Executive Director- Sarah Valentine, Founder of Riverside Ranch,

PATH Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor, Bachelor of Science Degree from Meredith College in Business Marketing, Wife to her husband Matthew  and Mom of their 2 beautiful kids Jonah and Brooke. Heart for people, animals, and her community.


Board of Directors 2020

President-Carrie Gower,  Carrie is an experienced IT Leader in the high tech and pharmaceutical industries, Carrie is a champion of the principles of servant leadership. A California native, Carrie, her husband Bryan and their two children relocated to Holly Springs, NC in 2011. While in California, she and Bryan were founders and board members of Crosstown Coffeehouse and Community Center, a non-profit focused on serving and building community in Alameda, CA. Now passionate about making a positive impact on community here in Wake and Johnston counties, Carrie joined the board of Riverside Ranch, also serves on the board of the OAKS Initiative based in Fuquay Varina and actively serves in her church in Cary.


Vice President-Holly Narron, Holly is a Johnston County native and grew up in Selma, NC.  She currently lives in Clayton with her husband and two children.  She is employed as a school psychologist and her passion has always been working with at-risk children.  She loves seeing others meet their goals and see success.  Holly is excited for all that Riverside Ranch has to offer for her community and looks forward to watching the program grow and change lives! 

Treasurer- Nora Sherwood, Finance Manager for Military Missions in Action, a non profit dedicated to assisting disabled and homeless veterans, located in Fuquay Varina, NC. I am a mom of 3 and have a heart for serving my community and meeting people right where they are. I am thrilled to be a part of Riverside Ranch and am looking forward to seeing lives changed through this organization. 

Secretary-Emily Stefan, Emily is a Pediatric Physical Therapist with an exceptional heart for both humans and animals, which is why she chose to be on the board. She has a dream to use animals and her physical therapy education to encourage goal-reaching and independence in children with physical challenges. She loves to visit her family in Ohio, spend time with her boyfriend, Doug; and cuddle with her dog, Casper. She is hoping that Casper will become a certified therapy dog this year so that he can visit some friends at Riverside Ranch!

Board Member-Nikki Dawson, Co Founder and Owner Dawsons Electric, Nikki and her husband have 3 teenagers. "I love being able to give back to our community and we have a special place in our heart for the special needs community because our oldest son has special needs. Working with Riverside Ranch has provided me with the opportunity to be involved in two things that are very special to me, the special needs community and horses." 

Board Member-Tammy Hicks, Tammy is a WW eComm Product Manager with Lenovo, and has worked for the company for the past 11 years. She is originally from Upstate NY, but escaped the rough winters in 2008 when she moved to North Carolina. She now lives in Angier with her husband Jake (an Army Veteran) and their 3 kids and 2 dogs. Tammy has a heart for our Veterans and individuals with disabilities and is excited to help Riverside Ranch bridge the gap in what the therapeutic community currently lacks.  

Board Member-Jenn Kaylor,  Ohio-licensed attorney, working as Legal Counsel in the pharmaceutical development space. Originally from Ohio, she now lives in Apex, where she enjoys spending time with her husband and two energetic boys.  For Jennifer, being a part of Riverside Ranch provides a wonderful opportunity to help those who are underserved in the community. 


Board Member-Diana Valentine, Co-owner of Xtreeme Challenge-team building center in Monroe, NC
Discipleship Counselor & Life Coach at Gracelife International Charlotte, NC, Emotional Trauma Therapist with Splankna Institute. Being a board member has allowed me to be supportive in the development and growth of an organization who’s focus will have rich community impact. 

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