Family - Married my high school sweetheart, Debbie, six months after graduating from West Point (we were not allowed to be married while cadets; one of my classmates got married during our junior year in Vegas in the little white chapel on the strip and came back to West Point for a few days - to complete his OUTPROCESSING).
Have two kids - Erin, born in 1988, and Ryan, born in 1991. Erin loves the horses and works for West Point TB and Ryan graduated from Notre Dame and is a professional soccer player.
I have four brothers and two sisters. None of them are really into racing that much. My dad was a high school Chemistry teacher and a racing nut. My mom raised seven kids....
Education - BS in Mechanical Engineering from West Point (1986) MSBA from Boston University (1990). Served as an Artillery officer in the Army for eight years. One three year tour of duty in the 3rd Infantry Division in Schweinfurt, Germany. Graduated from Airborne and Ranger School in 1987. Left the Army in 1994 with the rank of Captain. Completed Harvard Business School Owner/President Management program (2014).
It was a great experience both at West Point and in the Army. I remain very proud that I had the privilege to wear the uniform of the United States of America. Sounds corny, but it’s very true!
Interesting facts about college - I graduated much closer to the bottom of the class than to the top but was not the goat (the bottom person). One good thing about being the goat of your class at West Point - during the graduation ceremony, a paper bag is passed around and every member of the class puts at least a dollar in the bag - all given to the goat. The goat also gets a standing ovation from his classmates. The number one guy in my class, Mike Pompeo, is now a Congressman from Kansas. He’ll go very far in Washington.
Every year for the last 14 years about 15 of my classmates go to Vegas for a weekend in late February/early March to tell lies about our weight and our final GPA at school.
Favorite Movie and Book - I love The Shawshank Redemption and am not proud to say I am captivated by the show Locked Up on MSNBC. I’ve also caught just a few episodes of Jersey Shore. I’ve really liked reading The World Is Flat by Thomas L. Friedman.
Things I like about working at West Point Thoroughbreds - I really do get a kick out of seeing people derive fun and excitement over owning horses. Standing in the winner’s circle with partners - you can’t beat it.
Love the people on the WPT team. We are always trying to figure how to service our clients better and help win more races. I love that we have a score sheet in our business - it’s called the finish line. Either you get there first or you lose. Enough said.
I find it incredibly cool to honestly know I am more passionate and into the company and the racing industry than I’ve ever been.
Interests - I have grown to really love soccer. It’s a beautiful game. Also, like to workout, read and love spending time in New York City. I have developed a keen interest in technology and how it can help companies and individuals become more efficient and competitive. Heard a good one the other day “Five years from now, the only two things that will make us different are the people we’ve interacted with and the things we’ve read.” Very compelling thought.
Other Endeavors - I serve on the board of a fine organization called Catholic Leadership Institute (CLI). CLI’s goal is to help teach leadership and other management skills to priests and laypersons in dioceses around the country. http://www.catholicleaders.org/about.aspx
On the board of the Johnny Mac Soldiers Fund, I help veterans and their spouses and children who need assistance furthering their education.
Finally, I’m on the board of the Jackie Robinson Foundation, a superb group that helps deserving minority students fund college and prepare for life after school. http://www.jackierobinson.org/about/board.php
A few facts about me some might not know - I’ve stuttered for as long as I can remember. It doesn’t bother me as much as it once did. As Popeye said, “I am who I am and that’s all that I am.” One of my bucket list items is to run a marathon. I quit drinking alcohol cold turkey the day after the Breeder’s Cup in 2006 (a great decision).
Terry FinleyPresident & CEO