Growing up I was the typical horse crazy kid who did once a week lessons at the local barn. I worked my way up to show groom from mucking stalls, cleaning tack and grooming for that chance to ride for an hour. When I hit college, I was fortunate enough to work for two national level competitors; one in the hunter/jumper world and the other a shortlisted Olympic eventing rider.
After experiencing a traumatic riding accident, a three year break and an amazing instructor, I was able to rebuild my confidence through her techniques. Through lots of hard work, dressage became my passion. Apprenticing for 3 years under several trainers and methods I was able to complete my certification and began teaching on my own. I also purchased Indy, my rescued Percheron Paint yearling. At 4, when she finally stopped growing enough and was ready to break, she started showing signs of Kissing Spine from a trauma induced spinal injury. Saddle fitting became a new adventure.
In 2010, I decided to leave corporate America and began saddle fitting for Schleese Saddlery of Toronto. My sales territory was Orlando to Key West, but I worked primarily with international level riders in Wellington, including members of the US and Canadian Olympic dressage teams.
Feeling the need to give back, I began volunteering for Hope Equine Rescue in Auburndale in 2012 and joined the Board of Directors in 2013. I saw a real need for owners to be educated in horsemanship and how important saddle fit was for horses recovering.
To fill this need in the Central Florida area, I formed Blackbird Equestrian, an independent teaching and saddle fitting company in 2014.