James J. (Jay) Hickey Jr., JD, who retired as president of the American Horse Council (AHC) June 30 after 23 years in the position, received the American Association of Equine Practitioners’ (AAEP) 2016 George Stubbs Award for his contributions to the equine industry and outstanding support of equine health and welfare.

Named for the late artist and educator George Stubbs, the award recognizes a non-veterinarian who has contributed substantially to equine veterinary medicine through leadership, product development, public service, public policy development, volunteerism, advocacy, research or education. Hickey accepted the award during the Dec. 6 President’s Luncheon at the AAEP’s 62nd Annual Convention in Orlando, Florida.

Hickey’s tenure with the American Horse Council spanned 27 years and included involvement with almost every major federal law and regulation concerning the equine industry. Under Hickey’s direction, the AHC coordinated economic impact studies at the state and national level, and became a driving force behind the formation of the Congressional Horse Caucus; the Congressional Cavalry; the Unwanted Horse Coalition; and the AHC’s marketing alliance known as Time to Ride, which seeks to increase horse ownership and participation.

In recent years, Hickey was a leading voice for establishing the Equine Disease Communications Center, an organization that coordinates and distributes breaking information on equine disease outbreaks across the country.

“Jay Hickey has closely observed every issue that may impact the AHC’s constituents and provided astute guidance for more than two dec