Brooke USA On The Road

About Brooke USA's Future

December 16, 2020 with Host Julianne Neal Season 1 Episode 8
Brooke USA On The Road
About Brooke USA's Future
Chapters
Brooke USA On The Road
About Brooke USA's Future
Dec 16, 2020 Season 1 Episode 8
with Host Julianne Neal

About Brooke USA's Future  features conversations with  the organization's Chief Executive Officer Emily Marquez-Dulin, as well as Dwayne Hildreth, Brooke USA Board Member and Brooke USA Ambassador Katie Jackson. Emily Marquez-Dulin is an accomplished leader and corporate administrator with over 20 years of experience in all aspects of marketing and outreach. In her four years as the driving force behind Brooke USA’s initiatives, she has quadrupled the organization’s revenue. She is responsible for developing and coordinating the strategic fundraising and grassroots activism direction of Brooke USA, taking the lead in advising the senior management team and Board of Directors on all fundraising and advocacy matters.

Brooke USA Board Member Dwayne Hildreth can best be described by those who know him best as a loyal friend, consummate professional, and an energy giver, with a deep and passionate love for family, animals and music. He is also known in some circles as a “Super Connector” who thrives on opportunities to leverage his vast and varied network of contacts, relationship building skills, and creative mindset to help bring ideas and concepts to life. He is a 30 year veteran of Nike, Inc with a talent in understanding the “big picture” and is adept at finding the necessary resources to maintain a successful business. After losing her leg to cancer in 2015, Brooke USA Ambassador Katie Jackson is now an international para-equestrian dressage competitor. Digging deep, Katie found what brought her the most joy in life; horses. She has used this passion to triumph in the face of overwhelming adversity. Katie was named as first alternate for the 2018 Tryon World Equestrian Games US Para-Equestrian Team and has represented Team USA in numerous Nation’s Cup competitions. She is a USDF Grade V National Champion and a USDF Bronze and Silver Medalist.

The mission of Brooke USA is to significantly improve the welfare of working horses, donkeys and mules and the people they serve throughout Asia, Africa, the Middle East, the Americas and the Caribbean by raising funds and responsibly directing them to the areas of greatest need. Brooke USA accomplishes this through a holistic approach to funding which includes capacity building, sustainability programming, female empowerment and international advocacy. Brooke USA connects private philanthropists with their passion for helping relieve the suffering of working equines and their owners. Brooke USA raises funds to support a wide variety of programs for working horses, donkeys and mules to help them become (and remain) healthy and happy, now and in the long-term, which also benefits the poor families who depend on those animals to help them earn a living. For more information visit www.BrookeUSA.org.

To learn more about podcast host Julianne and her partner Bruce Anderson, visit www.naturesview.us or tune in to "Whinny Tales: Horse Stories, Pony Legends and Unicorn Yarns," the official podcast of Nature's View and The Marley Project, their equine and arts-based 501 (c)(3). A documentary about their work and films in the Natural HumanshipTM Training Series, are available on The EQUUS Channel, or on their website at http://www.naturesview.us.  Julianne's production work can be found at  http://www.jamediaconnections.com.

Show Notes Transcript

About Brooke USA's Future  features conversations with  the organization's Chief Executive Officer Emily Marquez-Dulin, as well as Dwayne Hildreth, Brooke USA Board Member and Brooke USA Ambassador Katie Jackson. Emily Marquez-Dulin is an accomplished leader and corporate administrator with over 20 years of experience in all aspects of marketing and outreach. In her four years as the driving force behind Brooke USA’s initiatives, she has quadrupled the organization’s revenue. She is responsible for developing and coordinating the strategic fundraising and grassroots activism direction of Brooke USA, taking the lead in advising the senior management team and Board of Directors on all fundraising and advocacy matters.

Brooke USA Board Member Dwayne Hildreth can best be described by those who know him best as a loyal friend, consummate professional, and an energy giver, with a deep and passionate love for family, animals and music. He is also known in some circles as a “Super Connector” who thrives on opportunities to leverage his vast and varied network of contacts, relationship building skills, and creative mindset to help bring ideas and concepts to life. He is a 30 year veteran of Nike, Inc with a talent in understanding the “big picture” and is adept at finding the necessary resources to maintain a successful business. After losing her leg to cancer in 2015, Brooke USA Ambassador Katie Jackson is now an international para-equestrian dressage competitor. Digging deep, Katie found what brought her the most joy in life; horses. She has used this passion to triumph in the face of overwhelming adversity. Katie was named as first alternate for the 2018 Tryon World Equestrian Games US Para-Equestrian Team and has represented Team USA in numerous Nation’s Cup competitions. She is a USDF Grade V National Champion and a USDF Bronze and Silver Medalist.

The mission of Brooke USA is to significantly improve the welfare of working horses, donkeys and mules and the people they serve throughout Asia, Africa, the Middle East, the Americas and the Caribbean by raising funds and responsibly directing them to the areas of greatest need. Brooke USA accomplishes this through a holistic approach to funding which includes capacity building, sustainability programming, female empowerment and international advocacy. Brooke USA connects private philanthropists with their passion for helping relieve the suffering of working equines and their owners. Brooke USA raises funds to support a wide variety of programs for working horses, donkeys and mules to help them become (and remain) healthy and happy, now and in the long-term, which also benefits the poor families who depend on those animals to help them earn a living. For more information visit www.BrookeUSA.org.

To learn more about podcast host Julianne and her partner Bruce Anderson, visit www.naturesview.us or tune in to "Whinny Tales: Horse Stories, Pony Legends and Unicorn Yarns," the official podcast of Nature's View and The Marley Project, their equine and arts-based 501 (c)(3). A documentary about their work and films in the Natural HumanshipTM Training Series, are available on The EQUUS Channel, or on their website at http://www.naturesview.us.  Julianne's production work can be found at  http://www.jamediaconnections.com.

Julianne Neal  0:03  
Welcome to Brook USA on the road. Our mission at Brook USA is to significantly improve the welfare of working horses, donkeys and mules and the people they serve throughout Asia, Africa, the Middle East of the Americas and the Caribbean by raising funds and responsibly directing them to the areas of greatest need. Brooke USA connects private philanthropists with their passion for helping relieve the suffering of working equines and their owners. In each podcast episode, you'll hear a report from one of our Board Members on the current initiatives for our organization. You will also enjoy updates from our Brooke USA ambassadors, who range from top level international writers to best selling authors. 

