World Horse Welfare’s Chief Executive, Roly Owers, is to receive an OBE for services to equine welfare in the King’s Birthday Honours List.

Roly has been Chief Executive of World Horse Welfare since 2008. The mission of this leading UK-based equine charity is to work with horses, horse owners, communities, organisations and governments to help improve welfare standards and eliminate suffering in the UK and worldwide.

Roly leads World Horse Welfare’s efforts to improve welfare by strengthening the horse-human relationship, including the charity’s work with governments and institutions in the UK, the European Union, the World Organisation for Animal Health, the Food and Agriculture Organisation and the United Nations. He also advises the International Equestrian Federation (FEI), the International Horse Sports Confederation (IHSC) and the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) on horse welfare.

“It is a privilege to be entrusted with leading the work of World Horse Welfare, and I am hugely thankful to my team and my family as this is as much for them as for me,” said Roly. “What I find inspiring is that recognition at this level demonstrates the continued relevance of horses to society and the part we all play in protecting their welfare for future generations.”

Roly is a qualified veterinary surgeon and has been Chief Executive of World Horse Welfare since 2008. He graduated from Cambridge University in 1992 and acquired his Masters degree in Nutrition from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in 1997. His previous veterinary roles included the Blue Cross and Royal Army Veterinary Corps.

Roly is currently Chair of the International Coalition for Animal Welfare, Treasurer of World Federation for Animals, a Board member of the European Horse Network and Vice Chair of Eurogroup for Animals’ equine working group. In the UK he is Chair of the Equine Disease Coalition, a Director of both British Equestrian and the British Horse Council and Treasurer of the British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA).

“I am delighted that Roly has been recognised for his unceasing hard work, leadership and drive which has been instrumental to the success of World Horse Welfare,” World Horse Welfare Chairman Michael Baines added. “He has embodied the compassionate, pragmatic approach to improving the lives of horses that has inspired the charity since it was founded by Ada Cole and continues to make us so relevant today.”

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