Volunteer Spotlight: Millie Herndon of Montgomery, Alabama

"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much." – Helen Keller

Changing Leads is ever grateful to the people who so graciously dedicate their time, energy, and resources to ensure our retired racehorses succeed in second careers.  As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, we rely heavily on them--the behind-the-scenes people who fill water buckets, deliver “cookies,” and love on the horses. We all (horses included) are so thankful for them each and every day!

Today’s volunteer spotlight is on 16-year-old Millie Herndon of Montgomery, Alabama.  Millie was introduced to the Changing Leads program through her instructors, Pete and Kirstin Murphy of Longview Farm in 2014.  She pitches in to help care for and ride the Changing Leads horses at Longview during the summer months.  Since wrapping-up the school year, Millie has been working with Zetterholm, including schooling him during his most recent show at Tryon International Equestrian Center (pictured here). 

Millie’s family has always had an interest in horse racing, watching the Triple Crown races together religiously every year.  A fierce competitor herself, Millie has always admired the strength, athleticism, and competitive heart of Thoroughbreds, so when Changing Leads was founded, stepping in to play a role in the career journey for these “sport stars” was a no-brainer.

“These racehorses give so much of themselves over the course of their racing careers," says Millie.  "I love seeing them pampered in the rehabilitation phase and then starting on healthy, positive paths to second careers after retiring from racing."  Since she has long admired the Thoroughbred breed from afar, Millie considers it a special honor to be involved close-up through Changing Leads.

As an aspiring Grand Prix jumper rider, Millie knows that hard work and dedication are essential to the success of horse and rider. Her recent wins on the "A" circuit, including winning classes at Tryon in the 1.10 meter Children's Jumpers and a 3rd place in the Washington International Jumper Phase Equitation class, have only highlighted her desire to help these horses find their own future partners with which to star. 

Changing Leads is so appreciative of Millie’s help with our retired racehorses at Longview Farm, and we look forward to watching her continued growth and development as a horsewoman in the years to come. Thank you, Millie!

 Millie Herndon schools Zetterholm at the Tryon International Equestrian Center under trainer and board member Kirstin Murphy's watchful eye.

Millie Herndon schools Zetterholm at the Tryon International Equestrian Center under trainer and board member Kirstin Murphy's watchful eye.