Want to Join Our Management Team?

Contact Molly Scannell,
Interim Executive Director,
at 415-662-2488 or email.

“It is a blessing to have a place for my son to ride a horse with such care and love. We cherish the smiles of the people at the ranch, especially adult riders who are comfortable just being themselves. They are beautiful and I see my son’s future smile.”

Meet Our Management Team

Our Staff

Molly Scannell, Executive Director
Molly was a volunteer with the program in her youth. She has an Animal Science degree from Cal Poly, and served an internship with Hoofbeats, a therapeutic riding program in Virginia. She came back to Halleck Creek as a part-time instructor, working her way up to Program Director in 2007 and Interim Executive Director in December 2016. She brings a long history of community service, horsemanship and passion for therapeutic riding to her position. She is a Certified Therapeutic Riding from the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International.

Brenda Falco, Program Director
Brenda is a CHA certified riding instructor, teaching both English and Western disciplines, and is a Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor from the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International. She brings over 30 years of equine experience to Halleck Creek, including teaching, riding training and leading trail rides. She enjoys spending time riding on the trails of Marin with Reno, the Quarter Horse she has owned since 2010. Her favorite part of being on the Halleck Creek team is seeing her students succeed in achieving their riding goals and feeling confident with their equine friends.

Saga McIsaac, Instructor
Born and raised in West Marin, she joined Pony Club and took her first lesson shortly after she was four. She has been teaching lessons and working with horses for over 24 years and owns a rescued horse named Daisy. Horses have been in her life for a long time, and she hopes they will always be.

Julia Clayton, Instructor
Julia began volunteering at Halleck Creek in 2013. After lending a steady hand on weekends and special events such as the Annual Horse Show and Marin County Fair, she became an assistant riding instructor in October of 2016. Julia is an avid equestrian, having grown up doing 4-H with her Arabian horse, and currently rides with a top hunter/jumper show barn on the Peninsula. Julia is honored to work with Halleck because she understands the enormous physical and emotional benefits that come with being around horses and loves being able to help our riders experience the same.

Timothy Dempsey, Instructor
Tim served in law enforcement as a San Francisco police inspector and Sonoma County district attorney investigator for over 35 years, combined. He volunteered at Equi-Ed (Therapeutic Riding Program) for 5 years, helping them with their facilities construction and maintenance. He is now semi-retired. He has a professional certificate in Equine Science, is a sitting board member with the California Mounted Officers Association and is on the statewide mounted police training staff, certifying new officers to mounted patrol duties. He is an avid rider, competing in extreme cowboy challenge races, team penning, team sorting, ranch cutting and trail trials.

Jordan Stanton, Volunteer Coordinator
Jordan has been passionate about horses and helping others all of her life. She has over 17 years of nonprofit experience, including co-founding and running organizations and building volunteer teams. She is also a community educator and through this has worked with diverse populations ranging from youth in the juvenile justice system to leaders in corporate America. She is an avid horsewoman and teaches riding lessons to youth at Morning Star Farms in Novato, CA. Five years ago, she discovered Buck Brannaman’s style of horsemanship and has been attending his clinics ever since. Her love for horses and people is at the heart of all she does and she is thrilled to be part of the Halleck Creek Ranch team.

Lucy Viscardi, Youth Intern
Lucy has been a volunteer at Halleck Creek since 2012 and has loved building relationships with the riders and horses here at the ranch. She has been working with horses for many years, and in addition to helping instructors during the Saturday program, has assisted with supervising and implementing Halleck Creek's summer horsemanship clinics. Lucy is a senior at Tamalpais High School and hopes to continue serving her community through organizations like Halleck Creek throughout her life.

Natalie Phillips, Administrative Assistant
Natalie joined Halleck Creek as a program volunteer in August 2016, and joined the team to help with administrative duties in January 2017. Natalie was a Real Estate broker in the years before she adopted her now teenage son, and joined the HCR community in hopes of building new friendships with horses and humans alike.

