Spencer Roberson is an accomplished athlete and volunteer who made his international debut at the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019. The Special Olympics USA athlete swept gold every category of equestrian including dressage, English working trails, and English equitation.
Although this is Spencer’s first Special Olympics World Games, he has spent more than ten years competing on the elite equestrian circuit in his home state of Texas and across the United States. He has won two AQHA Congress Championships, multiple AQHA (American Quarter Horse Association), NSBA (National Snaffle Bit Association) and PHBA (Paint Horse Breeders Association) High Point and Reserve High Point Awards.
Spencer’s decorated career began at Stable Strides Farm, an organization that provides a positive place for people with disabilities—as well as retired and active duty veterans—to become more confident, independent, and competitive equestrians. When he is not in the arena, he volunteers 20 to 30 hours a week with Stable Strides Farm and supports riders of all abilities as they develop their equestrian skills.
“Spencer has probably done the most volunteering with the veterans program,” says Mandy Cleveland, Program Director at Stable Strides Farm. “He also volunteers at the barn helping our other riders get their horses ready…I teach about 25 riders and many times he is my only volunteer.”
Influenced by their experience and friendship with Spencer, some veterans were motivated to volunteer with Stable Strides Farm’s program for equestrians with intellectual disabilities.
“[The veterans] have begun volunteering in the program, and they have said that it makes them more aware of our [riders’] abilities instead of their disabilities,” Mandy continues. “They know how hard riding is, and after seeing our riders be successful, they have realized the talent that people with intellectual disabilities have.”
After a stunning performance at World Games, Spencer is excited to celebrate with his family and friends back home—but eager to top his gold medal performance at Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023.