Our Staff


Amy Booth

Program Co-ordinator

My son Ronin started riding with the riding program when he was 3. That same year (2007), I  started  volunteering with TRP . Eight years later we are both still here – what can I say, TRP is both an addictive and an unbelievably powerful program to belong to.

My motivation comes from the incredible drive and devotion of the many, many wonderful people who make the riding program possible. From the generous donors, to those who go door to door to get sponsorship pledges, to the folks who come out each day, rain or shine to lend their support to the riders. I am truly humbled and inspired watching complete strangers stand up and give so freely of their time and skills to help my son (and many others) dream, believe and achieve.

Happy to chat with you at any point and welcome any suggestions and ideas you may have.



Maria Hofbauer

Co-ordinator and Head Instructor

Maria has had a passion for horses for over five decades. She studied agriculture in her native Germany before immigrating to Canada in 1979.  At St. Lawrence College in Kingston she studied Behavioral Science graduating in 1987.  In 1990 she obtained her CanTRA Therapeutic Riding Instructor Certification and in 1993 she was certified as a Canadian Equestrian Federation Level 1, English Coach.  Since then, Maria has taken numerous courses to deepen her knowledge of how to provide therapy to the disabled and to keep riders, volunteers and  horses safe and happy.

By both inclination and training, Maria enjoys and is qualified to work with people with special needs; and, in 1987, being familiar with similar programs in Europe, was happy to learn of the LCTRP. She has been an LCTRP instructor ever since, passing on her love for and understanding of horses to hundreds of riders and volunteers.  Maria assists other instructors and mentors and trains those wishing to become Certified Assistant Instructors.

In addition to her work with the LCTRP Maria is a relief worker to the Lanark Community Program Family Relief Program.  For many years she has worked over the winter months with many of our riders in the school system as an education assistant.

Maria lives on a farm and, along with her own horse, provides winter housing for several of the LCTRP horses.




Sarah Loten


Sarah began with the LCTRP as a volunteer and progressed to obtaining her certification as an Assistant Instructor through CanTRA in 2014. Sarah has five children, two of them with identified special needs.  She came to the LCTRP because it was an activity that had met the needs of two of her children tremendously well seeing the clear benefits for the students.  As a parent and now as an instructor Sarah has seen that with good instruction, therapeutic riding can make such a difference in the lives of children and adults. “I love working with people and horses so I can't think if a job I would rather be doing!”

For over 25 years in one capacity or another Sarah has taught including music at the university, high school and elementary level as well as privately (cello and violin). She has worked in education administration and special education both privately and in elementary school settings.  Sarah obtained a M.Mus from the University of Ottawa and M.Ed in Cognition from Queens University.

She rides and trains competitively in the equestrian sport of dressage and currently co-manages her working farmof 600 acres with over 700 sheep. The family farm also includes lesson and training services for a number of students and horses. 


Adrianne Villeneuve


Adi joined the LCTRP in the spring of 2013 as a volunteer and began teaching in Perth that summer. In the fall of 2014 she obtained her CTRAI from CanTRA.

Adi began riding at the age of 3 and has worked in the horse industry for over 25 years including being a 4H Horse Club Leader, a show groom, a trainer/coach and competitor in hunter/jumper, western performance, and speed & team penning events. She is a graduate of the KCAT Equine Studies Program and lives with her son & fuzzy/feathery family on an off-grid hobby farm.


Vicky Smith


Vicky started riding at the age of 6 at Silver Spring Farm in Bells Corners which was a working farm and group home for adults with Downs Syndrome. She was a working student there for 6 years in exchange for lessons. During this experience, she formed a great respect for people with challenges there. 

She has owned horses for 23 yrs and over that time have developed an interest in natural horsemanship.

Vicky has been with the program 6 yrs, first as a volunteer and now as an instructor. In her past life she worked in education as a library technician. 


Patty Townsend


Patty and her family operate an equestrian facility in the far west end of Ottawa, where they specialize in training young horses. When she isn't mucking stalls, feeding horses, fixing fences or doing other horsey chores, Patty can be found hanging out with her much loved Canadian gelding,  Zen.  


"I started volunteering with TR as a leader and sidewalker and absolutely loved it.  So when I retired from my very demanding job as the CEO of an agricultural association, I began working towards certification as an Instructor.  I have been teaching for 2 seasons now and there is nothing  else I would rather do.  I get to help horses help people. It doesn't get much better than that.