RICK BRUNSON
EQUINE PROGRAM DIRECTOR

Rick is the Equine Programs Director at Sorenson's Ranch School. He grew up in the small Utah town of Fillmore on a family farm with everything from horses and cows to chickens and sheep. His father always had a few colts around every spring that needed "time in the saddle" and it was here that Rick learned how to be as soft as you can be, yet as firm as you have to be when training horses. Rick loved horses from an early age spending a lot of time on horseback in the mountains and on the deserts of Utah. He found he could always find happiness and solace on the back of a horse and realized early on the truth in Winston Churchill's quote, " There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man."

Rick Spent his early adult years in the Air Force. As he traveled the globe he always looked forward to coming home on leave and riding his horse into the mountains to find that peaceful feeling that was missing in the world. After the service Rick began a successful career in the livestock transportation world as a safety supervisor for a trucking company. Rick found himself on the back of a horse on many occasions rounding up and sorting cattle for transportation to market. During these times Rick gained a great appreciation for a good horse which made the job much easier. Rick also bred, raised, and trained black and white paint horses with his family. Many of these horses went on to become great horses that were used in everything from ranching to rodeo including one that became the Utah High School Rodeo Horse of the Year. Rick has seen the benefits of the 4H program as each of his children have participated in not only the equine program but the animal husbandry programs as well.

After many years in the business world Rick had the opportunity to join the equine program at Sorenson's Ranch. This was the positive change Rick was looking for in life, finally a chance to work with children and horses, two of his passions in life. Rick is certified in the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA) modality of mental health treatment and has found a new power in horses through this form of treatment. Rick became the Equine Director in the spring of 2011 and not only practices the EAGALA method of therapy but also established a 4H program where kids compete year round vs. the summer months as most 4H programs do. He also encompasses trail riding into the program and many hours are spent camping, packing and riding in the mountains surrounding campus.

Rick is the father of five children three of which are grown and left home. He lives in the small town of Aurora UT with his wife and two remaining children. In his spare time Rick enjoys riding horses with his family, farming, and coaching wrestling at the local high school.