The Pumphrey Memorial Awards
Some people volunteer for a show here, or an event there. They serve on a committee or board for a year or two. Or volunteer while their kids are involved.
For others, volunteering is a way to build their resume and to network. And then there are those who volunteer just because it’s the right thing to do. Just because it’s their way of giving to the sport they love, or the community to which they belong.
They don’t volunteer for the accolades, titles,
“leadership roles,” or wall plaques. They volunteer because it is how they can help.
They are willing to take the odd jobs, those no one else wants. And they continue to do it, year in and year out. Indeed, they are so steady and reliable that it’s easy to overlook them or take them for granted.
The Maryland Horse Council’s Pumphrey Memorial Award recognizes these unsung heroes, these “behind the scenes” volunteers without whom we would not be able to run our shows, build our facilities, or enjoy our sport.
For 50 years, Jane Toal has been a steady volunteer with the Iron Bridge Hounds (now merged into the Howard County-Iron Bridge Hounds). She also volunteers for numerous trails groups, the Girl Scouts, and the East Park Civic Association.
“She’s just always there — ALWAYS there,”
explains Mary Anne Steele, who grew up with Iron Bridge and now hunts with HCIBH.
“When there is a job to be done, you can always count on Jane,” echoes Gretchen Mobberly.
“She works dinners, she sets up for the races, she works horse shows. If no one else shows up to do it, Jane does it — always with a smile on her face. She is now in her 80s, yet there she was recently, trudging to the end of the lane to put up balloons so people would know where to go, and then she was back checking people in. She’s incredible.”
Toal has been involved with foxhunting for most of her life and whipped for Iron Bridge Hounds for 26 years.
Her love of trail riding led her to volunteer clearing trails for TROT and similar organizations for many years. “She is still always giving 100%,” Mobberly says.