More About Dannielle
I started ATHA because, after over 8 years of volunteering for horse rescues, I was looking for somewhere to put all I had learned into where horses still had a great need to be rescued. With an 8-month racing season, our local Phoenix track has 1700-2100 horses coming from all over the country and Canada to compete. The chances a horse needs to retire from racing or needs somewhere to rehabilitate before learning a new career is very high. That was the niche that needed filling.
I gathered 9 friends who I knew were dedicated to horses and we began our Board. We submitted our request to the IRS and within 3 weeks we received our 501(c)(3) approval. After The Homestretch-Arizona began on July 25, 2011.
In my spare time, I like to go to movie theaters and be entertained by watching movies. It doesn’t matter if it is a drama, comedy, science fiction, or true story, as long as it is well-written and acted, I will enjoy it. (Horror pictures I avoid because that is not entertaining to me.)
Founder & President
I am inspired by acts of courage, wonders of nature, and people who have “against-all-odds” made great accomplishments.
I can't live without ... I was going to say “potatoes.” It seems the most perfect food, whether fried, mashed, baked or made in casseroles. But what I really can’t live without is 'sharing with others.'
When I first got married my husband thought when someone asked for something of me or I saw a need, he was doing me a favor by telling me it wasn’t my responsibility and to say ‘no.’ This went on for quite awhile until I realized how miserable I had become. I finally told him that I like to share. It makes me feel good about myself.
Soon after that conversation, he and I were in line at the grocery store and the lady in front of us with 3 young children bought maybe 4 items. One of her sons brought up a package of cookies. She looked in her wallet and explained to her children that they didn’t have enough money and they had bought what was needed. No child argued or even looked disappointed. All four started walking home together with their bag of groceries. I saw them walking together on the sidewalk while my husband and I were driving home. I looked in my wallet and saw I had a $20 bill. I asked my husband to pull over. I got out of the truck and approached the mom and told her I admired the job she was doing with her children. They were so respectful. I also told her I noticed money was a little tight for her, I had been there myself, and wanted to share what I had with her delightful family… that was a really good day for me.
‘Sharing’ gives me a feeling I can’t live without.
My credentials are:
Using the skills I have learned from every secular, educational and volunteer experience needed to run a rescue.
While in California I did office work in the fields of Public Health, Land Development, Insurance, and Law. I wanted a career change so I went to a community college and received an Associates of Arts in Sign Language Interpreting. I interpreted part time at the college, interpreting classes for deaf students. I then went on to receive my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Liberal Studies (as a prerequisite to becoming a teacher) from California State University Northridge.
We moved to Arizona and I continued to take classes at Arizona State University to become a Certified High School teacher. While waiting for a job, I worked at the Arizona House of Representatives as a secretary for one session.
I taught High School Business for 11 years—6 years at Trevor Browne High and 5 years at Camelback High School.
When my husband and I adopted an 8-year-old-daughter, I started my volunteering. I volunteered for 4 ½ years at a Therapeutic Riding Center. I was recruited to be the Barn Manager at a local horse rescue and worked there for 4 years.
On July 25, 2011, After The Homestretch-Arizona came to be with IRS #45-2897060. We currently have 4 Board members, 3 members on our Advisory Council, and 50+ volunteers. We have earned the Platinum Status from GuideStar, the monitoring agency for smaller non-profits. We have been accredited by the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance since 2015. We are now in a permanent location – a 5-acre ranch in North Phoenix.
A unique discovery:
I never used to believe in ‘things happen for a reason.’ I always felt we were given a brain to make decisions which resulted in things happening … until I noticed things were happening for a reason for our horses. For example:
Quetzel Green was rescued because of a phone number written on a napkin … just 3 days before he was going to be euthanized.
Brad’s Storm Time was foundering and we were faced with a decision to put him down … four days later, a lady gave me a business card for an alternative medical practitioner who was able to find a unique solution. He is now adopted and riding the trails.
Our lease was up on the ranch and we were running out of options for a new home for the horses… meanwhile, a friend referred me to a hay store where I just happened to meet a person who was getting ready to sell their ranch. It was perfect for our needs, so we bought it. And now our horses have a permanent home. Later, that friend called to apologize because she accidentally referred me to the wrong hay store.
More About Susan
I joined the ATHA Board because I have been volunteering for five years and felt it was time to be more involved.
In my spare time, I like to travel, go on cruises, and quilt.
I am inspired by people who work hard all their lives.
I can't live without friends and family.
My credentials are:
Owner/Operator of demolition and trucking company for 35 years.
An interesting fact about me is I lived without water and only on a catchment system for five years. It makes you realize how important water is.
Vice President &
Director of Operations
More About Beth
I joined the ATHA Board to further promote the organization through the website and digital communications. I was originally hired to update and manage the website but there was an immediate connection with Dannielle, the horses, and ATHA’s mission that I knew I wanted to be a part of this amazing operation as a volunteer.
In my spare time, I enjoy writing, reading, studying, and learning new things. Basically, I’m a nerd and quite proud of it!
I am inspired by people who overcome adversity while maintaining optimism. And I’m energized by conversations with deep thinkers who have an open mind and no hidden agenda.
I can’t live without laughter, my loved ones and our rescue dog, Maggie. She’s a silly and lovable Black Mouth Cur. Oh, and books! I definitely can’t live without books!
Secretary & Director of Marketing and Communications
My credentials are:
Entrepreneur since 1983 and I've built, managed and sold several businesses.
