2013 Board of Directors
Carol Anderson Ward
Advisor and Contributor
Owner of the Murieta Equestrian Center since 1982, Carol and her father Fred Anderson developed the facility into a leading equestrian event center. Carol has held many industry leadership roles to help improve the quality of the horse industry and sport of competition, including serving on the board of directors of the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association, the UC Davis Center for Equine Health, the National Cutting Horse Association and numerous other boards and leadership committees.
Along with her business hat, Carol has been at the top of competition starting as a teen showing Angus cattle, then breeding and racing thoroughbreds, riding jumpers, and for the past 12 years successfully competing in the sport of Cutting. Carol has developed and produces a world class Futurity Cutting event, the El Rancho Futurity & Foothill Fiesta.
Driving passions often stated by Carol, include, “A horse needs an opportunity to earn a living” and “I want to ensure horses are treated justly, with respect and appreciation.” She also works to encourage their caretakers to be educated and enlightened.
Carol earned her Bachelor degree from California State University, Chico.
A tremendous joy for Carol is spending time with family and friends, especially with daughter Erin, granddaughter Hannah, daughter Taylor and grandson Mathew, granddaughter Emma, son Bill, and step-daughter Kelly Jo.
Maryann comes to the West Coast Equine Foundation with more than 20 years of experience in foundation directorship. As WCEF’s director she is responsible for carrying out the organization’s mission and goals relative to ensuring the foundation’s long-range plan is achieved. Her annual goals include the development and implementation of fundraising, and program and financial plans.
Her previous development and management experience includes the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, the Sacramento Children’s Home, the Sacramento SPCA and the City of Sacramento Parks & Recreation Services. She has served on the boards of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Global Food Bank, chaired both the National Philanthropy Day Awards Luncheon and the Academy of Fundraising Conference, and was a member of the United Way Public & Media Relations Committee. She’s also a member of the California Parks & Recreation Society.
Maryann earned her Bachelors degree from California State University, Fresno, in Parks & Recreation Management, and was a member of the Fresno University Equestrian Team.
When not working, Maryann enjoys spending time with family and friends, golfing and cycling.
Jennifer was born and raised in Elk Grove where she currently lives with her husband John and three children, Kyle, Karli and Riley. She grew up riding horses and raising livestock, and along with her family is still involved in raising and showing livestock. She’s also active in sports and school events.
Jennifer graduated from CSU, Fresno, with a bachelor of science in agriculture. and from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, with a teaching credential. For the past 20 years, Jennifer has worked as a Realtor in the Sacramento/Amador area, specializing in country property, land and horse properties. Jennifer is a member of the Pleasant Grove and Elk Grove FFA boosters, the Los Rios Bond Oversight Committee, Sacramento City College Business Advisory Committee, Chicks in Crisis, and past member of many other charities.
Sara is a fourth generation Elk Grove, California native. Her love of horses and involvement in the equestrian world came to fruition with the development of her nationally recognized equestrian drill team, The California Cowgirls.
Sara and her husband, Syd, are the owners of S. Curtis Fine Jewelry in Sacramento. They recently moved to the Wilton horse property they have owned since 1997, and Sara is once again enjoying the serenity of country life in addition to sharing her love of horses with her grandchildren. Her four grandchildren, along with the Curtis’ three children live in the Sacramento area.
Recognizing the benefits the West Coast Equine Foundation brings to the community, Sara is proud to serve in the capacity of a WCEF Board Member. She considers this her opportunity to make a difference in the lives of youth through support and education in their equestrian endeavors.
Melissa is a writer, webmaster, and communications strategist for California Fair
Services Authority, a Sacramento agency that works exclusively with California’s fairs and fairgrounds. As a junior rider, Melissa competed in hunters and equitation throughout California, until heading off to college and retiring her horse, Duke of Argo. Proving that horses weren’t “just a phase,” she took up riding and showing again as an adult and now rides with Kelly Van Vleck at Van Vleck Sporthorses in Rancho Murieta.
Melissa is a past director of the Sacramento Art Directors and Artists Club, and the Sacramento Hunter Jumper Association.
Kelly Van Vleck
Owner of Van Vleck Sporthorses at the Murieta Equestrian Center, Kelly has professionally trained horses and riders for more than 20 years. Specializing in hunters, jumpers and equitation, Kelly is widely recognized for developing confident, elegantly precise riders and for bringing out the best performance in her horses.
In addition to competing regularly at horse shows throughout Northern and Southern California, Kelly’s students have earned both team and individual medals as members of the United States Junior and Young Rider Teams. Among the horses she’s trained are Lonestar, the 2010 $100,000 Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA International Hunter Derby Champion and 2010 Chronicle of the Horse Horse of the Year, and Pringle, winner of the 2010 Chronicle of the Horse International Hunter Derby.