I'm your host Julianne Neal. In this episode, you'll have the opportunity to learn more about Brooke USA, a nonprofit board-led organization dedicated to alleviating the suffering of working equines and the people they serve in the developing world. This episode of Brooke USA On The Road is entitled "Brooke USA: About The Future" and includes a powerhouse trio with founding board member Dwayne Hildreth Brooke, USA Ambassador Katie Jackson, and Chief Executive Officer Emily Marquez-Dulin. Dwayne Hildreth can be described by those who know him best as a loyal friend, consummate professional and an energy giver with a deep and passionate love for family, animals and music. He is also known in some circles as a "Super Connector" who thrives on opportunities to leverage his vast and varied network of contacts, relationship building skills and creative mindset to help bring ideas and concepts to life. He is a 30 year veteran of Nike Incorporated with a talent in understanding the big picture and is adept at finding the necessary resources to maintain a successful business. 

After losing her leg to cancer in 2015 Katie Jackson is now an international Para-Equestrian Dressage competitor. Digging deep, Katie found what brought her the most joy in life - horses. She has used this passion to try out in the face of overwhelming adversity. Katie was named as first alternate for the 2018 Tryon World Equestrian Games, US Para-Equestrian team, and is represented Team USA in numerous National Cup competitions. She is a USDF National Champion and a USDF Bronze and Silver medalist. Dwayne and Katie, welcome to the podcast. 

Dwayne Hildreth  1:11  
Thank you.

Katie Jackson  2:07  
Thank you. It's great to be here.

Absolutely.

Julianne Neal  2:54  
I had to admit when I when I realized both of you're from Texas, and it was going to be such a great fit to talk I thought, you know, I hear people talk about Texas all the time and how big it is. And what is your biggest...what's the best thing, Katie, about living in Texas for you?

Katie Jackson  3:09  
You know, for me, it's really the people. I just love how friendly everyone is. And you know, they make you feel right at home. I can remember I was in Los Angeles actually, before moving here. I was finishing my residency and the first time going to a Home Depot and was was looking for something and this gentleman because I can I can I help you with something ma'am..,what do you need? And I looked over at him and was like, Oh, I'm actually...Yes, that would be great. And it was just, you know, just a difference in in community and and way of being and, you know, you're driving down the road. And if you're in a truck, and they're in a truck, everybody waves at each other. And it's just, it's really comforting in the sense of home and my home away from home. Now, I grew up in Southern Oregon, but I think there's a lot of similarities. And so I love it here.

Julianne Neal  4:06  
Well, that was one of the other quotes. If you go to Lowe's and somebody offers to help you and they don't even work there, then you know, you're in check.

Katie Jackson  4:12  
We just have I can't even remember what I was looking at. But he just happened his sweet little gentlemen and he was just happened to be in the same aisle and could tell I wasn't sure which one to pick of whatever it was. So ya know, everybody's really, really friendly.

Dwayne Hildreth  4:27  
Dwayne, what about you? What do you love about Texas?

Well, I can I can mimic some of what Katie just said, but but you know, originally, I'm from Louisiana. I'm from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. And there's a lot of Southern Comfort going on there too, as well. But I migrated here, you know, right after college, to live with a relative of mine and get ready to see what my next career move was going to be. And I stayed for a while and obviously you know, we'll talk about it later. But you know, after I joined Nike, I've lived in tons of different states and cities and areas in United States but I have to say Texas has always become you know, my favorite places to live because it's wide open. And even with the major cities, you know, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin and Houston, there's vast differences within that same state, all friendly, all nice places to be, but you can get a different experience everywhere you go in Texas and obviously, and I'm sure we agree. If you're going to love horses, outside of Kentucky, Texas is one of the best places to be.

Julianne Neal  5:23  
Oh, it sounds like it. And we're going to get into your equestrian background in a little bit to Dwayne but it sounds to me like the perfect place for both of you guys to be. So I'm really excited to speak with you. Dwayne is a board member for both for Brooke, USA. And Katie is an ambassador and so different roles within the organization. But but so important. So Dwayne, can we start with you? I hear that you were very sought after Emily Dulin said, "we were looking for something specific when we sought Dwayne out." So Dwayne, what do you think they were looking for when they found you?

Dwayne Hildreth  5:56  
Well, you know, to begin with, I that I don't know that Brooke, that Emily and the team knew that I existed. I happen to be informed about Brooke USA by a friend of mine, a mutual friend, Tammy Tappin, who's an equestrian at Tryon International Equestrian Center in North Carolina. And my interest was sparked really by, you know, when the story was told about what Brooke USA does, what it does, and why they support what they support. And that just resonated to me as an as an equestrian. But, you know, as we begin to, to, to have conversations and develop that relationship, it was apparent that, you know, first and foremost, there was an there was an obvious gap in in the network, and Texas was that gap. So they've done some some research and done some studies to figure out, you know, what's the number of people in active equestrians that live in Texas? How can we reach them and you know, you know, it just seemed to be needed. And so it just so happens that the synergies grew together in terms of what I brought to the table, both as an enthusiast and competitive and then also, you know, with my background in marketing sales to kind of bridge some relationships to hopefully bring Brooke USA to Texas so quick to so pretty quickly. Simply, it was really just bringing Brooke USA to Texas. And that's that's kind of my main focus. So I think that's what they were looking for.

Julianne Neal  7:17  
Well, I have to tell you, Tammy Tappan is also friend, my partner, Bruce and I met Tammy at WEG two years ago. She is an amazing person, amazing artist. The paintings that she did of the different disciplines, she gifted us and I just love like she's quite the person.

Dwayne Hildreth  7:37  
Yes. Yes, she is. 

Julianne Neal  7:38  
So I'm so glad that you you met up with with Brooke USI through Tammy and have continued that relationship. Katie, how about you? How did you first get involved as an ambassador.

Katie Jackson  7:50  
So it was actually at the World Equestrian Games, as well. So I knew and I knew about Brooke, USA, but I'm getting to meet the entire team when I was there. And just really, you know, enabled me to learn more about the organization and really, you know, what their role is, as far as you know, helping working equines and helping the animals that we all love so much. And it really, it really resonated with me. They had this amazing booth setup where you can use the virtual reality goggles, and it literally transported you into the brick kilns of India. And it just blew my mind, I mean, just absolutely blew my mind is something that you know about, but when you see it, and then you hear the impacts of what, you know, what these animals do for these families, and, you know, the work that they're required to do, it really was was something I knew I wanted to be more involved with.

Julianne Neal  9:02  
So I do want to find out a little bit about both of your backgrounds as equestrians. So, Dwayne, let's start with you, if you don't mind, can you tell us I hear that you're into Western riding. And I know, that's sort of a big general topic, and there is reining and roping and all kinds of things. So what is it that you enjoy doing the most?

