Jane Banta, PATH Registered Instructor, Barn Assistant
Jane found Mane Stream through the semi-annual tack sale after moving back to New Jersey from Texas. She is currently a PATH certified instructor as well as a barn assistant. Jane has been riding horses for 15 years and getting back into the sport after graduating from Southern Methodist University.
Pony up! In her spare time she rides as many horses as she can get her hands on and spends time with friends, family, and her three dogs.
Louisa Bartok, Marketing & Communications Manager
Louisa leads the marketing and community outreach efforts for the organization and assists with special events and fundraising efforts. She brings to Mane Stream extensive expertise in non-profit administration, focused mainly in the areas of volunteer coordinator, marketing, and development.
After growing up on a horse farm in Hunterdon County with many years spent riding bareback and trail riding, Louisa graduated from Hollins University but did not ride while there. Louisa has been enjoying the sport of curling for 25 years, having competed for many years and represented the East Coast Region at the 2002 National Competition. Now she spends her vacation time participating in Bonspiels with her husband Paul all throughout Europe and North America.
Evelyn Cameron, OTR/L
Evelyn is a New Jersey licensed occupational therapist. Growing up on a farm in Newbury, South Carolina, Evelyn was an avid 4H Member; her family raised and showed cows. Evelyn received her BS in Occupational Therapy from the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina. In 1980, she made her way up north and eventually settled in Hunterdon County with her husband. She has previously worked in the New Jersey Public School system for the past 33 years, but came out of retirement just for us! Evelyn has experience working with school aged children, from pre-school through eighth grade and she is also NDT Certified.
When not working with Mane Stream's clients, Evelyn enjoys doing yoga, gardening, and spending time with her family.
Kelly Champion Tambasco, PATH Registered Instructor, Camp Activity Specialist, Barn Assistant
Kelly has many different and important job responsibilities at Mane Stream. She is a PATH Intl. Certified Instructor, one of the barn staff responsible for maintaining the barn and caring for the herd, and during the summer also acts as a camp activity specialist. Kelly has been involved with horses for almost 45 years and has enjoyed sharing her knowledge and experiences with the staff, volunteers and participants. In her spare time, Kelly still enjoys riding and is currently competing on the hunter\jumper "A" circuit.
Mike Caprari, Facilities Manager
Kimberley Coombs, Fundraising and Database Associate
Kim brings over a decade of experience as a professional fundraiser to Mane Stream. She worked at Hunterdon Healthcare where she lead their successful annual giving program, including an increase in donor retention and most recently was the Director of Development at the Diocese of Metuchen where she led the effort that achieved the largest annual appeal in the history of the Diocese.
Kim has loved horses since childhood and she continues to be a valued volunteer at Mane Stream. In addition, Kim is a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for children in foster care and spends time volunteering at a food pantry and local farm. She is active in community theater and with her church parish. Kim and her husband of nearly 30 years, Chuck, have 4 grown children and one adorable granddaughter.
Jen Dermody, Equine Manager, Head Instructor, Event Coordinator
Jen coordinates the adaptive riding program, schooling program for our horses, is responsible for finding and assessing potential new members of our herd, and is a PATH Intl. Certified Advanced Instructor. Jen specializes in teaching riders that are independent in their willingness to learn and she strives to get the most out of her riders while developing their skills. She utilizes what she learns from her own experiences and adapts that to help her riders reach their goals and become as independent as possible.
In 2015, Jen became the event coordinator for Mane Stream. She quickly discovered she had a passion for planning events. When one event ends she is immediately planning, to make the next one a success.
Jen spends her free time riding her own horse, helping friends at shows and spending time with friends and family. She has had success showing in the Adult Hunters, Adult Equitation, and Amateur Owner Hunters.
Melanie Dominko-Richards, MS, CCC-SLP, HPCS, Coordinator of Therapy Services
Melanie is a New Jersey licensed speech-language pathologist with her Certificate of Clinical Competency through the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She has been involved with Mane Stream for over 20 years, first as a camper, then a volunteer, and finally a staff member!
Melanie graduated from Seton Hall University in 2011 with a B.S. in Education and in 2013 with an M.S in Speech-Language Pathology. She completed internships in an elementary school, traumatic brain injury outpatient rehab, and at two facilities that provided therapy services utilizing equine movement as part of an integrated plan of care. Most recently, Melanie was the speech-language specialist at a special needs high school in Middlesex County. Melanie has attended both the Level I and Level II courses through the American Hippotherapy Association; she recently became a Board Certified Hippotherapy Clinical Specialist- one of a handful of Speech-Language Pathologists with this designation in the country. Melanie is a PATH Intl' Registered Instructor, Registered Therapist, Mentor, and Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning. Melanie is planning to obtain her Equine Specialist certification through the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA) in April 2018.
