Horse welfare group holds fundraiser featuring renowned tenor, governor

A world-renowned tenor is now a Kentucky Colonel – “I’m a native!” – thanks to Governor Steve Beshear who made the presentation following Anthony Kearns’ stellar solo performance on behalf of the health and welfare of Kentucky’s horses.

The Equine Health and Welfare Alliance, a group of veterinarians dedicated to equines, held its first fundraiser at Fasig-Tipton pavilion Sunday night (July 10). The featured performer was Anthony Kearns, internationally acclaimed founder of the Irish Tenors and fresh from performances honoring former Presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton. He drew standing ovations throughout his engaging performance which included a wide-ranging repertoire – from classic opera to Danny Boy and God Bless America.

His impassioned performance and his passion for horses drew praise from the audience.

“The Irish and Kentuckians share a love of the horse,” he said. “I grew up with horses . . .I have owned the back leg of a racehorse (explaining he once participated in a horse ownership group) . . .I am happy to support this good cause.”

Dwayne Marcum, a veterinarian and one of the founders of the nonprofit group, spoke about the need to assure quality of life for all animals, “particularly horses who give us so much.”

Kentucky’s First Lady, Jane Beshear, also addressed the group. She told her of life-long love of horses, of the good, loving care her own horses receive – “the kind of care every horse deserves.” She urged support of groups like the Equine Health and Welfare Alliance that are dedicated to the welfare of the horse – the heart of “Kentucky’s signature industry.”

See and for more information.

Photos by Judy Clabes

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