Our Professional Team

Amanda Weatherly
Administrative Support

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Bio coming soon!


Cassandra Porter, M.S.
P.A.T.H. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor & Child Development Specialist

Cassandra (Cassie) Porter received her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2015. Her desire to help special needs children and their families led her to pursue her M.S. in Human Development and Early Childhood Disorders from the University of Texas at Dallas. In Late 2016 she discovered the field of therapeutic horseback riding and immediately began volunteering at a center in Waxahachie. She quickly realized that she had found her calling and became a PATH certified instructor.

She has now joined the team at Paws as a Therapeutic Riding Instructor and Child Development Specialist. Cassandra specializes in providing early intervention therapy for children between the ages of birth to 6 years in many areas including gross motor, fine motor, speech and language, problem solving skills, sensory processing difficulties, adaptive life skills, social/behavioral skills, and literacy acquisition. Sheo also functions as a central resource of knowledge and support for parents learning to cope with the birth of a special needs child or a new diagnosis. Cassandra believes strongly in the healing and motivating power of animals and a natural environment combined with evidence-based practices in helping little ones and their families overcome some of the obstacles that may hinder the pathway into a happy healthy childhood.


​She is endorsed by
First 3 Years (formerly Texas Association for Infant Mental Health). She specializes in utilizing animals and a natural environment to assist children and their families struggling with developmental delay or associated early childhood problems. ​

Contact Cassandra:CPorter.pawsranch@att.net

Barbara Thompson
P.A.T.H. Cerified Equine Specialist

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Barbara Thompson (aka Babs) has lived in the Midlothian area for 37 years. Barbara lives with her daughter, 2 Quarter Horses, 2 "mini horses" of the barking variety (Great Danes) and 3 cats. She has 10 years experience in working with all aspects of therapeutic riding and a wide range of ages and disabilities. Barbara has spent 19 years studying natural horsemanship, has passed Level 3 skills tests in the Parelli Natural Horsemanship program and is working to complete Level 4 requirements. Through the everyday application of natural horsemanship, horses continue to take Barbara to new levels of understanding and communication. Barbara became a PATH certified Equine Specialist to share her passion for horses with humans seeking help with a variety of mental health and learning issues. Barbara works in concert with the counseling team to facilitate a magical healing and learning experience for each client based on their individual needs.

Contact Barbara:
PawsForReflection@att.net
Our professionals are pioneers in the field of animal-assisted therapies. Team members participate in a wide variety of educational opportunities in order to best serve our clients' needs, 

 Therapeutic Horsemanship & Horseback Riding Team


Amy Andra, M.A., LPC, RPT
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Amy Andra is licensed by the Texas State Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors as a Licensed Professional Counselor and Registered Play Therapist.  She graduated from the University of North Texas with a Masters of Education degree in counseling.  Amy has worked with adolescents and children in schools as a teacher for 12 years and as a school counselor for the past 3 years.  Amy offers animal assisted Play Therapy, Equine Assisted Counseling and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) for children and adolescents at the Ranch.  Amy believes that children have an innate ability to heal in a safe environment where they feel free to express themselves in ways that they choose.  Utilizing their strengths and emotional resiliency, children have a unique way of coping and can express and process these emotions through play.
Amy lives with her husband and two children.  She enjoys training for triathlons, running, spending time with family and friends, and helping support whatever activities her children are participating in.

Contact Amy:  AAndra.PawsRanch@att.net


Amy Carr, M.S., LCSW

Amy has been fully licensed as a Clinical Social Worker in the state of Texas since 2014, and obtained her Board Approved Supervisor status in 2016.  Amy has also been a Registered Yoga Teacher since 2015. Amy completed her Graduate studies in Clinical Social Work at the University of Texas in Austin, and has been working professionally with children and families since in 2008. She specializes in trauma focused work with ages 2-16, specifically utilizing Child Centered Play Therapy and Animal Assisted Play Therapy.  Amy also offers Equine Assisted Counseling, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), as well as Yoga Therapy techniques in her work with children and adolescents. She caters treatment to the needs of the child client, and always strives to meet families where they are in their own healing process. 


Contact Amy: acarr.pawsranch@att.net

Megan Pierce, M.S., LPC, NCC

Megan is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a National Certified Counselor.  She earned her Master of Science in Guidance and Counseling from Texas Woman’s University. She is a member of the Texas Counseling Association and is working towards becoming a Registered Play Therapist.  Megan has over a decade of experience in childhood education as well as private and school counseling. She has animal assisted therapy experience (her personal dog) and understands the soothing power of loving animal interacting with children and adolescents.

