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Articles by category: Rider Stories

STAFF

Staff

Kristen Kallai


Program Manager
[email protected]

Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Kristen has always had a passion for horses. She moved to Santa Barbara in 2008 and made it her home. After being a stay-at-home mom for 4 years, she came to Hearts as a volunteer. Before long she found herself happily involved in the Hearts volunteer program most days of the week! And while the horses are what she initially came for, it was the people of Hearts that captured her heart. Kristen enjoys all types of athletics, especially Olympic weightlifting, as well as spending time at the beautiful beaches of Santa Barbara. 

Duane Harsh Hearts Riding Santa Barbara

Duane Harsh


Equine & Facilities Manager
[email protected]

Morgan Kastenek Hearts Riding Santa Barbara

Morgan Kastenek


Development & Marketing Manager
[email protected]

Morgan was born and raised in Chicago, IL. She moved to Santa Barbara in 2008 to attend UC Santa Barbara, where she earned a B.A. in Sociology. She has been working with different nonprofits in Santa Barbara since graduating from UCSB in 2012. Morgan grew up riding horses and is so happy to be a part of the Hearts team as development and marketing manager, where she can be around horses every day and help support an amazing organization! She is passionate about social media marketing and fundraising. She and her husband live in Santa Ynez, and have a beautiful son and two dogs.

Staff

Sarah Pugmire


Volunteer Manager 
PATH Intl. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor 
[email protected]

Sarah comes to Hearts with 8 years of riding experience and 3 years of experience working in therapeutic riding geared towards addressing mental health and behavioral disorders in children and young adults. Sarah is a PATH International Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor and Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning. She earned a Bachelors degree in Psychology and a Bachelors in Criminology, Law, and Society from UC Irvine and has an Associates degree in Visual Communications from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles. She lives in Ventura with her husband Tyler, an LA City fireman, and their German Shepherd/Husky mix named Chipper.

Shannon

Shannon McGraw


Veteran's Program Manager
[email protected]

Shannon McGraw is a retired US Marine Corps Captain who had a MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) as a Staff Judge Advocate and JAG Lawyer. She served in the Marines for 10 years primarily as a Human Rights Expert assigned to US Southern Command and Marine Corps Forces South. As a JAG lawyer, she helped assess and determine the legal status of unlawful enemy combatants and detainees in the Global War on Terror.

Since retiring, Shannon has become a full-time mom to an active and precocious 8-year-old and enjoys working with others in the field of Therapeutic Riding. Shannon is the lead instructor for the Hearts' Equine Services for Heroes Veterans program and also teaches riding lessons at the Santa Barbara Polo Club. She plays polo on the USMC Polo Team and at the Santa Barbara Polo Club

Alicia

Alicia D'anna


Barn Assistant  

Amanda Dwyer
PATH Intl. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor 

Lillian Luu Garcia
PATH Intl. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor

Calsie Kaihara
Therapeutic Riding Instructor, Summer Camp Instructor

Tina Seebach
PATH Intl. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor 

Diana Ferrari, M.A., L.M.F.T
EAGALA Certified Equine Assisted Psychotherapy

Photography by Emily Hart-Roberts

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