Equestrian Canada (EC) extends heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Elizabeth Bordeaux of Surrey, BC, who passed away peacefully on Nov. 18, 2018 at the age of 82.
A lifelong equestrian, Bordeaux began in the sport of jumping at the Montreal Pony Club. There, she was mentored by well-known horsewoman, the late Barbara Kemp, who guided Bordeaux towards her prolific career as a jumper judge.
In the 1960s, Bordeaux began officiating horse shows as a judge and steward in her new home of British Columbia. Soon, her talents were recognized as unique and her knowledge indispensable by the local jumping community. Bordeaux became a familiar face at Thunderbird Show Park in Langley, BC as a regular member of the ground jury, and acted as Vice President of FEI Disciplines for Horse Council British Columbia in the 1990s. She also lent her skills to international competition as an FEI Steward until her retirement in 2005, and as an FEI Level 3 Jumping Judge until 2012.
The Canadian equestrian community greatly benefited from Bordeaux’s in-depth understanding of rules and high performance competition, coupled with an incomparable moral compass and keen sense of diplomacy. Throughout her extensive work with EC, Bordeaux freely offered her time and generously doled out expertise as a member of the EC Rules Committee and founding member of the former EC Sports Council.
Furthermore, Bordeaux was a dedicated volunteer for Jump Canada (JC) in various capacities –including Chair, Rules Chair and Finance Chair – for over two decades. She also brought her precise editing skills and attention to detail to EC’s jumping newsletter, The Warm-Up Ring, as a member of its editorial board for the publication’s entire lifespan of more than 10 years.
Bordeaux was recognized for her tireless support with the 2003 EC Volunteer of the Year Award, the 2009 JC Volunteer of the Year Award, and the 2015 JC Recognition Award. In 2016, she was honoured as a foundational pillar of modern Canadian equestrianism with an induction into the Jump Canada Hall of Fame as a Builder (Individual). However, Bordeaux’s many achievements were outshined by her sterling reputation of positivity, fairness, and a powerful ability to bring people together.
“On behalf of the Jumping Committee, I would like to express our deepest sympathies to Elizabeth’s family on her passing,” said Pam Law, Chair of the EC Jumping Committee. “Elizabeth was an irreplaceable member of our committee for so many years. She served as Chair for several terms and managed our affairs with dignity, wise council, and great intelligence. We could always count on Elizabeth’s sensible approach to sometimes contentious matters, and will all miss her presence very much.”
Bordeaux is survived by her husband, Corlin Bordeaux, as well as their children, extended family and many friends.