Tyler Poppe, Ranch Caretaker
Tyler is a West Marin native who joined the Halleck Creek team as a volunteer in February 2015, proving early on his commitment to helping make a difference. Working alongside the ranch caretaker at the time, he learned how to care for HCR’s horses and about the necessary upkeep of a 60-acre ranch. In November 2015 the ranch caretaker decided to step down and Tyler took her place and joined HCR as an employee. He enjoys contributing to Halleck Creek through his knowledge and understanding of construction and his dedication to hard work.

Board of Directors

Dan Steadman, President. Dan first became involved with Halleck Creek Ranch when he was asked to be a judge at the annual Halleck Creek Horse Show in 2011. He is a 4th generation California horseman raised on a ranch in Northern California, where he learned his horsemanship skills under the guidance of his grandfather. Dan has been a local business executive in Marin County since 1985 and currently serves as an executive officer and member of the Board of Directors of Hennessy Advisors in Novato, CA. He joined the Board in June of 2012.

Rick Lind, Vice President. Rick has been bringing his son Ben to ride the horses at Halleck Creek for about 18 years. Living with his wife and son in Santa Rosa, Rick is a professional potter who participates in many of the local art shows and events. Rick has been a member of the Halleck Creek Board of Directors for 23 years, and has been instrumental in organizing and leading the fundraising activities for our Halleck Creek Golf Tournament fundraiser. He joined the board in 1993.

Roger Peters, Treasurer. Roger has been riding horses on and off in most of the Western states for more than 20 years. Along with his spouse Stephanie, and sons Steve (17) and Dave (15), he spent 10 days moving cows in central Wyoming one recent summer at a working cattle ranch. When Roger went to HCR several years ago to pick up Steve, who was part of the Boy Scout team restoring the Redwood Trail creek crossing, and to meet with Dennis Hansen, the connection to HCR and its work was immediate. Roger is a semi---reformed lawyer who worked for PG&E for 29 years, retiring in late 2006. Roger remains involved in various environmental/ energy projects and issues and in non---profit activities; he is currently on the Board of the Valley of the Moon Alliance and a member of the Audit Committee at The Redwoods. He joined the Board in 2008.

Selina Wajnowski, Secretary. Selina and her husband Greg moved back to California after living for 12 years in Asia when their son Zachary was diagnosed with autism, and soon heard about Halleck Creek from Zack’s occupational therapist. Zack has enjoyed riding at the Ranch for nearly 16 years, since the age of 4. “We are deeply appreciative of the program at Halleck Creek, the beautiful surroundings of the Ranch, and most of all the wonderfully inclusive and diverse community that defines and distinguishes Halleck Creek”. Selina joined the Board in February of 2010, volunteers on Wednesdays on the facilities maintenance team, and was nominated Secretary in May 2016.

Claudia Johnson, Director Emeritus. Claudia has been involved as a rider since 1979 after the Halleck Creek riding program started and has been instrumental in helping Halleck Creek maintain a historical perspective of Halleck Creek. She provides critical input as a former rider in the program and as Secretary until May of 2016 was responsible for getting meeting minutes and other notices out to the Board. She joined the board in 1995.

Nancy Brookshire. Nancy first came to the ranch in 2000 looking for a place to keep an abandoned donkey she had adopted. She has since become known as the “donkey lady” at Halleck Creek. Nancy is also our hardworking facilities manager, leading a volunteer team on Wednesdays in facilities maintenance and also spearheading Halleck Creek’s invaluable recycling program. She joined the Board in 2002, and provides valuable input to the ranch and animal needs.

David Lambert. David first heard about Halleck Creek from one of his daughter Jennifer's physical therapists. “We have been coming to the ranch since 1998, enjoying the great camaraderie and beautiful scenery that makes Halleck Creek so special to all who come and experience the facility. Both Jennifer and I have watched the ranch grow and become an outstanding facility for anyone with a disability to enjoy being outdoors and around horses and other animals. We look forward to continuing to be a part of this unique organization for many years to come”. Dave joined the Board in 2005.

