WASHINGTON, D.C. — Bill Lear, a Member in Stoll Keenon Ogden PLLC’s Lexington office, testified on Jan. 28 before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Energy and Commerce’s Subcommittee on Consumer Protection and Commerce during a Capitol Hill hearing entitled “Legislation to Promote the Health and Safety of Racehorses.”
Lear, vice chairman of The Jockey Club and a Trustee of the Keeneland Association, helped develop, and spoke in support of, House Bill 1754, the Horseracing Integrity Act (HIA) before a packed hearing-room audience.
The legislation would establish, under the auspices of the Federal Trade Commission, a Horseracing Anti-Doping and Medication Control Authority as an independent, private non-profit corporation responsible for developing and administering an anti-doping and medication control program for thoroughbreds and other horse breeds, along with the people who care for, train and race them.
Speaking passionately about the state of thoroughbred racing, Lear told the committee members, “Many people in our industry believe that we are staring at the abyss. The future of Thoroughbred racing and breeding is at stake. We have to do more to protect our athletes. We have to do more to protect our horses and to get the cheaters and the abusers out of our sport.”
Further, Lear said, “The HIA represents true reform and because of that, as you’ve seen, it’s supported, not just by industry key players like the Breeders’ Cup, Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders Association, Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, Keeneland, the Water Hay Oats Alliance, The Jockey Club, but also by the top animal welfare organizations.”
Others joining Lear at the hearing in supporting the HIA included Hall of Fame jockey Chris McCarron and Joe De Francis, chairman of the National Horseracing Advisory Council of the Humane Society of the United States.
Bill has been with Stoll Keenon Ogden since 1980 and serves as chair emeritus. He was the Managing Director for 22 years and Chairman of the Board for four years. His leadership and many achievements over the course of his decades-long tenure at SKO are at the foundation of the firm’s Legal Horsepower.
A highly experienced trial attorney, Lear is a member of the Business Litigation practice, with a focus on disputes and challenges relating to Equine, Eminent Domain & Real Estate, and Trust & Estate matters. He also assists clients through the Real Estate and Government Relations practice groups.