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Merit Awards Program
Earn a Register of Merit (ROM), Legion of Merit (LOM) or Superior Division Horse (SDH) Awards and you can order a certificate with horse's name, title earned (and class name, if applicable), date awarded, and owner's name.
Earn a Superior Event Horse (SEH), Superior Halter Horse (SHH), Versatility Award (VA), or Performance Versatility (PV) Awards and you can order a custom plaque with simple engraving with horse's name, title earned, date awarded, and owner's name. Actual horse head design may vary, cookies from recent years are typically used. You may also order the above certificate.
The goal of the Merit Award Program is to reward models which consistently place well at NAMHSA member shows. This is entirely separate from, and may be in addition to, any NAN awards the model may win; attendance at any NAN is *not required* to earn a Merit Award. We also hope to encourage show holders to sponsor more NAMHSA member shows in regions where the opportunity to attend a NAN is less likely, as it will give showers an attainable goal to strive for, and a reason to continue supporting our member shows. In what follows, we set forth the rules for participation in the Merit Award Program.
Models earn NAN cards by placing first or second at NAMHSA member shows. These cards can be used to earn Merit Awards. The proper number of cards is mailed in with the application form and appropriate fee to the Merit Awards Coordinator.
In order for a model to receive an award, the owner must submit the minimum number of NAN cards required to earn one of the following awards. The owner decides which award(s) they wish to strive for, and need not earn, for example, an ROM, LOM or SDH before working towards another award that requires a higher number of the same or similar cards.
Register of Merit Award (ROM)A horse must earn a minimum of 6 NAN cards in a *single class* (in either the halter or performance division). For example, all 6 cards could be earned in a "Harness" class, or a "Saddlebred" halter class, or a "Repaint Only" or "Dilute Colors" workmanship class. If a model has earned cards in a grouped class, such as "Gaited Breeds," but has others earned in a "Saddlebred" class, all cards count towards an ROM in "Saddlebred Halter", as long as the cards are earned with the horse shown as the same breed, or in the case of performance, exhibiting the same activity.
Register of Merit 2013 Gallery
Register of Merit 2012 Gallery
Register of Merit 2011 Gallery
Register of Merit 2010 Gallery
Register of Merit 2009 Gallery
Register of Merit 2008 Gallery
Register of Merit 2007 Gallery
Register of Merit 2006 Gallery
Register of Merit 2004-2005 Gallery
Register of Merit 2003 and earlier Gallery
Legion of Merit Award (LOM)A horse must earn a minimum of 8 NAN cards total in *any combination of classes,* with a minimum of 3 cards in halter classes and a minimum of 3 cards in performance classes. Breed halter, workmanship, and collectibility classes may all count toward the halter class requirement. For example, the horse may earn 3 cards in an "Arabian" halter class, 1 card in a "Chestnut Workmanship" class, 2 cards in "Western Pleasure," 1 card in "Arabian Costume," and 1 card in "Saddleseat," for a total of 8 cards.
Legion of Merit 2010 to Present gallery
Legion of Merit 2006 to 2009 gallery
Legion of Merit 2005 and Prior gallery
Superior Division Horse (SDH)A horse must earn a minimum of 16 NAN cards total in *one* performance subdivision (Western, English, or Other), with a minimum of 4 cards from 3 different classes within that single performance subdivision. For example, 5 cards in "Huntseat Pleasure," 4 cards in "Hunter over Fences," 4 cards in "English Trail," and 3 cards in "Dressage," for a total of 16 cards from the English Performance division. Western classes include Western Pleasure, Western Trail, Western Games, Stock Work, Cutting, Roping, Western Riding, Reining, and other Western. English classes include Huntseat/English Pleasure, English Trail, English Games, Hunter over Fences, Jumper, Cross Country, Dressage, and Other English. Other performance classes include Harness, Costume, Parade, Scene, Showmanship, Saddleseat, and other performance. The Merit Award Coordinator has final discretion over whether a particular card applies to English, Western, or Other Performance.
Superior Division Horse gallery
Superior Event Horse Award (SEH)A horse must earn a minimum of 12 NAN cards in a *single class* (in either the halter or performance division). For example, a horse may earn all 12 cards in a "Costume" class, or all 12 cards in a "Thoroughbred" halter class. If a model earns some cards in a grouped class, such as "Hunter/Jumper," but has others earned in "Hunter Over Fences," all the cards can count towards an SEH in "Hunter Over Fences", as long as the cards are earned with the horse shown exhibiting the same activity, or in the case of halter classes, as the same breed.
