The Kent Association of Riding Therapy (KART) is pleased to announce the appointment of three new board members: Dawn Holmes, Erin Hopwood, and Justin Varga.
“Our board of directors is comprised of a dedicated team of individuals committed to carrying out KART’s mission to provide therapeutic horseback riding for local children and adults with special needs. We are excited to welcome these new members, bringing new energy, diverse experience, and talent to our board,” said Renée Bench, KART President.
Dawn Holmes has been a teacher for 30 years, working in public, private and outdoor education programs. She spent many summers on Nantucket working with the STAR program for children and young adults with special needs at the Sea Pony Farm, a therapeutic riding center. She taught at Radcliffe Creek School for 24 years providing instruction for children with learning differences. Currently, she is helping families with homeschooling.
Erin Hopwood is the mother of a KART student, so she knows KART first-hand and the benefits of the program. She has been providing legal counsel to the House of Delegates Health and Government Operations Committee since 2000. She and her family moved to Chestertown in 2002.
Justin Varga is currently an Assistant Vice President/Loan Officer at Chesapeake Bank and Trust. Prior to this position, he was an Account Officer and Portfolio Manager with JPMorgan. He earned his Bachelor of Science with a concentration in Finance from the University of Delaware. He brings his expertise in finance to the board.
The 2021 KART Board: Renée Bench, President; Marti Hawkins, VP; Tom Stevenson, Treasurer; Carolyn Sorge, Secretary; Bobbi Pippin, Corresponding Secretary; Phil Ake, Horses and Equipment; Alix Rickloff, Media Coordinator; KC Holland, Past President; and At Large Members: Kirsten Forney, Ann Murray, John Sjostrom, Wendy Coslett, Dawn Holmes, Erin Hopwood, and Justin Varga. Staff includes Executive Director, Theresa Snyder; PATH Certified Instructors, Marco Belperio and Jen Wayne; and Stable Management Instructor, Gen Kuster.
About KART. Now in their 37th year, the Kent Association of Riding Therapy, Inc. (KART) continues to provide therapeutic horseback riding for special needs children and adults. At no cost to the schools or families, KART serves 6 Kent County schools: High School, Middle School, and four Elementary Schools. Participants from Camp Fairlee, an Easter Seals respite camp in Kent County for special needs children and adults, join KART for a summer riding and horsemanship program. Benefits from therapeutic horseback riding and related activities include physical, cognitive and social improvements. KART, a 501c3 non-profit organization, a Premier Accredited Center of the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, Int. (PATH) and an Agency of United Way of Kent County, relies on fundraising and generous contributions from the community to support their programs. To learn more about KART or to volunteer, please visit their website www.kentridingtherapy.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To register or become a sponsor for the upcoming Golf Tournament Fundraiser, April 30 at Back Creek Golf Club, please visit their website www.kentridingtherapy.org/klassicgolf.
Letters to Editor
Doug Kelley says
What a wonderful organization. Animal therapy can be a true lifesaver for many individuals. The dedication of the volunteers, paid staff and board members are an inspiration.