John “Jack” Kieninger (ISA President)
Jack Kieninger and his wife Jeri have two sons, one daughter, and seven grandchildren. He has trained and raced Standardbreds for 49 years and currently owns and runs JAK Farms in Rochester, Indiana. Jack has served on the boards of ITPHA, IOBA, and ISA for over 25 years as a director and president. He is the current President of the ISA and actively takes part in planning for the future of the organization. Jack loves the horse industry and has raced in Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, Missouri, New York and Iowa. He believes that no one works harder than horse people.
Joe Putnam (ISA 1st Vice President)
Joe Putnam, a Michigan native, has been involved in Indiana racing since its inception in 1995. Joe has a reputation as a hard worker, as a family man, and as a man approachable to everyone. Joe is driven to serve the state of Indiana and his fellow horsemen for the pursuit of a business he whole heartedly believes in. He comes from a generation of career horsemen and understands the need to be active in the preservation, continued growth and success of an Industry that can thrive and grow in the light of changing times. He is very much in touch with his fellow horsemen and the strengths of the industry, as well as areas that are in need of attention.
Richard Keaton (2nd Vice President)
Richard Keaton became involved in harness racing over 40 years ago. His father was a Standardbred owner, and through his love of the business, Richard gradually became more involved. He became an owner/trainer in his teens and was a driver for over 25 years until 1994. While working at Eli Lilly for 33 years, Richard still managed to own, train, and drive his own horses. Richard is committed to seeing Indiana move to the forefront of the harness racing industry, believing Indiana horse people have the basics, the knowledge, and the personnel to be leaders in the industry.
Nat Hill IV (ISA Treasurer)
Nat Hill IV comes from a family with close to a century long involvement in harness racing. He has owned and bred horses for twenty years, with his Barely Able Stable producing several Sires Stakes winners. His family’s best mare, Bad John’s Sis, produced winners of over $440,000. A retired veterinarian and Indiana University professor, Hill has served faithfully in the past as an ISA Director, for twelve years on Breed Development, and is a recipient of the IHRC Chairman’s Award. In 2016, Nat was inducted into the Indiana Standardbred Hall of Fame.
Dr. Alan White, D.D.S. (ISA Board Secretary)
Fountain City, IN
Dr. Alan White’s interest in horses started with his close relationship with his grandfather, who had a large Shetland pony breeding farm. As a child, Alan participated in many ponies shows and auctions. After establishing his dental practice in 1972, Alan started racing and breeding Trottingbred ponies, and his interest in harness racing began. Hall of Fame horseman Gene Riegle, from nearby Greenville, Ohio, had become a patient in Alan’s office, and the horseman encouraged Alan to join a Standardbred ownership group. In 2001 Alan joined in purchasing 5 yearlings. He and his wife Carol now have a breeding farm in Fountain City and continue to be active at the yearling sales. Alan is also a licensed trainer/driver.
Jeff Cullipher is a second-generation horseman. He and his wife Kori have two daughters, Darbie and Dakota, and are proud “Arabians,” of Pendleton, Indiana. Jeff owns and trains a stable of race and stake horses at Hoosier Park and Pacesetter Farm in the winter months. He believes the horsemen are the backbone of the industry and is passionate about taking Indiana racing to the next level.
John DeLong is a third generation horseman born and raised in Clinton, Wisconsin. He grew up on his family farm and started his racing career at the county fairs throughout the Midwest. When the time came to get his pari-mutuel license, he began racing at Running Aces and at the Chicago tracks by helping train and race his family’s horses while working on improving his catch driving. He made the full-time move to Indiana 2 years ago with the intent of making it his home. He now manages a small stable of mostly 2 & 3 year old Indiana sired racehorses with his girlfriend, Tabatha. He recently made Anderson, Indiana his permanent home, now owning and operating a 35 acre training facility within 5 miles of Hoosier Park.
Joe Essig, Jr.