Dwayne Hildreth  9:23  
Well, for me, I guess I have to start back when I was a kid, I always fancied myself a cowboy and would worry my parents to death to stop at every ranch along the road just to stop and gaze at horses and my sisters would tease me all the way and then we'd go in front of all these different department stores with the little electronic horses in front of stores and I'd get on and ride. We couldn't go to a state fair without I just I just always thought I was a cowboy and then my grandpa, my parents bought me my first little Shetland pony when I was probably eight or nine years old. And I rode that thing to my feet drug the ground almost til I was a senior in college. And so when he finally passed, you know, I kind of, just kind of left it with you know, I had to go on and and pursue opportunities. But my heart, you know, I was always wanting to be around horses. I don't know why I do know my grandmother told me later on that her father actually was an equestrian if you will and he actually was killed on a horse. He ran under limb in a storm and it kind of hit him in the head and killed him. But she said he loved that horse. I don't know if it came from that or not. But for me, I've just always loved being around them, I will tell you that. And Katie and I talked about this last night too. There's a kindred kind of spirit that goes along with horses, you either get it or you don't. And I think most people are intimidated by them because they are so intuitive. And that intuitiveness is something that draws me to them. Like the distance there's the perception, their senses, they know your feeling when you walk into a barn, and they know what you're thinking before you think it. And there's, there's something that draws me to them for that they're just so intelligent, so versatile. And from specific to Quarter Horses. We talk about versatility, those animals really that's what this country was built on the back of those animals. And if you think about everything that they did, for us as people with a developing nation, and to me, there's just something about that, that I love. So specific to Western, I kind of got off track there, but specific to Western, um, you know, go back to the cowboy thing. I've enjoyed the cutting, you know, the reining, the riding fast through the pastures, I just love that. And as an athlete to ask you in college, you know, just being able to see those powerful animals with so much agility. I kind of aligned with that. So that that's my love for for Quarter Horses, but I also and I visited Kentucky Park and my mother used to be a Dean, Associate Dean at the University of Kentucky. So I would go and visit her and she had some people on the Board that she worked with, so I got to visit some of those corporate farms as well. And those magnificent horses too, is just so happens that I happen to like the Quarter Horse.

Julianne Neal  11:55  
well, they're pretty special, too. You know, I had a friend who had cutting horses a decade ago and he would let me sit on him and I have a dressage background. And so just sitting on his well trained cutting horses, man, I'd almost fall off because they are doing this and that they know where to go and and do it thing, right? Boy, they're quick. So you have to have a good seat to be able to do that. So good for you. So Katie, how about you? What is your background as an equestrian? What do you do? 

Katie Jackson  12:25  
Well, I think there's a lot of parallels, actually, with Dwayne and I, as far as I was that horse crazy kiddo as well. And I don't know that my parents have still figured out where I where I got it from. You know, both of my granddad's had horses through farming and that and they were the ones that kind of helped me embrace the horsey addiction, I guess you could say. And I begged and pleaded and finally my parents gave in and gave me a writing lesson for my sixth birthday. And I was hooked. And then I had a little Welsh pony, but I did the same little pony and I went for trail rides, and we actually did some barrel racing back in the day, and when my legs could literally wrap around them, I taught him to drive and so I have have had horses in my life from really from sixth on and, and came to the sport of dressage, through a very naughty pony, and who was you know, figured out her little girl couldn't stop her when she decided it was time to go to the barn. And a family friend introduced me to dressage and I, through you know, exploring different sports, that's the one that I just I love the beauty and the power. And I think I'm a glutton for punishment too, on the detail side of it, and that it is really, really hard. So through through school, and that found ways to keep horses in my life and after finishing up school and settling here in Austin, and came back to riding and as an adult amateur did some little bit of competing here and there, I was more focused on building my my business and my career and my general dentist, and my other in my other life while I was doing that, but the horses always were my grounding force, and then leave the office and be able to go to the barn. And it didn't matter how stressful my day was, by the time I walked away from the barn, I was in a good place. And so they've always, they've always been that for me. And then life changed pretty abruptly for me in 2015 with a diagnosis of cancer and made some big, big changes in my life as far as practicing and things from the career standpoint, but um, you know, the horse is really at that point became my lifeline and helped me through some huge, huge hurdles, as far as of course, the diagnosis and what that meant, as part of my cancer becoming an above knee amputee and just being able to go to the barn and be around the horses and know too that some some way shape or form I was going to get back on and was going to do. And dressage again really helped me push through. And since then have have gotten to do things I would have never imagined with competing and riding, I was able to learn International Level Dressage and had the honor of representing our team as the traveling first alternate for the World Equestrian Games, which was just mind blowing on so many levels. I learned I learned so much about myself and horses and learning to compete at that level. And continuing on the horses have given me really a new sense of drive and passion and and I never imagined that being a Paralympian could be something that I could be working towards. And that's my new goal. So it's been, it's been great. And yeah, they're, like Dwayne was saying, I mean, it just the horses are amazing, as far as just they just know, and they have this sense about how you can they can be going with the trainer and just up and, you know, having that level of fire, and I can get on and they take care of me. It's amazing.

Julianne Neal  16:49  
Oh, they really do. And and you talk about it being the other life and haven't, you know, the dentistry business and, and everything in between? You mentioned the Nike and everything else that you've done in the corporate world? I mean, it's like we do we have this other side. And it's hard to know which one is is the more important one to me. You know, so I think we all know which one's the most. I think you're right. But Dwayne you do have that background, is that part of what helps you in your role as a Board Member? What has your experience been on the Board? And what are you proud of? What are the accomplishments that you all with me?

