WPRA – An organization dedicated to promotion
The Women’s Professional Rodeo Association was formed in 1948 when 38 cowgirls came together in San Angelo, Texas, to create an organization dedicated to the promotion and advancement of women in the sport of rodeo.
The WPRA and their independence
Girl’s Rodeo Association (GRA) were ropers, bronc riders and barrel racers. They were fed up with a system, which did not grant them competitive opportunities in the arena and when it did, operated under unfair conditions. The GRA began with 74 original members with 60 approved contests and total payout of $29,000. In 1981, the GRA changed its name to the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association. It is the oldest women’s sports association in the country and the only one governed entirely by women. Today, the fast paced event of barrel racing dominates the activities of most WPRA members.
Promoting growth for Women in Rodeo
WPRA barrel racers compete for millions of dollars each year, culminating in 12 circuit finals rodeos held throughout the country, the Dodge National Circuit Finals Rodeo held in Pocatello, Idaho, in April and the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo held in Las Vegas each December. In addition to the traditional events, the WPRA has formed new programs to promote growth in the industry.
The WPRA . . . the past, present and future of women in rodeo!