Screening Committee Adds Waterstone

Published: April 16, 2020 12:10 pm EDT

Gordon Waterstone, a 42-year veteran of harness racing journalism who has worked at The Horseman and Fair World for over two decades and is a member of harness racing’s Communications Hall of Fame, has been appointed to the Hall of Fame Screening Committee of the United States Harness Writers' Association (USHWA) by Kim Rinker, president of the sport’s leading media organization.

The HOF Screening Committee considers the nominees submitted by the various chapters of USHWA, talks with a select group of present members of the Hall of Fame, and then announces the candidates for the summer HOF ballot, on which a nominee requires 75 per cent of the ‘yes-no’ vote to receive the sport’s highest honour, election to the Hall of Fame.

Waterstone started his career working in publicity at Detroit’s Hazel Park, and also worked at other tracks at other points of the season, including helping with Breeders Crown publicity in that series’ early days. In 1998, he joined The Horseman and Fair World as associate editor, and during his time with the Kentucky-based company he has received two John Hervey Writing Awards, one in the feature category and one in the news/commentary division, making him one of the few people to have been honoured in both sections. His popular ‘Backstretch With Gordon’ column during the prime of the Red Mile’s racing season keeps him in close contact with many of the sport’s leading horsepeople.

A former national president of USHWA and a Life member of the organization, Waterstone is currently the president and secretary of the organization’s Kentucky chapter. He received the USHWA President’s Award in 2001.

Waterstone has also been honoured by the North American Harness Publicists Association, Harness Horsemen International, and the Michigan Harness Horsemen’s Association. The ultimate honour for a harness journalist, entrance into the Communicators Hall of Fame, came with his induction ceremony in 2017 at the Harness Racing Museum in Goshen, NY.

The first Sunday in July at Goshen, if the world is back in normal order, will find Waterstone discussing the merits of this year’s candidates with his fellow committee members: committee chair Judy Davis-Wilson, Tim Bojarski, Bob Heyden, Jason Settlemoir, and Steve Wolf (president Rinker also serves on the committee as an ex officio voting member).