At Horses Adaptive Riding and Therapy, we are committed to nonprofit excellence in service to our clients. We operate a fiscally responsible, operationally sound 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Our instructors, therapists, staff, volunteers are experienced, professional and qualified. Safety is our top priority. We are passionate about the services we provide.
Susanne J. Rosen – Executive Director
Susanne has over 35 years of experience in the nonprofit sector connecting people with special needs and animals. She was an assistance dog trainer, volunteer coordinator and development director at Canine Companions for Independence in California. In 1988, Sue and her sister Kerrill Knaus-Hardy, founded HORSES for the Physically Challenged in Oregon. During her 26 years there she trained therapy horses for persons with special needs; ran the first and only all access horse rental business at Silver Falls State Park; designed custom riding equipment; and took people with disabilities on equine pack trips into the wild and wilderness areas of Oregon. Susanne was the Executive Director at Adaptive Riding Institute which was the third largest equine therapy program in Oregon before assisting with the founding of Horses Adaptive Riding and Therapy.
Amber L. Schoeff – Program Coordinator, Head Instructor
Amber was ‘raised on the back of a horse’ and spent much of her youth showing horses and pleasure riding in the Cascade Range of Oregon. After attending college and starting a family she followed the path of her true passion uniting well trained horses with people who have physical, emotional and behavioral issues.She has recently participated in training with the American Hippotherapy Association as a horse handler who works as a team member with a licensed Occupational, Physical or Speech Therapist providing equine therapy. Growing up around special needs individuals, Amber has an amazing ability to relate to and develop lasting relationships with her clients and their families.
Tricia McCormick – Instructor
I am passionate about horses and helping people, so being part of Horses Adaptive Riding and Therapy is a perfect fit for me. Over the many years I have volunteered I have seen miraculous things happen. There is almost a mystical power horses have to help people whether their needs are physical, emotional, psychological, or spiritual. I am so excited to be part of Horses Adaptive Riding and Therapy. Their vision is to help every individual who has a desire to experience the special love horses give to us, regardless of any physical or financial limitations. How could I not be part of that?!
Mija Paris (Sims) – Instructor
Mija joined the Horses Adaptive Riding and Therapy team in May of 2017. Her background includes a Bachelor’s of Science degree from OSU, and 20 years of experience as an accomplished Dressage trainer/instructor. She is also a USDF Bronze medalist. Mija is the current president of the Mid Valley Chapter Oregon Dressage Society. Mija has been very instrumental in helping Horses Adaptive Riding and Therapy’s clients expand their independence and confidence.