New York, N.Y.” June 1, 2012 – The Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) announced today that Mike Ziegler has been named the organization’s executive director, effective immediately. Since March, Ziegler had served as the TAA’s interim executive director. He will continue to serve in his ongoing role as executive director of the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance.
‘I am proud to take a formal position of leadership at an organization that is so important to the future of the Thoroughbred industry,’ said Ziegler.”I thank Jack Wolf, Madeline Auerbach and all the members of the TAA for this opportunity to make a difference in the lives of our retired Thoroughbred athletes.’
‘During the early days of the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance, it became apparent that Mike’s expertise and breadth of experience would be invaluable as we moved forward on this vital initiative,’ said TAA board president and Thoroughbred owner Jack Wolf.”It is the responsibility of anyone who has a stake in the game to take responsibility to support the aftercare of these great animals who are the intrinsic center of our sport.’
‘With Mike’s leadership, we will improve upon the current level of Thoroughbred aftercare, and all industry stakeholders are going to be a part of the solution,’ said TAA board executive vice president Madeline Auerbach. ‘Together, we will see to it that retired racehorses receive the care and second careers that they deserve.’
‘Thoroughbred aftercare is a key component of the Safety and Integrity Alliance, and so Mike’s new responsibilities merge nicely with his ongoing role of overseeing day-to-day activities of the Alliance,’ said Alex Waldrop, President and CEO of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association. ‘
Based in Lexington, Ky., the TAA is designed to serve as both the accrediting body for aftercare facilities that care for Thoroughbreds following the conclusion of their racing careers and a fundraising body to support these approved facilities.’ Funded initially by seed money from Breeders’ Cup, Ltd., The Jockey Club, and Keeneland Association, the TAA is comprised of owners, trainers, breeders, racetracks, jockeys, aftercare professionals and other industry groups.