Meet Our Team
KHS Director of Education
Mitchell L. Taylor, CJF, AWCF, APF
Currently, Mitch is the director of the Kentucky Horseshoeing School in Richmond, KY, and received the AFA’s “Educator of The Year” award for 2007 and 2011, as well as the Clinician of the Year award for 2012. In addition, Mitch was named the 2015 Rising Star Instructor by the Kentucky Association of Career Colleges, chosen from among 200 instructors in every field of career education. In 2015, Mitch was inducted into the International Horseshoeing Hall of Fame, an honor bestowed on only the few considered the Elite throughout the industry. Among his many successful students Mitch is proud to count 8 members of the AFA U.S. National Horseshoeing Team as well as students who have earned positions with various US equine teams, leading veterinary hospitals, university veterinary schools and have even shod Kentucky Derby winners. Mitch is an active judge at national and international farrier competitions and currently works worldwide as a noted clinician in the field of equine limb anatomy and biomechanics. In Taylor’s work as a clinician in the field, some of the more notable events include being an featured speaker at the NAEP annual conference on lameness, teaching race-horse short courses for the Turkish Jockey Club in Istanbul, Turkey, serving as the Keynote Speaker and Judge at the Mexican National Horse Congress in Mexico City, speaking at the International Veterinarian and Farrier Conference in Bergamo, Italy, served as a Judge at the Ayreshire Shoeing Competition in Ayreshire, Scotland and as a clinician on several occasions at Stoneleigh, England as well as presenting original research and findings at the International Equine Conference on Laminitis and Diseases of the Foot in West Palm Beach, Florida.
Mitch Taylor began his farrier training in 1975 and has been an AFA Certified Journeyman Farrier since 1982. After receiving his primary farrier training at Colorado Mountain College, Mitch served his apprenticeship in southern California specializing in jumping and dressage horses. Mitch moved to Kentucky in 1985 to pursue a Masters Degree in Animal Science at the University of Kentucky. While at UK, Mitch was fortunate to study under Maxwell Gluck, one of the premier experts in the field of equine lameness and anatomy.
During the length of his career, Mr. Taylor has served as the President of the Registry of Professional Farrier Educators, as a member of the AFA Equine Research Committee, served on the AFA Board of Directors and served as Chairman of the AFA Education Committee. Mitch has also been chosen to be a part of the panel presenting technical seminars as a part of the KTOB/Keeneland International Emerging Markets program. He also serves on the Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit Shoeing and Hoof Care Committee.
Working with researchers worldwide and alongside his students at the Kentucky Horseshoeing School, Mitch is able to continue his interest in the area of promoting sound farrier principles to all horses. Midway College, one of the first in America to establish an equine science program has invited Mitch to teach their lab course as an adjunct professor. 2010 was the first year, and it was a resounding success. A noted author, Mitch publishes frequently in Professional Farrier, the official publication of the American Farrier’s Association, and served as the primary author of the AFA’s Education Manual; he has published extensively in numerous other farrier publications, including theAmerican Farrier’s Journal. Working with researchers worldwide and alongside his students at the Kentucky Horseshoeing School, Mitch is able to continue his interest in the area of promoting sound farrier principles to all horses.
“The school (KHS) is well known within the industry for its superior academic and practical standards. Not only is Mitch an instructor of immense knowledge, but an example of impeccable integrity for his students. Mitch is a sought-after clinician around the country. He is also well known in farrier competition circles, where he excels in both farriery and blacksmithing skills.” – Rob Edwards, Publisher, Anvil Magazine
KHS Staff Members
Nigel Fennell, AWCF
Nigel has nearly 30 years of working in the industry. Starting in 1989 and qualifying in 1995, Mr. Fennell has run his own horseshoeing business and has gained a wealth of experience in the farriery industry along the way shoeing in many disciplines such as eventer/Sports Horses, racehorses, Grandprix Dressage Shoeing, British Hunt Horses, National Driving & Farrier to the Fullers London Brewery shire Horses for 20years – Nigel has many years in remedial and surgical Shoeing and also having served as Farrier to Robert Eustace FRCVs(Hons)at the Laminitis clinic In Dauntsey Wiltshire uk for a number of years. His Farrier competition experience highlights include 20 years of contest experience, winning many county shows over the years in the United Kingdom. His main National & International highlights – National Industrial Blacksmithing Champion; two-time Italian Farriery Show champion in Verona Italy; two-time British Horseshoeing National Champion Medallist; eight-time representative on the England Farrier Team; Reserve Individual International Show Champion 2014 (Stoneleigh UK) two time World Horseshoeing Championship finalist in Calgary, Canada (2007 and 2013); and finalist at the Europe Farriery Championships in Austria 2012. Most recently, Nigel was UK National Reserve Champion in 2015 and won the prestigious World Horseshoeing Team Classic title in Kentucky in 2016 and 2017. In keeping with Nigel’s interest in education, he has served England Farrier Team Manager (coach) from 2012 to 2018;
Nigel has worked and trained alongside some of the finest farriers in the world all of which have influenced his work in some way. He is an included clinician on the farriery training website ‘Know Foot Know Horse’ and is an appointed and approved judge by the Worshipful Company of Farriers in England. For many years Mr. Fennell has been a farriery clinician and judge, teaching worldwide and holding clinics in the USA, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Italy and Germany. Mr. Fennell holds both the Diplomacy of the Worshipful Company of Farriers (DWCF) qualification and the post graduate higher exam the Associateship of the Worshipful Company of Farriers (AWCF). He is currently preparing for the highest accolade in farriery, the Fellowship of the Worshipful Company of Farriers (FWCF).
Sam Gooding, CJF
Sam Gooding comes to the Kentucky Horseshoeing School with an exceptional set of skills. Following Sam’s graduation from KHS in 1996, he served as an apprentice to Mitch Taylor for 2 years. Following his apprenticeship, Sam left for Texas where he continued his training in the field, under the tutelage of Jim Poor, CJF. In the following years, he honed his skills both under the horse and in the forge.
Sam is both an accomplished tool-maker and horseshoer, having proven his skills by being named to the American Farriers Association US Horseshoeing Team in 2005 and placing in the top 10 finishers at the 2005 World Championships in Calgary, Canada. Sam is a gifted instructor, having shown his affinity for the classroom during his advanced training with Taylor and throughout the many clinics he has given during his years in the field. We are thankful to have Sam Gooding as an integral part of our staff.
KHS Teaching Assistants
The Kentucky Horseshoeing School maintains a minimum of one resident teaching assistant at all times. These staff members are practicing professional farriers and honor graduates of KHS, trained to instruct students in basic farrier techniques and to ensure continuity within the KHS curriculum. The resident assistants are extremely helpful in instructing from the student viewpoint, and these positions provide valuable insight and incentive for attending students.
The Kentucky Horseshoeing School employs a professional staff to assist instructors and visitors. These staff members are familiar with the school’s programs and offerings and can assist you as you prepare your application and registration materials.
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