Message from Past President Barbara Slade
Handing Over the Reigns of Between Horses and Humans
Horses are magical! I discovered that magic at age 5 when I walked through the woods behind my suburban home, and, much to my surprise and delight, found a barn with horses. That day began my lifelong love of horses, and I have spent nearly every day since then in the presence of these magnificent animals. I quickly learned the special bond that so often exists between horses and humans, especially children, and the joy that horses bring, as well as the values of responsibility, discipline, trust, cooperation and teamwork.
After graduating, I began my equestrian career in the disciplines known as hunters and jumpers. And for 5 years in my 20’s I was one of the few female jockeys at the thoroughbred racetrack. In 1985, to recuperate from an injury sustained at the track, I came to the Carson Valley, immediately fell in love with the area, and have lived here ever since. I returned to hunters and jumpers as an instructor, rider, trainer and competitor.
11 years ago, after reading about the suicide of a youngster here, I decided that I needed to do what I could to help local children and young adults facing difficult and challenging life situations. It was time for me to give back, to share the joy and values that horses had brought to me. And so it began, in 2008, when I choose to end my competitive show career, and start Between Horses and Humans.
During this season of Thanksgiving, I am thankful to all the volunteers and supporters of BHH, who over the years have defined philanthropy in many ways – the sharing of unconditional love and laughter, of time, energy and hard work, of heartfelt passion and compassion, of expertise and wisdom, along with the many financial supporters who believed in our mission.
And now I am thankful and pleased to announce that after 11 years as president of Between Horses and Humans I am handing over the reins to our new president, Bayan Lewis. Bayan comes with lots of energy, experience, talents, and a fresh perspective for the continuance and sustainability of BHH. Bayan had 24 years with the U.S. Army, and 34 years with the LA Police Dept, retiring as Chief of Police.
I am excited to now have my focus mainly on the children and horses, and will remain as program director and head instructor.
My heart is full, giving thanks daily, and I'm delighted to be placing BHH in such good hands.