Jennifer Young

  • Name
    Jennifer Young
  • Title
    Executive Director
  • Organization
    RED Arena
  • Number of Years as Executive Director
    12

What does your organization do?
We serve individuals with disabilities and their families through a variety of equine related therapies, activities, educational & vocational programs and promote inclusion with our horse camps and horse shows.

How did you become interested in this work?
As a peidatriac physical therapist I loved seeing how empowered my patients were when they were riding a horse. It not only addressed my PT goals for strength, balance, coordination--it was a natural support for building social communication, confidence, and self-esteem. It helped me set the whole developing child up for success and they LOVED doing it, so it made my job easier.

What drives your passion?
I want to do everything I can to help every child with disabilities be enriched, empowered and successful.

Did you have a mentor or a role model?
Our founding board president ran a mulit-million dollar non-profit for 30 years, so she has been instrumental in guiding me step by step through the nonprofit world.

What's the biggest challenge in your work?
I work too many hours because we don't have enough budget to bring on more support staff to alleviate some of my responsibilities.

What's the best advice that you have ever received?
Less is more!

What are your top tips for new Executive Directors?
1. Find a mentor.
2. Keep your board small.
3. Make time to make personal connections for outreach. It's all about who you know!