Born and raised right here in Oldwick, Melanie enjoys riding and competing in the hunter/jumper divisions, reading, hiking, and spending time with Arnold, her Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
Trish Hegeman, Executive Director
For the past 25 years Trish has worked with nonprofit organizations, both as a staff member and as a consultant, helping them secure the resources necessary to be successful. She has broad fundraising experience with a focus on individual giving, foundation and corporate relations, board development and annual campaigns. Over her career she has worked with a wide variety of organizations including a children’s hospital, a major NYC museum, an organic farm and environmental education program, a public radio station and most recently, was the Associate Director of Development and Alumni at Far Hills Country Day School.
Trish has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Holy Cross College and a Masters of Arts in Visual Arts Administration from New York University. She has served on a number of boards of directors, including a term as President for Family Connections, which provides education services to low income families.
She grew up on Long Island and rode horses as a teenager. She has lived in New York City, northern California and moved with her husband Rich and three children to Basking Ridge eight years ago. Most of her free time is spent cheering for her kids – either from the stands at a hockey rink or from the audience at a dance performance.
Ivy Kessler, PATH Registered Instructor
Ivy Kessler has been riding since the age of five. Growing up she also realized she had special place in her heart for working with kids with special needs. She decided to combine the two things she loved most. After receiving her PATH Instructor certification in 2013, Ivy began working at a PATH center in Delaware. In 2017, she moved to New Jersey and joined the team at Mane Stream where she then continued to get her PATH Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning (ESMHL) certification.
Ivy spends a lot of her time fostering and hosting events for Big Dog Rescue Project based out of Mendham New Jersey and is always out on an adventure with her pups. She also is still an avid equestrian that competes on the A circuit.
Holland Kochanski, Barn Manager, Camp Director & PATH Registered Instructor
Holland Kochanski is the Camp Director and a PATH Registered Instructor. Holland joined Mane Stream in 2009 as the Camp Counselor, and worked as barn staff and as the Program Assistant before becoming Barn Manager in 2011 and Camp Director in 2015. Holland holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology: Law, Criminology and Deviance from the University of Minnesota, and has been a PATH Registered Instructor since 2006. Holland enjoys creating games, activities and theme days to make Mane Stream Summer Camp a memorable experience for the campers and volunteers.
Holland was born and raised in New Jersey, and enjoys spending time with her family. She and her husband live in Somerville.
Alissa Lanahan, DPT, Cert MDT
Alissa is a New Jersey licensed physical therapist. Alissa graduated from the
University of Delaware in 2010 with a B.S. in Exercise Science and Minor in
Strength and Conditioning. Continuing on to achieve her Doctorate of Physical
Therapy from Drexel University in 2013, Alissa completed two internships in
pediatrics including a school based and early intervention rotation and another
at an outpatient pediatric facility. After graduating, Alissa accepted a position
with ProCare Rehabiliation, LLC located in Flemington, NJ. At ProCare, she
enjoys treating all age ranges for orthopedic, neurological and vestibular
diagnoses. Alissa started working at Mane Stream in January 2017 and loves
the chance to combine her love of pediatrics, horses, and physical therapy. She is
looking forward to completing her Level I course through American Hippotherapy
Association in 2018.
Alissa grew up in Pittstown, NJ and rode horses during her childhood years. In
her spare time, Alissa enjoys recreational running and spending time with her
husband and her dog, Jackson.
Casey McMahon, PATH Registered Instructor
Casey is a PATH Intl. Certified instructor and teaches lessons for the adaptive riding program. Casey grew up riding horses, owning her own for over 10 years. Her riding is primarily hunter-jumper based, but she has a background in basic dressage and western riding as well. Casey worked at a therapeutic horseback riding program on Long Island for many years teaching lessons, doing summer camp, and aided in other programs, such as work study and at-risk youth programs. She graduated from Delaware Valley College with a BS in General Science for Secondary Education. Casey has both a PA and NJ teaching certificate and currently works as a behavioral support staff member.
Susan Nemeth, MA, LPC, LCADC
Susan Nemeth, MA, LPC, LCADC is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor with a Master’s in Counseling from Seton Hall University. After attending an Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA) training and witnessing the power of including equines in the psychotherapy process, she became determined to incorporate equine assisted therapy (EAP) into her practice. Because EAP is experiential and solution-focused—clients are given the opportunity to find their own best solutions—this modality fits well with Susan’s belief that clients already possess the tools they need to promote self-healing. She is excited to provide this service to individuals and groups at Mane Stream. Susan is also EAGALA certified.
