Meet your Board

Karen Piper - President

I started riding at the age of 7. My mother was Open Jumper Champion of the State of Washington at that time.  Her trainer a retired Calvary man taught me to ride.  At the age of 9 I was riding with the Woodbrook Hunt Club and rode as Whipper-In when I was 14.  I did a lot of eventing and hunter jumper shows.

My dressage scores were low so I could place in Eventing but not win.  In 1995 I was at Toyon Farms watching a Nigli clinic.  That is when I wanted to really learn to ride Classical Dressage. I started working with Rachel Saavedra on a young horse named Samurai.   I have had 10 young horses since then.  I purchased my Hanoverian gelding, Ernst August in 2011 and trained with Tanya Vik. I won the 4th level RAAC in 2013 on Ernst.  I earned my sliver medal in 2015.  He is 18 years old now and continues to improve.  We are working with Michelle Woollard and Kathy Everman and hoping to ride the I1 in the near future.

I have ridden with Chris Rivlin, Jane Schwartz, Andrew Murphy, Sue Curry, Lilo Fore, Heidi Gaian, Jennifer Williams and Michael Lieberg.

I have a miniature pony, London Fog, whom I drive around my farm in the Griffen Creek area. I am dedicated to the sport of Dressage and offer my school master to a select few to ride and learn on.


Savannah Whisler - Vice President

At a young age I began taking riding lessons and from that moment fell completely in love with horses. Growing up in Portland, Oregon, I spent most of my younger years riding and showing dressage. When I moved away to attend college in Southern Oregon, I immediately found a place to continue riding dressage while going to school. I was lucky enough to work with some great trainer who helped fuel my passion for dressage. 

Since graduating from SOU with a business degree, I now work as the manager at a local tack store in Phoenix, Gid-De-Up Boutique. I spent the last four years competing Lovely Lady RP, a Haflinger mare owned by Nancy Brandenburg up through Intermediate-1 and Darlington, a KWPN gelding owned by Michelle Woollard up through 3rd level. At the 2019 USDF Regional Championships held at Devonwood Equestrian Centre, we competed in 4 Championships - receiving a Reserve Championships in our 1st Level Freestyle. 


Melanie Plisskin - Secretary

My parents began indulging my love of horses at the age of 4. Little did they know when they signed their toddler up for weekly lessons that it would become a lifetime passion and be the reason they still jokingly say they have no money.  

At 7, we moved to England and my horsey habit got more serious. I was lucky enough to ride at the queens stable and spent hours galloping and exploring Windsor Great Park. This is also where I learned to jump.  Back in the USA, I continued jumping in the form of 3 day eventing until college when I decided cross country produced way to much adrenaline for me and I switched to hunters. I rode hunters locally and showed on the West Coast on many different mounts over the years. I also served in different administrative capacities for most of the last 10 years on the Southern Oregon Hunter/Jumper Association board.    

It was about 2 years ago that I made the move to stay closer to the ground and began learning dressage again. Michelle Woollard took my hunter, Cashmere and myself and turned us into respectable dressage show partners. We spent the last 2 seasons showing at Training and First level and had a blast. Unfortunately my sweet mare passed away this fall so I found myself a new partner. Rudy is the newest love of my life and he, along with Michelle, is teaching me what it’s like to ride an upper level dressage horse. I am looking forward to taking him out this year at First and maybe Second level (if I can learn to sit the bounce!). 


Ed Miller - Treasurer



Tesia Penner - Member at Large



Ellie Brown - Member at Large

Ellie began riding at the age of 5, and has been devoted to Dressage specifically since the age of 9. She began training professionally as a young adult and has benefited greatly from studying with her mentor, Jeff Moore. Ellie is a mother of 3 and runs her business, Aletheia Dressage, in Southern Oregon. She enjoys competing and has schooled several horses through the FEI and Grand Prix. She is looking forward to the coming years with her young Hanoverian stallion, Finero. Ellie works with all ages and levels of horses and riders, with special focus on biomechanics, training for soundness, and empathy for the horse’s learning process.


Carrie Allen - Member at Large