Celebrating its 85th year in publication, Western Horseman began its popular Women of the West series in the March 2007 issue. It’s been a fixture in the magazine every month since. In 2019, Western Horseman teamed up with Art of the Cowgirl to present the first Western Horseman Women of the West Award. The prestigious honor celebrates women who are dedicated to innovation and preservation in the ranching, stock horse and Western industries.
Western Horseman Editor in Chief Ross Hecox presented the third-annual Women of the West award to Barbra Schulte of Brenham, Texas, during Road to the Horse, a colt-starting championship held in Fort Worth, Texas. She will be honored again at the Art of the Cowgirl summer event, June 24-27, in Bozeman, Montana.
“I’ve known Barbra Schulte for quite a few years and she’s always been a class act,” says Hecox. “It’s interesting to look at her history as a trainer and clinician and see how she’s helped so many people, whether they’re competitors or recreational riders, in the horse industry. What she has done for the horse industry makes her fitting for this award.”
A lifelong horsewoman, Schulte grew up learning from her horseman father, Cletus Hulling, and at age 13, became the youngest female to ride in a National Cutting Horse Association semi-finals at the NCHA Futurity. She trained and showed Quarter Horses in reining, cutting and other Western disciplines for many years. In 1994—after winning NCHA Derby, NCHA Super Stakes Classic and the Augusta Futurity—she became a personal performance coach and created her Mentally Tough program to mentally motivate riders to overcome fear, sharpen their focus, perform under pressure and reach their full potential.
Schulte has conducted clinics and seminars all over the world, produced educational videos and authored books and articles. She received the National Female Equestrian of the Year Award from the American Quarter Horse Association in 2000, and was inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame in 2012. In 2017, she was inducted to the NCHA Hall of Fame, and in 2020, received the 2020 Equine Industry Vision Award presented by American Horse Publications and sponsored by Zoetis.
Schulte often shares the clinician role with other horsewomen, such as Julie Goodnight and Sandy Collier, and continues to motivate other horse enthusiasts through education. She joins Judy Wagner, vice-president of marketing and communications for Montana Silversmiths, and Linda Davis, owner of the CS Ranch in Cimarron, New Mexico, as recipients of the Western Horseman Women of the West Award.
The Morris Equine Group consists of some of the industry’s most recognized equine publications, including Western Horseman, Quarter Horse News, Barrel Horse News, and Ranch Horse News. The group also includes the business-to-business publication, Western Lifestyle Retailer, and Equi-Stat, a statistical service offering detailed information and earnings for the performance horse industry. Morris Equine Group is also home to the National Barrel Horse Association and the world championship of colt starting, Road to the Horse.