Dwayne Hildreth  17:25  
Well, you know, I'll start by saying that I'm not quite a year in yet. And then obviously, you know, when I first started, you know, we had some, some, some pretty lofty goals, as we were, we were coming off a very successful year as Brooke USA. And both from a financial standpoint, in terms of raising funds, and to getting those funds to the much needed animals in their in their caretakers, then, obviously, you know, COVID and all the other things that have happened, have, you know, without without question been been been a challenge, but through it all, we've I think we've been able to, to sustain and still be able to deliver to some of these these countries, these poor countries and their animals. Um, for me, when I first came on, one of the thing was, okay, get grounded, find out where the opportunities are, and then begin to look for other ambassadors like Katie and other people and supporters of it to get to get the message of Brooke USA out there. One of the things that I've done, when I first came in, I had to vet the existing list list, because their list of potential donors and previous donors that lived in Texas, but Texas is big. So we had zip codes, myself and Emily, which was an arduous task, but we did it to try to figure out okay, where where is the best bang for the buck, so to speak, that was one of the things we've done. And so letters have gone out from that exercise. And we're just beginning to get to some points, we're getting some responses. Secondly, and I'm really excited about this, because, you know, there's always events going on in Texas as a, as Katie can attest to, from all different disciplines. So one of my goals is as a competitor myself, when I go to these shows, I'm sitting and talking to people trying to get met network and that's, you know, yes, my skills that I'm bringing over from Nike, my my career really accomplished a salesman, marketing and supply chain. So all three of those, I think, are building blocks that helped me over on the brick USA side. So particularly on business development, and developing developing relationships or what I've been able to do within this short period that I've been in the question world is really gone to relationships, a lot of it via social media, believe it or not, just meeting people and then meeting them at shows starting those relationships, found out what what these people are involved in, and then trying to find the right opportunity to bring USA into the to the conversation. So for example, is the Aqa, the American Heart Association is hosting the world show in Oklahoma City. This is an organization that was started in the early 70s. And there's a show going on right now and I'm going to go up there tomorrow, but it shows going on between November 2 and 21st. It's the largest of its kind where the American Heart Association really, really showcases the best, it's the World Show. So people have all year been preparing for the show. But the disciplines are vast, isn't it and you'd be surprised that the Quarter Horses also do dressage. And that was something that was new to me. So you talk about trail riding, you talk about ranch and cutting and sorting and those types of things. Yes. But there's also dressage. And there's, there's there's several different things that these horses do. So I'm excited to go there. meet some people. And my goal, you know, for for maybe I shouldn't be saying that. But it's my goal. I really would like to have some presence that next year show be able to say that. I'm going to talk to Katie, maybe she and I can work together to figure out how we can get presence at that show. I mean, there's over 2,100 exhibitors, and there's 7,500 entries. And that's just all those people in one place, you know, to do that. And these people have, you know, deep financial pockets. And they also have the same fire that Katie and I have around horses, right. So how do we bridge that gap and bring some synergy there. So those are the types of things that I'm looking to do.

Julianne Neal  21:16  
Well, that's amazing, because I think of the crowd. And the way that I keep coming back to Tryon but just having the presence that Brooke USA evidently had there, and you had the tent, and you had people coming in and out, there was a huge storm and all kinds of other problems that kind of limited that audience but what you're talking about right, there is a totally different crowd and, and different way of reaching a bunch of people that, like you said, have that same passion for horses, just in a different discipline, or in several different disciplines. So that shows me that what I read about you and your ability to look at the big picture, in that type of setting, you've already started making those connections and putting things together. So that's, that's amazing. So Katie, as an Ambassador, what has been your experience? How have you been a part of things? When did you come on board?

Katie Jackson  22:07  
I came on board in 2018. And it's been so much fun, I was telling Dwayne I just all the time, wish I could be doing more. And right after coming on board, I was able to help out and raise over $1,200 through the Giving Tuesday. And that December to be helping and and also got to attend the one of the main fundraisers for Brooke USA, which is the Sunset Polo and White Party that's held annually in Wellington, and which was so much fun. They have an amazing silent auction that I was able to have some of my sponsors donate products to and then just being there, they had these wonderful orange sashes for us as Ambassadors and just walking around getting to meet and connect with some of the donors and really, you know, kind of embrace and share the message of no why why I love Brooke USA and getting to hopefully, you know, just share that energy and get more people excited about it. And a lot of fun.

Julianne Neal  23:15  
Well, it sounds to me like they weren't able to do the Sunset Polo and White Party. But a lot of people that I talked to it just have wonderful things to say about it. I was looking forward to that one. I know, me too. But maybe next year, I know everything's virtual now. But the auction of all of those items that would have been there. I believe they're having virtually right now from October, mid October through end of November. So and speaking of initiatives and funding and Giving Tuesday, there's a new one right now out called the Power of One. Dwayne if you could talk a little bit about that. What do you what do you see as the strength of the Power of One initiative?

Dwayne Hildreth  23:52  
Well, first and foremost, the power of one is most certainly our most ambitious campaign right now, with a goal of raising one $1 million this year. And you know what, there's not this this notion that we acknowledge that one person's donation can change the world. And so it kicked off October 15, and is really simulating, like I said that the most ambitious campaign we have and the funds primarily will be used to help Brooke USA continue to lead the country and the world in support of equines and the people that they serve. And so right now, that's where majority of our focus is and so, um, it's again about spreading the word of Brooke USA, and every every dollar counts, particularly doing now and so I would say that, that that initiative right now is is is is the main thing that we're working on, there's there's a lot of branches of other work that we're doing, but recognizing that funding is the number one goal and and with that lead icon being the Power of One so that's that's that's where the focus is. Um, and so, you know, but between that and and and kind of expanding the Advisory Council in the DFW area. those are those are the two things that for me specifically are are must haves in order to make this thing continue to to work. So, um, if you don't mind me kind of just dropping in that anyone who's interested in helping right now, I mean, we have a website is www.BrookeUSA.org. And you can email the staff and someone will be available to answer any questions. The website itself is pretty explanatory and very in-depth in terms of the information it provides. However, there's just tons of stuff going on. And you can get involved in a variety of ways. But I would say that, you know, the Advisory Council and the Power of One or two of those, those main cogs that's going to make the wheel continue to work.

Julianne Neal  25:42  
Well, and you're right, the website is so comprehensive as I started just kind of looking at the basics in the menu, you know, I didn't realize all the different opportunities to find out there there are web chats that are speaking about specific places, the trip to Guatemala or like we've mentioned the brick kilns in India and different the Women4Donkeys and I think it's in Kenya. And so a lot of that international focus and emphasis, but then to there are some things more recently that I've noticed are back here in the United States with the storms and wildfires and everything else. So Katie, could you speak a little bit about anything that you know of that would be I mean, for you guys in Texas, I guess... I'm in the south also, and so the storms start coming up, I look at the weather and I'm always already thinking, are we going to have evacuees coming in? So are there things like that, that go on that Brooke USA has helped with here in the US?

Katie Jackson  26:37  
Yes there are and that's that's something that I really love about the organization too. This team and just how dynamic and you know, their response and ability to think outside the box and even though they have such an amazing impact internationally that they've really also brought the support to us here at home and some of the major need that has come about in the last few years because of natural disasters, and some of the wildfires that, I mean they continue to devastate California, but as those really started ramping up they went into action and have raised over $100,000 that have gone to helping with you know, finding temporary shelter and nutrition and welfare for the animals through those fires. There's some of the hurricanes that have come through and yeah, right here in Texas and we've we've been a big part of some of those rescue missions and I know Dwayne is has personally gone to help just recently which is incredible and and even with COVID and some of the impacts that a lot of the really amazing organizations that are working to help animals around our country and they've started a grant program and have been able to find over 25 organizations with relief grants just here recently to make sure that these organizations are able to do what they need to do and stay afloat and it's really been incredible to to learn and watch and see how um you know with with the dollars that are coming in and with the donations and and just like the the power of one that in a one donation can impact so many people and have a no such a huge huge impact. And I yeah I love that it is you know we're helping across across the globe. But then you know organizations like LOPE right here in Texas and and others that are you know, right right here at home that also need it, especially right now.

