Wren Blae Zimmerman is a legally blind show jumper based in Lexington, KY. At 17 years old, Wren was diagnosed with a rare incurable eye disease called Stargardt's Macular Dystrophy, which has since led to blindness. Roughly 90% of people who are blind have some sort of usable vision and in Wren’s case, her central vision is totally blank and her peripheral vision is incredibly blurry. Not having the opportunity to ride growing up, but with a lifelong love of horses, it wasn't until after Wren lost her eyesight and graduated from college that she was able to start riding at a therapeutic riding center. Shortly after, Wren transitioned to a hunter/jumper trainer to pursue her lifelong dream of learning to jump horses.
In 2015 Wren began her work campaigning for the sport of Para Show Jumping to become an officially recognized discipline in the US and Canada (and ultimately, a Paralympic sport), with the goal of empowering growth, change, and equality within equestrian sport on both a national and international level by making it more inclusive and accessible, while creating resources and opportunities for riders with disabilities to participate in the jumping disciplines.
Wren relocated to Lexington in 2019 to train and compete more seriously and continue pushing the Para Show Jumping movement forward. Wren's personal goal is to become the first blind person to compete at the Grand Prix level — changing perceptions about people with disabilities, in particular the blind and visually impaired.
The founder of Para Show Jumping North America, Wren has been working with the governing bodies to continue progressing the PSJ movement and establishing the sport. Wren’s efforts to advocate for disability inclusion and accessibility have led to her role as an External Thought Leader on USEF's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Action Plan and as a member of USEF’s Adaptive Sport Committee.
Most recently, Wren organized the first Para Show Jumping demonstrations in North America, working closely with EEI, which were held at the 2022 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event, attended by a record 85,000+ spectators!