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2022 Horseperson of the Year
Jo Egenes

In 1965 at the age of 29, I was in Dublin, Ireland, at the Royal Dublin

Horse Show.  For the first time, I saw riders jumping horses over fences. 

Right then and there I came down with a severe case of wanting to learn

how to do that.  That’s where this journey started….


Growing up in a small farm town in West Central Illinois, Rushville,

the closest I ever got to a horse was going with my grandfather as he

drove his horse to his farm or getting to ride a friend’s horse in the



The journey to Woodside and Olive Hill Farm:  

  •      Teaching for the U. S. Air Force in the dependent schools in England and Germany.

  •      Marrying an Air Force pilot, Lloyd, from California in 1964.

  •      Leading a small group of college students for the Experiment in International Living, which was the forerunner of the Peace Corps.  Destination: Ireland.

  •      Teaching at Westmoor High School in Daly City.

  •      Riding lessons at Mar Vista Stables in Daly City.

  •      Meeting Katy Farquharson, who was a teacher at Aragon HS in San Mateo and taking jumping lessons from her student at the Stanford Barn.

  •      Buying my first horse and learning how to take care of her while boarding at Roy Markegard’s farm on Tunitas Creek Road south of Half Moon Bay.

  •      Taking jumping lessons at Stanford with Jack Melville who ran the Stanford Barn.

  •      Discovering Woodside, the Little Store, Fox Hollow at the Playpen, which was home to the Los Altos Hounds.

  •      All this while living in San Francisco, teaching in Daly City and commuting seven days a week to Tunitas Creek.

  •      Then, buying the old Zwierlein Barn with its five additional stalls brought down from Tanforan Race Track when it had closed.  This resulted in a total of 17 stalls in two barns.  (1969)

  •      Of course, then came the horses.  I brought three horses to Woodside and having no experience in taking care of a farm or a horse.


I think the world “determination” best summarizes this journey, and it came from what

Jack Melville would say to me in a jumping lesson as I came down to maybe a two-foot

fence, heart in my mouth.  I was a beginner as was my horse because the only horses I

could afford were off the racetrack.  Jack would say “get determined.”


This journey was done on a shoestring propelled by lots of determination and many

wonderful mentors who helped me along the way…kind, patient, encouraging people

who helped me up when I was down (literally and physically) and sent me on my way

telling me they knew I could do it.  My husband Lloyd, Roy Markegard (Tunitas Creek)

Jack Melville (Stanford), Bob O’Neil, and Al Orsini (the farm in Woodside).  To them

I will be forever grateful.


I’m still at Olive Hill Farm where I am boarding several horses.  I’m not jumping any more but still enjoy a trail ride or a workout in the ring on “Flora.”


The horses began this journey for me and still give me great

pleasure.  I have them to thank for the great wealth of

friendships they have brought me over the years.


So, my friends, come by and say “hi” at Olive Hill Farm.

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