Dr. Jennifer Rice is a Cowgirl Catalyst Award Recipients in 2023

For Women in Rodeo Month, The Breakaway Roping Journal awarded the Cowgirl Catalyst: Way of Life Award to Dr. Jennifer Rice for epitomizing the value of women in rodeo and their skills inside and outside the arena.

Dr. Jennifer Rice with a solid bell catch in Round 1 at Cheyenne Frontier Days in 2023. | Jackie Jensen

The Breakaway Roping Journal is delighted to announce Dr. Jennifer Rice is a first-year recipient of the Cowgirl Catalyst Awards—a series of Women in Rodeo Month awards designed to recognize the people and organizations that support Women in Rodeo.

Dr. Jennifer Rice is the chosen recipient of the Way of Life Cowgirl Catalyst Award. Inspired by Resistol’s commitment to “live it every day,” the Way of Life Award recognizes the person or entity that embodies and epitomizes the depth of field that characterizes the talent and skill possessed by Women in Rodeo.

In the day to day, Dr. Rice is the Chief of Medicine at Johnson County Healthcare in Buffalo, Wyoming, who provides multi-faceted medical care for patients of all ages and maladies. She’s also a mom to two daughters and, when feasible, a ProRodeo breakaway roper and barrel racer. Despite all odds, Rice was able to make the breakaway at Cheyenne Frontier Days in July where, as she waited to make her run while the steer wrestling wrapped up, she was called to put her emergency medical training to use.

Bulldogger Ben Kilburg had just been in a freak accident where a hoof strike from his hazer’s horse left him bleeding and unconscious in the arena dirt. Rice pitched her reins to a fellow competitor and ran into the arena. She stabilized Kilburg’s head and neck while directing the team of steer wrestlers who had gathered to assist and, together, they sent Kilburg off with emergency responders to the hospital, where he was able to get the care he needed.

“Along with Dr. Rice, I will never be able to thank any of you enough for what you did for me in that arena,” Kilburg said on Facebook a few days after coming out of his medically induced coma. “You all are heroes.”

After loading Kilburn into the ambulance, Rice washed her hands, found her horse, and again prepared for her breakaway run.

The Breakaway Roping Journal finds Dr. Rice a perfect recipient of the Way of Life Cowgirl Catalyst Award because she exemplifies the multi-faceted nature of countless Women in Rodeo and the cross-section where their professional careers meet their professional rodeo endeavors.   

To Dr. Rice, we congratulate you and thank you, sincerely.

About the Cowgirl Catalyst Awards:

Women in Rodeo Month 2023 marks the introduction of The Breakaway Roping Journal’s Cowgirl Catalyst Awards. Throughout the month, we will be announcing a total of five Cowgirl Catalyst Awards and their recipients. The awards are inspired by the Women in Rodeo Month sponsors—R. Watson BootsMane ‘n Tail and Resistol—who make it possible for The Breakaway Roping JournalBarrelRacing.comThe Team Roping Journal and CalfRoping.com to dedicate a full month of coverage to the people and organizations behind the expansive growth in women’s rodeo and the Western industry.

About The Breakaway Roping Journal:

The Breakaway Roping Journal provides professional coverage of the athletes, horses, gear and events driving the exponential growth in the sport of breakaway. It is home to “The Breakaway Breakdown” podcast and a sister brand to The Team Roping Journal, BarrelRacing.com, CalfRoping.com, Roping.com and more under the ownership of Equine Network, which provides the equine community with best-in-class competitions, content, products and services.