Not surprisingly, Governor-elect Larry Hogan has been doing quite a bit of reorganizing, appointing all new cabinet secretaries. The appointments include two longtime horsemen: David Brinkley and Ken Holt.
Hogan selected soon-to-be-former Senator David Brinkley (R – District 4) to serve as his Secretary of the Department Budget and Management. Equiery readers know David as a former B Pony Clubber who competed in 1973 and 1974 on the first and second Prince Philip Cup Games Teams representing the United States – winning the Cup the second time. In addition to being a member of the Frederick Pony Club, David grew up whipping-in for New Market Hounds Hunt Club, which was founded by his parents.
In his adult life, in addition to maintaining a small horse farm, Brinkley has spent the last 20+ years in the General Assembly and was most recently the senate minority leader. He has served on both the budget and tax committee and the finance committee. According to the Washington Post, the Secretary of Budget and Management has been “one of Hogan’s most anticipated appointments, setting the budget and addressing a $750 million shortage will be among the most challenging hurdles of his first few months in office. Hogan has warned that cuts are coming and that he hopes to quickly offer Maryland residents some tax relief.”
Meanwhile, Thoroughbred owner and breeder Ken Holt has been appointed Secretary of Department of Housing and Community Development. Holt is a Republican and a former delegate for Baltimore and Harford Counties. Holt’s Mount Peru Farm is in Kingsville
Of course, the departments that are of the most interest to the majority of horse people are Agriculture and Natural Resources. For Secretary of Ag, Hogan, a Republican, has appointed lifetime farmer Joe Bartenfelder, a Democrat and a former Baltimore County delegate. Hogan has appointed Charlie Evans to head DNR; Evans is a former assistant secretary for that department, under the Ehrlich administration.
All appointments must be approved by the Senate.
Horse people who attended the November meeting of the Maryland Horse Council got to meet Adam Dubitsky, who at that time was Hogan’s campaign spokesman. He has been named as the Governor-elects Director of Policy.
In the meantime, Hogan took time from his frenetic schedule to meet last week with a delegation from the Maryland Horse Council. It was supposed to be for a quick photo op, but then Hogan surprised the MHC delegation by being so very VERY generous with his time, and the delegation was able to provide Mr. Hogan with a better business sense of the horse industry, which has an annual economic impact of $1.6 billion. In return, Mr. Hogan shared stories with the group about his father and his father’s horses, and how passionate his father had been about the Marlboro Race Track, now the Prince George’s Equestrian Center. Mr. Hogan’s father, Lawrence Hogan Sr. served as Prince George’s County Executive from 1978 – 1982.
With Governor-elect Larry Hogan are Equiery publisher Crystal Kimball, Larking Hill Farm owner, manager and trainer Christy Clagett, and the Crofton Dover acting manager, Chris Briggs.