. All because the Pres. does not like them. Now we have no AFA web site, and the Pres is communicating AFA buisness with the general public through his personal blog something that could of been done on the AFA site if it was still active.

We have

Now we have Johnny come lately "Mr. Kenny" who thinks it would be better to be "Vice Pres", which is a stepping stone to "Pres", instead of a BOD member. Is not the BOD suppose to be running the AFA. If so why would a person think it better to be on the EC instead of the BOD. If change is gooing to happen it needs to come from the BOD not the EC.

These are just a few of the reasons why I have decided to not continue my membership in the AFA.
Gary Miller, PF

Ride hard, shoot straight, and always speak the truth.
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 05:17 #6

  • EDeSocio
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Some things about the AFA I would like to ask...
1. When will the AFA website be back up? Do we have a plan?

2. The term "Certified Farrier" is rather difficult to defend since anyone can really claim that they are an organization certifying someone in farriery though we are dealing with that... but now we have switched the "Intern Certification" to "AFA Farrier Classification" which to me is a little insulting since the way I look at it, if a farrier joins the AFA, he might have been shoeing rock solid for 10 years but isn't classified as an AFA farrier till he takes this test? Maybe this is to try and improve income and membership and thirst for certification by having more people test? I would be afraid of the back lash of turning down possible members because they don't want to be a member with less than a AFA farrier classification when they pay dues.

Just some questions if anyone knows an answer?
"Why Ike, whatever do you mean? Maybe poker's just not your game. I know! Let's have a spelling contest!"

Eric DeSocio CF
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 10:24 #7

  • Martin Kenny
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Gary_Miller wrote:
I'm currently on my last year as a member of the AFA.
Now we have Johnny come lately "Mr. Kenny" who thinks it would be better to be "Vice Pres", which is a stepping stone to "Pres", instead of a BOD member. Is not the BOD suppose to be running the AFA. If so why would a person think it better to be on the EC instead of the BOD. If change is gooing to happen it needs to come from the BOD not the EC.

These are just a few of the reasons why I have decided to not continue my membership in the AFA.

Mr. Miller, You had a wonderful post. Thanks for taking the time to share with us. I only wanted to take the time to respond to the question above. I stated in the beginning, that I was thinking of running for BoD and was pursuing input on that when I was asked (by an EC member) to look at VP position. I discovered that no one else had stepped up for the position at the time so decided that it needed someone to fill the position so I should consider it. My biggest reservation WAS THAT IT IS A STEPPING STONE TO PRESIDENT by the fact that the VP will automatically be nominated for the Pres Elect slot. I for one feel that is wrong, but it is the bylaws, so that is the way it is. I HAVE NO DESIRE TO BE PRESIDENT of the AFA. Should that happen, well I would have had to deal with that if and when it happened. BUT I can assure you it was not my goal. For the record, I also agree with you that the one year term is not wise, it take way too much time to generate change to limit the terms to that time frame. But that is another discussion.

You state; "If change is going to happen it needs to come from the BOD not the EC." You will note that I never said I was running to CHANGE things, but to LEAD the organization to change. There is a difference.

It comes up several times over the threads here that people feel I have an agenda that will be exposed. I have stated that I HAVE NO AGENDA and that is the truth, the fact that others feel otherwise is something I can not change. I guess we just live in a world that no longer trusts people to speak the honest truth. That is just a sad fact.

With me, you get what you see. If you like it, fine, if you don't that is fine too. BUT if you distort it to make it appear other than what it is,that is wrong and in that case I can not help you to help the AFA.

Regards. Martin Kenny CJF RJF AFA #178
If you feel shoeing horses is best served by how well you can work in the forge, you are missing the point!

It is how well you shoe a horse, so he performs at his best advantage, IN SPITE of his personal issues. Forge work is simply a tool that MAY be...
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 12:54 #8

  • anvilsteve
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I'm just catching up with all the latest posts by Martin Kenny et al. I have been very busy and haven't spent much time at the computer but as a board member I'd like to add some clarity.

First the new AFA website is being worked on and is near completion.

