February 7, 2023
Having had the opportunity to assess additional information, verify the facts, and fully understand the information recently published concerning the crimes of Elliott Higgins, the organizational membership of the International Horn Competition of America wishes to offer further clarity and important facts concerning the matter and the ongoing nature of the competition.
Everyone within the organizational structure of the International Horn Competition of America, currently or historically, was shocked by the news detailing the crimes of Elliott Higgins. No one in the organization, currently or historically, had any information (suggested, factual, or otherwise) that would have led to recognition of Elliott Higgins’ ongoing criminal activity. Detailed evidence, gathered by multiple law enforcement agencies supports the fact that Higgins’ heinous crimes had no direct association of any kind with the IHCA and its sponsored events, other than connections of geography and timing. The abhorrent atrocities committed by Elliott Higgins were the independent acts of a sick and deviant individual.
No one associated with the International Horn Competition of America, currently or historically, shares any direct association with Elliott Higgins. Although one member of the current organizational staff shares the last name Higgins, there is no direct or tangential relationship of any kind, nor has there been. This is a random coincidence.
Everyone associated with the IHCA strongly condemns Higgins’ crimes, and deeply regrets that he had any historical association with the organization. But the actions of a single deviant individual should not change or color the tremendous benefit that has come from a long series of IHCA events held over many decades that have served the international horn community in many positive ways.
Moving forward, this extremely difficult and trying moment in the organization's history has provided opportunity for appropriate reflection, assessment, and proactive planning for the future. Change and evolution, reflective of 21st century norms will be addressed. The IHCA stands committed to making appropriate changes regarding all aspects of its structure that will be fully reflective of, and inclusive of, all members of the greater international horn community that we wish to serve.
This evolution and change is already underway as evidenced in the most recent competition conducted in August of 2022. Fifty eight percent of adjudicators participating across both divisions of that competition were female. (Not chosen because they were female, but because they were highly qualified and made strong contributions to the competition).
Continued evolution in the administrative and organizational structure will be a priority as we move into the future. The IHCA will accurately reflect our greater horn community.
The IHCA has provided a valuable service to the international horn community for many decades. The primary and singular focus of the organization has been and remains, the continuation of that ongoing legacy.