Our Board of Directors ensures that we are delivering on the organization’s mission and values. To get in touch with a board member please call the ELCR office at 859-455-8383.
Ken Haddad, President
An avid fox hunter and trail rider, Ken recently retired as Executive Director of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. In that role he was responsible for the management of over 5 million acres of Florida public and private lands and served on the state council that guided the purchase of $300 million worth of public lands annually. He also served as member of the state lands Acquisition and Restoration Council; Chairman of the Science Coordinating Group of the Everglades Restoration Task Force; and president of the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. He is a current board member of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and the Wildlife Foundation of Florida.
Ken will contribute greatly to ELCR’s ability to be the horseman’s resource on recreational use issues at the state level. He has firsthand understanding of the myriad of issues surrounding equestrian access on public and private lands including public game lands.
Dale Brown, Teasurer
Dale Brown is currently a Vice President at ServiceNow, a San Diego/San Jose-based leading provider of cloud-based services to automate enterprise IT operations. Dan previously was the Vice President of Finance at Data Domain, which was acquired by EMC Corporation in July 2009, from January 2006 to December 2011. Prior to that he worked with major companies in the Silicon Valley and other parts of the country.
Dale is a CPA and has worked with non-profits in his past life, one of which was Path, International, where he served on the Board and Finance Committee. Dale brings over 25 years of finance and accounting experience to the ELCR board. His goal is to assist and equip non-profits for the ever changing world of regulatory issues, audits and reporting to donors and government regulatory departments. He greatly appreciates the efforts of ELCR to educate others on the dangers of the loss of open land and is looking forward to working on the ELCR Board and Finance Committee in the coming years.
A lifelong horseman, Robert Banner grew up in Tennessee foxhunting, showing hunters and jumpers, and riding in owner/rider timber races. After graduating from Vanderbilt University in 1980, he began a career in equine publishing. He spent his first 5 years at The Horsemen’s Journal (a national racing magazine,) then 5 years as Ad Director of EQUUS, (the leading national horse care magazine,) and ended his publishing years as Publisher of The Chronicle of The Horse, (a leading national newsweekly) for 18 years.
For the last 10 years, he has served as President of Great Meadow Foundation in The Plains, VA, a 501(c)(3) non-profit with a mission to “preserve open space for equestrian and community service.” During that period, he has doubled the land holdings of Great Meadow and built a world-class all-weather arena that today hosts the first FEI Eventing Nations Cup in America. Construction complete, he placed a conservation easement on the property to protect it in perpetuity. Banner continues to fox hunt and show jump avidly. His life in the Piedmont Valley of Virginia is dedicated to protecting it for the equestrian activity we all embrace.
Colby grew up in a small Pennsylvania community bordering 2,000 acres of accessible state game lands. She quickly learned how lucky she was to have access to such open land. She also learned that not all users of the land acted as responsible stewards, which threatened the health of and access to that land for everyone. Colby became a supporter of responsible trail maintenance and advocacy, and she continues to support land conservation for equestrian use in her position as an ELCR board member.
In addition to being an outdoor enthusiast and active three-day eventer, Colby is also Vice President of Marketing at SmartPakTM. SmartPak is a rapidly growing company made famous by its patented single-dose supplements custom packed for individual customers. It is also an environmentally-savvy company that is working hard to minimize its impact on the planet by following the “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” philosophy of conservation.
As principal of Blackburn Architects, P.C., John Blackburn has over 35 years of experience in the practice of architecture. He is responsible for the overall firm management. His award-winning designs include a full range of project types and services, from programming, existing facility evaluation, and master planning to new construction, adaptive reuse, and historic preservation.
In the field of renovation and restoration, John has a special sensitivity for historic structures and an interest in the adaptive reuse of existing structures for new uses. His conversions have garnered awards from the AIA and Southern Living magazine. Licensed in more than 25 states, John has experience working with differing building types, building codes, and historic preservation requirements.
John’s experience in equestrian architecture positions him as a leader in the niche. His equestrian work, which encompasses more than 160 projects, ranges from polo barns to thoroughbred and training facilities to therapeutic riding centers: all of which employ key principles of passive design to create highly functional, sustainable facilities that nurture, inspire, and protect both owner and horse.
