Our Board

Catherine Gibson

President of Riding with HEART

Catherine is a strategic marketing professional, with extensive experience in the tech industry. She is VP of Client Engagement for BLEND360, a management consulting company, where she provides exceptional marketing consultants to Fortune 50 clients. She also serves as Senior Consultant and Facilitator for Ignite Advisory Group, which runs Customer Advisory Boards for Fortune 1000 firms. Previously she was marketing director for BT in the Americas; and VP, Events for a global telecom industry association. And she spent over 20 years at AT&T, where she led such functions as their Enterprise Industry Events, Executive Forums, and their Customer Advisory Councils. Catherine earned a BA in International Affairs from Lewis & Clark College and an MBA in Finance from Vanderbilt University.

Catherine has been president of the Board of Trustees since 2016, and her daughter was a volunteer at Riding with HEART throughout high school.

Cheryl Buxton

Cheryl Buxton recently retired after 24 years as Global Managing Director of Pharmaceuticals for Korn/Ferry International, the world’s largest Executive Search Company. Based in the firm’s Princeton office, Ms. Buxton conducts senior-level assignments, with a special focus on research-driven organizations. She also led the R&D sector for the Pharmaceutical and Consumer divisions within Korn/Ferry.  Ms. Buxton joined the Firm’s London office and European headquarters before spending time in Paris and then relocating to Princeton in 1997.

Prior to joining Korn/Ferry, Ms. Buxton was human resources director for Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceuticals, (Cilag Ltd), based in the U.K., where her focus was on organizational issues and strategic resourcing and guidance on European directives.

She also provided human resources support to three smaller companies in the group for Europe. Her human resources career started at Bristol Myers Ltd., where she was responsible for its consumer and pharmaceutical business.

Ms. Buxton holds a master’s degree in employment law and industrial relations from Leicester University, a degree in Nursing, a diploma in personnel management, is a member of the Institute of Personnel and Development.  Ms. Buxton is on the Executive Council for Springboard, a non-profit organization encouraging women entrepreneurs in Life Sciences, and Advisory Board for South Asia Pharmaceutical Council.  She previously was on the Board of SIFE.

A keen horsewoman, she is a competitive amateur showjumper, endurance rider and fox hunter.

Richard Defuccio

Richard is a founding portfolio manager at Marquis Wealth Advisors, managing equity and fixed income portfolios for individuals, retirement plans, and non-profit organizations.  He has been a volunteer and fundraiser for the Susan B. Komen Ride for the Cure, a volunteer for the Alexandria Equestrian Association’s Baron Tour (2014 and 2015), and volunteer for the Vought House in Clinton, New Jersey.  


Richard is a 30-year resident of Alexandra Township, New Jersey and is married to Kerry Cahill-Defuccio.  They are the parents of two college-age children.  Their daughter volunteered with Riding with Heart when she was in high school.

Maureen Haney

"I am honored to be a member of the distinguished Riding with HEART Board of Trustees.  Their exceptional horses, with their grace, beauty, power, strength, and intellectual personality, have amazing abilities to connect with people in awe-inspiring ways. The Director, staff, and volunteers are extraordinary…dedicating themselves to changing lives each and every day.  It is a privilege to help support an organization so committed to the well-being of those in need.”   


Maureen spent much of her career at AT&T, holding leadership positions primarily focused across marketing and sales.  Post AT&T, Maureen assumed the role of VP for Client Engagement at BLEND360, a Marketing and Data Sciences consulting firm.  She has a passion for helping people and continues to mentor and coach professionals for business success and career growth.


Maureen has always been active in volunteering for non-profit businesses.  In addition to being a member of Riding with HEART’s Board, she is the Financial Secretary on her church’s Board.  She earned her Master’s Degree in Organizational Management and her Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration

Dr. Suzanne Smith, VMD

Dr. Suzanne Smith is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine.  She received her Bachelor of Arts degree at Wellesley College in Massachusetts.  Dr. Smith has been involved in the veterinary community as a former President of the NJ Veterinary Medical Association.  She founded the New Jersey Animal Hall of Fame.  She has served as Chair of the NJ University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine Alumni Society and she served several years on their Admission Committee.  Additionally, Dr. Smith has served in the past on committees of the American Association of Equine Practitioners. Dr. Smith was a member of the NJ Governor’s Lyme Disease Advisory Committee.  She served several terms of the Executive Board of Mane Stream, a therapeutic riding center, in Oldwick, NJ.


