MEET

THE

BOARD

It takes a dedicated team to help ensure the continuing success of Medicine Horse. These individuals continue to offer their time and energy to help take Medicine Horse to the next level.

Julie Lobdell

Board Chair

Julie, a career entrepreneur, started her first company, Real Entertainment, at the age of 21. After many years in the entertainment business, she co-founded Bodacious Buns, a retail bakery and coffee-bar franchise with multiple locations in Southern California. In 1996 she moved to Colorado seeking a lifestyle change. A lifelong fitness enthusiast, she founded Peak Pilates®, a pilates equipment manufacturer and instructor training company. As an industry expert she spoke at many conferences and held multiple patents which she licensed to LifeFitness, the world’s largest manufacturer of exercise equipment.   A dedicated horsewoman and a previous Board member of Colorado Horse Rescue, Julie is also a Certified Skyhorse Equine Guided Education coach. Led to Medicine Horse by her belief in their mission and the desire to help the organization grow and flourish, she was elected to the Board in January 2019.

Nancy Hoopes

Board Secretary

Nancy has ridden and shown horses since she was in her teens. Nancy's professional life was heading up Human Resources for several start up companies including WholeFoods.com, CareerTrack and several other Boulder companies. At her last position, she was VP of Human Resources, Legal and Administration for Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy. Nancy graduated with a degree in Political Science from the University of Colorado and has an MBA in Finance and Accounting from Regis University. Wanting to combine her love for horses and helping others, Nancy started volunteering at MHP two years ago. She's grateful for the opportunity to work with such a great team of dedicated staff, therapists and horses who are transforming lives through equine therapy.

Mike Franklin

Board Treasurer

Mike joined the Medicine Horse board in 2018 and currently serves as the board treasurer. He has a long history in the software technology industry having started and sold several businesses over the years, most recently TouchSource, Inc., a provider of digital directory and wayfinding systems. Prior to founding TouchSource Mike was the Vice-President of Finance for EAP, International, a Denver-based company providing employee assistance programs to employers throughout the US. He has a background in finance with a BS from Colorado State University and previously served on the tax staff of one of the world's largest accounting firms. Mike is currently retired and lives in Erie with his wife Deirdre. He is a horse owner and spends time each year in central Illinois helping farm the family's 170 year-old farm.

Natalie Longhini

Executive Director

Natalie began her professional career in Human Resources as a Training Specialist and Corporate Recruiter and after 7 years in this field decided to return to college and complete her bachelors degree from University of Colorado at Boulder. Upon graduation, she developed a career in the High Tech industry as a Business Development leader at start-ups and large Tech Industry corporations. During this time she built and managed global and large national partnerships with IBM, Dell, HP and others while mentoring and leading diverse and international teams. Since 2017 Natalie has been working with several Colorado based non-profit organizations which led her to Medicine Horse. In 2018, she received her certification for Animal-Assisted Business Coaching and has founded a corporate training business, called Unleashed Coaching, that leverages both her business acumen and love of horses to enhance team building, leadership and empowerment within businesses.

Nikki Hodgson

Nikki is a sustainability professional with a background in climate policy and environmental mediation. After graduating from the Monterrey Institute of International Studies with an M.A. in International Environmental Policy, Nikki moved to the Middle East to work on natural resource conflict resolution and climate adaptation policy in conflict zones. After receiving a fellowship with the Advocacy Project, she worked as a journalist and human rights reporter before moving to Colorado in 2013. Nikki currently works within the outdoor industry, helping companies drive climate action and reduce their environmental impact. Her interest in the therapeutic aspect of horses started at an early age after the sudden loss of a family member and the support of a Belgian horse named Prince. She has been involved with Medicine Horse since 2013 and, having experienced and witnessed the power of horses, is a staunch advocate for their unique ability to help humans process trauma

Emily Harkless

Emily discovered a love for horses at the age of 11 when she started riding lessons in exchange for cleaning stalls. Although her life went down many different and often conflicting paths as a teenager and young adult, she continued to return to horses for peace and retreat from a chaotic world. Horses healed Emily’s heart when recovering from a crippling drug addiction in her early 20’s, and now, although she loves to train in dressageand jumping, she is more interested in helping others find their own healing through horses. Not surprisingly she is also a paramedic by trade and has earned a Masters’ in Public Health. She utilizes the skills learned through graduate school to aid in securing grant funding for Medicine Horse. Emily is the proud mom of two little boys, three dogs, a giant 17.3hh thoroughbred and a 9hh (38 inches) miniature horse. She has recently starteda small business in Equine Facilitated Growth and intends to become certified as an Equine Gestalt Coach in the near future.

Gennaro DeSantis

Gennaro received his Bachelor of Science with distinction from Middle Tennessee State University and his J.D. from the University of Denver, School of Law. He is a principal of the DeSantis Law Firm where he helps businesses of all kinds with real estate, corporate and transactional matters. As a principal in several Colorado businesses, he also has practical experience in the real estate industry, as well as, business ownership and management. As a resident of Boulder County, Gennaro found Medicine Horse while looking for an opportunity to use his legal and business experiences to assist a local non-profit and give back to the community. He was elected to a board position in 2017. Gennaro enjoys spending time with his family, skiing, cooking and traveling.

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9143 Valmont Road

Boulder, CO 80301

Email: info@medicinehorse.org

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