Currently own and operate two businesses – one with my husband (commercial foodservice equipment repair) and one on my own (web design and business consulting).
Served on the board of a public education foundation for 7 years.
“Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.”
This powerful quote by Helen Keller means so much to me. Without the dedicated and passionate volunteers who give so generously and freely of their time and resources, the success of this organization would not be possible.
More About Lysa
I joined the ATHA Board because it is my desire to connect more people with the spirit, heart, and talent of these special horses. Although I started riding quarter horses when I was 10, it was 20+ years later that I purchased my first Thoroughbred off the track from Turf Paradise. Three-year-old “Brumby” had the kindest eyes, a heckuva spook, and oodles of talent. Together, we have had the most marvelous adventures from Arizona to Virginia and back. We evented together through training level, and with braver people than me on his back, he made it to the advanced level in style. Brumby is now enjoying his well-deserved retirement on pasture with buddies in Camp Verde. My experience with Brumby, and with my second uber-talented and much loved OTTB and eventer “Razed,” opened my eyes to the spirit, heart, and athleticism of OTTBs, and I want to share that with others.
In my spare time, I like to ride, play tennis, and read.
Executive Director of Equine Management
I am inspired by people who accomplish great things by focusing on something important.
I can’t live without animals in my life. I’m a lifelong animal lover and wannabe veterinarian. In addition to our two retired horses, our family includes five rescue dogs and four rescue cats.
My credentials are:
BS in Advertising from ASU, and an MBA from University of Phoenix, and am a Certified Executive Coach.
25+year career in higher education including 15 years at the executive level in marketing and operations, helping to bring post-secondary education opportunities to nontraditional students.
Owned and managed a large horse boarding, training and rehabilitation facility in Middleburg VA for 9 years.
Owned (and sold) a pet sitting business (also in VA) that provided high-level care for dogs, cats, horses and other farm animals while their owners were traveling.
Served on the boards of two educational foundations
Volunteered as a foster parent for pets awaiting their forever homes
Assisted in feral cat TNR programs.
A special memory with Brumby:
I had the rare and lucky experience of deciding when I was going to ride Brumby for the last time so that he could officially retire at 19. He was dealing with small and mostly manageable aches and pains as he was getting older, but they were adding up.
For our last ride together, I decided to go cross country schooling with a group of friends. When we arrived at our destination and started to get saddled up, it was clear that he knew where he was and that he was going to get to do his most favorite thing in the whole world – run fast and jump things! His eyes lit up and mine teared up as we took off cantering around the rolling Virginia countryside. We sailed over the (smaller) jumps, ran through the water, and jumped over ditches.
When we were done, I sat on his back and cried like a child for at least 10 minutes – completely overwhelmed with all of the emotions at once and all of the memories this wonderful horse and I shared. Through my sobs, I heard one of the riders near me, who knew what was happening that day, say, “I want that kind of relationship with my horse.”
I truly wish that for everyone!
More About Jennifer
I joined the ATHA board to commit myself to the improvement of the OTTB racehorses.
After growing up around horses and competing in events, it had been too long. It was time to get back amongst the animals I love most.
After 20 years of working for the same corporate company, I was laid off…best thing that ever happened to me! I found myself with time to do whatever it is I wanted to do. So, I increased my volunteer hours at ATHA and became certified in Equine Massage Therapy.
When the board reached out and asked me to join, I was elated! While I am now back working in corporate travel, I am able to spend my free time helping these amazing horses adapt to life off the track and find forever homes.
In my spare time, you’ll find me amongst the horses. When I cannot be there, you will currently find me behind my mother’s old camera manual learning to improve my photography skills.
Director of Equine Management
I am inspired by artists - people who are doing what they love but have to put themselves "out there" in order to thrive.
I can't live without my small close knit family, my small group of true friends, and my truest furry friend, Mya.
My credentials are comprised of years of working with horses: English – 3-day event shows and Western – Barrel races/Poles /pleasure. I’ve received various awards, became a Certified Equine Massage Therapist, and I’m in the process of being certified for the Masterson Method Equine Bodywork Program.
I love using my intuition to strengthen my bond with the horses and learn to read them better to create the best relationship possible.
More About Tony
I joined the ATHA Board I had been volunteering for a while and was honored to be asked. I wanted to get more involved and contribute more to the incredible work we do.
In my spare time, I like to ride motorcycles and horses (but not at the same time), watch soccer, and I’m also a certified open water scuba diver.
I am inspired by our fantastic volunteers who give so selflessly their time and energy and the work we do for our magnificent horses.
I can't live without chocolate and quadruple shot latte (Self-confessed coffee snob - I roast my own coffee beans!)
My credentials are:
Originally from the UK, my family had a riding school in England so I have been around horses my whole life. I have been in the information technology field for 40 years, primarily in the entertainment industry. I came to the USA in 1997 and moved to Northern Arizona in 2005. I have been an entrepreneur and a restauranteur.
Director of Equine Management
I have a deep love for all animals. I have been fortunate to get up close and personal with lion cubs and cheetahs in Africa, sharks and sea turtles in the Caribbean, and I have two big dogs, a Newfoundland and a rescued Pyrenees/Anatolian mix.
As a young boy, my cousin’s hunter mare, Aquila, started my love for horses. It inspired me to do many great things over the years. I have been a groom for dressage horses in France, participated in riding therapy for the disabled, and fulfilled a childhood dream to be a cowboy, taking care of a herd of 65 Arabian horses and 100 head of pedigree British White cattle.
Nothing has given me more satisfaction than the work we do here at ATHA.