Joe Essig, Jr. was born and raised in the horse racing business by his parents, Joe and Janet Essig. When he was 14, Joe drove his first matinee race. He stayed working for his parents and learning the ropes until he was 24, then went on his own. Joe lives in Alexandria, Indiana with his wife Melissa and stepson Tyler. He has two children in Ohio, Brittany and Joseph, who are also involved in harness racing. Joe has seen about everything through all of the years he has raced and puts that experience into practice as he supports Indiana racing and the people involved with it.
Chad Gooding was born and raised in Anderson, Indiana and attended Purdue University, from which he graduated with a Construction Management degree in 1998. Chad currently lives in Fishers, Indiana and works for DEEM Electrical and Mechanical. Horses have been part of Chad’s life since he was born, from 4H to owning racehorses. His parents got him involved in Harness Racing in 2008, after they had a great experience owning them. After 2009, Chad built Pacesetter Farm, a top-of-the-line training facility. Chad looks forward to finding ways to help the industry and lead it into the future.
Randy Hatton was born in Hamilton, Ohio, and currently resides in Anderson, Indiana with his wife, Vicki. Randy has been in the racing business for over 43 years and has also officiated high school and college sports. He and his wife have 2 sons, Kevin and Tim. Randy moved to Las Vegas in 2001 where he would spend the winter months and would come back to Indiana during the racing season. A few years ago, Randy and his wife purchased a farm in Anderson, Indiana with 6 1/2 acres so that they could remain in Indiana year round.
Ross Leonard grew up in the horse racing industry and is a third-generation horseman. He started working with his father and uncle on the family farm in Illinois. Ross’ grandfather bought Ross and his brother their first horse (Herby Let’s Go, which unbelievably is still on the farm) when they were in their early teens. Ross started his driving career in 1996 at the Wisconsin County Fair Circuit, and then Maywood and Balmoral from 1997 to 2006. In 2006, Ross decided to move to Indiana because of the strength of the program. His father sent him with a stable of five horses to Indiana Downs. In 2013 Ross and his wife Rachel purchased a farm in Anderson.
Bunker Hill, IN
Alvin Miller has been a Standardbred owner and trainer and involved in all aspects of the business for over 30 years. Alvin’s family actively trains approximately 30 head of horses a year and breed a few mares. His perspective as a horseman adds to the ISA board, and he finds it a privilege to help influence the decisions of the sport.
Dennis Petty was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. He has been around horses his entire life and has been connected to the harness racing industry for 40 years. Dennis was raised on Two Gaits Farms in Carmel, Indiana, which was later renamed Trotter Range Farms, the largest Standardbred training and breeding farm in the country at that time. While living on the farm, Dennis was involved and gained valuable experiences under the supervision of his father with the training and breeding operations. Dennis, a member of the USTA and ISA, now lives in Carmel, Indiana, with his wife Kathy and works as a Service Manager for a commercial fire alarm company. Dennis has a Standardbred training license and assists his brother and sister in training Standardbred horses.
Doug Rideout was born in Toronto, Ontario, and learned the ropes as a teenager from his uncle, a trainer stabled at Mohawk. Doug earned his driver/trainer license in 1983 and has worked in the horse business ever since. For ten years, he was head trainer for a large stable in Michigan. At the same time, he was catch driving every night at Raceway Park, Northville Downs and Hazel Park. Doug started his own public stable in the late 1990s before moving to Indiana in 2002 with his family.
Jacob Smith is a third-generation Standardbred breeder and owner. His grandfather, two uncles, mother and brother have trained, bred and owned Standardbred horses in Indiana for decades. Beyond his family’s involvement with the Standardbred breed, Jacob has been directly involved in owning and breeding Standardbred race horses for the past eight years. He grew up and still lives in Knightstown, Indiana, where he and his wife, the parents of three grown children, own a small farm and keep a couple broodmares. Jacob has worked as an Environmental Consultant at American Environmental Corporation for the past 23 years, starting as an intern and now the president of the company.