Laurie Higgins-Kerley founded the rescue in September of 2012. She was profoundly changed from time spent with a small herd of horses at Dove Creek who assisted her in healing from a grief stricken state after the loss of her husband in 2008. Laurie realized how much horses seem to know when a human is vulnerable and weakened as they showed her this by coming close, offering a deep connection, making her part of their herd. This was a salve for her broken heart and eventually her insight and reflection ignited a desire to assist them in "their world". Those that needed a second chance, some time to mend, and heal from the hand that life dealt them, which she shared and understood. It was a place of connection that she now says is the gift of grief. It seemed Dove Creek was the perfect place for this to happen. It didn't take her long to gather support and form a board, file a non-profit certification, and get to work!
Head Horse Trainer and Ranch Foreman
Frank Castillo brings a life time of experience working with horses and cattle to his position as Foreman and Head Horse Trainer at Dove Creek Ranch and Equine Rescue since 2013. His horsemanship skills and knowledge have helped many of our rescues rehabilitate and go on to be adopted into safe and loving homes. We get the experience of watching him fearlessly work with a trembling horse for hours on end, his steady patience guiding the horse to a new way and a better life. Frank brings a tremendous amount of creativity to Dove Creek with his uncanny ability to partner with horses and lead them out of trauma, building trust and establishing a good foundation from which they can grow and evolve - in other words, giving them a second chance. Frank has a plethora of training skills he uses to coerce a horse back from being fearful around humans to being a skilled and reliable mount.