Diana Pinones

“Diana Pinones is a hero on a daily basis. We all know that working at the racetrack is tough and that the social situations are even tougher, but no matter the scenario or the need is for any Racetrack employee, Diana is always available and willing to help. Her family works at the track including her father and her husband. She grew up around there and treats everyone as her family. She answers calls all hours of the day for riders and backstretch employees if they need help with medical care, help with payments, prescriptions, mental health issues and much more. She helps those that are down and is always a friendly face. Everyone knows her and seeing her smile in the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association office or on the backstretch is comforting. She takes many elders under her wing and has helped numerous cancer patients get the help they need. Diana’s compassion is unmatched, and on many occasions she goes to the hospital to help translate and visit backstretch workers or riders who are in a hospital that do not provide adequate care to Spanish-speaking patients. When riders have injuries, they often are confused and overwhelmed by the system. She makes sure they know where they are supposed to go, gets records, works with worker’s compensation and helps the riders get their medical bills appropriately handled. They get care and are well taken care of in difficult situations because she goes the extra mile, every single time. Maryland racetracks are the first in the United States to implement a concussion protocol and are at the forefront of jockey health. We also have an outstanding clinic for backstretch workers including a yearly free health clinic. We continue to strive to do more and more, but while I get most of the recognition, Diana is my backbone. Her organizational skills and preparation, without even asking most of the time, are really the reasons our horsemen’s health program is so successful! On top of all of that, she helps organize toy drive for Christmas, scholarship program, activities for workers, holiday dinners and much more. Even more impressive is that she is currently going to school while working and caring for her daughter, parents and husband. She wants to further her education so that she can be a nurse but still wants to take care of her racetrack community. She doesn’t need a new job, and doesn’t plan to work anywhere else, she just wants to know more to better serve other. She is the most selfless person I know. Speaking of awards, she is constantly finding ways to recognize backstretch workers. She is an excellent candidate for SheHero recognition, and she is my personal hero.”

         Dr. Kelly Ryan, Primary Care Physician at Maryland Racetracks

“Diana is a very special woman who has been very helpful, not only for me but for all of us at the racetrack. She is always helping us in different ways, calling companies, translating for those who need help, etc. Thanks Diana, I will be forever grateful.”

         Victor Carrasco, Jockey

“Diana manages the MedStar medical clinic which provides free medical services to backstretch workers and jockeys. In addition to this big job, she provides other social services as needed to backstretch workers. She takes calls at home when someone is in need, translates for co-workers and anyone else at the track that needs her and always keeps the needs of our backstretch workers paramount. An absolute advocate for those working in the racing industry, she regularly speaks up for their needs at meetings and puts forth extra effort to make a difference. Diana also jumps in and supports her co-workers in the racing industry with projects and events regularly…especially if they involve aftercare. Many people in many different positions are touched by Diana’s dedication. In addition to her working for the MTHA for the past  years , her father and husband are grooms and her mother used to work at the track too. The track community is her life and we are all very lucky to have her working here.”

         Jessica Hammond, Beyond The Wire

“Hero is not strong enough of a word for the work Diana does for the entire backstretch community. She truly is the mother hen of the racetrack and the glue that holds the entire Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association team together. Diana works 24-7 taking care of the needs of the backstretch as the Manager of the Horsemen’s Health System and has saved numerous lives from her selfless commitment to the health and welfare of our workers.”

         David Richardson, Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association