MEET THE TEAM
Mike is a former collegiate and professional soccer coach, athletic administrator and senior sports executive with nearly 50 years of experience. He brings an entrepreneurial spirit to Saddleback Stables and manages the LLC similar to a professional sports franchise. Prior to his current position Moore was the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics at St Louis Community College at Forest Park, retiring in 2011 to manage the stables full time. He served as the inaugural President and CEO of the highly successful State Games of America, a national Olympic-style sports festival, held in the St Louis metropolitan region in 1999 and 2001. The Continental Basketball Association (CBA), at the time the official development league of the NBA, hired Mike to be their Director of Business Development and CBA Properties. Additionally, Mike served as President and CEO of the Southwestern Illinois Senior Olympic Games. He was employed by the Illinois Governor’s Council on Health and Physical Fitness, serving on the staff of Governor Jim Thompson and Governor Jim Edgar, responsible for helping plan and execute the Prairie State Games, Illinois’ largest amateur sports festival.
In 1987 Moore opened the Ball Park Sports Center, the first privately owned multi-sport complex in Southwestern Illinois. He was among the early group of coaching candidates to earn an “A” license from the United States Soccer Federation, in Olympic Valley, California. He coached soccer on the collegiate and professional level and served, for nearly 25 years, as a consultant and spokesperson for Nike’s Soccer Division…evaluating equipment and apparel, while conducting coaching clinics and player development camps throughout the Midwest. He is a graduate of Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville where he was a member of the first intercollegiate basketball team, under the direction of legendary NBA Hall of Fame player and coach, Harry Gallatin. Mikewas deeply honored to be inducted into the SIUE Athletics Hall of Fame…class of 2019. Moore currently serves on the Illinois HBPA Board of Directors, the Bob Emig Foundation Board and the SIUE Red and Black Benefit committee. He is the longest standing member of the St Louis Sports Commission…and a past member of the St Louis University Sports Business Advisory Board, the SLU Entreprenurial program and the Illinois Equine Research and Promotions Board. Mike oversees the breeding, racing, sales and overall operation of Saddleback Stables Thoroughbreds LLC.
Maureen is the Queen and Founder of Saddleback Chocolates in O’Fallon, Illinois. It began as an equine-themed premium chocolate company in 2019, and quickly expanded to personalized specialty confections for corporate gifts, weddings and special functions. The small batch chocolates were a favorite of many stallion farms and horsemen in Lexington, Kentucky and have since expanded to an international clientele. In 2021 Maureen opened a second kitchen in St Louis, Missouri…where the Kizmet brand was launched to benefit medical marijuana patients. Previously she was the founder, and rights holder, of the Peabody Leaders in Education Program…which Peabody Energy introduced as its flagship outreach program in the United States. Over the past 40 years Maureen has had a successful career in event management and corporate development; most notably at St Louis University, where she was responsible for the funding campaign of Chaifetz Arena. Moorealso served as President and CEO of the Illinois Health and Sports Foundation, President of the National Congress of State Games and spearheaded legislation to create the inaugural State Games of America.
Maureen is currently the Chairwoman of the Bob Emig Foundation, past Vice-President of the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Foundation and Cardinal Glennon Hospital Foundation. In 2016 Maureen was recognized as a “Woman of Distinction” by the Missouri Athletic Club. A 1982 graduate of St Louis University, Moore played intercollegiate tennis and earned a BS in Business Administration, in both Accounting and Finance. Maureen and her husband, Michael, have two grown children, Partrick and Kyle. They reside on Saddleback Trail with their most loyal canine treasure, Saddleback Annie! Maureen coordinates all financial matters, including syndicate partnerships for Saddleback Stables Thoroughbreds LLC.
Michael is a dedicated equestrian and has been a valued staff member, along with his partner Kimmy Shipman. Both joined Saddleback Stables in the spring of 2021.
Michael is a lifelong resident of O’Fallon, Illinois…graduating from O’Fallon Township High School in 1998. Michael has been around horses his entire life…handling babies on a lunge line at nine years of age…learning from his grandfather, Leonard Ellis. He did not compete in traditional sports in school but gravitated toward rodeo. Michael competed in the 1998 Illinois High School Finals Rodeo…later earning a rodeo scholarship to Fort Scott Community College, Fort Scott, Kansas. He was a member of the team from 1998-2000…specializing in bulls and saddle broncs.
Michael and Kimmy are responsible for the daily care and feeding of the horses, as well as maintenance of the stables and pastures. They assist with foaling and the safekeeping of our broodmares, babies and retired racehorses. Michael has a keen eye for the weight, muscle tone and soundness of our equine athletes…and sees to their trimming and shoeing needs. Additionally, Michael serves as Assistant Starter and Paddock Blacksmith at FanDuel/Fairmount Racetrack. Michael and Kimmy bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the operation and have a genuine love for the horses.
James “Homer” Crafton
Bloodstock/Confirmation Consultant/Former Blacksmith
From ranch hand, PRCA saddle bronc rider, rodeo judge, thoroughbred owner, to “high performance” reigning horse trainer and competitor, Homer Crafton has done it all. The legendary dean of blacksmiths in the St Louis metropolitan region and Southwestern, Illinois has mentored many young horseshoers over the years. JL Crafton Horseshoeing handled all the trimming and shoeing needs of horses stabled on the Moore Family Farm for nearly 25 years. We rely on his knowledge and experience, and put faith in his ability to evaluate the legs and feet of our young runners and make any adjustments necessary, prior to them leaving the farm for their next level of training. Homer frequently travels with Mike to Lexington, Kentucky and Indiana…to evaluate stallion prospects and yearling sales offerings.