Continuing Education Grants for Dressage Instructors

USDF GMOs/CHAPTERS OR OTHER NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS may apply for $1,000 grants to conduct continuing education programs for dressage instructors that best fit their needs. Funding is available from The Dressage Foundation to provide five programs up to $1,000 each. Grants will be awarded to the first five groups that apply, and whose applications are approved by The Dressage Foundation’s Instructor Education Advisory Committee. Funding may be used for the USDF Instructor Certification Program workshops and testing in addition to other continuing education programs for instructors. GMOs can receive a grant only once in any given calendar year. It is required that applications reach the Foundation Office at least 90 days in advance of your event.


This grant program is being made possible with funding donated by Maryal and Charles Barnett (MI), who conducted some Estate Planning with The Dressage Foundation. Maryal is a long-time premier US Dressage Instructor, and The Dressage Foundation is pleased and honored that she has arranged to “give back” to her beloved sport in this special way.

Maryal states, "The future of dressage and the welfare of our horses is dependent on the quality of education that our professionals obtain. There were people in my life such as Violet Hopkins and Lowell Boomer who were instrumental in making education possible for me, and many others through their generosity and foresight. Lowell Boomer, along with many others, saw the importance of education; and they founded the United States Dressage Federation to unite and educate Dressage enthusiasts. Violet Hopkins gave her farm, time and wisdom each Summer to make the Vi Hopkins Seminar for Dressage Instructors possible for those of us hungering for more knowledge. Now, it is my desire to give back to the sport that has given me such a rewarding and happy life. That is why I want to help to make it possible for other present and future dressage instructors/trainers to be able to obtain quality education through The Continuing Education for Dressage Instructors Grants."

Maryal and Charles Barnett’s fund is administered at The Dressage Foundation.


  • California Dressage Society-East Bay Chapter
  • Connecticut Dressage & CTA
  • Connecticut Dressage Association
  • Deep South Dressage & CTA
  • Indiana Dressage Society
  • USDF Region 9
  • Wisconsin Dressage & CTA

L:This photograph was taken on May 17, 2007, at The Dressage Foundation's headquarters office in Lincoln, Nebraska, prior to the "trailing" of the horse to Lexington, Kentucky, where it will be "stabled" permanently in the USDF Hall of Fame. Lowell Boomer, then 95 years of age, humbly expressed his pride for this high honor.

R: Maryal Barnett (MI) and Lowell Boomer (NE) stand beside the carved horse head Maryal has donated to the United States Dressage Federation, through The Dressage Foundation. This donation honors the 81 founding organizers who met in Lincoln, Nebraska in 1973 to form and organize USDF. Her gift also permanently remembers Lowell Boomer, who devoted so many years of hard work in transforming the founding group's dream into action.