Board of Directors
Marian Heyink, LISW-S, JD
Achievement Centers for Children, Cleveland, Ohio
Marian got her B.A. in Social Work from
She has over 20 years of hospital social work experience, with 15 of those years providing services in the Emergency Room and Psychiatric Emergency Room of an inner city hospital. During that time, she also served as the advisor to the Cleveland Emergency Medical Services Peer Support program. She has worked in the field of Corporate Compliance at the Cleveland Clinic Health Care Ventures. Marian also worked for 15 years for Catholic Charities Health and Human Services in the Diocese of Cleveland. She started as the Assistant Director of a residential treatment center, then moved to the position of Director of Public Policy. She then transitioned to the position of Attorney in the Department of Migration and Refugee Services, where she assisted in the development of setting up a system of providing legal services to clients without financial resources. Currently, she works part-time for University Hospital/Case Western Medical Center as a social worker.
Marian is EAGALA certified as both a mental health professional, and an equine specialist. She is also a PATH certified therapeutic riding instructor. She teaches classes and works with other staff providing equine assisted activities, as well as teambuilding at Camp Cheerful in Strongsville, Ohio.
Marian and her husband Mark Milam live in Seven Hills, Ohio with their foxhound, Abby.
Mark Wood, PG cert Health Sciences (CAMH), PGC Teaching and Learning, Bphil(ed) Community and Youth work, Dip HE Community and Youth Work
Outreach Committee Chair
Helena has loved horses since she was old enough to point and smile at them. Starting her riding career in pony club she determined she had enough “Thelwell moments” and it was time to switch gears. She rode all around (english and western) for ten years and was state champion several times in different classes. In her twenties, she started riding dressage and has competed through Prix St. George. Now she has a two draft mares that work as therapy horses by day and jousters by night? Helena hopes any way...stay tuned.
Ricardo (Ric) A. Jerez, Ph.D., LPC
Open Arms Behavioral Health, LLC, Lawton, Oklahoma
Ric is a naturalized, bi-lingual immigrant from Cuba raised in Queens, New York. In his thoughts and memories of childhood, he can’t remember a time that horses were not involved in his life. His very first job at the age of 15 was as a stable hand at Belmont Park in New York. He served in the United States Marine Corps from 1977 to 1985 and was medically/honorably discharged. While in the Marine Corps, he was trained as a Field Artilleryman and taught at the Field Artillery School, Fort Sill Oklahoma. He is a recipient of the Saint Barbara Medal (Exemplary Field Artilleryman) and the Navy Achievement Medal. He is a 100% disabled veteran.
After discharge, he worked as a land surveyor for several years, and in 1989 he started preaching for the Church of Christ in Temple, Oklahoma where he preached for over 20 years. In 1991, he went back to school and earned a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and Family Science, a Master's Degree in Behavioral Sciences and earned a doctoral degree in Counseling Psychology in 1999 after which he started doing private practice work and joined the faculty of Cameron University. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology where he’s taught counseling and marriage and family courses at the graduate level for fifteen years and currently teaches Family Relations. In 2006, he established Open Arms Behavioral Health, LLC, a CARF (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) accredited outpatient mental health clinic which provides approximately 175 hours of mental health services for people of all ages to the Lawton-Fort Sill, Oklahoma area per week, and includes EAGALA Model EAP since his EAGALA Certification in 2013.
Barbara Morgan, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT
Richard Bland College, Petersburg, Virginia
Barbara Morgan received her Ph.D. in Counselor Education from The College of William and Mary. She has been practicing as a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist since 1998. Together with her husband Frank, Barbara operates EQ Farm which is the location of her private counseling practice which includes equine-assisted therapy and learning services. Barbara is Associate Professor of Psychology at Richard Bland College in Petersburg, Virginia. At RBC, she developed and coordinates the Equine Therapy Certificate Program which offers students pursuing degrees in the helping professions a stackable credential in equine-assisted therapy. Barbara currently is engaging in research to examine the effects of equine-assisted learning activities on college student stress. Barbara has always had a love of horses and has owned horses for twenty years, but it was a powerful experience with her late horse Sam that prompted her to seek the training and certification through EAGALA to incorporate work with horses into her professional life. Since that time, Barbara has adopted a BLM mustang, two rescue donkeys, an appaloosa and a thoroughbred who are her partners in both her counseling practice and at Richard Bland College. Barbara lives on a horse farm in Petersburg, Virginia with her husband, horses, six chickens, three dogs, and she enjoys regular visits from her three adult daughters and four grandchildren.
