Our Staff


  • Name: Fern Goodman (Bonchek)
  • Type of Therapeutic Riding Certification: PATH Intl. Advanced Instructor
  • Position: Executive Director
  • Email: fern@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 12
  • The person at PALS that has seen it all and been there from the beginning is Fern, the Executive Director and Founder. Before she started PALS, she obtained a B.A. degree in Psychology with a specialization in Human & Animal Interactions and worked at other therapeutic riding centers from California to New York since 1995. Fern started PALS because she wanted to bring her experience in therapeutic riding back home to Indiana. Fern served as the chair of the Higher Education Committee of Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl.) from 2004 – 2006, is a PATH Intl. Registered On-Site Workshop/Certification Associate Evaluator, an adjunct instructor at Indiana University School of Public Health (formally HPER) and a 2010 graduate of Leadership Bloomington-Monroe County (LBMC). Fern’s life isn’t all work, she enjoys hiking, rock climbing, camping, and of course riding her horse “Sunny”.
  • Name: Annie Cornett, MS, CTRS
  • Type of Therapeutic Riding Certification: PATH Intl. Registered Instructor
  • Position: Assistant Director
  • Email: annie@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 13
  • Annie was first introduced to therapeutic riding when she began volunteering at PALS in 2005 as a sidewalker, horse leader, and barn manager. The passion she developed for the field only grew as she spent more and more time with the program, and in 2009 she became a PATH Intl. Registered Instructor. She is a two-time graduate of Indiana University, most recently completing her Masters of Science in Recreation, with a concentration in Therapeutic Recreation. She received her professional certification as a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) from the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification in 2011. Annie was recently named one of Bloomington’s “10 Under 40” award recipients for her work in our community. Check out her video from the award presentation here! In addition to her time at PALS, Annie enjoys showing her 6 year old OTTB Bubba, running, walking her dog, and reading.
Kara Square
  • Name: Kara Szabo
  • Position: Head Instructor
  • Type of Therapeutic Riding Certification: PATH Intl. Registered Instructor
  • Email: kara@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 14
  • Kara was first introduced to therapeutic riding in 1994 when she began taking dressage lessons from then, para-equestrian coach, Linda Fristch. She has been a volunteer at PALS since 2005, as a side walker, horse leader, and barn manager. Her work at PALS inspired Kara to remain at Indiana University and change her major from marine biology to therapeutic recreation. She has an A.A. in Liberal Arts from Ivy Tech University, and hopes to continue her education at IU. Kara is a PATH Intl Registered Instructor, has experience as a barn manager since 2007, and has worked as a veterinarian assistant at Farmstead Veterinary Services PC since 2008. In her down time Kara enjoys riding her two horse Tee and Gracie, kayaking and snowboarding.
  • Name: Abi Yates
  • Position: Outreach Coordinator
  • Email: abi@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 15
  •  Abi is a 2015 graduate from Indiana University with a degree in Telecommunications. Her dedication to helping others, community outreach, and event planning led her to PALS where her passion for non-profits can continue to grow. In her spare time Abi loves to cook, participate in winter sports, and cuddle with her cat!


