Steven Money manages one of the top Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association rodeos in the country. In 2016, he was instrumental in getting Spanish Fork Fiesta Days Rodeo into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame. In 2017, he received the John Justin Committee Person of the Year Award and was honored at the PRCA awards banquet and at the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas.
Steven started working for Spanish Fork City in 1991 and has been the Fairgrounds Manager and Rodeo Committee Chairman for 34 years. “Mr. Rodeo,” as he is affectionately called, has been the back bone of the Fiesta Days Rodeo which has been the core event of the city’s large Fiesta Days Celebration. Steven was very influential in bringing the city into the rodeo business by working with the Diamond Fork Riding Club, the previous producer of the rodeo. He was the founding member of the new city rodeo committee.
Steven’s passion and desire to produce the best rodeo possible is what led to the Fiesta Days Rodeo becoming a Silver Tour Rodeo in 2010. Due to his knowledge of rodeo production and all other aspects of rodeo, Steven was also asked by the PRCA to serve on various national committees.
Under his leadership, the Fiesta Days has promoted all types of horse shows, rodeos, cow cutting, ropings, barrel racing, and fairs. They have also received numerous PRCA Justin Best Footing Awards.
Steven was born in 1951, is a graduate of Spanish Fork High School and attended college at Utah Valley University. He has been employed by Pacific States Cast Iron Pipe for 23 years and by Spanish Fork City for over 25 years.
JOE AND CARRIE RUIZ
The Ruiz family has been an active part of the Utah horse community for many years. Joe is an accomplished horse trainer, bit and spur craftsman, judge and clinician. Joe and Carrie are working in all aspects of the Utah horse industry. As a horse trainer, Joe has specialized in Reining, Working Cow horse, and Barrel racing. Joe and Carrie have proven to be extremely effective coaches for many clients. In 2009 Joe was inducted into the Intermountain Reining Horse Association (IRHA) Hall of Fame. Joe and Carrie have been a great team with the never-ending help & support of their three sons: Brandon, Just in and Jared. Some of their accomplishments include:
- World Champion — Mules Reining 1987
- World Champion — American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) Reining 1994
- Reserve World Champions Working Cow Horse and Freestyle Reining
- World Qualifiers in AQHA, American Paint Horse Association, Appaloosa Horse Association, Reining,
- Working Cow Horse, Ranch Riding, Barrels, Poles 2x 1987, 2x 1988, 1989, 1992, 3x 2012-2018
- World Qualifiers AQHA, APHA, ApHA Amateur 1987, 1988, 2×1989, 1999
Joe was president of the IRHA from 1985 to 1991 and has been a National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) Judge from 1988 to the present. Carrie has been a National Reining Horse Association judge from 1992 to the present and Intermountain Reining Horse Association Events Coordinator and Operation Manager 1985 to 1991.
Joe and Carrie have both served for several years on the Utah Quarter Horse Association Board of Directors. They are dedicated horsemen who have had a large impact on the equestrian world.
Joe Ruiz was born on Sept. 26, 1951 in Florence, Ariz. He grew up on an Arizona cattle ranch. At 16, he started breaking colts and training horses finding a passion that would last a life time. Joe competed in college rodeo for Central Arizona College in Casa Grande, Ariz., from1969-1971. Carrie Parker Ruiz was born June 26, 1956 in Salt Lake City. She was raised on the Lazy P Ranch. Carrie learned to ride and compete in 4-H, Open and Quarter Horse Shows. Joe and Carrie were married on Dec. 12, 1975.
Gary Blackburn began life at a coal camp in Spring Canyon, Cabon County in 1928, coming from a long line of ranchers, cowboys and pioneers who settled Utah. He began cowboying at a young age, often staying with cousins and uncles helping herd cattle and sheep in Carbon and Emery Counties. Gary rodeoed, riding saddle bronc, roping calves, even participated in potato races and barrel racing.
In 1948, Gary married the love of his life, RaNae Swenson, and gave up riding the rough saddle broncs, but rodeoed for many years at community rodeos, roping calves and organizing events. During the early years of marriage, he worked in the coal mines and coke ovens in Carbon County, but in the spring of 1958 he moved his family to the Deseret Land and Livestock Ranch in Woodruff. He was hired as a cowboy and then became ranch manager in 1970.