I am glad to see these latest discussions started by Mr. Kenny. It looks like he will run unopposed unless someone steps up to the plate soon. I agreee that the AFA needs good leadership, which we presently have with Andrew, will have when Dick Fanguy, Pres. Elect moves up. I don't see what some of you see with Andrew. He is a decesion maker(leader). If volunteers don't like his decesions, they shouldn't take it personally and resign. That is bound to happen in any administration.

The Vice Pres.'s job is to assist the EC more like a work horse to possibly prepare him for the next step, which is what Eric Nygaard is doing now ( an excellent job by the way). The EC takes care of the day to day business of running the AFA, the BOD makes policy. The Pres., Pres. Elect, and VP are part of the BOD.

My question to Martin now is how do you see yourself taking part in this interaction with the BOD? You say you are a good leader, great, that could come later, right now it is just hard work implementing what we already have planned. Do you want to be part of a well functioning team or are you looking to make changes for the sake of change? Right now we have made changes for the betterment of the AFA and it's members so change can be good. It is a constant process. Many of the complaints that have come to me are being handled.

I see a lot of critisim of the AFA, which is OK if you recognize that there is also a lot of goosd stuff being done. I wish you guys would contact your regional board members if you have questions or complaints instead of complaining to every one else.

Steve Kraus, CJF, AFA BOD Region #5
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 13:11 #9

  • vthorseshoe
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How do you feel your working relationship will be with Mr. Fanguy ?

How are your working relations with the BOD members ?

Have you , by chance, researched into the progress on the AFA website ?
If per chance you have, will it be the focal point to draw foks to answers that have been asked over and over ?
Will it actually and in reality be a true bulletin board for keeping members updated, "in a timely fashion" on the proceedings and pertinent information ?

Will it have regular and "frequent" messages from different officers (the Pres. on down to board members) informing the membership of news and events to keep the memberships interest sparked and peaked ?

Or will the website be pulled up by members to find they are facing the same info they have seen for the previous 2 years ?

Martin, If the AFA doesn't get off their duff and become a heck of a lot more informative to the paying membership then they might just as well go back to being a small group of farriers with their own agenda.
Which isn't bad in its own concept.
As far as I see and have concluded, the membership is worth nothing more than the dues they pay to fund the projects that benifit a few.
It has taken me a long time to bring myself to make such a statement.

There are a lot of perks, I know I researched them. On paper and listed, it adds up to a nice program. but how many folks take advantage of more than one or two of the items in a years time ?

What the general concensus wants is leadership in education.
Even as important as I believe certification is, if there was a firm educational program focused on helping farriers gain the knowledge heading them towards education it would fill a lot of what folks are looking for.

If the AFA would put their biggest efforts into working with each individual chapter and build not just good, but great programs focused on education,
then membership would increase dramatically.

I don't expect the AFA to be any more than the instrument in guiding the chapters, but they don't even do that.
We as a chapter never hear from the AFA unless we request something.
The AFA is the porthole to all the skilled and talented farriers around the world.
The chapters are most often limited in their resources.
Yes there is the over the hill gang who do a marvelous job and offer their services, but this isn't enough.

I can go on, but this will get you started for now.

my 2 cents worth ;)
"you may not like what I say" !
-but-
"you'll never have any doubts where I stand
quote Cindy Matthews 1948-2006


I thought my life had come to a close with Cindy's passing, but there is life after death Thankyou Sharon !

Bruce Matthews
Southeast...
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 13:30 #10

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Hi Steve, Glad to see you came on.

I would like to respond to your request to intereact with the regional board rep.

We haven't even recieved a letter of introduction, or hello I am so and so,
or If you have any concerns please contact me, etc. (to the best of my knowledge)

If I was a board rep I would have sent a letter or e-mail to each chapter I would now be representing and introduce myself, and make sure each chapter had access to me vial e-mail, phone , or snail mail.
I would be contacting each chapter in my district and setting up a visit schedule so I could personally meet them and speak and LISTEN to their concerns.
Make sure I explain , so all understand how this new process is working to help them the chapters and the members be better heard by the folks running the ship.

Once again communication and making one's self available to the folks who voted said person into the position.

If finances were and are a concern then by contacting each chapter and requesting they cover traveling expenses would be the route to take.

But our reps should be getting in front of the members instead of sitting back and waiting for the members to come to them.