Rachael Final
  • Name: Rachael Speedy
  • Position: Facility Manager
  • Email: rachael@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 16
  • Rachael is a graduate of Harrison College with an Associates in Veterinary Technology. She’s been working with horses for years and after working in a small animal practice for a few years, decided to make working with horses into a career. She hopes to go back to school for her next degree. Rachael does not own any horses right now but her American Bulldog, Kora, keeps her busy. Her other hobbies include rock climbing, cliff diving, and anything outdoors.
 Lindsay FINAL
  • Name: Lindsay Nash
  • Position: Development Associate
  • Email: lindsay@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 18
  • Lindsay is a graduate of Indiana University’s Master’s in Public Affairs program and has her Bachelor’s from Loyola University Chicago. She is a recently-converted Bloomington resident with roots in Northwest Indiana. Lindsay enjoys being a part of the PALS team, engaging with new people and remaining involved in the community. She is new to riding horses due to her dreadful allergies, but has found a friend in PALS therapy horse, Tux. In her spare time, you will find her playing her guitar, exploring culinary interests or pursuing artistic endeavors!
Cindy - Final
  • Name: Cindy Linsenbardt
  • Type of Therapeutic Riding Certification: PATH Intl. Registered Instructor
  • Position: Instructor
  • Email: cindy@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 11
  • Growing up Cindy developed her love of horses through riding lessons, 4-H, and by leasing a horse. Cindy attended the University of California at Davis where she graduated in 2007 with a BA in Studio Art and Minors in Equine Science and Spanish, and completed a Foal Management Internship at the Animal Science Horse Barn. In addition Cindy holds a Certificate of Experiential Teaching as well as a Certificate of Entrepreneurship from the Keller Graduate School of Management at DeVry University. After volunteering at several therapeutic riding programs in Illinois, Cindy became a Certified PATH Registered Level Therapeutic Horseback Riding Instructor in 2012. When she and her husband moved to Bloomington, Indiana, she immediately started volunteering at PALS, and the rest is history! In her free time Cindy enjoys training her horse Zella, being outdoors, doing gymnastics, reading, writing and traveling.
  • Name: Holly Foster
  • Type of Therapeutic Riding Certification: PATH Intl. Registered Instructor
  • Position: Instructor
  • Email: holly@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798 ext. 11
  • For at least 50 years, Holly has had horses in her life and has ridden different styles. She has trained in English and Western riding, and is currently training in natural horsemanship. She is a graduate of Indiana University with a Masters Degree in Special Education. After graduation, Holly worked for the North Lawrence County Schools as a Special Education Resource Teacher. She served children with many disabilities in grades K-6 for 34 years and has recently retired. Holly began volunteering at PALS as a horse leader when they were first established in 2000. Now as a retired teacher, she has chosen to stay involved by combining her special education background and all that her past experiences have taught her with her lifelong commitment to horses.
  • Name: Shawna O’Neill
  • Position: Instructor
  • E-mail: shawna@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798, ext 11
  • Shawna was first introduced to therapeutic riding during a clinic at the Hoosier Horse Fair. After researching the benefits and networking with like minded people in the field she became a PATH Intl. Registered Instructor in 2005. Shawna co-founded Freedom Reins Therapeutic Riding Center in Southern Indiana and worked there until 2011. Shawna has her B.S. in Accounting from Indiana State University and by day is a Controller at Berry Plastics in Franklin, IN. She is very excited to be a part-time instructor at PALS. She and her husband live on 10 acres along with three daughters, horses, dogs and barn cats. In addition, she has three step-daughters and many grandkids.
  • Name: Christa Arthur
  • Position: Instructor
  • E-mail: christa@nullpalstherapy.org
  • Phone: (812) 336-2798, ext 11
  • Christa was first introduced to horses by a friend in high school. It was at this time she began showing in 4H. After high school in 2014, Christa found PALS and started volunteering as a side walker, horse leader and stable manager. Since then, she has become a Barn Assistant and a PATH Intl.-Certified Instructor. Christa also gave PALS’ two retired miniature horses, Rocky and Shorty, a home where they are loved by her little brother and two other horses. In her free time, Christa enjoys baking, cake decorating, and riding her horse, Star.
  • Name: Joshua Apanavicius
  • Position: Indiana University Advocate for Community Engagement (ACE)
  • E-mail: japanavi@nullumail.iu.edu
  • Phone: (765) 635-5123
  • Josh is a student at Indiana University studying Biochemistry and Physics in hopes of one day becoming a physician so he can change the lives of others. In his free time Josh likes to work on his car, ride bicycles, and read poetry. Some of his favorite poets are Edgar Allan Poe and Pablo Neruda. He is super excited to be at PALS and learn as much as he can from all of the wonderful people here.
Barn Assistants

  • Taylor Chasteen
  • Kathy Smith
  • Cody Testerman
  • Tiffanie Wright

*** All PALS instructors are PATH Intl. Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructors or are supervised by a PATH Intl. Certified Instructor at all times.



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