Jessie began riding as a small child, and spent every moment of her free time either riding horses or dancing. She always loved riding horses, but it was when she bought a horse named Skylark that her horsemanship journey really took off. He was a green-broke 9 year old Arabian, whose history, much like many horses who cross our paths, was far from good. She knew she needed to work with her horse in a way that would gain his trust and build mutual respect, and develop her horsemanship. When she moved to Arizona for college and met Dan Knuth and was introduced to Buck Brannaman’s style of horsemanship, she knew she had found what she was looking for. She felt the changes in her horse and her own horsemanship immediately, and has been dedicated to this style of horsemanship ever since. While in Arizona, Jessie went to Arizona State University where she majored in Dance and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance Studies. Through her education, she increased her knowledge of the human body and how it moves, which enhances her ability to teach students how to use their own bodies to communicate effectively with horses, both in and out of the saddle.
While in Arizona, Jessie met Nick, who was Dan’s apprentice. In 2005 Dan retired and Nick and Jessie began teaching riding lessons and riding colts. In 2006, they married and moved to Oregon to continue teaching horsemanship and riding horses, and to pursue their dream of having their own ranch. In 2010 that dream was realized with the opening of Silver Spade Ranch.
In December of 2014, Nick and Jessie had their first baby- a daughter named Leah. When she was born, Jessie went from teaching horsemanship full time to teaching part time, to raise their little girl.
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