The Horseman

I have written of him in my first book, Leadership, Power & Consequences. He was on a backpacking trip with his campers in the snow fields when there was an incident where he, as the junior counselor, ran down the mountain to the ranger station for help.  He remained cool in this emergency and handled it well. 

He was Intelligent and capable in so many ways. We needed a few more horses at Camp Shasta, so I sent him and two others to the weekly horse sales in Redding, California.

I clearly remember him asking me, “How do I know a good riding horse from a bad one?” I told him to ask the “old timers” who were shopping for horses themselves would show him the way.

I can’t remember how many they bought, but they did remarkably well, including arranging delivery to camp. While he may not have known anything about riding horses, he was the right kid to be assigned this task.  I knew his father often took him to the racetrack in his early years, and he had an immense love and knowledge of thoroughbreds. I could always depend on him to do the right thing.    

He came to us in the early fifties and remained until Camp Shasta closed in 1970. I asked him and another long-term camper he grew up with at Purple Sage to come to Las Vegas to staff, train and operate a Day Camp for a local Temple. According to the people at the Temple, they ran the best program they had ever had.  I was like a “proud father.”

He is the owner of five thoroughbred racehorses today and apparently still picks the right ones because his horses regularly win at the tracks. Maybe one day, he’ll make it to the Kentucky Derby. He has it in him to get there. Sadly, his co-director at the Temple camp passed away. Our loss.


Author: Sy Ogulnick

Sy Ogulnick received a BA from UCLA, Teacher’s Credential from Los Angeles Board of Education and completed phase I (Master’s portion) in a Doctor of Behavioral Science program at California Coast University. Sy leased and operated a summer day camp in LA. He and his wife then purchased virgin wilderness land in Northern CA, where they built and operated a coed summer camp. They moved to Las Vegas, NV, and purchased, built and operated a community children’s program for families staying in a major resort casino in Las Vegas. They have created programs for children nationwide that employed many people and in the process developed successful training programs for personnel. This led Sy to lecture on how to train staff and the creating of community within the workplace. Sy was then invited to speak at professional conferences on how best to hire and train employees, which led to his becoming a consultant in the art of improving relationships in a work environment and eventually to his epiphany that “Leaders are the primary problem and the answer to the personnel issues that arise in the workplace.” Sy has written numerous papers on the subject of interpersonal relationships, leadership and power. He has lectured throughout the United States, has been interviewed by the media and has appeared on many radio and TV talk shows

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