Did you know that this year we’re celebrating 20 years of the National Rural Ambassador Award? To celebrate, we’ve been catching up with the 19 individual who have held the prestigious title since 2001. We look forward to announcing number 20 next month at the Ekka.
When Prue Capp won the national rural ambassador award she was an equine dentist based in the horse capital of Australia, Scone. Previous entrants and friends who had been involved in the program encouraged her to enter and when she participated in the program at 23 years of age, she said it well and truly opened her eyes to a bigger picture.
The rural ambassador award showed Prue a side of Sydney Royal she hadn’t seen, despite having competed there with horses for years.
“I thought I had seen all aspects of the show. I was so wrong! The Rural Ambassador Award was an incredible opportunity to meet so many people from different agricultural backgrounds so passionate about what they do,” Prue said.
“The experience ranged from training how to stand a duck for showing, sitting at a dinner table with Australia’s leading Dahlia growers to meeting my now husband in the Member’s bar.”
“I have made lifelong friends who, almost ten years later, are still my closest friends. The networks created have branched and grown over the years and created incredible opportunities I could not even dream of,” Prue said.
“It didn’t stop after the award, it kept going and going… creating amazing networks and opportunities which I still utilise today.”
Agricultural shows have always been a big part of the Capp family life.
“I was competing at the Gresford Show before I was two years of age and continue to compete with horses now. Our family of five would load the horses in our old truck and travel across eastern Australia attending shows with all members of the family competing. I remember sitting in the back of the truck at the Merriwa show with all five of us huddled in the cold listening to the Sydney Olympic Ceremony on the radio,” Prue recalls.
These days Prue is a veterinarian for both large and small animals in Gresford, and is married with two children, and she’s still very much involved in shows.
“Now I am on ag show committees where I enjoy contributing time, knowledge and muscle to help shows run smoothly.”
It’s something she loves sharing with her dad especially, Tim Capp is the president of the Agricultural Societies Council of New South Wales. As an accredited horse judge, Prue has been able to assist with the local pony club and judging at shows.
“Every time I have moved to a new town since leaving school, getting involved in the local agricultural show was how I met people in the community. From there I joined local sporting clubs, helped run local market stalls and assisted wherever needed meeting members of my new community along the way.”
“Never would I believe how far agricultural shows have taken me: from the little old Gresford Show to around the world. What was and is something I loved doing with my parents and siblings, now my husband and I do with our kids.”
“Participating in this award impacted my growth and development, my family and my career. And my show journey is not over yet…” Ms McCormack said.