“Education is the most powerful weapon
    which you can use to change the world”

    – Nelson Mandela

    Our Goals

    The mission of the Bill Pickett Memorial Scholarship Fund is to provide scholarships to deserving students nationwide and provide educational opportunities!

    Who is Bill Pickett?

    Adapted from Black History Now

    1870-1932 Bill Pickett was the most famous African American rodeo performer of all time, and the first black cowboy movie star. He invented a way of controlling steers called “bulldogging,” and became a star attraction of wild west shows. Now known as “Steer Wrestling,” the event he created remains a popular part of rodeos to this day.

    Early Entrepreneur

    Pickett was born in Travis County, Texas, in 1870, the second of 13 children. His parents were emancipated slaves. As was common for African Americans in the region, he also had Cherokee ancestry. The young Pickett showed an interest in animals, and after finishing fifth grade, began working as a ranch hand. He learned the skills required for a cowboy including riding horses and roping and herding cattle, combined with a temperamental toughness and resilience. Pickett excelled in all regards and was soon giving exhibitions, passing a hat for donations. By 1888, the family had settled in southwestern Texas near Taylor, and that year, Pickett performed in the town’s first fair. He and his brothers founded their own horse-breaking business called Pickett Bros. Bronco Busters and Rough Riders Ass’n. Pickett became a deacon of the Baptist Church, joined the National Guard, and married Maggie Turner in 1890 with whom he would have nine children.

    We are excited to provide scholarships for deserving students nationally as they change the world.

    All applicants must submit applications and required paperwork by identified deadlines.

    Lu Vason Founder Scholarship

    Students graduating from high school or attending an accredited technical school, community college or four-year university in the United States.

    For 2022 we will award (2) Lu Vason Scholarships. Deadline to submit application is December 30, 2021.

    Bill Pickett Regional Scholarship

    Applications will only be accepted for the state where you reside and where the Bill Pickett Invitational Rodeo (BPIR) is presented.

    Regional Scholarships Deadlines:

    Denver, CO:
    December 30, 2021

    Ft. Worth, TX
    May 17, 2022

    Oakland, CA:
    July 1, 2022

    Los Angeles, CA:
    July 1, 2022

    Atlanta, GA:
    July 10, 2022

    Washington, DC:
    September 1, 2022

    Jesse Guillory Book Scholarship

    Recipient will receive a scholarship to help with the cost of books. Eligible students are those graduating from high school or attending an accredited technical school, community college or four-year university in the United States.

    Deadline is December 30, 2021.

    Sedgwick Haynes Memorial Calf Roping Fee Grant

    One BPIR Calf Roping contestant will receive a scholarship to cover calf roping fees for one year.

    Applications for consideration must be received by December 30, 2021

    For more information or questions:

    2617 Gray Mill Way,
    Loganville,GA 30052

    Office Phone: 303.373.1246
    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    2021 Bill Pickett Memorial Scholarship Fund.All rights reserved.