Meet a Member: Hope Ellis-Ashburn

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Name: Hope Ellis-Ashburn

Location: Whitwell, Tennessee

AHP Affiliation: Individual member since 2016

Education: Bachelor of Science in animal science with an emphasis on equine science, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, Tennessee; master of science in agricultural education, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee

Years in the equine industry: 35


AHP: How did you get involved in equine media?

HEA: Before becoming involved in equine media, I wrote for newspapers and newsletters, public relations and marketing pieces for various positions. In the late spring/early summer of 2015 I wrote a true short story about an experience at a horse show that was published in EQUUS magazine. Since then, I have written feature pieces on a variety of topics for EQUUS. I’ve also been published in American Quarter Horse Journal and Arabian Horse Life, and have written blog pieces for The Horse. I also recently added new clients Horse IllustratedSidelines and US Equestrian. Finally, I published a book, The Story of Kimbrook Arabians, and have a blog, Red Horse on a Red Hill (, where I showcase my published work.


AHP: How did you hear about AHP and what made you decide to join?

HEA: Many of the publications that I write for are multiple AHP award winners. It was because of reading about their success that I became interested in the awards program and the organization itself. The chance to compete, the opportunity to travel and connect with others already involved in the industry, as well as to further my own education were strong incentives to join.


AHP: What are the biggest benefits of AHP to your business?

HEA: The opportunity to connect face to face with editors of the publications I wish to write for to discuss my work and ideas. I’ve attended two AHP Equine Media Conferences and each year it has helped me grow my freelance business by allowing me to connect with new clients and re-establish relationships with current clients. The learning aspect has also been tremendous, my writing has improved as a direct result of attending classes held during the conference. The contacts made there are also invaluable. Last year, I was able to interview one new contact that proved to be a monumental resource for an article I wrote for a new client. I also met two authors who have been instrumental in helping me publish my second book due out in 2019. All three of these ladies have become so much more than resources; they are now my true friends.


AHP: How do you make the most of your membership?

HEA: Networking is the best way to make the most of an AHP membership. I try to be as helpful as others have been to me by sharing contacts and information, and answer questions for other members. I hope to continue to grow in my career and help others grow their careers, as well.


AHP: In what other areas of the equine industry are you involved besides media?

HEA: I was an extension agent for five years. Currently I’m a full-time business technology teacher and also hold a teaching endorsement in agricultural education. I’ve been in the horse industry for more than 35 years and have competed in Western, English, halter, dressage, hunter and jumper classes. I presently own a half-Arabian mare, Aallusive Angel (“Sally”).  She’s a hunter, but I also enjoy riding her on trails and making use of our commercial cow-calf farm. I also own a standard donkey, Harmony, who serves as a companion for my mare.