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Alicia has had a love of horses since she was able to talk. At an early age, Alicia and her sister Shannon worked after school and on weekends to help pay for their pony April that her parents bought for her and her sister. From that time on they were completely involved with anything horse related.

At the age of 14, Alicia was offered a job in Clarkston, Michigan working for David V. Johnson. She worked after school and on the weekends caring for his private farm.   It was three years later, in 1997, when Mr. Johnson invited Alicia to come to Bay Harbor to work for the newly developed Bay Harbor Equestrian Club. Since then, Alicia has had the privilege of working with some of the finest horse trainers in the nation and has gained valuable skills, knowledge and friendships.   Starting out as a stable hand she worked her way up to Head Trainer and Manager of Bay Harbor Equestrian Club. During this time, Alicia studied with a diverse group of dressage trainers including Colonel Albrecht Von Ziegner, Gerhard Politz, Maryal Barnett and most recently with Bettina Drummond.  She also worked with French instructor Cyril Pittion-Rossillon to improve her work over fences.     

In 1999 David Johnson brought Buck Brannaman to Bay Harbor Equestrian Club to teach a 4-day clinic that focuses on the teachings of the Vaquero Cowboys.  Buck has returned yearly since 1999 and Alicia has been able to ride in every clinic held since that time at Bay Harbor. In 2001 Alicia traveled to Brannaman’s home in Sheridan, Wyoming to ride in his backyard for 10 days. During this time she received intense training from Buck on Colt starting, Ranch roping and Horsemanship that began a long time commitment to studying the methods of the Vaquero tradition. Alicia continues to train with Dr. Brannaman and just returned from his ranch in June 2010 where she put her Quarter horse Marlin into the two-rein bridle, a long time dream of hers.   

Buck Brannaman introduced Alicia to Ray Hunt in 2004.  Alicia was able to start two colts under the watchful eye of Ray Hunt and ride her Grey Trakehner Gelding, Donaubeck in two Horsemanship classes.  Donaubeck was started by Alicia and during her time with him she would work on her ranch roping one weekend and take him to a USDF recognized Dressage show the next weekend scoring in the 70’s consistently. Due to the Horsemanship training many of the outside distractions that usually distract a “hot and electric” Dressage horse were very easy for him to accept. Donaubeck was able to focus his energy toward the task at hand, which many observers recognized and asked about, following a great test.   

Alicia met Maryal Barnett FEI “C” Dressage Judge, and USEF “S” Dressage Judge in 1998.  With Maryal's guidance, Alicia earned her United States Dressage Federation Silver Medal in 2004. Maryal has been a great role model for Alicia over the years with her calm and effective teaching style.   In 2006 Alicia met Bettina Drummond, a French trained Dressage rider, and has continued to travel to Connecticut to learn her methods several times a year. Bettina has helped Alicia see a method of training that truly studies the balance of each individual horse. Bettina Drummond has allowed Alicia to feel the high school movements of her highly trained Lusitano stallions an experience that allows her to recreate what she feels with her clients horses and her own.     

Alicia is a currently living in Nashville, Tennessee. She travels regularly for public and private clinics. She is a USDF Silver medalist, ARIA certified Instructor, and has successfully competed through Prix St. Georges.  Additionally, Alicia, along with many of her students, has qualified and competed successfully at Regional Championships. Alicia believes that any horse and rider can benefit from the techniques of both Natural Horsemanship and Dressage, and she truly believes that the skills can be applied effectively towards any goal, whether driving cattle or competing seriously in the show ring. Alicia's horse specialties include Dressage, colt starting and Natural Horsemanship techniques. She also has an Associate Degree in Marketing from North Central Michigan College.     

ARIA Certified Instructor

USDF Silver Medalist

Alicia has learned from and continues to train with many of the sport's leading trainers, including:

  • Bettina Drummond
  • Buck Brannaman
  • Maryal Barnett
  • Ray Hunt
  • Colonel Albrecht Von Ziegner
  • Cyril Pittion-Rossillon
 
 
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