Susan has experience working with clients with various mental health diagnoses including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and addictions to alcohol or drugs and specializes in the treatment of individuals struggling with addiction and dependency. Susan has also been a volunteer at Mane Stream for many years. In her spare time, Susan enjoys reading, horseback riding, cycling, practicing yoga, and ballroom dancing.
Stephanie Pieros, MS, CCC-SLP
Stephanie is a speech-language pathologist licensed in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Stephanie has completed her American Hippotherapy Association Level I and Level II courses as well as the AHA Horse Connection course. When not working at Mane Stream, Stephanie provides home-based Early Intervention services for children age 0-3 and she works part-time at a rehabilitation hospital.
Stephanie enjoys spending the remainder of her time with her family and her horses, Patchy and Misha.
Erin Polos, PT
Erin is a New Jersey licensed Physical Therapist. She grew up in Boston, Massachusetts where she spent most of her time training for and competing in athletic activities. She graduated from Northeastern University with B.S. in Physical Therapy. She moved to New Jersey with her family in 2001 and joined the Mane Stream staff in January 2017. It is rumored that Erin took the first EVER hippotherapy course offered through AHA over 20+ years ago!
In her spare time, Erin enjoys riding her own horse, Clancy, and spending time with her three daughters.
Jeanne Schroder, Business Manager
Jeanne is responsible for the overall financial aspects of Mane Stream. She prepares financial reports, handles the annual audit, and generates invoices, processes payments and deposits donations. She also pays the bills and works on Human Resource and Insurance functions.
Jeanne grew up in Cincinnati and has lived in Chicago, as well as on both coasts. Her career track was a winding journey that started with sales and purchasing. She then earned degrees in accounting and computer programming which led to two years at Ernst & Young and a C.P.A. license. After positions doing corporate reporting and software conversions, she “took time off” to be home with her daughter.
When not being a horse-mom, a.k.a. free groom, at her daughter’s riding events, she enjoys finding destinations to photograph with her husband, and quiet moments to sew and quilt.
Sarah Schwartz, Barn Assistant
Sarah takes care of our hardworking herd on Sundays. As a local horsewoman with years of experience we rely of her to keep an eagle eye on the horses to ensure their safety while Mane Stream is closed.
Gina Taylor, MS, OT, HPCS
Gina is a New Jersey licensed occupational therapist as well as a Board Certified Hippotherapy Clinical Specialist. She is certified in Sensory Integration and has a strong interest in sensory based interventions, including Sensory Diets and home programs. She is an American Hippotherapy Association faculty member and teaches the Level I, Level II, and Sensory Connections course to other therapists using the horse to treat their clients nationally and internationally. Gina is also a PATH Intl' Advanced Riding Instructor.
Outside of Occupational Therapy, Gina enjoys dancing, hiking and camping. She owns her own horse, Drifter, and Great Dane, Smedley.
Jenni Tevlin, MS, NCC, LPC
Veterans and Mental Health Programming Specialist
Jenni is a PATH Intl. Certified Instructor and Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning. She holds a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degree in Animal Science, with a specialization in Equine Science, from Rutgers University, as well as a Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling from Monmouth University. Jenni is a NJ-State Licensed Professional Counselor, a NJ-Disaster Response Crisis Counselor and a National Certified Counselor. She is also currently in the process of completing her mental health and equine specialist certifications through the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA).
Jenni also has a certified therapy dog named, ‘Sweet Pea’ who she takes with her to schools and community events. Jenni has developed and taught graduate courses in Animal-Assisted Therapy for Monmouth University’s Professional Counseling Program and undergraduate courses at Rutgers University Animal Science Department. Due to her expertise in the field Jenni was recently awarded a $4000 grant, which she used to jointly collaborate with teams from Rutgers and Monmouth Universities to investigate the impact of Equine Assisted Therapy (EAT) in both horses, and veterans with PTSD. The resulting paper was accepted for publication in 2018 in The Journal of Equine Veterinary Science.
In addition to these achievements in the field of Animal Assisted Therapy, Jenni’s other professional credentials include 17 years of experience in Research and Development, Project Management and Human Resources in the Pharmaceutical industry.
She currently loves spending time with her teenage son, Nicholas, her husband Bill, 3 dogs, 2 horses and a rabbit, and enjoys taking riding lessons and competing at low level horse trials on her shire horse, Maverick, as well as visiting Disney World each year.