Our Dedicated Team

Shannon Novak, E.S., Founder, Board of Directors

image14

Shannon is the founder of the “Horses For Heroes” program. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Respiratory Therapy. Her husband served 20 years in the Air Force, they raised two beautiful children in the midst of multiple deployments and duty station changes. She saw the way horses were able to reach her husband during difficult times, and then became EAGALA certified in 2016. She founded the first Veteran Equine Assisted Psychotherapy Program in Montgomery County in 2017. She has facilitated hundreds of EAGALA Equine Therapy sessions to date. It is her passion to assist Veterans and their families become closer and stronger together.

Jay Novak, MSgt, USAF, Retired, Board of Directors

image15

Jay served 20 years in the United States Air Force. He received two Meritorious Service Medals while in service. The Air Force has taken him all over the world, including two tours of duty in Iraq. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a Master’s Degree of Business Management from Webster University with a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification. He currently works in the Architectural Signage Industry as Vice-President of Operations at Hardman Signs. Jay enjoys time out in nature with the horses and his family..

Marianne K. Dove, Ph.D., Program Assessment/Grants,Board of Directors

image16

Marianne served 30 years as a professor and researcher. She received the Distinguished Professor Award, published numerous articles/book chapters, and received many grant awards. She has made international and national presentations for the International Association of Violence, Abuse and Trauma and the American Research Association. While serving at the University, she and her students conducted service projects for military personnel stationed in Kosovo, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Her father gave her a Welch pony at age 5, and she has spent a lifetime of showing ponies, and partnering with them as therapy teams to promote the highest quality of life for children and adults.  

Linda Ward, Board of Directors

image17


Linda is a dedicated go-getter and hardworking team member who also oversees safety and horse health at the ranch. Linda’s husband is a Navy Veteran who is also a retired Houston Police Department Lieutenant. Together they share a son and three beautiful grandchildren. It is her mission to keep the horses healthy and happy so they can serve their role in our therapy sessions.

Bob Knapick, Ph.D., LMFT

solutions through the horse-human connection. Known as Scuba Bob, Bob is also a scuba instructor and


Bob is a University of Houston graduate who has spent over 30 years helping people overcome obstacles that have kept them from achieving their full potential. His ultimate goal is to provide Veterans and their families the skills necessary to help resolve conflict and create positive, real life solutions through the horse-human connection. Known as Scuba Bob, Bob is also a scuba instructor and avid outdoorsman.

Marla Neely, LPC

image18


Marla, the daughter of an Army Sergeant, is a Sam Houston State University graduate with a Master’s Degree in counseling. She also has 27 years’ experience working with children as an Occupational Therapist. She is EAGALA certified and feels blessed to be at a point in life where she has the opportunity to work with such amazing creatures and the Veterans and their family members in our community.

Lorie Corrigan, LPC

image19

Bio Coming Soon!

Deana Turner, Board of Advisors

image20

 Deana earned a Bachelor‘s Degree from SFA, which led to a 12 year career at the Better Business Bureau, culminating in VP of Operations.   Together, with her family, she then lived in Indonesia for 4 years. Overseas, her appreciation for what it means to be an American, and the sacrifices and amazing service provided by our military became even more appreciated. Her grandfather, father, father-in-law, brother-in-law, and cousin are all United States Army Veterans.  

Honey, Cheyenne, & Sunny

Great listeners who are honest 100% of the time.

Great listeners who are honest 100% of the time. 

Janet Coe, M.Ed., Board of Advisors

image21

Bio coming soon!

Thom Bolsch, Board of Advisors

image22

Thom is a graduate of Pace University in New York where he earned a BBA in business management. After graduation, Mr. Bolsch was selected for a position with the US Secret Service (USSS) and entered into service in 1989Mr. Bolsch’s 25-year career with the USSS began at the White House where he worked his way through the ranks to become a team leader with the elite tactical unit, the Emergency Response Team (ERT). He then served as a Special Agent in the Washington and New York Field Offices before being selected for an assignment with the Presidential Protective Division (PPD). After his PPD assignment, Mr. Bolsch spent five years as an instructor at the USSS training facility where he taught other Special Agents and recruits the USSS protective methodologies, weapons handling and tactics as well as investigations. Mr. Bolsch concluded his long and distinguished career as a supervisor in the Houston Field Office. 

Nolan Novak, iMovie Media Director

image23


 Nolan is a military brat who has lived in 4 different states. Nolan loves to code and make movies. He volunteers his time on the ranch caring for the horses and land as well as making movies to promote the important mission of serving Veterans and their family members. Nolan enjoys meeting other military kids who share a love for their country and the sacrifices they’ve made.   

image24

image25