This goes for all, Show us the members you really are representing us and really do care and you will find more backing and encouragement.
This is DONE THROUGH COMMUNICATING.
Not once a year or when the masses cry so loud you do it to calm folks down, but on a regular basis.

Steve hope your getting more hay cut than we are here in Vermont. It is so wet that it will take a week to dry the ground and get the hay in condition to bale.
Going to be an expensive winter for most.

my 2w cents worth ;)
"you may not like what I say" !
-but-
"you'll never have any doubts where I stand
quote Cindy Matthews 1948-2006


I thought my life had come to a close with Cindy's passing, but there is life after death Thankyou Sharon !

Bruce Matthews
Southeast...
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 16:41 #11

  • Gary_Miller
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Martin Kenny wrote:
You state; "If change is going to happen it needs to come from the BOD not the EC." You will note that I never said I was running to CHANGE things, but to LEAD the organization to change. There is a difference.
Your correct there is a difference.

On the other hand I feel that since the BOD is who sets the policies as well as the direction in which the organization should go. It would be better to have strong leadship in the BOD. That is where the difference will be made.

Martin Kenny wrote:
It comes up several times over the threads here that people feel I have an agenda that will be exposed. I have stated that I HAVE NO AGENDA and that is the truth, the fact that others feel otherwise is something I can not change. I guess we just live in a world that no longer trusts people to speak the honest truth. That is just a sad fact.
I believe you.
Gary Miller, PF

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"Discover what it is that makes you passionate then grab a firm...
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 17:01 #12

  • Gary_Miller
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anvilsteve wrote:
I see a lot of critisim of the AFA, which is OK if you recognize that there is also a lot of goosd stuff being done.
Your right there is a lot of good stuff the convention and the certification for one. There is also alot of good people doing good things.

However, when you bury the good stuff with trash. Eventually all you have is a pile of trash.

anvilsteve wrote:
I wish you guys would contact your regional board members if you have questions or complaints instead of complaining to every one else.
I wish our regional board members would get on here or at least the AFA web site (Oh I forgot we don't have one right now) and let us know whats currently happening in our association.

There has been at least two BOD meeting in the last 6 months. As of yet no information has been provided on what happened and whats going to happen in the association.
Gary Miller, PF

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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 21:58 #13

  • Martin Kenny
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Gary_Miller wrote:
Your correct there is a difference.

On the other hand I feel that since the BOD is who sets the policies as well as the direction in which the organization should go. It would be better to have strong leadship in the BOD. That is where the difference will be made.

Originally Posted by Martin Kenny View Post
It comes up several times over the threads here that people feel I have an agenda that will be exposed. I have stated that I HAVE NO AGENDA and that is the truth, the fact that others feel otherwise is something I can not change. I guess we just live in a world that no longer trusts people to speak the honest truth. That is just a sad fact.

Gary's answer:
I believe you.


Gary, thank you that means a lot.
Martin Kenny
If you feel shoeing horses is best served by how well you can work in the forge, you are missing the point!

It is how well you shoe a horse, so he performs at his best advantage, IN SPITE of his personal issues. Forge work is simply a tool that MAY be...
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 22:25 #14

  • EDeSocio
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I know we are not a team based occupation.. I don't know the politics and organization enough to know whether the change should come from the EC or the BOD but it would be nice if change started in the membership. Support, patience and confidence in our leadership... Kinda like training a horse... tell it to go and you get refusals and bucks, ask it to go and results come like magic... Maybe we need a little belief in the system?
"Why Ike, whatever do you mean? Maybe poker's just not your game. I know! Let's have a spelling contest!"

Eric DeSocio CF
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RE:Will the REAL AFA please stand up? 25 Jun 2008 22:51 #15

  • Martin Kenny
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anvilsteve wrote:
My question to Martin now is how do you see yourself taking part in this interaction with the BOD? You say you are a good leader, great, that could come later, right now it is just hard work implementing what we already have planned. Do you want to be part of a well functioning team or are you looking to make changes for the sake of change? Right now we have made changes for the betterment of the AFA and it's members so change can be good. It is a constant process. Many of the complaints that have come to me are being handled.

