Equest Boots & Salutes Patron Party Provides Revealing Panel Discussion on Issues Veterans’ Face
DALLAS – June 17, 2019 – On Thursday, June 13, guests filled the shimmering CrossFirst Bank office space for the Boots & Salutes Patron Party. Amongst the breath-taking views, wine, cocktails, and hors d’oeuvres provided by Food Glorious Food, guests learned about the healing power of the horse through a panel discussion led by Jeff Hensley, MS, LPC, Navy veteran and Equest board member, and Equest Veterans Manager and Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning Susannah Denney. Boots & Salutes, presented by CrossFirst Bank, benefits Equest’s Hooves for Heroes program which promotes the well-being and mental health of veterans and their families through equestrian therapies and counseling.
The panel – featuring mental health specialists Leslie West, MS, LPC-Intern and Equest counseling program manager, Veronica Jimenez, MSW, Texas Air National Guard veteran and Jay Hayes, MEd, LPC, Navy veteran and lead case manager at Endeavors, Inc. – discussed numerous topics including what brought them to Equest, the challenges veterans face upon their return home and what prevents some veterans from seeking help.
Said Hayes, “I went straight into service at 17-years-old and was always told what to do and when to do it, so when I got back home and had to make my own decisions, I didn’t know how to do that.”
Since its founding in 2012, Equest’s Hooves for Heroes has helped more than 1,500 veterans and military family members at no cost, thanks to generous grant funding, charitable donations, and underwriting. As pointed out by Hensley, “There is a need for alternative therapies in the veteran community.”
Additional attendees included Equest CEO Lili Kellogg, Equest Chairman of the Board Lane Cates, Equest Co-Founder Susan Schwartz, Boots & Salutes Co-Chairs Carolyn Anderson and Norma Jean Schaltenbrand, Nancy and Ron Natinsky, Ryan Smith, Hannah Sherertz, Emily Luth, Kailey Pretzlaff, among others.
Boots & Salutes is made possible by presenting sponsor CrossFirst Bank, Pendery’s World of Chiles & Spices, Mavs Foundation, SettlePou Law Firm, Luther King Capital Management, Living Magazine, Rita Wortham Photography, Bob Manzano Photography, Bar Louie, Carlton Provisions, Doc B’s Fresh Kitchen, Haute Sweets Patisserie, Kolache Factory, Pop Star Handcrafted Popsicles, Resident Taqueria, and Savor Gastropub.
Boots & Salutes, presented by CrossFirst Bank, benefiting Equest’s Hooves for Heroes, will be held on Friday, July 19, starting at 7:30 p.m. at Equest at Texas Horse Park (811 Pemberton Hill Road, Building 4, Dallas, TX 75217). Led by Co-Chairs Carolyn Anderson and Norma Jean Schaltenbrand, the festivities include upbeat music by Ray Johnston Band, dancing, auction items, delicious small bites, and tributes to the men and women who have served our country to protect our freedom. Tables (of eight) are available to purchase for $600 and individual tickets for $75. For more information, visit www.equest.org/boots.
Founded in 1981, Equest provides equine assisted learning, therapies and counseling to children and adults with physical, cognitive, sensory, coping and learning disabilities and veterans with adjustment challenges. The services provided include physical and occupational therapy, equine facilitated counseling and equine assisted learning, therapeutic carriage driving, therapeutic horsemanship and competition. With the help of 30 therapy horses, eight instructors, four therapists, two counselors, and 400 volunteers, lives are changed for more than 2,000 served annually. Equest was the first PATH International Premier Accredited Center in Texas and remains one of the largest in the country. Equest offers an engaging volunteer program that provides 30,000 hours of direct program service opportunities each year. www.equest.org
About Equest Hooves for Heroes
Through equine-assisted activities and therapies, Equest’s Hooves for Heroes program helps veterans and their families transition from military to civilian life and excel as community members, neighbors, and civic leaders. The individually tailored programs include mental health counseling, physical and occupational therapy, therapeutic horsemanship, carriage driving and more. Since its founding in 2012, Hooves for Heroes has helped more than 1,500 veterans and military family members at no cost, thanks to generous grant funding, charitable donations, and underwriting. www.equest.org/veterans