She is passionate about providing a safe and accepting environment which honors the unique developmental level of each individual child. Through the language of play Megan looks for ways of helping in the “language” of the child. She believes that by utilizing play therapy, the child will be better able to express themselves in what pleases and bothers them. Through this expression the child can resolve their problems while building emotional resiliency and individual strengths.



Contact Megan: mpierce.pawsranch@att.net

Katelyn Crawford 
P.A.T.H. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor& LPC - Intern
​Under the Supervision of Chris Covington, LPC-S

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Even though Katelyn's parents thought that her love for horses was a "typical phase", she has always had a desire to incorporate horses into her life. In 2013, Katelyn graduated from the University of North Texas with her Bachelor's degree that focused on Child and Family Development. In her last year at North Texas, she participated in a school related study, at a nearby therapeutic riding center. This was where Katelyn discovered her true passion. After shadowing and working various positions at the riding center, she decided to move to West, Texas, to begin training to be a therapeutic riding instructor. In the spring of 2015, Katelyn officially became a PATH Intl. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor.

The following summer, Katelyn had the privilege of working alongside an Equine Assisted Counselor as a Horse Specialist. This special work experience led her to pursue the path to become a Licensed Professional Counselor to one day help others through Equine Assisted Counseling. Katelyn graduated with her Masters Degree in Counseling at Tarleton State University and added Licensed Professional Counseling Intern to her resume at Paws for Reflection Ranch.

In the fall of 2015, Katelyn invested in her first horse, a Palomino Quarter Horse, named Ranger. Katelyn and Roger have both recently moved back to the DFW area and joined the Ranch team. They are both grateful and excited about their future in Equine Assisted Therapies at the Ranch.

Contact Katelyn:
Crawford.pawsranch@att.net 

Administration

Educational Programming

Kelly Clark, M.A., LPC-Intern  
Under the supervision of Brenda Elledge, M.Ed., LPC-S


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Kelly Clark received her Master of Arts degree in Counseling from Dallas  Baptist University. She has always had a passion for horses and enjoys working with them.  Her horse experience includes Buck Brannaman Natural Horsemanship Clinics, studying with LM Performance Ranch in Oklahoma, and personal horse experience. Kelly works as an LPC-Intern under the supervision of Brenda Elledge,LPC-S. Kelly offers Equine Assisted Counseling, Animal Assisted Counseling, and Traditional Counseling sessions. Kelly personally owns 3 horses, 2 dogs, and 2 cats.  When she is not working, schooling, or horsing around, she enjoys activities with her church, family, and friends.

Contact Kelly: KJensen.PawsRanch@att.net
India Baucom - Equine Specialist
 

India started her journey with horses at the age of 8, growing up on the NTAJA Circuit. In 2010, she met the horse that would have the most influence on her career, a rescue named Ginger. Ginger taught her the importance of partnership and trust and how to advocate for herself and others. She graduated from Meredith Manor International Equestrian Centre with certifications in horsemanship, riding instruction, and equine massage therapy. It was at Meredith Manor that India fell in love with dressage and classical horsemanship. After a riding accident, she was unsure if she still wanted to work with horses. However, after healing with the aid of her Equine partner, Pony Soprano, she decided to move home to Texas to pursue a new dream, one in equine assisted therapy.


Contact India:
PawsForReflection@att.net

Courtney Utter 
M.Ed., LPC-Intern, P.A.T.H. Certified Equine Specialist

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​​Courtney obtained her Masters of Education in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Texas Christian University (go frogs!). Courtney is a PATH Certified Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning and is a Licensed Professional Counselor- Intern. She is under the supervision of Christina McDonald, LPC-S. She has a background conducting Animal Therapies and completed her one year Counseling Internship here at Paws For Reflection Ranch while in school. She has been working with horses for over 20 years and has an English Hunter Jumper background. She takes a holistic approach to counseling and has a true passion for people, horses, healing and helping.  