Julianne Neal  28:54  
For more exciting content tune into Winnie tales, horror stories, pony legends and unicorn yarns, featuring the work of international equine clinician, Bruce Anderson. You'll find these podcasts and more at Equus film festival.net or on any of your favorite podcast directories. Well and you mentioned the pandemic and we really haven't talked a whole lot about that but what it what is next for you Katie is as far as competition and writing and all and has the pandemic changed any of that

Katie Jackson  29:25  
it's been this year was was definitely unique. I was training in Florida for the winter season as things started to come to a head and actually made a pretty quick I don't want to say escape but left left Florida a lot quicker than I was planning to with worries of the border closing and not being able to get home so the season ended a lot more quickly than I was hoping. Um, but it's been in some ways I believe to be home and be here in Texas and we we moved into a new house and I got to be here to help a lot more with that. And things didn't stop for a while the barns were closed, you know, we weren't able to go and the horses were completely cared for and and healthy and that but there wasn't any riding or fading going on for a bit. But thankfully, things are back up and rolling and and gearing up towards competition, I was just sharing with Dwayne that there might be a new four legged member of the family coming on board. So you guys are the first to know so. But I am really excited for this opportunity. And it would mean getting back in the show ring and and the next big international competition is in January in Florida. So that's my goal right now. 

Julianne Neal  30:56  
We'll be following along to see how that goes. Yeah. And Dwayne, how about you? Has the pandemic changed your riding experience? Do you board at home? Do you board somewhere else? How's it been for you?

Dwayne Hildreth  31:09  
Yes. Like I was telling Katie last night, my life has kind of been in flux too. So after recently having left Nike after after 30 years and my position, the last position I had with them was in Austin. Last week, last Friday, I also moved so I now live in Denton, Texas, which is just north of Dallas, I just moved here. So I have stuff everywhere. My horses are at a buddy's house, just north of Houston in a community called Montgomery. He is a reigning cow horse trainer. And he boards and stables and trains for other clients. But when I have a friend so we we partnered on a on a horse, which he rides in competition, and then I have another horse that I ride. And so I've been fortunate that he keeps the horses and we have an arrangement where you know, I go when I can to ride but I'm really itching to get to a point to where I can have my own horses on my own place. So I've just recently purchased 30 acres close here to Denton. And I'm going to start planning and building my ranch here in the next few months. So my hope is to have by April, have bought my horses to my place and then I can begin right in here and getting with some trainers around him. There's tons of rain in cow horse and ranch branches around this area. So that's pretty much what I from a personal standpoint, what I'd like to be able to do, you know, by April,

Julianne Neal  32:33  
so you have that planning background. So have you already mapped out I want this and this and this in the barn or you kind of...

Dwayne Hildreth  32:41  
I have a plan and then my wallet has a plan. I'm gonna land those two to the end, but it's uh, you know, nominees ranches and you go oh my god, no, but it's, uh, you know, I think if I plan it, right, I can get pretty much what I what I want to get out, I don't aspire to be a trainer, you know, I just want to have my place to where I can ride, have people come over and ride and have the facilities to be able to accommodate, you know, the practice and the work that they need to do. And you know, when it just goes back to I want to wake up and look at my horses. That's that's what it comes down to so...

Julianne Neal  33:17  
That's wonderful,

Dwayne Hildreth  33:19  
The pandemic also impacted the Western world. I am a member of SHOT, if you're not familiar with it, this is the Stock Horse of Texas. Love this organization because if you're a beginner, whatever background, you can go into a SHOT event. Your horse doesn't have to be some registered, you know, horse with papers. Um, but what they do is focus on the core disciplines of horsemanship, through trail through pleasure, through reining and through cow horse, so you have the ability and you have you have to perform raining patterns to show I hate to use the word control but that you've mastered the skills of going through gates with the horse. And my experience is not is not common. I mean, I I got thrown into this thing I didn't grow up with, with horses, you know, all the way through and have classes to my just met my friend, he was like, okay, you're nasty, go do it. I'm not quite sure I would recommend that for anybody else, because I've hit the dirt more times than I care to say. But I'm now having to go back and learn things I probably should have learned years ago that just my life just didn't work like that. So now I'm, I'm working at it. And um, it's just it's hyperspeed because I'm in competition now with these people they've been riding for years. And my expectations is to is to be able to be that good. And my friend goes you got a lot of learning to do. That's not hard work. So um, I say that to say that SHOT has offered me the ability to be able to get in at the ground level with less pressure yet compete with people who've been doing it for years. So that's one of the organizations that I'm in said that to say that in the shows we missed probably half of the shows because of the pandemic. Right right. Have a schedule and push things out. So all season is coming to a close. And we start back up again in January,

Julianne Neal  35:07  
Will one of those horses will your horse or, or the one that you co-own be in Oklahoma event coming up? Are you working goward something like that? 

Dwayne Hildreth  35:14  
They won't, um, and mostly because of preparation or lack thereof. I mean, I, you know, you have to qualify for these shows. But now that I know and now that I'm kind of in the cadence, I'm goal-oriented. So I have to be honest with you, I want to win a buckle, just one in my life. And I'm gonna take that thing and hang it on a plaque. You know, I've told myself, I'm not wearing a Western belt until I get a buckle, I just wear a regular belt, I just I'm not going to do it. That is that is my goal, at some level to be able to win a buckle. And so for me, I have to do have to go back and kind of learn the fundamentals because I really want to be good at this. And yes, I'd like to compete it that that the stallion that I have did competing to maturity last year, and we came to the point for making it to the finals. And so but right now he's doing really good in hackmore. And so he's qualified for World next year. So yes,

Julianne Neal  36:07  
You'll be there, you'll be there. Well, that'll be exciting, and I can't wait to follow that as well. So I'm going to ask both of you the same thing. What do each of you see next for Brooke, USA? And so Katie, what do you think the organization has to come? You've mentioned some funding initiatives and things that you've done with Giving Tuesday, what do you see next for yourself with the organization?

Katie Jackson  36:32  
You know, I am really excited about getting to meet Dwayne and getting to hopefully just really get the word out and really share more about what this organization has to offer as far as not only helping the working equines and the animals that we love, but the impact that it makes on the families that depend on them and the communities. And even what we're doing here and in the States, like I had mentioned before, so hopefully, just getting to know if it's if it's just talking to people one on one or traveling now that we're able to do a little bit more of that carefully. I'm traveling to events and sharing my perspective and the reasons that I'm a part of the organization and just getting getting people excited, and hopefully, you know, connecting with people that will will feel the same need to help and and finding those donors for Brooke USA. So I know that I mean, the team is is incredible. And their wheels are constantly turning about ways that we can have either virtual events or online events and just being as much a part of those as I can. And yeah, just just sharing however I can.