At that time the Deseret Land and Livestock Ranch was one of the largest ranches in the entire United States. Two hundred thirty thousand acres in Rich County, plus 15,000 deeded acres in Skull Valley and 400,000 BLM acres. Some 4,000, head of cattle were on the ranch at this time as well as 50,000 sheep, which were run on the ranch, wintering in Skull Valley and at Pilot, Nev. After he became ranch manager, Gary designed a major expansion and improvement of cattle-handling yards resulting in a very satisfying profit.
In 1975. the Deseret Ranch was sold and by spring of 1976 he began working as manager for Skull Valley Ranch. The Skull Valley Ranch was 30,000 acres with 3,000 head of cattle and National Forest permits on the Stansbury Range. Gary retired from Skull Valley Company in 1993 to run his own cattle operation.
In 2003 Gary sold his cattle as his wife had become increasingly disabled with aging dementia, so he became her full-time caregiver and they lived at their home in Grantsville.
Gary’s leadership style also included compassion for others when they had hard times. He took out personal loans from the bank to help folks in need, opened his home for shelter and meals for folks down on their luck and needing a hand. Gary passed away Dec. 3, 2014 at the age of eighty-six.
Monty Joe Hadley was born on July 30, 1943. Monty started his race horse career at age 11 and was an amazing jockey. He traveled in various states and raced at all race tracks in Utah. He had many accolades and awards.
After attending a semester at Weber State College, serving a two-year LDS Mission, getting married, finding a job, and starting a family, Monty continued his cowboy activities. In 1965-1968, he mostly competed in the Rocky Mountain Rodeo Association, participating in steer wrestling, calf roping, and team roping. He joined the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) in 1968 in which he competed until he was in his 50s. He won many awards and when the PRCA started the circuit system (for contestants who worked full time), he competed in the Wilderness Circuit and placed second in the All-Around, steer wrestling, and calf roping. He received his gold card from the PRCA when he turned 50 because he was still an active member. He was also a professional judge for the PRCA, amateur, and high school rodeos.
Monty was also involved during these years in chariot racing. He won the championship in 1988 for Wasatch Slopes Racing Association.
Monty was on the Ogden Pioneer Days Rodeo Committee from 1997-1999 and helped the board make that rodeo very successful. Monty enjoyed his time training and breaking horses and teaching future cowboys and cowgirls in their rodeo events. He was also an experienced farrier and shoed many horses for over 30 years.
He was employed with the Weber School District Transportation Department for 28 years, where he was the director of Transportation; and for Massey Ferguson in Clearfield for 18 years. The Utah Highway Patrol awarded his department and his leadership every year for 28 years for safety and maintenance of the bus fleet. He retired in 2011after 28 years. He passed away Oct. 9, 2013.
Brent Kelly was born on April 17, 1949, and currently resides in Heber City, Utah. Brent has been the Rocky Mountain Pro Rodeo Announcer of The Year five times. He has become known as the “Voice of the Utah High School State Rodeo finals,” as he has been that rodeo’s announcer for over 30 years and has also announced the National High School Rodeo Association (NHSRA) finals for over 20 years. Brent was honored in 2015 as one of the top announcers of the NHSRA.
He is a Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Card Holder and a Rocky Mountain Professional Rodeo Association Card Holder. He also holds the honor of announcing at the famous Benny Binion’s Bucking Horse Sale every December at the National Finals Rodeo, and has been announcing the Evanston Rodeo Series every year since 1993.
Brent spends every weekend in the summer, from May to September, calling rodeo action, which has included the World Reining horse show in Fort Worth Texas as well as the Winter Series rodeo in Ogden. Brent is a previous owner-operator of the Utah Livestock Auction in Spanish Fork. He has served on the Mountain Valley Stampede PRCA rodeo committee for over 20 years and has been instrumental in that rodeo’s success. In addition to being one of the founders of the Heber Valley Horse sale, he is also on the Heber Valley Cowboy Poetry board and serves as one of the masters of ceremonies. He also serves on the water board for Midway City.
Brent has a bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University. He has been a Seminary Teacher for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for over 30 years. He is married to Mary Kelly, who is the head of the Heber Valley Cowboy Poetry and Citizen of the Year for Wasatch County in 2015.