As a native Texan, Gary earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Colorado State University, where he was on its champion horse judging teams and which he later coached. He returned to CSU from 2010 through 2013, serving as the Industry Outreach and Liaison Director for the Equine Sciences Program. He managed its Legends of Ranching Performance Horse Sale, taught classes associated with the sale, advised students, and promoted CSU’s Equine Sciences program to the horse industry across the country.
Gary is a Certified Association Executive through the American Society of Association Executives. Now serving as the Commissioner and CEO of the National Reining Horse Association, his experience encompasses a broad spectrum of the horse industry, and includes 10 years as Executive Director of the American Association of Equine Practitioners, as well as executive positions with The Jockey Club, the American Quarter Horse Association and the Arabian Horse Trust. In 2016, Gary was awarded the Equine Industry Vision Award, presented by Zoetis in partnership with the American Horse Publications. The prestigious award recognizes ingenuity and service, and innovation across the equine industry.
Gary has traveled the world working on equine projects involving veterinary, welfare, publishing, studbook, and racing endeavors.
On a personal note, Gary has been involved hands-on with horses for his entire life and is a member of the renowned Roundup Riders of the Rockies. All four daughters have shown horses and have been involved with 4-H, U.S. Pony Club, and AQHA youth activities. Gary and his wife, author Marian Carpenter, also boast three grandchildren.
Dawn Davis currently resides in the prominent equestrian community of Barrington Hills, Ill., where she and her husband, J.R., preside over Barrington Hills Farm. They are both avidly devoted to preserving land for horses in the village of Barrington Hills. Dawn and J.R. are actively involved in equine rescue efforts in the Chicago area through their alliance with HARPS (Hooved Animal Rescue & Protection Society). Ms. Davis is Vice Chairman of Davis Bancorp and also contributes time to many other civic duties, including serving as director of the Chicago Zoological Society (Brookfield Zoo), Chicago Crime Commission, Chicago Cultural Mile, and the Smith Museum of Stained Glass and American Art.
Peter is a lifelong resident of the Worthington Valley in Baltimore County Maryland, less than twenty miles from downtown Baltimore.
In 1998, he joined the Board of Directors of the Valleys Planning Council (VPC), an organization founded in 1962 to plan and manage the pressures of development in the rural portion of Baltimore County. Since 2005, he has served as President.
Since 2002, he has been President and Race Director for the Grand National Steeplechase Association, an historic steeplechase event in Baltimore County first run in 1898. He currently serves as Secretary of the Maryland Steeplechase Association and has served in the past as Secretary of the National Steeplechase Association.
Peter and his family have a farm in the area where they combine their love of open space and horses.
Susan was originally elected to the ELCR Board of Directors in 2010 and served as Vice President in 2011, and President in 2012-2014.
Susan has over 20 years of experience in the equine publishing industry. She served as Executive Vice President at Fleet Street and then as Vice President and Group Publishing Director of Source Interlink Media’s Equine Network. During her time with those companies she was responsible for several well-known equine magazines – including EQUUS, Horse & Rider, Practical Horseman, and Dressage Today – as well as a book division and the web sites EquiSearch.com, equine.com and EquiShopper.com. Susan currently works as a consultant with Active Interest Media, a special interest media company that purchased the Equine Network from Source Interlink in 2010.
“My years as a horse owner and equine industry professional have shown me the importance of ensuring that future generations can enjoy horses and the equestrian lifestyle.”
Susan’s equine endeavors are not limited to her employment. She has also served as President of American Horse Publications and on the Board of Trustees of the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association. She is also currently on the board of the Horse and Humans Research Foundation and is chairman of the US Hunter Jumper Association Marketing Committee.
Libbie is a life-long horse lover, starting in 1961 with organizing a fan club devoted to Derby winner Carry Back. She claims to be a mosey-along rider. A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, she has worn various career hats including art gallery director, school teacher, social worker and founder of Johnson-Powell Public Relations Inc. and Johnson-Powell Lecture Group. Libbie is currently serving as the Economic Tourism Director for Polk County, NC.
As one who believes that “service is the rent you pay,” Libbie has been involved in her communities serving in various volunteer positions with Community Development, Travel and Tourism, Planning and Zoning, PTA, Planned Parenthood and Food Rescue.