Julianne Neal  37:59  
That sounds fantastic. And Dwayne, how about you? What do you see next for the organization?

Dwayne Hildreth  38:05  
So I think for me, I have to eat the elephant one bite at a time, right? Um, the opportunities that Brooke USA have are massive in scope. I know why it was bought on. And so I need to focus on what that opportunity is, Texas is huge there thereby, you know, opportunity is huge. So for me, you know, ditto to what Katie said, the first thing would be to lie with her strategically on I need to expand the base here in Texas for people like Katie, to help bring the message of Brooke, USA to Texas. That's my number one goal. And it's not about the quantity of ambassadors, but just the right ones. I have some in mind, but it'd be interesting to see from our background experiences, what are the expectations, what type of people I should be looking for? What we should be looking forward to feel that that boy are to add to what will kind of go so that's that's one of the things. Secondly, I think from a business development standpoint, again, showing up at events, people don't know you exist, you have to kind of go out there and find them. But it has to be the right thing. I'll be partnerships, you just can't just go willy nilly. And hey, let me tell you about Brooke you have to really kind of to get the right types of partnership for sustainability. Finally, I have this thing that that's just going for myself is deliver on Texas. That's that's what I was bought here to do. And so that's kind of my inner mantra just deliver on Texas and that that's wide in scope when you start to think about it, but I believe that the board and Brooke USA in general would expect that there'd be some penetration, right? Some penetration, some some support from additional potential donors, and really trying to blanket Texas or at least start to begin to see from a Western perspective how we can bring that segment of the population into what we're doing. Holistically, does it make sense?

Julianne Neal  39:52  
It does it does and I have to just respond to that because you talk about your reach and and bring in in Texas but I can tell already from the things That you've said your reach is far greater than just Texas. So that's, that's pretty special and pretty impressive to me. And I just I do have one last question for you, Dwayne. If you could ask three things, or have or two or three things of our listeners, for them to do, what would you ask if you could have them do something, you know, other than just the funding thing? I know, that's part of it, too. But are there other things that you would ask them? 

Dwayne Hildreth  40:00  
Absolutely. And I would say that the majority of the people who listen to the podcast are involved with horses that, you know, probably have some awareness of, you know what the horse means to to, to have development into, particularly as you look at our focus on on these other third world countries. So the first thing I would ask them to do is to become informed, because you can't really get behind something unless you really know what it is and have have a draw to it. So I would say, ask that the people, go to our website, read about book USA, find out how we became to be, and then really look into why we do what we do. Because you know, it's fun for us to sit here and talk about riding horses for pleasure, and they bring us such joy. But there are actually countries that use these horses for interviews. And I'm hard to believe but but it's true. That's how they make their living. And as such, to have the education funding and support to keep those families moving. I just think it's a good thing. So the more you informed about what it is that the organization stands for, I think the more apt you are to get behind and support. So that's the first thing. And secondly, I can't emphasize it enough is just the power of one. And that would just kind of register the first point, which is it simplest way to do it, is one person makes a difference. And there's tons of ways to do it. And you know, we have the resources for you to go and find out about how to do that. So those two things. And then I'm third, just any creative ideas that one person may have, again, you don't have to be a horse person. I mean, I think it's just really more about having compassion about it is what we do. But any creative ideas or events or things that that may not be discovered through what we're doing, the efforts that we're making, we we welcome those ideas and, you know, it's it's all about, you know, getting behind like the cause for greater good. So those are the three things. Well,

Julianne Neal  41:56  
I can tell you that between the two of you and with all the other folks that I've spoken to I think the future is pretty bright for USA because of your work. So I have to thank you. Thank you for speaking with me today. But more importantly, thank you for all that you're both doing for Brooke USA.

Dwayne Hildreth  42:11  
Absolutely. 

Katie Jackson 42:12
Thank you. 

Speaker 4  42:14  
100 million working horses, donkeys and mules support 600 million of the world's poorest people. They are the sole source of income for many families through the backbreaking labor of their animals. Unfortunately, the majority of these working equines are suffering from chronic welfare issues and premature death, nearly all of which are preventable. Brooke USA provides funding for scientifically proven, practical and sustainable equine welfare programs throughout the developing world. We work primarily through Brooke, the world's largest international equine welfare charity, which reaches 2 million working equines annually benefiting 12 million people who depend on them. When we fund training for people and veterinary interventions for working neck whines, rookie USA effectively prevents and eases the suffering of these animals and ensures better livelihoods for people now and for generations to come. Projects recently funded by Brook USA include construction of permanent water troughs in Ethiopia. Continuing Education for veterinarians in Senegal training from OSI women who own donkeys in Kenya, veterinary interventions in Pakistan, disease prevention and training for animal health care workers in India, improve nutrition for animals in Guatemala, and so much more. We also recently funded emergency relief programs for equine victims of natural disasters in the US and Puerto Rico. Please help us fund even more solutions to the world's most challenging equine welfare problems.

Julianne Neal  44:21  
Emily Dulin, the CEO of Brooke USA, is an accomplished leader and corporate administrator with over 20 years of experience in all aspects of marketing and outreach. In her four years as the driving force behind Brooke USA's initiatives, she has quadrupled the organization's revenue. She's responsible for developing and coordinating the strategic fundraising and grassroots activism direction of Brooke USA, taking the lead in advising the senior management team and board of directors on all fundraising and advocacy matters. Emily, thank you so much for speaking with me today. I'm really, really excited about this one. We've been, we've been talking about you for a while of the podcast and all of the Ambassadors, all of the board members, everyone, everybody knows Emily, of course. And so we'll talk a little bit later about that. But I just have to say, first of all, congratulations on all of the accomplishments that you have in in your role at Brooke USA, because you've been the driving force behind so much the change. You're bringing decades of experience to this role. You've restructured and there's a really large emphasis on fundraising. So it's pretty obvious to me why they wanted you to take the role. But what was it that drew you to this organization to Brooke USA?