Superior Event Horse 2013 gallery
Superior Event Horse 2012 gallery
Superior Event Horse 2011 gallery
Superior Event Horse 2010 gallery
Superior Event Horse 2009 gallery
Superior Event Horse 2008 gallery
Superior Event Horse 2007 gallery
Superior Event Horse 2006 and prior gallery
Superior Halter Horse Award (SHH)This title has been developed to recognize those horses that have excelled in both breed and workmanship/collectability criteria in the show ring. In order to earn the title of "Superior Halter Horse," a horse must earn a minimum of 16 NAN cards in *a combination of breed (green card) and workmanship or collectibility (yellow card) halter classes,* with a minimum of 4 cards earned in breed halter and a minimum of 4 cards earned in collectibility (for OF models) or workmanship (for CM and AR models). Breed halter, workmanship, and collectibility classes may all count toward the halter class requirement. For example, earning 12 cards in an "Appaloosa" halter class, 1 card in "Leopard Pattern Workmanship," 1 card in "AR Finished by Owner" workmanship, and 2 cards in "Traditional Scale AR" workmanship, for a total of 16 cards.
Superior Halter Horse 2013 gallery
Superior Halter Horse 2012 gallery
Superior Halter Horse 2011 gallery
Superior Halter Horse 2010 gallery
Superior Halter Horse 2009 gallery
Versatility Award (VA)A horse must earn a minimum of 16 NAN cards in *a combination of halter and performance classes,* with a minimum of 6 cards earned in the halter division and a minimum of 6 cards earned in the performance division. Breed halter, workmanship, and collectibility classes may all count toward the halter class requirement. For example, earning 5 cards in an "Appaloosa" halter class, 1 card in "Leopard Pattern Workmanship," 1 card in "AR Finished by Owner" workmanship, 4 cards in "Cutting/Roping," 3 cards in "Western Games," and 2 cards in "Hunter/Jumper," for a total of 16 cards.
2008 to Present Versatility Award gallery
2006 to 2007 Versatility Award gallery
2005 and Prior Versatility Award gallery
Performance Versatility Award (PVA)A horse must earn a minimum of 18 NAN cards in performance classes, with a minimum of 4 cards in Western classes (to include classes such as Western Pleasure, Western Trail, Western Games, Stock Work, Cutting, Roping, Western Riding, Reining, and Other Western), a minimum of 4 cards in English classes (to include classes such as Huntseat/English Pleasure, Jumper, Hunter over Fences, Cross Country, Dressage, English Trail, English Games, and Other English classes), and a minimum of 4 cards in Other Performance (to include classes such as Harness, Costume, Parade, Scene, Showmanship, Saddleseat, and Other Performance classes). The Merit Award Coordinator has final discretion over whether a particular card applies to English, Western, or Other Performance.
Performance Versatility Award gallery
Rules and FAQs
Valid Cards. Cards dating from October 1997 onward are valid toward Merit Awards. There is no "expiration date" on cards used towards a Merit Award. If you have a valid ticket (dated October 1997 or later), it can be used towards an award and will not expire.
Important rule change effective May 1, 2008!! A limit of TWO NAN cards earned by one horse in the same class (e.g., OF plastic Morgan - breed; OF UK China collectibility; OF Western Pleasure etc.) on any one DAY may be applied toward a Merit Award.
What titles are earned for ROM and SEH awards? The owner can determine the actual ROM and SEH award title, based on the classes the model earns cards in and the specialty exhibited. For example, a horse earning 6 cards in "CM by Owner" can receive an ROM in "CM by Owner", or a model earning 12 cards in "Other English (Foxhunting)" can receive an SEH in "Foxhunting".
Rule Change Effective August 1, 2007! For Register of Merit (ROM) and Superior Event Horse (SEH) awards, which respectively require at least 6 (ROM) or 12 (SEH) NAN cards earned in ONE class: BREED HALTER and COLLECTIBILITY or BREED HALTER and WORKMANSHIP cards may * not* be combined and applied to the same one award. A horse may earn a ROM (or SEH) award in breed halter and a separate, second, award in collectibility or workmanship.
