Annie Turri is a Registered Adaptive Riding Instructor with PATH International, as well as a certified Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning (ESMHL) which qualifies her as an instructor to use the horse in partnership with a mental health team to serve wide-ranging audiences for educational purposes and personal growth. She has over 25 years of horse experience, starting in the 4-H International program and working through the system from beginner to intermediate and advanced levels in a variety of English and Western Riding disciplines. Annie is originally from Breckenridge Colorado and holds a BA in Psychology and English from Willamette University. She is a bilingual instructor and is also the former owner of Rincón Vacations travel company, with nearly 10 years of experience in the travel industry in Puerto Rico. In 2015 Annie co-founded West Coast Ecuestre, an organization dedicated to providing riding services for both able-bodied and special needs riders in Puerto Rico.
Originally from England, Michelle started riding lessons at 3 years old as a member of the English Pony Club, advancing over a period of 10 years into the British Show Jumping circuit. She has competed and trained under several professionals as well as in the British dressage circuit, with many wins under her belt. She later expanded to the study of Natural Horsemanship training and riding techniques in the United States and competed in Western trail, reining, pleasure and in-hand classes. Michelle has experience training and starting young and abused horses and has over 10+ years working in therapeutic riding. She was employed by RDA (Riding for the Disabled) in the UK for 5+ years and spent several years volunteering in the States for NARHA (now PATH Intl). Most recently, Michelle trained and performed with the Herrmann Royal Lippizzaner Stallions troupe based in Florida. Michelle is passionate about animals and active with several rescue groups in the area. She currently serves as a life coach with Pacia Life youth educational and enrichment program in Rincón Puerto Rico. In 2015 Michelle co-founded West Coast Ecuestre, an organization dedicated to providing riding services for both able-bodied and special needs riders in Puerto Rico
Elaine Cosby lives with her husband, John, in Isabela, Puerto Rico and has been working with horses and clients with disabilities for the past 20 years. She is an ASHA (American Speech-Language Hearing Association) certified speech-language pathologist and former faculty member of Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, MI). She specializes and has extensive experience teaching in early childhood development, autism, animal-assisted therapy, cerebral palsy and trauma diagnosis and treatment. She is also a PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, International) certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor and Equestrian Specialist in Mental Health and Learning. In addition, Elaine holds PATH certification (ES4H) and training in providing services for veterans with disabilities, including head/spinal cord injuries, amputations, and mental and psychological problems such as combat-induced PTSD, addiction and sexual trauma. She serves as a proud member of the Board of Directors of West Coast Ecuestre, Inc. and has been working as an instructor with them for the past year.
John Cosby brings a wealth of experiences to West Coast Ecuestre including: 25 years marketing and public relations work for government and non-profit organizations as well as private sector for-profit companies. He is the owner of Ola Lola’s, a successful and popular bar and restaurant in Isabela which he co-founded 12 years ago. His surf photography business based in Isabela has an international following and continues to set the standard for other area surf photographers. Cosby has more than 25 years’ experience as producer and coordinator of concerts, kite festivals, walk-a-thons and other events. He knows volunteering both as a volunteer for air shows and other events and as the volunteer coordinator for a community television studio and for his own festivals and events. Prior to moving to Puerto Rico, he worked for two years in a school dedicated to children with disabilities and special needs. He and his horse Chocolate live and train with his wife Elaine in Isabela.
Member at Large
Deixter Marie Colón Charneco is a Medical Technologist (ASCP Certified) that has an Independent Clinical Laboratory (Laboratorio Clínico Colón, Inc) in the town of Aguada that is family owned since 1977. Diexter has a lifelong love of horses and started riding herself when she was young. She joined the Board of West Coast Ecuestre in January 2018 and has been an integral part of our community communications at outreach. Diexter’s interest in the WCE programs began with her daughter Stella. Still has been part of the West Coast Ecuestre Team since July 2017. During her first year of riding, Deixter had seen the great improvement in her daughter’s confidence and self esteem. After that success, she decided to be part of the Board to help other families that have been through the same thing and give them the confidence they need to be successful in life.
Member at Large
After 20 years active duty, Ivan Fernandez is a retired Sergeant Frist Class of the U S Army Signal Corp. He now work as a mantainence laborer at Ramey Unit School on Ramey Base in Aguadilla, PR. Ivan has been married to Heather of Appling, Georgia 16 years. The past six years they’ve lived in Communidad Rafael Hernandez, Barrio Guerrero Aguadilla. In October, 2014, Ivan and Heather rescued a one -yed horse named Pirata. Ivan said, “I bring to West Coast Ecuestre a non-biased opinion and a willingness to work.”
Mark Turri has a lifetime of experience in corporate management, working in the executive tiers of ExxonMobil for much of his life. Mark is a mechanical engineer with business expertise. He assists West Coast Ecuestre with financial management and organizational services. Mark lives with his wife Donna in Scottsdale Arizona and volunteers regularly with a number of community and non-profit organizations.