France “Fran” McAvity of Vancouver, B.C., was honoured as the Jump Canada Volunteer of the Year for 2014 in recognition of her loyal support and dedication to the furtherance of the hunter and jumper sport in Canada.
McAvity first joined Equine Canada in 1963 and is a well-respected national judge and steward. She is also an FEI steward in jumping and eventing.
A competitor since the age of eight, McAvity was a very well-rounded rider who showed in Amateur Owner hunters, equitation classes, Intermediate level dressage, High Junior/Amateur Jumpers and was a member of the Canadian Three Day Event Team in 1975.
In addition to her officiating duties, McAvity is also a tireless volunteer. She has been a board member of the British Columbia Hunter Jumper Association and on the Horse Council British Columbia. Her Jump Canada duties included the Competitions Committee, CET Medal Committee, Athlete & Domestic Development Committee and the Rules Committee. Every volunteer role that McAvity has taken on has benefited from her extensive experience and incredible dedication.
McAvity has also volunteered on the organizing committees of BC Summer Games (Jumping Chair), BCHJA Fall Finale; Southlands Riding Club Spring and Fall Horse Shows; 1982 North American Junior and Young Rider Championships in Maple Ridge, BC; and is a member of the Ring Committee at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair.
As a long-time member of the CET Medal Committee, McAvity recently attended the inaugural Royal West Tournament in Calgary, Alta., to help facilitate the first ever CET National Medal Finals held in the West.
“Fran McAvity has made a huge contribution over the years to one of Jump Canada’s most important programs, the CET Medal series,” said Elizabeth Bordeaux. “The CET Medal is a prestigious jumper equitation series started 26 years ago through the generosity and vision of Barbara Anderson of Calgary. Fran has run the regional finals in British Columbia for that whole time, and she also ran the national finals at The Royal for the first 25 years. In addition, Fran heads the CET Medal Committee, which is active in keeping the rules up to date after input from riders and coaches. Jump Canada owes a big debt of gratitude to Fran for her dedication, and we are delighted to present her with our Volunteer-of-the-Year award.”
“It’s overwhelmingly special to receive this award,” said McAvity. “I do it because I love the sport and it’s my gift back. It’s about providing opportunities for young athletes to rise and bringing the Canadian equestrian community together. If I can help in any way, I will. Thank you to Jump Canada and the entire equine community.”
“Fran McAvity has been one of our hardest working volunteers for many years. She is incredibly efficient and dedicated and a worthy recipient of this award,” noted John Taylor, Chair of Jump Canada.