Wanda Whittlesey-Jerome, Ph.D., LMSW
New Mexico State University, Corrales, New Mexico
Wanda earned her B.S.W. from the University of North Texas, and an M.S.S.W. and a Ph.D. in Social Work both from the University of Texas at Arlington. Wanda is a Licensed Master Social Worker, practicing the EAGALA Model and evaluating its effectiveness in the Horse Capital of New Mexico – Corrales – and beyond. As part of her 12 years of direct social work practice with homeless clients, survivors of interpersonal violence, incarcerated individuals, and others, she became a high-level administrator of social services and substance abuse treatment programs for The Salvation Army’s Carr P. Collins Social Service Center in Dallas, Texas, followed by a university teaching career that now spans 23 years. Her university teaching began at Texas A&M University-Commerce, Texas, followed by a move to New Mexico where she taught and was an administrator in the School of Social Work at New Mexico Highlands University. Currently she teaches graduate foundation practice, human behavior and the social environment, and advanced group work as Associate Professor for the School of Social Work at New Mexico State University’s MSW Program in Albuquerque.
Wanda is EAGALA Certified mental health professional. Having had the pleasure of living with horses during her life, she is also a major equine enthusiast! To Wanda, horses are profoundly important – and she is happy to help encourage and support their role in mental health treatment. She recently completed co-facilitating an eight-week EAGALA program for veterans and their families, and plans are underway to conduct a study of EAGALA and well-being among female survivors of military sexual trauma. Her earlier research focused on the impact of EAGALA on resilience of at-risk youth. Recently, she published results of her study of the impact of EAGALA on self-efficacy among female survivors of interpersonal violence. Wanda and her husband, photographic artist Ric Speed, live in Corrales, New Mexico with their Labradoodle Pearl, Australian Sheppard/Blue Heeler mix Ozzie, two black and white cats - Abbi and Lizbeth, and a myriad of Gambril quail and cottontail bunnies.
Misty M. Jones
The Bridges Program, Kentucky
Misty has been the Executive Director of The Bridges Program in Owensboro, Kentucky, for the last eight years. She also served for nine years as a board member and one year as president at Dream Riders of Kentucky, which exposed her to EAGALA. This experience prompted Misty to become a certified EAGALA Equine Specialist working towards her advanced certification. Misty has been involved in Drug and Alcohol prevention as a motivational speaker to groups in the court system as well as schools and civic organizations for the past twenty-three years. The Governor of Kentucky, the State Attorney General, and the County Judge Executive have recognized Misty for her sixteen years of advocacy for victims of violent crime. She has also been awarded the Robert M. Strauss award for her work in drug and alcohol abuse prevention. In 2015, she was awarded the Beacon Award through Lighthouse Recovery for her work with addicts using the EAGALA model. Misty has served with the Juvenile Drug Court task force for the last eight years while providing family therapy with horses to adolescents working through recovery. In addition, she has served with the Aubrey’s Song Foundation for the last four years, which brings awareness to eating disorders.
Misty resides in Owensboro, Kentucky, where she houses two Appaloosas, one Quarter horse, and two Miniature horses for her therapeutic work. She also has a spunky Golden Retriever named Bear, who enjoys ruling the barn and rolling in dirt. When she is not trail riding, Misty has a profound love of the outdoors and is an avid hunter and markswoman on the range with rifles, shotguns, and pistols.
Lisa Krystosek, J.D., M.H.A., L.P.C.
Bridle Ridge Acres/Community Treatment, Inc., Hillsboro, Missouri
Lisa is a licensed professional counselor practicing in Missouri. She is also a licensed attorney and mediator. Lisa earned her M.A. in Counseling from Missouri Baptist University and her Juris Doctor and M.H.A. from St. Louis University. She is currently earning a Doctorate in Counselor Education from University of Missouri-St. Louis.
Lisa is an Eagala Certified Practitioner and is working toward Advanced Certification. She qualifies as both a mental health specialist and an equine specialist. She is also a TF-CBT certified practitioner and finds the Eagala model to be a powerful and effective method for helping her clients address trauma-related issues. Lisa is currently employed at Bridle Ridge Acres, a therapeutic farm owned by Community Treatment, Inc. She works with the Division of Juvenile Justice to provide equine-assisted psychotherapy services to adolescent boys in recovery. She also works with Veterans Treatment Court to provide services to Veterans through the Bridle Ridge Acres Veterans Equine Program (B.R.A.V.E.).
A life-long horse person, Lisa grew up with a variety of ponies in her backyard. Throughout high school and college she re-trained and re-homed off-the-track thoroughbreds. She enjoyed competing in horse trials and jumper divisions for several years and her main focus is now dressage. She makes a point of having as much fun as possible with her adorable Haflinger/Paint gelding named Q. In addition to working with horses, Lisa also has a therapy dog named Louis and a “therapy cat” named Freddy.