Contact Courtney:
PawsForReflection@att.net

Nicole Litterio, M.Ed.
Volunteer & Outreach Coordinator

Nicole Litterio received a Master in Education at DePaul University and holds an Illinois Professional Educator License Endorsed in School Counseling. She moved to the DFW area in spring 2016 after working as a Case Manager for 9.5 years in the south side of Chicago. She began volunteering at Paws for Reflection Ranch in the fall of 2016 and became the Volunteer Coordinator in 2017. Her passion is to empower individuals to better understand their skills and talents to live more fulfilling lives. Nicole hopes volunteering will help people to learn about themselves and their life purpose in the greater community.
As the Outreach Coordinator, Nicole educates the greater community about the services offered at the Ranch and how others can take part in Ranch activities and services.
When not working or volunteering, Nicole enjoys spending time in nature with her dog and gardening.


Contact Nicole: Litterio.pawsranch@att.net
Tannis Lambert
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Director of Educational Programs

Tannis Lambert has a passion for sharing experiences with animals and nature within a fun and safe learning environment.  She has home schooled for 18 years and has been part of many groups along the way.  Somehow she always finds herself involved with kid's programs; AWANA, Bible Studies, Mom's Day Out, Parent's Night, Jr. High Leader, Boy Scouts, 4-H, Co-op Nursery, etc.  Recently at Paws for Reflection Ranch Tannis is using the skills she has gathered over time to lead the Paws for Fun after school program, Paws for Fun Summer Camp, special needs class field trips, and therapy animal visits to assisted living homes. She is very excited about the Ranch educational programs and excited to grow even more programs.

Contact Tannis:  TLambert.PawsRanch@att.net


University of North Texas (UNT) Counseling Interns

Paws for Reflection Ranch was selected by UNT for their Masters and Doctoral Students to obtain first-hand Animal Assisted Counseling experience toward their required internship hours. These interns allow us to offer services at a low cost for clients who can be flexible with their schedules.


Christin Norman, M.S., LPC-Intern
​Under the supervision of Tracy McClung, Phd, LPC-S, RPT-S)


Christin Norman received her Master of Science degree in Counseling from the University of North Texas. Christin offers Child-Centered Play Therapy with children, activity therapy, Person-Centered Therapy with adolescents and adults, and Child-Parent Relationship Training. She works as an LPC-Intern under the supervision of Tracy McClung, Phd, LPC-S, RPT-S. Christin believes that children can process their experiences and emotions through play, and begin healing when given the opportunity to play out this process in a safe, facilitative environment. She enjoys working in partnership with the animals to help children reach their goals. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, camping, coffee and relaxing with her dogs and family. 


Contact Christin: pawsforreflection@att.net

Counseling Team

Elissa Jeter, M.A., LPC-Intern, NCC
Under the Supervision of Mark Aldridge, Ph.D., LPC-S, NCC 


Elissa M. Jeter, M.A., LPC-Intern received her Master of Art in Counseling from the University of Rochester in New York. Elissa joined the Ranch as a Counseling-Intern under the supervision of Dr. Mark Aldridge, Ph.D., LPC-S. As a member of the Army National Guard, Elissa has provided Behavioral Health Counseling both as a civilian and a Soldier to Veterans, active military, and their families. She has experience in Chemical Dependency, Crisis Counseling, Adolescent Counseling, Sexual Trauma Counseling, PTSD Counnseling, and Interpersonal Counseling. Her passion lies with working with Veterans as they transition to civilian life and reach their full potential. Elissa believes in a holistic approach to Counseling, focusing on every aspect of one's life including Spiritual, Emotional, Behavioral, Cognitive, Social, Financial, and others. Elissa is a member of the American Counseling Association and the American Mental Health Association.

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Contact Elissa: EJeter.pawsranch@att.net
Liana White
P.A.T.H. Certified Therapeutic Riding and Horsemanship Instructor

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Liana White's passion and dedication for horses is rooted in her childhood in Germany.  Life moved her to the United States where she obtained her Associates of Science in Agricultural Sales and Services with Equine Training from Dickinson State University, ND and later on, the Bachelor of Arts with concentration in Therapeutic Horsemanship at St. Andrews University in Laurinburg, NC. In North Carolina, Liana worked under the legendary Reining Horse Trainer Francois Gauthier, where she specialized developing young horses into Reining Show Horses. In Texas, she furthered her skill in training young horses for cutting and cow work, working for Manion Ranch under Cutting Futurity Winner Phil Hanson. Liana gained knowledge about cattle and herd management. One of the mile stones in her career was the coaching at the NRHA Futurity Para Reining Riders. Liana's position as a Therapeutic Riding Instructor at Paws for Reflection Ranch combines her passion to teach special populations the fundamentals of horsemanship, as well as, maintaining the level of training of the lesson horses.

Contact Liana: 
LWhite.pawsranch@att.net