Panels, Speakers Announced For Sept. 27-29 Horse Racing Women’s Summit

The second annual Horse Racing Women’s Summit, Sept. 27-29 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif., will include a welcome reception, three panel discussions, morning and luncheon keynotes, and a Friday morning workshop.

Zoe Cadman, XBTV and 1/ST RACING Host and Analyst, will serve as the emcee for the event, which will kick off with a keynote from Reagan Cannon, an international leadership speaker and coach. Following the morning keynote, leaders at the frontline of industry change will gather for a discussion on the State of the Industry, moderated by Millie Ball, XBTV and 1/ST RACING simulcast host.

Attendees will enjoy lunch in Santa Anita Park’s Chandelier Room featuring a presentation of the Jane Goldstein Exemplary Leadership Award and an address from Debbie Marshall, SVP, Client & Community Relations Director at PNC. Attendees of the inaugural HRWS will recall Marshall’s powerful opening remarks highlighting the 257-year economic gender gap that was identified by the World Economic Forum’s 2020 Global Gender Gap Report.

The second panel, titled Running the Show, will feature a conversation amongst industry professionals in various facets of management from race tracks across the county. Moderator Michelle Yu will guide the panelists through a discussion focused on their careers, the ins-and-outs of racetrack management, current events, and their outlook on the future.

“I am a firm believer in the philosophy that ‘a rising tide raises all ships’ and this sport is so much better when we are able to come together, elevate and support each other,” said Jessica Paquette, Parx Racing announcer and Running the Show panelist. “I am honored to join so many women I respect in the industry for an event that is sure to be educational and empowering.”

Thursday afternoon will wrap up with a conversation about the future led by FanDuel TV’s Christina Blacker. The third panel discussion, titled Looking Forward, will delve into a variety of topics including diversity, mental health, the backstretch community, and how the industry can improve.

Karen Chavez, General Manager of the New York Race Track Chaplaincy, who will join the Looking Forward panel said, “Attending the HRWS Meet Up in Saratoga was an inspiring experience that showcased the power of connection and empowerment within the horse racing industry, leaving a positive and lasting impact on the women of the backstretch community. I am excited to be on a panel at the second Horse Racing Women’s Summit at Santa Anita Park, and continuing to build on the momentum that began one year ago.”

On Friday morning, attendees will gather one last time for a hands-on workshop designed to identify areas of focus and specific action items for the Horse Racing Women’s Summit Committee in 2024. Those who wish to stay for an afternoon of racing will enjoy access to the Chandelier Room Balcony overlooking the finish line and the stunning views of the San Gabriel mountains.

Tickets for the Horse Racing Women’s Summit are now on sale (click here to purchase tickets). Tax-deductible contributions for the October 3rd Horse Racing Women’s Summit Backstretch Event, which will also take place at Santa Anita Park can also be made via the ticket link here.

Panel 1: State of the Industry
The Thoroughbred racing industry has historically had the greatest of triumphs as well as challenges. In recent years, what was known as “business as usual” for decades has been upended between legislative and regulatory changes, media prominence, and more. Listen in as leaders in the industry discuss their perspectives on the horse racing industry’s State of the Industry.Featured Speakers:
Shannon Arvin – President & CEO – Keeneland*
Britney Eurton – Horse Racing Reporter – NBC Sports / FanDuel TV
Lisa Lazarus – CEO, Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority
Casille Batten, DVM – Equine Veterinarian – 1/ST RACING
Moderated by Millie Ball
Simulcast Host – XBTV & 1/ST RACING*Shannon Arvin to provide video address as she cannot attend in person

Panel 2: Running the Show (Racetrack Management)
Horse racing brings great thrills to customers and fans on a worldwide stage and it takes intricate preparation to make it all possible. Those behind the scenes and right out front share how they got there and how they succeed while reshaping assumptions of who might typically fill these positions.

Featured Speakers:
Joi Garner – SVP & General Counsel, Sports & Entertainment – NYRA
Ann Hall – SVP, Operations and Administration -DMTC
Jessica Paquette – Announcer,  Parx Racing
Amy Zimmerman – SVP & Executive Producer for Santa Anita Park

Moderated by Michelle Yu
TV Personality – Santa Anita Park

Panel 3: Looking Forward
As the horse racing industry landscape is quickly changing we look ahead to identify and engage underrepresented stakeholders. Hear from incredible women doing important work while addressing groups that might get overlooked. From the backstretch workers, to diversity as a woman of color in the equestrian world to the NFL’s perspective regarding the Professional Athlete’s mental health and overall well-being as priorities.Featured Speakers:
Karen Chavez – General Manager – New York Race Track Chaplaincy
Chanel Minnifield – Let’s Ride, Trainer and Equestrian
Catherine B. Iste – Chief Administrative Officer – Los Angeles Chargers

Annise Montplaisir – Executive Director, Amplify Horse Racing

Moderated by Christina Blacker
Racing Host, Analyst, & Reporter – FanDuel TV

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