Emily Dulin  45:43  
Well, first, Julianne, I want to thank you for taking the time to do this for me and for us, because the Brooke USA On The Road podcast has given us an opportunity to tell everyone what we do, and in an in depth manner, right is that every day that you were able to talk for an hour for half an hour about what you do. So thank you. First thing, I think if you look at my career, what you'll find is that I have gone back and forth between animal welfare and human health. And those are my two passions. So when you look at Brooke USA, it does bring together animals and humans. So it's the perfect place for me, I get to work with my two passions, right. So that's what attracted me to them when they called me. So I'm a recruit, which is wonderful. And I also have this little thing where I see myself as the voice of those who cannot speak, you know, whether they're animals, the ill, the elderly, or children. So again, when they contacted me for this job, I said, Oh, this is the perfect match for me, and I couldn't be happier five years later, it is an amazing place. Because I get to help animals and I get to help people at the same time. And more importantly, I get to share with others, the interrelationship that exists between the animal and the human. And I don't think we all know that, especially in the developing world. When one suffers, so does the other and when the one thrives. So as the other in as people, you know, in the developing world, people that depend on these work, connect clients within most basic and routine chores, fun traveling miles to a river to get water to take in kids to school, which is far far away, or even selling produce at market, which will give them their meager living of what $2 a day. So these animals are pivotal to people's livelihoods. You know, and just to add this funny twist for you, just so you know, any many developing countries across the world, and in many, many remote villages in the developing world, working equines transport electron balance, and return them to the capital to be counted. So what was that?

Julianne Neal  48:05  
So that's pretty, pretty timely, you know, we're definitely, well, so had you heard of Brooke USA before they called? Did you know already? Or did someone kind of have to explain to you what the organization did at that point?

Emily Dulin  48:19  
So I knew a little bit about it, because my mother was British, and like any British woman who loves animals, she knew about Brooke. Okay, so it's part of a heritage that comes across the way. I mean, Brooke has been around since 1934. So yes, I knew a little bit about it, but not enough. But certainly I knew the name. I knew it was reputable.

Julianne Neal 4 8:42  
Right, definitely, definitely. Well, and then you grew up in Venezuela, you have this extensive international background, you've been professional, your professional life was in South Florida, you're bilingual. So you have all of this. You've been exposed to a number of cultures throughout your professional career. Has that influenced your work with Brooke USA? Has it been a help? 

Emily Dulin  49:03  
Oh, I would say absolutely. Um, when I was, you know, I was raised in the capital in Caracas, which is very different from the rest of the country. But my father happened to be even as well and politician and a senator. So campaigning across the country was part of what we did. So I grew up in an environment where we traveled everywhere. I never thought that those memories would help me understand how people in the developing world rely on their animals, horses, donkeys and mules to get the work done. In Venezuela, it's an agriculture and in transporting goods from villages to cities, and it's been very, very useful. I know as soon as my mother was British, so I was here. I was seeing this with my dad, but my mother was British. So she took a keen interest as all Brits do what was happening to the animals, you know, and as I said, she didn't know about Brooke, so I wasn't surprised and that has helped me absolutely when we went to Guatemala, I know and I think I mentioned this to you, when we went to Guatemala, I expected to see exactly what I saw. And I traveled with a photographer who was also going as well. And, and as we're driving around in these mountainous terrains, and I mean, no, no streets, no expressways, no roads, and it was raining, it was crazy. He would tell me, Doesn't it remind you of home? You know what? Yeah, it did. The fact that I speak Spanish also helped, because I was able to compete to communicate with indigenous populations who live high up in the mountains. And they will tell me stories that I don't think if he didn't speak the language you would understand. So I think it made a lot, a lot of sense. And it just makes it so much easier for me to connect with people. And I'm hoping that I can use my other languages one day because I don't own these. I'm not only bilingual, I speak I have a degree. So I have a fat I have a bachelor's degree in foreign languages, and specifically in romance languages. So I do dabble in French and Portuguese and Italian. So I'm hoping that I can use that one day.

Julianne Neal  51:06  
Well, and you also there's a Trinidad background there too. Because before and so when when were you in Trinidad.

Emily Dulin  51:14  
So my father, as I told you was a politician. So he was in the Senate. But at one point in time, he became an ambassador and was sent over to Guyana, which, as you know, is next to them as well, and then move to Trinidad and then move to Jamaica. So I also had the opportunity of working throughout the Caribbean, and you see working equines all over the Caribbean as well, right?

Julianne Neal  51:34  
Well, and my partner, Bruce had talked about growing up in Trinidad and they had a cocoa and coffee estate. And so the the donkeys that they had first and then later, the horses off the track, helped him up and down the hill took his dad up to work every day, or whatever. And so for a lot of Americans who aren't used to that, it's, I'm imagining for when you take these trips and take the ambassadors or the board members, whoever, that it's a, it's a bit of a culture shock. So having you there to be able to provide a level of trust for the people that you're dealing with, you know?,

Emily Dulin  52:04  
I think it's a nightmare when two people who come from the US to see what the livelihoods are and how these animals live. And why it's impossible to bring vehicles and make mechanized machinery to those areas that high up in the mountains, there are no roads, maintenance becomes impossible, it's very expensive, a car can cost you know, $5,000 or $6,000, a donkey cost $200. So it kind of tells you if this is this is why there can be no change over time, well, hopefully there will be but there can be no change immediately, the only thing that we can do is improve the lives of these animals. And people really want to learn if I told you that people really, really want to learn to do it better, because they want to work in equine that's going to help their home. Right? So they're eager to learn and that is so satisfying is a word it's so satisfying to see that that everybody wants to learn and that they go to the classes, you know, when we when Guatemala or in India, you know we arrived, the entire village comes out to listen to us talk.

Julianne Neal  53:12  
That's amazing, Americans are not always welcomed in that same way. So for the animal for the people who do have these animals to be that receptive to you. That's, that's a pretty that's a testament to the relationship that Brooke USA and the brook already have with with their and I can't remember which one of your ambassadors told me that you know, the response on social media, sometimes you see a picture of a thin or a thin donkey. And the response is not always good until you realize that the man standing beside him is just as thin. You know, it's not that somebody doesn't want to know the right thing to do. Sometimes they just can't.

Emily Dulin  53:52  
And I think that I did that. I saw more of that in India than I saw anywhere else, because you're talking about people working in the brick counts. There's bonded slavery, there's child labor. So there's issues that really the equines live in the same exact situation as their owners, as many of them sleep in the same home inside the home to avoid that it will be stolen or hurt. So it's it's we're not we're looking at people who live exactly the same as their animals. And what we need to do is elevate both lives because they affect affect each other. Right,

Julianne Neal  54:29  
Exactly. And now you've been involved in animal welfare for quite some time. You have a background with the Humane Society, you work with adoptive pets in Miami. How did you begin that journey? How did you get into the animal welfare side of things initially?

Emily Dulin  14:45  
Oh, so that's actually an I've always been an animal person. My house has always been filled with lizards, birds. You know, anything that we could find was brought home snakes, I have to have everything in my house. I always love them. Never had I've never had a horse. I must confess I've never had a horse. Yeah, 

Julianne Neal  55:06  
Yet...

