PCA Board Members

A life with horses starts here

Pony Club Australia is overseen by a board of eight independent directors, who each bring special skills

HEATHER DISHER, CHAIR

Heather has many years experience as a Vice President, Business Leader, Director, Consultant and Advisory for start-ups, SME’s and Corporates by creating sustainable operations, superior customer communication and high growth. With previous experience as a Director/Board and Committee Member Heather brings global expertise within the areas of Governance, Operational Development, Communication, Digital Transformation, Strategic Development and Growth.

Growing up Heather and her sisters where members of the Beveridge Pony Club, she remembers the joy of riding to events, the bond of horse and rider and being a part of a community that encourages education and teamwork. Heather looks forward to continuing a focus of participation, education and awareness along with increasing the profile of PCA and equestrian sports.

Heather was appointed to the board in 2019 and elected as Chair in May 2020.

MARYLOU HODGES, DEPUTY CHAIR

Marylou has been involved in Pony Club since 1967 and is a member of the Holbrook Pony Club in NSW. Marylou has held Secretarial and Presidential roles at both club and zone levels, as well as two terms as the Zone Chief Instructor. She has level one NCAS coach accreditation and mentors and assesses coaches in southern NSW. 

Marylou has extensive experience in the agricultural field, having worked for many years for the International Agricultural Exchange Association. Marylou has a degree in Social Welfare, diplomas in Community Services and Case Management and Cert IV in Business and Administration. She currently works as an Equine Specialist with Equine Assisted Psychotherapy at Willow Creek, EAP using the power of the horse to assist young people with lifestyle issues, mental health, anger management, addiction and bullying. Marylou was elected to the board in May 2018.

MICHELLE HARPER, Secretary

Michelle is a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria and the High Court of Australia. She also has extensive experience in corporate governance, education, health and welfare, and equestrian sport. As President of Yarra Glen and District Pony Club, in February 2009 she was instrumental in helping the Club recover after the grounds were destroyed in the Black Saturday fires. She received an award for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Bushfire Recovery’ at the 2009 Victorian Sports and Recreation Awards.

She was an elected Board Director from 2016-2018 including two years as Chair. She has an interest in helping improve corporate governance at club, state and national level, and making Pony Club more accessible to others. Michelle is a board-appointed director in 2021 for a two-year term.

ANDREW MCLEAN

Dr Andrew McLean is recognised across the world for his work on equine behaviour. Andrew holds a PhD in equine cognition and learning, has been an accredited horse riding coach for over 30 years and has written 5 books (including an International Best Seller) and authored 35 peer-reviewed journal articles. Andrew is a past winner of the Eureka Prize, which is the highest science award in Australia. As a rider Andrew is a past winner of the Gawler 3-day event, has competed nationally in showjumping and held a racehorse owner-trainer’s license. He established and is currently the director of the Australian Equine Behaviour Centre. He is in great demand and delivers lectures and workshops across the world on the optimal use of learning theory for improved performance and improved welfare of the trained horse.  Andrew was appointed to the board in 2016 and is in his third term.

JULIET SKINNER

Juliet has been actively involved in Pony Club in Australia since 2009, when she and her daughter joined Mareeba Pony Club, in Far North Queensland. However, her experience with Pony Club started as a child in the UK, where she competed in various disciplines and taught at her family’s riding school.

She has attended 5 Queensland State championships with her daughter and the 2017 National Championships in Toowoomba. Juliet has a particular interest in promoting the less well-known disciplines and advocating for smaller clubs and their members in rural areas. Juliet trained as a doctor at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London and has practiced as a rural and remote GP in Queensland for over 20 years. Her experience includes working as an outreach women’s health GP with the Royal Flying Doctor Service, Indigenous health and family medicine as well as numerous voluntary duties at equestrian and other events. Juliet joined the board in 2017.

JO MORGAN

Jo is a senior marketing and finance industry professional with over 20 years’ experience in the financial services industry. She holds a Master of Applied Finance. She held senior executive roles across blue-chip, national and boutique firms, and worked on strategic business and marketing planning, brand, media liaison, marketing campaign development, digital/web content and marketing analytics. Jo is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).

She has been a member of Arcadia Pony Club NSW for nearly 10 years, and her three children have grown up with the Club. Jo has been instrumental in recruiting members and increasing the Club’s digital footprint, including establishing online certificate work for members during the pandemic.  Jo Morgan was a 2019 Finalist for PCA Volunteer of the Year and Arcadia Pony Club was a finalist for PCA Club of the Year in 2020. She is passionate about member engagement and satisfaction across all States and the long-term growth of Pony Club. Jo was elected by members at the 2021 AGM for a two-year term.

CAROLE-ANNE HODGES 

Carole brings many years of experience in the business and financial sector, and a passion for Pony Club, to the Board. She is a Quality Assurance ISO 9002 Auditor and a past winner of the Rotary Pride of Workmanship Award. In 2017, she was the Sports NSW Community Sport Administrator of the Year and PCA Volunteer of the Year.

She has worked in finance and administration for over 40 years, first in the banking industry and now the private sector, specialising in human resources and finance. Carole also runs her own bookkeeping business with private clients.

A current Level One Pony Club Instructor and  State Scorer for PCANSW, she has been a member of various Pony Clubs in Zone 9, NSW for over 20 years. Carole was elected by members at the 2021 AGM for a two-year term.

JACOB McLOUGHLIN

Jacob is a solicitor currently practising at a Commercial Litigation firm.

Jacob began his Pony Club journey at grassroots level as a volunteer at Tallebudgera Pony Club, Queensland. He then obtained a horse and began participating as a rider, volunteer and official. He has been Chief Scorer of state events in Queensland and was Deputy Venue Results Manager for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.

Jacob held committee positions at club, zone and state level including Secretary of Pony Club Queensland. Jacob was elected to the board in 2020.

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A life with horses starts here

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