We cannot do it without you

GallopNYC relies on our volunteers

Volunteering with GallopNYC is one of the most rewarding, exciting, and fun activities in NYC!

Volunteers are able to experience the personal satisfaction of helping children and adults with developmental, emotional, social, and physical challenges, all while working with and being around horses, one of nature’s most sympathetic and empathetic animals.

Ready to start? Create your account here!


After you create your account, a member of our team will be in touch by email and will share with you next steps about completing your orientation.

Welcome aboard!



  • Each rider is supported by up to three volunteers – one leading the horse and one on each side of the rider.
  • NO EXPERIENCE is NEEDED. We provide training.
  • A love of horses is helpful, as is a desire to work with individuals with a disability.

” I marvel to see how much people are capable of when no one puts limits on their expectations.”
—GallopNYC volunteer

What happens now?

Your first step is to create your account. You will then be asked to complete an online orientation, and then you will be given the chance to complete an on-site orientation. After orientation, you’re free to find a volunteer opportunity that fits your schedule and sign up!

We ask volunteers to commit to two hours of service a week.

Questions? email volunteer@gallopnyc.org, call 646.233.4507.

Pay Fees

Pay Fees

Become a volunteer

GallopNYC would not exist without our dedicated volunteers. We need help at lessons and with a wide range of specialized skills. Come to a party!

Become a volunteer

attend an event

attend an event

Make a donation

Make a donation

Alicia Kershaw

Alicia first volunteered for therapeutic riding in Hong Kong in 1998. She is a retired attorney who grew up with horses. In 2005, she took a training course in starting a therapeutic riding program at Winslow and is a Certified PATH INTL Instructor. She is an Auxiliary Mounted NY City Parks Enforcement Patrol Officer. She also serves on the Board of the Fund for Women in Asia and the Women’s Foundation (Hong Kong) and the Dean’s Council of the Harvard Divinity School. Ms Kershaw does not receive compensation for her services. She has a JD from Yale Law School and a BA from Williams College.

Peter Byrne

Peter is an accomplished management executive with a unique combination of clinical, operational and computer implementation experience. He brings over 20 years of progressive, results-oriented success in combining sound project management skills with implementing leading-edge information systems to GallopNYC. He began as a volunteer and took on the Program Manager role in 2009. Peter has an MBA in Health Care Administration, from Bernard M. Baruch – Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from State University of New York – Downstate Medical Center, and a BA from Manhattan College.

Virginia Terry

Virginia joined GallopNYC in September 2015. A creative and results-driven non-profit professional with passion, drive and vision, Virginia has more than 15 years
experience leading non-profits to influence the business sector to adopt more sustainable practices. M.A. New York University, Gallatin School, B.A. Furman University. Virginia’s work experience includes the Brooklyn YWCA, the New School, BSR and the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Virginia is married with three children, a Master’s level swimmer and Sporadic triathlete and marathoner and a passionate but mediocre tennis player. She’s also an avid ballet fan.

Bonnie joined the GallopNYC team in January 2016. She grew up riding and loving horses in rural southeastern Ohio and is so happy to have the opportunity to reconnect with this part of her life here in New York City. Bonnie previously coordinated a city-wide Travel Training program, teaching adults with disabilities independent travel skills. Bonnie has an MSW, with a focus on Organizational Management and Leadership, from Hunter College’s Silberman School of Social Work. She has a BS in Psychology from Baldwin-Wallace College. In her spare time, Bonnie enjoys traveling and live music and she is an avid reader.

Anne Rehnkopf Townsend

Anne Town came to GallopNYC in 2012. She served as the Director of Development for the Brooklyn Historical Society and the National Academy of Design before becoming a fundraising consultant. She has over 20 years of experience working in the non-profit sector and has served on a number of boards including the Junior League of Brooklyn and Rebuilding Together Brooklyn. She graduated from Tulane University with a B.A. in Art History.

NYC Civic Corps
Priscilla Porras and Daniel Afonin

Up2Us Sports AmeriCoprs VISTA
Nikki Lee

2015-16 – CUNY Corps
Clariza Mayo
Stephanie Olcese
Oluwabusola Oyenuga
Adriana Villanueva
Cynthia Odiliactie
Jabeen Cheema
Jessica Altieri
Lana Roff

Liz Skoski, Development and Administrative Assistant, grew up riding horses and competed throughout high school and college. After five years working as an English teacher in the New York City Public School System, she discovered GallopNYC. She holds a BA in English Literature from Binghamton University and an MA in English Education from Columbia University.
Emma Missouri, Office Assistant

James found GallopNYC as a volunteer in October 2010, and joined our staff full-time as of January 2014, in the newly created position of Director of Operations. James has an extensive background in retail; both buying and planning, full-line department store and off-price. His love of horses goes back to his hometown in Texas, where his father taught him to ride and rope. James holds a Bachelor of Science, Agribusiness and a Master of Science, Marketing from Texas A&M. He is in the process of becoming a PATH Intl. certified instructor, and enjoys photography in his spare time.

Angela has resigned effective Oct. 16 2015. She will be missed! We are searching for a new Volunteer Coordinator. Please contact James@GallopNYC.org if interested. If you have questions about volunteering go to volunteer.gallopnyc.org or contact James (james@gallopnyc.org) or Beth (beth@gallopnyc.org).

Mocha is a rescued horse. He is a 15 year old bay gelding with a calm and sweet temperament. Mocha is healthy and sound. He is pretty but does have a high wither. This makes him a perfect Therapeutic Riding horse – after all no one at GallopNYC is perfect!
Mocha was homeless and faced an uncertain future, perhaps even a kill auction.

We were able to adopt Mocha with the combined efforts of GallopNYC, the NYC Parks Department and Equine Rescue Resource.

At GallopNYC we are delighted to have such a great therapeutic horse AND be part of the effort to protect horses in NYC.

Cinnamon is a sweet little pony who was injured and blinded in one eye. Jamaica Bay Riding Academy generously donated her to GallopNYC. She has a gentle willing temperament and is well trained, so she is popular with our more advanced riders as well as our beginners.

Gracie is on lease from the International Riding Camp. She’s a sweet pony who is doing a lot of Hippotherapy because she has a peppy pace!

Pride is our new rescue horse from the Standardbred Retirement Foundation. He was raced and earned a whopping $12,728 – he wasn’t very fast! But that makes him all the more wonderful as a therapy horse. He is BIG and sweet, and we are training him with plans to put him to work in our Spring Session.

Zest joined us from a stable where he was under occupied. He’s a beautiful Morgan Haflinger cross and a big favorite among our riders. He’s sturdy and can carry a lot of weight. He’s needed a few manners on the lead but we are training him and he’s a great addition to our team.

Shown with rider Lauren Reischer, Trusty is a gorgeous Hanoverian who was a competitive dressage horse. His owner Judith Sloan is a member of our Council of Advisors. When decided to retire him, she thought we might like him. We love him!

New PONY! Another pony we are leasing from The International Riding Camp. We will have a contest to name her: Heart? Joyful? Bounty? Charm?