Bob Reyff. Bob began volunteering at Halleck Creek Ranch with his daughter Libby in the summer of 2006. Libby is now attending Scripps College in Claremont, CA and she continues to volunteer at Halleck Creek Ranch during the summers. His wife, Sydney, is also a volunteer and a retired teacher at Saint Raphael Elementary School. Bob is a Deputy Attorney General in California’s Department of Justice. He has been an attorney in Marin and San Francisco Counties for 31 years, including private practice, Assistant District Attorney, and staff counsel for the State Compensation Insurance Fund. He joined the Board in December of 2008.

Pete Irving. Pete’s father, the late Duane Irving, was one of the founders of HCR. Pete was born and raised on the Halleck Creek property until he was 18 years old. He went off to college and graduated from San Diego State with a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Economics. He has worked for United Van Lines Moving in San Rafael for the past 21 years. Pete and his wife are partners in the business with her brother and sister. Pete is an asset to the Club due to personal knowledge of the Ranch. He joined the Board in March of 2013.

Dino Ielmorini. Dino is a 5th generation descendent of a dairy ranching family from Hicks Valley, West Marin. His family still maintains a dairy in the Nicasio Valley. A certified welder and mechanic out of college, he has been a licensed general contractor for the last 18 years that specializes in steel covered horse arenas and ranch barns.

He was formally introduced to HCR by Dan Steadman to give an assessment of the ranch structures. With a large animal, ranch maintenance and construction background, he hopes to bring that knowledge to help the HCR facility to continue with its forward movement. He joined the Board in April of 2014.

Jean-Denis Ncho-Oguie. Jean-Denis (or “John”) grew up in Novato, CA, attended San Marin High School and University of California, Santa Barbara, graduating with a Bachelors Degree in Business Economics with an emphasis in Accounting. He is a licensed CPA and currently works for Deloitte & Touche LLP in San Francisco. Jean--?Denis lives with his wife Alicia and their two young daughters, Elena (4 years old) and Emma (5 months old) in Novato. At the age of 2, Elena was diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum, and in early 2016, the Ncho family found Halleck Creek Ranch. Elena now receives equine therapy every Thursday afternoon. The Ncho family has felt so blessed to find an organization as prestigious and inclusive as Halleck Creek Ranch. As such, in an effort to show their appreciation and to further contribute to the great organization that is Halleck Creek, Jean---Denis became an active Board Member in October of 2016.

A. J. Hennessy. A.J. began his philanthropic work by volunteering his time in local classrooms and at several charity events. He was introduced to Halleck Creek in 2013 after Dan Steadman asked him to judge their Annual Horse Show. He serves as a committee member for the Novato Community Hospital Golf Tournament, which raises money for the Novato Unified School District Partnership Program. A.J. has become an accomplished horseman and is a member of the Sonoma County Trailblazers, an organization based on horsemanship and cowboy camaraderie. A.J. holds a B.A. in Political Science from California State University, Chico and is currently a Vice President at Hennessy Funds, in Novato, CA. He resides in Petaluma, CA. A.J. joined the Board in October of 2016.

Shannon Manzoni. Giving back to her community was always a desire, and she found the right fit when she was introduced to Halleck Creek Ranch by Dan Steadman. Being part of a non---profit that provides special families with therapeutic horseback riding could not have been more perfect. Shannon has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Wine Business Management from Sonoma State University. She currently works in Novato as a logistics manager for Renkert Oil, LLC and resides in Novato with her husband Kyle. Shannon joined the Board in September of 2017.

Advisory Council

Bill Barboni, DVM
Hicks Valley, CA

Patrick McNeil, Esq.
San Rafael, CA

Dennis O’Connell
San Rafael, CA

M. Hunter Spencer
Nicasio, CA