What about cards earned in "Other" classes? When a model receives a NAN card for placing in, for example, an "Other Performance" or "Other Pure Breed Halter" class, the owner should make a note on the card of what activity or breed the horse represented when it placed. For example, if a model receives a ticket in "Other English Performance" while performing part of a dressage test, the owner would write on the ticket "Other English Performance - Dressage." For cards won in "Other Breed Halter," the owner should make a note of what breed the horse is shown as after the class name. For example, if a model Paso Fino is shown in an "Other Breed" halter class, the owner would write "Other Breed Halter - Paso Fino" on the card.
It was so long ago ... If an exhibitor has cards from past shows but cannot recall what activity/breed the horse demonstrated when it pinned, it is recommended that these "unknown" cards be used towards an overall award such as the LOM or VA, instead of the class-specific ROM or SEH awards.
Foals: Foals may earn awards with NAN cards won in any division, including separate foal halter divisions, breed halter classes where models of all ages are shown, and performance divisions. As long as the foal has earned a valid NAN card, it may be used toward any of the Merit Awards.
Cumulative Awards: Each award can be used as a stepping stone for a future award if the owner so chooses, since the cards turned in for an earlier award can count towards future awards. For example, if Ibn Sham earns an ROM in Arabian Halter for owner Jane Doe, Jane has already submitted 6 Arabian Halter cards. Jane (or a future owner) can later submit 6 more cards that Ibn Sham earned in Arabian Halter (for a total of 12) for an SEH in Arabian Halter. Or, 3 of Ibn Sham's performance cards could be submitted to earn his LOM (which has a total of 8 cards required, from any classes, with a *minimum of 3 halter cards and 3 performance cards*).
Change of Ownership: A change of ownership of the model will not affect otherwise valid cards already earned. Cards may be transferred if the model is sold, and will count toward Merit Awards as long as the model's name is unchanged. The new owner of the model should write his or her name on the *back* of the card. Please do *not* cross out any of the information previously written on the card.
What if I want to change my horse's name? The NAN rules state that the horse must be shown under the same name under which it earned its NAN cards, since this is the only way to identify the model. If you change the horse's name, you need to earn new cards with the horse's new name. The model must have the same name on all submitted cards, but the owner's name listed may change as long as the *current* owner is applying for the Merit Award.
Will the cards I use for a Merit Award be returned to me? Cards submitted for use in earning Merit Awards are not returnable. If the owner wishes to show that model in an upcoming NAN, they must earn and retain enough cards to do so **in addition to** sending in the required number of cards to earn a Merit Award.
NAN Card Verification: The Merit Awards Coordinator will have access to NAMHSA member show results, which may be used to verify that horse nominated for an award did in fact earn the submitted cards in the stated classes. The Coordinator has final say on any cards counting towards an award, and whether a grouping of cards is allowable. For the ROM/SEH awards, a group of cards is considered valid if they have been earned in classes with similar class names and judging standards, such as in ASB/TWH Halter and Gaited Breed Halter; or Hunter over Fences and Hunter/Jumper; or Gymkhana, Western Games, and Barrel Racing.
Important notice about NAN card expiration dates: All NAN cards marked 2011-2012 are now good through 2014, NAN cards marked 2012-2013 are good through 2015, and so forth. Please do not cross out the qualifying dates on your NAN cards. The NAN Registrars for future years will know the extended years. You may make a small note next to the current qualifying years listed, such as 2011-2014 to help remind you of the extension. Starting in early 2013, NAN cards will be marked with the new range listed as "2013 / 2014 / 2015 / 2016".
Certificates and Trophy Plaques
In addition to being known as having earned the award, the model/owner can also receive (upon proper application):
The application fee for awards is based on the actual cost of providing the award and postage to the recipient:
Please note that fees may be paid either by check or money order made payable to NAMHSA and mailed with your application, or by PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photos of Winners
Photos of Merit Award winners will be available in a Merit Award Gallery on the NAMHSA website. If you would like to add your horse to the gallery, please e-mail the Merit Award Coordinator with a photo of your horse. Your e-mail must include the subject line "Merit Award Gallery Addition" and include 1) your name, 2) your horse's name, and 3) the title of the award won.
The application for Merit Awards is currently available in PDF or Word Doc formats. Please note that NAMHSA encourages the use of delivery confirmation on all Merit Awards applications sent by mail, and that fees may be paid either by check or money order made payable to NAMHSA and mailed with your application, or by PayPal to email@example.com. Incomplete and/or incorrect cards used to apply for a Merit Award will delay your application until such time as a correctly filled out card is submitted.
Please address all Merit Award Program inquiries to the Merit Awards Coordinator, Beth Lamm, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last updated on May 31, 2012