Ride With Pride serves riders in the greater Augusta County area who have physical, emotional, & developmental special needs with a wide range of therapeutic equine activities. We are able to provide this invaluable service to the community through charitable donations.
Since it was founded in 1989, Ride With Pride has provided services to about 150 therapeutic riders each year.
Our riders have represented more than 8 community groups including foster care, public schools, the
youth shelter, and Veterans.
Ride With Pride Board of Directors
Laura Martlock (President)
Laura has been a riding instructor and trainer for 35 years. She teaches Balanced Seat riding, Dressage, Hunter/Jumper, Eventing, Trail Riding skills and Orienteering both at her place, Wildwood Farm, as well as at clients’ homes in Augusta County. She has also been on the Virginia Horse Council for more than 5 years. Laura has been involved with Ride With Pride in one capacity or another for 23 years, including instructing, Volunteer Coordinator, special events coordinator, and board member.
Allison Bagley (Vice-President)
Allison Bagley, is a graduate from Iowa State University with a B.S. and M.S. in Animal Science. Following graduation in 2003, she has worked for multiple businesses in agricultural marketing, including the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and Streetmarc Advertising & Marketing. Allison recently joined the Administrative Department at Augusta Co-op in Staunton, VA and is responsible for marketing, advertising, public relations and communications. Currently, she resides in Swoope where she and her husband raise cattle with their two daughters.
Alisa Fernez (Secretary)
“I am a native of Augusta County. I graduated from Virginia Wesleyan College with degrees in English and Theater, and have written a book, a play and two screenplays, and am currently writing my third screenplay. I first became involved in RWP as the parent of a student, then as a volunteer, before being invited to serve on the Board several years ago. Shortly after joining the Board I began serving as Secretary, an office I still hold. I have witnessed many times the positive impact RWP has on those involved, and feel fortunate and honored to be part of this wonderful organization.”
Sue Guyer (Treasurer)
Sue Guyer has been living in Augusta County since 2003 having moved here from Bridgehampton Long Island New York with her husband of 48 years. She is a retired bookkeeper looking for something to do in her spare time when she heard that RWP was looking for a treasurer. Although Sue, a daughter and wife of farmers, does not have experience with horses, she loves them and looks forward to working with the group. She has been involved in many community organizations including Girl Scouts, 4H, The Bridgehampton Historical Society, Habit for Humanity, REACT, and is currently the secretary for their home owners association and the statistician for Stuarts Draft Horseshoe Club. “I needed something to do with my spare time and think this is a perfect fit. I am delighted to have joined this wonderful group”
“I have been giving riding lessons for beginners through advanced to adults and children at their farm or ours. I love teaching people how to work with their horses, whether they show or trail ride, it’s all about communication. I love to show in combined training, foxhunting and a sport called TREC, which involves map orienteering and obstacles.
I have been more involved with RWP for the past couple of years and have seen how it helps people of all ages overcoming their difficulties and makes them mental and physically stronger.”
Dr. Julia Hecking
Dr. Julia Hecking is a local veterinarian with the Blue Ridge Equine Clinic. She received her Undergraduate at Virginia Tech and moved to the University of Minnesota to complete her DVM. She is now a Federation Equestrian Internationale(FEI) veterinarian, a member of the American Association of Equine Practitioners, and Vice President of the Virginia Association of Equine Practitioners. She has been on the Ride With Pride board for 2 years and assists with organizing events and assisting in the veterinary care of the Ride With Pride horses. She lives in Goshen and enjoys eventing and fox hunting with her horse Cody
Annie is a graduate of the University of Miami School of Architecture and relocated to Staunton to join Frazier Associates in 2005, where she works as an architect specializing in residential design with a focus on historic preservation and traditional new construction. Annie is a native of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, whose journey to the Shenandoah Valley included stops in the United Kingdom, Florida, and Pennsylvania. In all of these places, her involvement with horses contributed to her belief in the therapeutic magic of horses. She was thrilled to join the board of Ride With Pride in 2020. She lives in Staunton with her daughter and owns several active and retired horses.