MSEA News & Events

Reserve World Champions At USTPA 2017 National World Championship Show

Reserve World Champions At USTPA 2017 National World Championship Show at Fort Worth, Texas

James Rasberry (from left), Katie McGuffin, and Dustin Johnson.

Reserve World Champions At USTPA 2017 National World Championship Show at Fort Worth, Texas


James Rasberry Is MSEA President

“Rooster” Rasberry always got up too early. That’s what his mother said, and that’s why she nicknamed him when he was about two or three years old.

Maybe that’s why James S. Rasberry is an accomplished builder… and builder of many things. James is the President of the Mississippi State Equine Association and for lots of reasons.

He was on his father’s framing crew when he was l5 years old, and was trimming homes in his native Attala County when he was 20. Three years later, James was still getting up early, feeding the horses and starting his own construction company. By 1985 “Rooster” Rasberry was the youngest President ever elected from the 2,000-member Home Builders Association of Mississippi.

During that time two of his three daughters started riding competitively. It was a weekend ritual to load horses “early” and travel anywhere in Mississippi for a horse show, and get back home at 2 or 3 a.m. While the girls were barrel racing and riding western pleasure, Rasberry introduced himself to a sport that was new to the State of Mississippi in the early 1990’s. Team penning was a new craze that had just reached Mississippi, and he said, “it spread like wildfire.”


James Watts Is MSEA's 2018 Executive Director

James Watts says he was “probably promoting an economic development program” when asked what did you do prior to the creation of the Mississippi State Equine Association.

James calls himself a public relations guru and insists he was trained by some of Mississippi’s greatest. “I’m not saying I was one of them, but I worked for num-erous public relations giants in Mississippi,” he said.

As one of the founders of the MSEA, James started his career as a copy boy for the STATE TIMES, a competitive daily for Mississippi news in 1959. It was part time and he worked for owner and publisher Dumas Milner, editor Paul Tiblett and sports editor Jimmie McDowell. After a full summer at the corner of South State and Lamar Streets in Jackson, “I decided I had some experience” so maybe the CLARION-LEDGER might be interested in me.

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