Hunter/Jumper Trainer: Laura Tuttle
Laura Tuttle comes to us from Long Island, NY. She has 40+ years of equestrian experience including the highly competitive New England and Florida circuits. She has competed in Equitation, Hunters, Jumpers, Dressage and 3 Day Eventing. She is a "B" rated Alumni of Pony Club and was a judge for the New York Games for the Physically Challenged for 5 consecutive years. Her experience also includes work as a Veterinarian Assistant for large and small animals.
Laura has trained hundreds of people, children (4years & up) through adults in all disciplines. She has competed in A level competitions and trained many students to do the same. To her credit some of her students have gone on to accomplish successful training careers of their own. Laura's experience training horses spans from breaking to advanced performance levels. This gives her a unique perspective from which to train riders. Although she is capable of using her skills to benefit all horses, Laura's forte is training 'Off The Track Thoroughbreds' and restarting them with new show careers.
Laura believes in teaching students to build a strong foundation of being centered and balanced in the saddle. She stated, "My goal for my students is to have fun, enjoy what they are doing, either for pleasure or competition, and achieve their goals safely.
Dressage Trainer: Danielle Bertholf
Danielle is a USDF Bronze & Silver Medalist. She graduated from the University of Findlay with Bachelor of Science degrees in Equine Riding & Training and Equine Business Management.
She has worked and ridden for numerous international dressage and eventing riders, Olympians, and judges for 11 years prior to starting her own training business. Her list of employers includes Cesar Parra, Marilyn Payne, Michael Barisone, Samantha & Pierre St. Jacques, and Rebecca Cowden. Danielle spent many winters working, riding, training, and showing in Wellington, Florida, for the winter season.
Danielle specializes in training horse and rider of any age or ability to reach their maximum potential. Her dressage students have consistently shown great improvement at home and at shows, moving up the levels. She starts young horses under saddle with solid basics, improving their understanding of what is being asked of them, increasing their knowledge and the quality of their movements.
Growing up in New Jersey, Danielle was heavily involved in the horse community, starting in 4H, learning the fundamentals of horsemanship. When she started taking lessons in dressage, her love of the discipline became a passion. Since then, she has shared her knowledge and experience with her students to better understand the relationship between horse and rider. Danielle feels that solid basics in dressage will help other disciplines improve in their own ring. She has had many hunter, jumper, eventing, and endurance students improve their respective discipline as a result of having those solid dressage basics. In her opinion, dressage helps improve communication between horse and rider so the asks are more easily received and performed.
Part Time Instructor: Mary Thomson Alber
Mary graduated from St. Andrews University with a B.A. in Equine Business Management. She has worked for Grand Prix jumpers as well as a Pan Am games eventer. She helped open Maple Leaf Stables in 2018 with her mother Christie, but has recently come back from maternity leave in a part-time capacity.
Mary focuses on building riders from the ground up, emphasizing correct position and how that effects the horse's way of going. She believes learning can be done at all times at the barn, not just in the saddle, and loves to teach students to be well-rounded horsemen.
Mary began riding at the age of six after years of begging for lessons. She grew up riding and showing hunters and jumpers in the Charlotte area. She knew she wanted to become a trainer at the age of 16 when she got her first horse Rocket; a four year old Haflinger gelding. She brought him along from the beginning to become the amazing lesson and show horse he is today.
Owner: Christie Pedder
Christie grew up in Jacksonville, FL riding Tennessee Walkers with her friends. She moved to the Charlotte area in 1996 and renewed her love of horses when her daughter started riding in 2000. She has raised three daughters who all share her passion for these amazing animals and now has a granddaughter who will surely follow in the tradition! It has always been her dream to own her own farm and now she is finally seeing that dream become a reality.