2024-2026 PNER Presidency Term
As a dedicated attendee of the Pacific Northwest Endurance Rides for the past 11+ years, I am excited to announce my candidacy for the position of President. My journey with PNER has been one of passion, resilience, and most of all, a deep appreciation for its community.
Endurance riding has been much more than a sport to me; it has been a source of personal strength, and healing. Having overcome two cancer diagnoses in the time since becoming a member, I found solace and unwavering support within the PNER community. This journey deepened my commitment to endurance riding, igniting a desire to give back to this incredible group that stood by me during my most challenging times.
Alongside my supportive husband, we have traversed countless miles in competition but even more so in training, together experiencing the joy in facing challenges, and the beauty of the trail that endurance riding brings. Our shared love for this sport has created a bond that has not only strengthened our relationship which began at a PNER ride!! But also enriched our family life, and we eagerly anticipate the day our 5-year-old son joins us at the starting line at these adventurous rides, surrounded by our PNER community that has watched him grow.
I firmly believe that the cornerstone of PNER's success is its focus on education and teaching. Knowledge and understanding of both the sport and the horses that encompass this sport are vital for fostering a safe and enjoyable experience for riders, at all levels. As President, I aim to further enhance our educational initiatives, ensuring that every member has access to the resources and guidance needed to thrive in endurance riding.
Another aspect of PNER that I hold dear is the sense of community it fosters. The bonds formed while traveling down the trail are unique and profound. These shared experiences create lasting friendships and a supportive network that extends far beyond the trail. I am committed to nurturing this amazing community, ensuring it remains a welcoming and inclusive space for all who share our love for endurance riding.
My incredibly knowledgable friend running as PNER VP, Melissa Laws, brings with her 15 years of Veterinary experience before moving to the sunnier side of Oregon. She resides on a lovely farm with her endurance partner and husband, David Laws whom she also met at an endurance ride!
10 years ago at a Washington Ride, I met Melissa and her entire family, who were committed to supporting her, which made me appreciate both Melissa’s ability to surround herself with fellow horse enthusiasts, and her knack to recruit for devoted crew!!
With our shared appreciation for all things Equine health related, I knew we were going to be GREAT friends! Having Melissa's wealth of knowledge and endurance experience to turn to in a friend has been a tremendously humbling experience. She's already been an enormous benefit to PNER, volunteering every chance she gets, and donating time and energy to the PNER fundraiser ride.
With her kind heart, and steadfast determination to provide support to others which was invaluable during my cancer treatments, Melissa will no doubt be incredible support as Vice President to myself and our community!
Utilizing my experience as an Equine professional and extensive experience within the Sport Horse community for 20 years, combined with my personal journey in endurance riding, I am well-positioned to lead and represent our community within PNER. I am passionate about fostering a vibrant, supportive, and educational environment for all our members and look forward to the opportunity to serve as your President!
With an undergraduate degree in Biology from St. Louis University and a DVM from Washington State University, I have traveled around the world and have resided all over the United Stated including Manhattan, St. Louis, Nashville, and Portland. I was a practitioner at a mixed animal practice in Nashville for 7 years, then relocated to Portland where I owned a mobile small animal practice for the following 7 years.
Recently, David Laws and I have relocated to the Wallowa Mountains in Eastern Oregon to pursue our own outdoor adventure with horseback riding, cabin rental, and breeding Rocky Mountain Endurance Horses at our property, Quadrant 25.
Although I have been an avid outdoor and equine enthusiast for the last 20 years, I was introduced slowly to Endurance in the Southeast Region only in the last decade. Despite some difficult first rides without experience or mentorship, I was hooked! My whole life now revolves around the Endurance Ride Season and all the adventures it brings.
My entire family has also been pulled into Endurance by not only crewing; they can also be seen cooking at rides for volunteers, or creating meals at the PNER fundraisers. They are instrumental in my success in this sport!
After relocating from the Southeast to the Pacific Northwest in 2016, Alex Lewis was the first friend I met as she performed Equine Bodywork on my horse at the Klickitat Trek Endurance Ride. This should not come as a surprise to anyone who knows Alex. Her outgoing personality and kindness is the cornerstone of who she is and how she treats every individual at ride camp. Alex has also completely redefined the importance of equine body management for me in the last 7 years, as I strive to always do better for my equine family.
PNER and endurance riding has provided me with so many experiences (gratifying but humbling), a greater appreciation for true horsemanship, endless physical and personal growth, a generous extended family, and most importantly – my husband David!
In 2024 I would love the opportunity to support PNER by promoting membership, providing support to new riders, promoting convention, and most importantly, caring for our ride management.