Dr. Smith has spent the last ten years involved in NAVS (Native American Veterinary Services) as a veterinary volunteer on several of the more impoverished reservations in the Southwest performing surgical procedures and providing veterinary care for horses and small animals. As part of her efforts in NAVS, she dedicated time mentoring and teaching veterinary and pre-veterinary students in New Mexico and Arizona.

Jennifer Stevenson

A graduate of The Pennsylvania State University, Jennifer was a high school English teacher for ten years where she explored written, spoken, and verbal language with a variety of learners through the Advanced Placement and Advanced Creative Writing levels. Currently, Jennifer is the owner of Paws and Rewind, LLC, which specializes in equestrian marketing, photography, and videography.  She is a proud board member of both the International Side Saddle Organization The Liberty Side Saddle Network. 


She is also the Director of Camp Leaping Horn, as well as the founder and former EMD Chairwoman of the Flemington Woman’s Club. Jennifer resides in Hunterdon County, New Jersey with her husband Sean.  She is an amateur equestrian and enjoys show jumping, side saddle riding, and spending time with her pets and horse Ozzy.

Kerri Nottage, MD, MPH

Dr. Kerri Nottage is a Pediatric Hematologist/Oncologist and is currently serving as Executive Medical Director at Janssen Research & Development. She received her undergraduate degree in Clinical Laboratory Science from the University of Rhode Island and her medical degree from Brown University. She completed her residency training in both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics at Brown, followed by fellowship training in pediatric hematology/oncology at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. She is a former faculty member in the Department of Hematology at St. Jude prior to relocating to Hunterdon Country, NJ.

She is currently the clinical leader of a first-in-class compound in the oncology therapeutic area and has a particular interest in drug development for life-threatening pediatric diseases, many of which are orphan diseases. Her research interests include benign and malignant hematological disorders. When not working, Kerri is energized by dance, exercise, a good book, exploring the beauty of Hunterdon County, and time spent with family and dear friends.

Siobhan Dunphy

Bio coming soon!

Board Member Emeriti


Steven Tarshis

Joe Baxter - 2009 - 2016

Jean Good, President, 2014 - 2016

Amy Howard


Riding with HEART offers a wide range of Equine-Assisted Activities to individuals and their families. We provide a comprehensive, inclusive and therapeutic environment to participants with a wide range of disabilities including, but not limited to ADD/ADHD, Autism, PDD NOS, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Spina Bifida, Visual Impairments or Traumatic Brain Injury.  All of the Therapeutic Riding Instructors at RWH are PATH certified and our professional therapists hold proper credentials and /or licenses.

©2019 Riding with Heart

Riding with HEART voted BEST charity in Hunterdon 2020.

Thank you for voting for us!

therapeutic riding, equine assisted therapy, special needs riding, NJ therapeutic riding, best therapeutic riding center in New Jersey, New Jersey therapeutic riding center, PATH Certified Riding center in New Jersey, volunteer in NJ, volunteer in New Jersey, special needs programs, special needs summer camp, inclusion summer camps, inclusive riding program, inclusive horse riding, therapeutic horseback riding, therapeutic horse back riding, Adaptive Therapeutic Horseback Riding, Hippotherapy, Equine Assisted Learning, social skills group, summer horseback riding, summer horse back riding, horseback riding for special needs
  • Facebook Social Icon
  • YouTube Social  Icon
  • Pinterest Social Icon
  • Instagram Social Icon

Riding with HEART is 501 (C) 3 non-profit organization.  Tax ID # 57-1233216.  Your donation is tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.  All donors will receive a contribution letter for your tax purposes.