I see a lot of critisim of the AFA, which is OK if you recognize that there is also a lot of goosd stuff being done. I wish you guys would contact your regional board members if you have questions or complaints instead of complaining to every one else.

Steve Kraus, CJF, AFA BOD Region #5

Steve, Frankly I don't have any plans to do anything. MY GOAL was to see if I could assist in developing the leadership of the AFA to comprehend what needs to be done and follow it through with the help of the hard working individuals of the AFA membership. TO assist in energizing them to WANT TO HELP, instead of discouraging them from helping. For way too many years, I have watched as people were asked to do a project and when the elected officials or the BoD felt that it was not being done correctly, they stepped in and told the volunteers how it SHOULD be done. In my opinion, one of the best ways to drop moral through the basement is to make your volunteers feel you do not trust them to do the job you charged them to do. Let me put that into a perspective that any farrier should relate to.

Ever have a vet tell you the diagnosis of a lameness in a horse? I am sure all have had that happen. Then the vet tells you he/she wants you to shoe it a specific way; you tell him, "I have tried that but the way I have been using works better and I'd like to take care of it that way." Then the vet tells you, "you do it my way, or I'll bring in my farrier to do it!" How did that make you feel?

That is exactly what happens when leadership charges a task and then does not let the person charged with the task follow through. That builds resentment and brings us to where the AFA is today. The horse (AFA) may still be walking around, but it's possible not as well as he (AFA) could have been. Sure the farrier's (Volunteer) way may not always be better than the vet's way (AFA Leadership) but that is life.

If the horse isn't better with the way the farrier (volunteer) tried to shoe it (do task charged to do) then when the farrier (Volunteer) will figure that out. Now if he feels he will be able to go for help without fear of being jumped on, he will ask for help from the vet or another farrier (AFA Leadership) then the horse will become sound, and all (horse, farrier and the one helping him/her) become closer, learn more and are able to work even better in the future.

By the way, no one has asked me....... but that is the true essence of LEADERSHIP! I waited for someone to ask what leadership meant to me, but it never happened, so I answered it myself!


Anyhow
When I was jumped on because I offer a program (that was requested by owners all over this country) to assist the farrier they love and respect, I got jumped on like I was trying to steal their work or something. That feeling is rampant and that is because we have not fostered the idea that the individual farrier will never know everything he/she needs to know. I have been doing this for over 35 years and have made some tremendous mistakes and some of you may have come behind me to clean up that mess. A mistake is just a learning experience and I have tried to learn from each one. Now others (owners that are asking for help with their horses) have asked me to offer a program to help many of you to not make the same mistakes I did. I never dreamed of doing this, it was first brought up from suggestions from numerous people I was doing consulting for from all over the world who understood that I had some good ideas and they could not afford to fly me all over the world to shoe their horses; plus I don't want to travel so much anyhow. I love being at home with my lovely wife; who is also my best friend.

The AFA needs to begin to teach that we need to be mature enough to learn some very technical stuff that frankly our profession as a whole simply has no clue about, when it comes to the horse's foot.

In my opinion, the AFA has had it's priorities wrong for a very long time. In my opinion and of many of those I speak with when I travel around this country shoeing, the AFA needs to stop placing the focus of our education on .........(I know this will make a lot of you mad, but as you have come to realize, I DON'T CARE!!!)....... competing and forging. The competing has only served to make us more competitive in the market place. I voiced that in the BoD meeting in the 80's and about lost my head, but I still see it that way. Competing has made a mindset of I can do this better than you and that has shown up very large in these posts this week. Look at such lines as "so you thing you are better.... you call yourself a farrier and don't use a forge.... and on and on.

So there you have it, How would I like to see the AFA change? I'd like to see us focus our education on what actually helps the horse, instead of our egos and our wallets. Get back focused on the horse! Even the last issue of the PF has a beautiful photo of some wonderful forge work on the cover. Are we BLACKSMITHS of FARRIERS. Think about it.


Martin Kenny CJF AFA #178 and proud of it!!!
If you feel shoeing horses is best served by how well you can work in the forge, you are missing the point!

It is how well you shoe a horse, so he performs at his best advantage, IN SPITE of his personal issues. Forge work is simply a tool that MAY be...
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