Susan Rothgeb, lifelong equestrian, FEI judge, past chair of Dressage Canada – 1939-2015

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Sue Rothgeb
Sue Rothgeb

Sept. 30, 2015

Susan Rothgeb, a lifelong equestrian, retired international dressage judge and past chair of Dressage Canada, died Tuesday at the age of 76.

Sue rode hunters, three-day eventers, Arabs, Western reining and three gaited saddle horses but her passion was dressage.

The Dressage Canada Officials Committee honored Sue’s contribution to Canadian dressage and in particular to the development of Canadian officials with the announcement that the Dressage Canada’s Officials Bursary has been renamed the Sue Rothgeb Officials Development Bursary beginning in 2016. To make donations to the bursary, contact Christine Peters at Dressage Canada (

Sue began riding at the age of 10 in Roswell, New Mexico. At 19, she participated in the United States trials for the three-day eventing team for the 1960 Olympics.

She pursued a life as a rider, coach, judge, mentor and volunteer for riders across North America and Europe.

She first moved to Montreal in the mid-1960s before she and her husband settled at Hopewell Farm in Green Valley, Ontario in 1970.

In the mid-1970s she went with her husband, involved in high tech, to Kuwait. Sue used the opportunity to train in Europe. On her return to Canada, Susan achieved her greatest success as a rider with her horse Pegasus Playboy, winning advanced level championships in Ontario, Quebec and northeastern U.S. At the same time, she devoted herself to trainng and operating a
high performance breeding farm.

She became an international dressage judge in the early 1980s until her retirement as an official a quarter century later. She was also chair of Dressage Canada.

She has two children, five grandchildren and great grandchildren.