In equestrian circles, past and present memberships include American Horse Council, North Carolina Horse Council, North Carolina Dressage and Combined Training Association, United States Dressage Federation, United States Eventing Association, United States Equestrian Federation, Foothills Riding Club, Foothills Equestrian Trails Association, North Carolina Horse Protection Society, Cardinal II Pony Club and River Valley Pony Club. Currently, Libbie serves on the Board of Directors for the United States Pony Club. She is also involved in implementing and hosting the first national symposium on Equine Economics for spring 2007.
On the home front, Libbie and husband Jerry are parents of three grown children. They share Far Side Farm in Tryon, NC with a collection of middle-aged horses, motley dogs, and moody cats.
Robin is a lifelong philanthropist and actively strives to support and promote various humanitarian causes. Her tireless involvement with the United States Pony Club (USPC) began in 1980, stemming from her daughters interest in horses and membership with the Jackson Hole Pony Club, (WY). She held many leadership positions over the years and in 2009 her dedication was recognized when she was chosen to receive the USPC Founders Award; a prestigious honor that’s presented each year to a person who has made a significant contribution over a period of 20 years.
In 1993 Robin joined forces with two other women to form the Jackson Hole Therapeutic Riding Association (JHTRA) to advance the therapeutic value of horses in the area. In 1998 a new arena was built and named the Robin Lightner Arena. The program continues to grow under Robin’s continued guidance as the Founding Director. Robin also authored a children’s book, “Dasher’s Lucky Shoe”, and dedicated all proceeds to the JHTRA.
Robin and her husband, Sam, are committed to land conservation efforts on both the local and national level. The couple has a home in Wyoming and actively supports the Jackson Hole Land Trust and a home in Lexington, Kentucky, where they’re involved with the Bluegrass Conservancy; a nonprofit land trust that serves to protect the Inner Bluegrass Region of Kentucky through land conservation for future generations. On the national front Robin and Sam support the Land Trust Alliance (LTA), an organization that works to save the places people love by strengthening land conservation across the country.
Robin and Sam have a son, Sam Jr., a daughter, Cammy, and two granddaughters, Isabel and Corinne.
Dorothy (“Dot”) Moyer was raised on a large cattle farm in Charlottesville, Virginia. Riding, foxhunting, boarding and training horses and showing 4-H steers, she developed a lifelong interest in horses, agriculture and nature. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, she kept her OTT TB in Wissahickon Park in Philadelphia, and learned about the challenges of keeping horses in a city environment. In 1990, her family relocated to Flat Rock, North Carolina. When the equestrian trails were built over there, she moved down the mountain to the Tryon area, where she met people from around the country also looking for places to ride and keep their horses.
Dot has represented and served on the boards of many community-based nonprofits during her career. Now retired, she focuses her efforts on preserving land and equestrian access. She is an active member of Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy, the Polk County Soil and Water District Advisory Committee, and previously an active member of the Pacolet Area Conservancy, serving on its Land Committee. She has served on the Board of the Foothills Equestrian Trails Association, and focuses on its easement program to protect the trails.
D. Craig Barnett, D.V.M.
Dr. D. Craig Barnett has been a horse owner and equine enthusiast his entire life. After receiving his doctorate of veterinary medicine from the University of Missouri, he owned an equine/small animal veterinary practice in Spring Hill, KS. Several years later he started his industry career as an equine technical services veterinarian in the animal health pharmaceutical industry. He is currently the director of the Merck Animal Health equine veterinary technical services team.
Barnett is actively involved in many aspects of the equine industry. He currently is on the Kansas Horse Council Board of Directors, a member of the American Horse Council Health & Regulatory Committee, the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) Infectious Disease Committee, Moderator of the AAEP Infectious Disease Rounds, Chair of the AAEP Serology Task Force, and is the AAEP representative on the American Veterinary Medical Association Clinical Practitioners Advisory Committee.
In addition to his veterinary work, Barnett also enjoys working with horses in his free time. Barnett boards several retired, senior horses on his ranch in Paola and enjoys driving a wagon team and trail riding as often as he can.
After 42 years in the Thoroughbred business and having been involved in the development and operation of Three Chimney’s Farm for 30 years, Dan has earned a reputation for integrity and knowledge of every aspect of the industry. Dan has developed strong relationships with people in all aspects of the business and is uniquely qualified as a consultant to help you identify your goals, develop a business plan, and to help you select the most appropriate farm, trainer, agent, veterinarian, attorney, accounting or other services based on your goals, budget and personality. All of these services are on a fee basis and with no commissions and no incentive to sell you anything.
