We are very sad to announce that former Horse&Rider editor Kathy Swan, of Scottsdale, Arizona, passed away Friday, June 25, after a nine-year fight to survive breast cancer.
Kathy served as the magazine's editor in the early 2000's. ?Her husband, Rick Swan, currently serves as H&R's associate publisher.
Kathy had a long and distinguished career in equine-related publishing. The publications and audiences blessed by her talent included Horseman, Quarter Horse News, Western Horseman, Horse&Rider, and The Reiner. She also wrote and edited trade magazines serving the horse industry, and wrote and edited books, including ones with reiner Bob Loomis and natural horsemanship clinician Pat Parelli.
Using her earlier byline of Kathy Kadash, she made a name for herself in the world of reining by writing one of the first and most popular books about the sport. That book was REINING, with Bob Loomis. In the days before DVDs and YouTube videos, Kathy's book was on the shelf of every would-be reiner and deserves to be considered a classic.
Kathy's last post, a position she held until last year, was as editor in chief of The Reiner, official publication of the National Reining Horse Association. If anyone were to ask me, I'd say she was in the full flower of her considerable set of talents at the time NRHA managed to hire her, and that she helped advance reining as much as anyone with the quality of publication she created.
I knew and worked with Kathy and had tremendous admiration for her skills, insights, horsemanship knowledge,and level of professionalism. When it comes to being dedicated to the service of a magazine audience, she had few equals. She also had a great sense of humor, was a thoughtful friend, and was someone you could count on to keep her word.?She was the real deal in every way and a delight to spend time with. She was someone you could trust with saddling your horse.
I don't think Kathy would mind my telling you that she enjoyed drinking Crown Royal whiskey from time to time. So with an imaginary glass of Crown, here's a toast to her:
'To a real hand--in every way.'