Sandy, our head instructor and horse manager, is a Massachusetts licensed riding instructor and a certified instructor at the Registered level with PATH International.
Sandy has been riding, teaching, and competing since 1980 in many disciplines: combined training and dressage, western pleasure, polo, hunter/jumpers, and gymkhana. Sandy joined Equus in 2002 and served for 10 years as the assistant barn manager for Oakhollow Farm. She has also organized the Western Region's Special Olympics Equestrian Qualifying Event for many years. She has a BS in biology from the New York State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University. She worked as a veterinary technician at Greylock Animal Hospital for more than ten years.
Sandy lives in North Adams with her two cats, Sienna and Remington Steele.
Jenna has loved horses all her life. She began riding as an adult and learned to canter on Equus's very own Elvis. She began volunteering with Equus in 2009. In March 2013 she became a Massachusetts state licensed riding instructor, and in June 2013 she passed the tests at High Hopes to become a PATH International registered
Jenna earned a BA in psychology from MCLA in 2012, is currently pursuing her teaching license in early childhood education, and works as a one-on-one aide in the special needs department in the North Adams Regional School district.
Robin has been a PATH International Registered Instructor since 2010, having taken the on-site trainig course at High Hopes. She joined Equus at the start of 2013. Robin also teaches therapeutic riding at Shepard Meadows in Bristol, CT, and Hidden Acres in Naugatuck, CT.
A lifelong rider, her passions are working with horses and helping people, and she is dedicated to bringing the two together. She lives in Blandford, MA, with her husband. Having taught primarily in Connecticut, Robin is delighted to be working in her home state and is pursuing her MA riding instructor license.
Janet Renard, Program Director
Janet started riding only in 2003, but horsemanship became a passion, and once she began volunteering with Equus in 2009, she knew she'd found a calling. She is now a Massachusetts licensed riding instructor and, having apprenticed under Sandy and completed testing at High Hopes, a PATH International Registered Instructor.
In the summer of 2012, Janet became Program Director of Equus. Her early experience as a classroom teacher combined with her longtime work as a production specialist in book publishing prepared her for this role. She has a BA from Northwestern University and an MA in education from New York University. She loves stepping away from the paperwork to fill in as a volunteer horse leader or sidewalker and as a substitute instructor.
Her horse, Mardi Gras, lives at Emerald Glen Equestrian Center in Stephentown, NY.
Equus Founder: Marcia Gross
Marcia Gross, who along with her husband, Larry, owns Oakhollow Farm in Williamstown, MA, founded the Equus program in 1982 as a 4-H project. Marcia earned her advanced certification in therapeutic riding from the Cheff Therapeutic Riding Center in Michigan and served as the Equus Program Director for 30 years. In the fall of 2012, after three decades of generous support, Oakhollow Farm began scaling back, necessitating the Equus program's move to a new host barn. Marcia and Larry’s boundless dedication to the program will always have a place in our hearts.