Additionally, Dan offers a tremendous resource for those already in the industry to solve problems or manage projects. He has advised on numerous matters, including farm layout and design, personnel issues, head hunting, audits of systems and procedures, expense reduction, downsizing and dispersing, and has served as expert witness in legal disputes.
Melanie Peterson-Ramey resides in Wellington, FL and Lexington, KY where she practices real estate and operates a sport horse farm with her husband. She is a graduate of Florida Atlantic University with a bachelor’s degree in Geography, Environmental Resource Analysis and a GIS Certificate. She also co-authored an informational booklet called “Agricultural Best Management Practices in South Florida” while a Marshall Fellow during her time at FAU. Melanie works at Douglas Elliman in Florida as well as holding her license in Kentucky with
Biederman Real Estate. she also holds her Insurance license and writes equine mortality, major medical, and farm policies for Jarvis Insurance.
Ramey served as Vice Chair of Palm Beach Soil and Water Conservation District for 7 years, the Loxahatchee River Coordinating Council for 5 years, the Florida Farm Bureau Equine Advisory Committee for 10 years, was a Florida Farm Bureau Young Farmer and Rancher, served on the Western Palm Beach County Farm Bureau board for several years, and a past board member of the Children’s Healing Institute. Melanie was a professional horse trainer for 20 years before shifting gears to equestrian real estate.
From 2014-2019, Melanie served on the South Florida Water Management District as an at-large member for an area that includes St. Lucie, Martin, Palm Beach, Broward, Miami-Dade, and Monroe counties. She was Vice Chair of the Board and Chaired the Project and Lands Committee and also served on the Lake Worth Lagoon Initiative. She spear-headed the complete restructuring of the public relations department as well as the website and email marketing campaigns in order to promote good, factual information directly to the public.
Ramey was also instrumental in the re-negotiation of the lease ofthe Arthur Marshall National Wildlife Refuge with the US Fish and Wildlife Service to expand and include more public access resulting in opening nearly 150,000 acres that had been restricted forover 50 years. Today, there are more people enjoying that land than ever before. Melanie believes in the conservation of natural resources and the use of public lands by their owners, the tax paying public. She is passionate about education of land use and public access so that we may preserve open space for the future.
Warren Wilson is a resident of Escondido, CA and President and CEO of California Horsetrader, a thriving niche horse publication and an award-winning media company serving the equestrian industry since 1990. Raised on a historic San Diego County homestead and with a publishing career largely devoted to the horse industry, Wilson has a broad perspective of the equine land conservancy landscape.
Wilson studied literature and writing at the University of California San Diego. Before California Horsetrader, Wilson’s publishing career began in newspapers. He was editor of his hometown weekly, the San Marcos Courier, at age 20. He moved on to a San Diego area morning daily, the Morning Press, first as Sports Editor before being named Managing Editor at age 26. In 1990, he purchased California Horsetrader magazine.
In 1997, he founded Horsetrader.com working with architects, engineers and developers to create an enterprise-level platform for advertisers to provide concurrent online exposure in sync with printed insertion orders. This led to the development of online delivery of content as well as web-based business systems for publishers that remain a daily part of companies nationwide. Today many American Horse Publications (AHP) member magazines, websites and corporate members use technology his team developed.
Wilson is well known and respected in the equine publishing world as both an innovator and an amazing collaborator. First appointed to the AHP Board of Directors in 1995, Wilson served as AHP President from 2000-2001. In his role as AHP President, he led numerous AHP workshops and panels on wide-ranging topics including editorial management, technology and business development.
In 2014, Wilson was honored with the AHP Champion Award and recognized for his 25 years in equine publishing that have provided technical innovations bridging the transition from print to Internet and for his collaboration in the industry. Today’s collaborations extend outside the print realm, as Wilson and the Horsetrader team also now work with non-publishing AHP members including trade shows and associations to engage their audiences with online and mobile marketplaces and video contests.
His childhood home, the Borden Homestead in San Marcos, CA, remains an active equestrian and agricultural enterprise. The 14-acre ranch is the home to his mother, Carolyn Read, a well known equine land use advocate and preservationist.