ORGANIZING AND PROMOTING EXCELLENCE AT THE LOCAL LEVEL
The Farriers Association of Washington State (FAWS) was first incorporated in 1977 as a vehicle to enhance communication and learning between farriers and to increase overall communication within the horse industry. Many states in the United States have similar organizations, all of which are united through the American Farriers Association (AFA).
Licensing is not a FAWS goal. Although many states have entertained legislation for state licensing, we oppose state licensing and encourage certification within the guidelines set by farrier associations. Our intention is to be prepared, if such circumstances should occur within our state, to guide and influence such legislation in an attempt to protect the future of our profession.
HISTORY OF FAWS
There was a meeting called by a well known farrier, Jack Woods, in the area to start a union of farriers. It was attended by about fifty farriers which was a great number to get together at that time (or now).
It was decided at the meeting that it would be more valuable to possibly create a Farriers’ Association. A few people volunteered to try and come up with something acceptable.
The group included John Palmer, who had tried to create an association in Olympia and had a great program already outlined; Bill Miller, instructor at Olympia Community College and a farrier of great repute; Al Martineau, owner of a farrier supply; Ed Riebe, a farrier and writer for outdoor magazines; and Gordon Goss, a show farrier from Redmond, Wa.
We met for several months and outlined a program that became FAWS. We became chapter 2 in the American Farriers Association (AFA). We had the first testing for farrier competency in the United States and much of what we created was later adopted by the AFA.