Emily Dulin  55:06  
Yeah, yet.. But yeah, I haven't had a horse yet. Um, so it was it was, um, I had worked, I'm going to tell you as vice president of marketing and sales for an animal theme park in Miami, Florida is actually quite well known. It's called Jungle Island. And I had been there. And I think that that's what came to the realization, this is what I want to do for a living, I want to work with animals. And from there, I went to work for another nonprofit. And then I was recruited by a reporter for the Miami Herald who said, Emily, this is a perfect job for you. And they recruited me at the Humane Society to go work there. I was there seven years, it's a long time. And that gave me the opportunity to see a whole different dimension, anything from, you know, animal cruelty cases that are horrific, and I find them intolerable, and now can't in our country, which is a developed country, you know, Penny taxes for homeless animal care, I got to attend a slew of conferences. So I think I became more educated on the plight of animals as I got more and more involved. And after that, I actually left I went to work at the American Cancer Society and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, which kind of brought to my attention the suffering of humans. And I think that seeing both sufferings, both animals and humans suffer, that's really what kind of made my job of Brooke USA, so perfect. You have to you have to have a feel in football. There's a tendency in humane societies to say, Oh, well, we only care about the animal. And there's a tendency, and others say we only care about the humans, but we actually care about both, because as I said, when one suffers, so does the other and when that one thrives. So that's the that's that's the beauty of what we do we improve both.

Julianne Neal  56:53  
Right? Well, and when you came in evidently, there was a pretty large transformation. So did you kind of step in and have a plan? Did you do strategic planning thing and figure it all out in advance? And you knew where you were going? Or did you kind of take a while? And what was your transformation process?

Emily Dulin  57:11  
Well, I love the word transformation process. I think I'm going to keep that one if that's okay with you as a word. It's a cool name. So cool, man. Honestly, when I started, the only thing I knew was that we needed to grow this tiny organization into a force that could help other organizations across the country. But we couldn't have done it without the support of our volunteers. And there's a there's a story to that, if you want to hear it, then. Yeah, I started I started in November 2015. And quite honestly, I knew nothing about the equestrian world. So I needed to learn quickly, and I needed a few mentors. So what we had, we had a few top notch equestrians, as ambassadors that will help in this kind of build awareness for the organization. And the most important one, there is a name that you will remember because you have already interviewed and that's Margaret to pray. Our fans have found in Brooke, USA ambassadors. I sat down with her and I said, Oh, and her answer was I'm going to help you and introduce you to the movers and shakers of Wellington. In the equestrian world. I'm going to host a party for Brock USA at my house. Okay, for the party, we had about 80 to 90 people show up. Among them are Brooke USA Ambassador  Don was, you know, as a polo player, Catherine, who also came to the party, the two of them got to talking and 20 minutes later came up to me and said, we have an idea. We want to hold a party in Wellington, that includes Polo, and we want to call it procuress. A sunset Polo my party, which in year one attracted 1000 people. I kind of established a look USA and Well, yeah. But you know that Wellington is actually the winter capital of the world. Yeah, once the season is over, people go home. So they remember does whatever they want. Okay, so we started creating these pockets of friends throughout the country. So that was the beginning. And since then Katherine has become a member of the board of directors. She will be our chair next year, which is very excited. And you know, we have expanded our work into try on Southern pines, Akin San Francisco or Kyla Lexington and Louisville, and hopefully Texas. Yes, that's a good idea. I would say, you know, if it hadn't been for Margaret du Pres and Katherine Kaneb and Nicole dawn, we wouldn't have had that first impetus to succeed. Right. And so since then we have mushroomed into, you know, I think what I consider one of the most respected equine nonprofits in the country.

Julianne Neal  60:08  
Absolutely. And now everywhere I go, the people I talk to know who Brooke USA is. So what, what, uh, like you said, transformation. So how did you manage to get all the right people on the bus? As they say you've got I mean, your staff. Every time I'm around you guys, there's just this energy that you're, you're coming up with these creative things. So between you, Kendall and Amanda, how did you manage to get them on board first of all, and decide that they were the right fit for you?

Emily Dulin  60:40  
Oh, my goodness. I wish I could take credit for that. But you're absolutely right. I am surrounded by the most extraordinary staff members. And I think it's just been a matter of luck, somebody has been looking over me and saying, you know, we're going to put in front of you the most amazing people. So you're right, we have Amanda Miller, who is our Major Gifts Officer. And she is an extremely talented fundraiser, a fundraising generalist, as we like to call them. And then Kendall Bierer, who is a Donor Relations Manager, and I'm sorry, Donor Relations Officer. And she everything she touches turns to gold. It's one of those things, right? You can just look at a website, or look at our social media. It is beautiful. It's beautiful. It's dynamic. It communicates Well, I mean, so I just wish I could take credit for their work. I just think I have very lucky to find them. They are not only well rounded professionals, but they're also fun to be around. I love every single day I spend with them. And I love them to death. I really do they make my life happy.

Julianne Neal  61:53  
Well, I can tell and I mean, I won't go into any of the stories that I hear that, please. But it's wonderful that you have a good time while you're while you're doing good things. So what is your thoughts on the initiatives that you've all come up with? As far as like your funding things? And would you be able to do all of this in person, if we weren't in a pandemic? Would that virtual setup that you have now still be in effect? Or do you think you'd do more "in person things."

Emily Dulin  62:25  
So as a team, we have always worked virtually. But there's certain conditions that we have put in place over the last five years that make us very, very effective. And I think one of them is we maintain an open door policy, which means that no matter at what time when one calls, the phone will be answered unless you want to meet and then you just pick it back and say in the meeting. So it's the same thing. If you weren't, if you were in an office, I call it the Pop In Syndrome, you will just pop in somebody's office and say, Hey, I have a question. Yeah, we do the same. Gotcha. It's no different. Our calendars are available. So you can always check out our calendar, see what we're doing and do that pop in call handle, you can ask a question. Or, you know, I would I do in the mornings, I actually the first thing I do is I check on them. I call them and say Hey, what's up what you're doing? Good morning. So, and at least for an hour a day, we all get on the phone. Now Teams or it was actually Teams, Zoom, it used to be Skype. But we all get on teams, and we work together. Great. And that may be as simple as just having them on there. And I'm writing and we're just seeing each other. Is it important to have that kind of together as a team, right. But what's different right now I'm going to tell you, I would probably I travel 50% of the time normally. Because I like to connect with people. It's very, very difficult to ask for money over the phone. It's much easier to do it in person. That's true. Yeah, I know. I know, donors. There's so fun and just sitting down talking to them. And holding events is fun. So we missed that all of us.

Julianne Neal  64:06  
Sure. Well, and you speak of events. So I've been hearing about the Sunset Polo and White Party. I've been hearing about the Power of One initiative. You just had a virtual film premiere event online. I mean, you've got some really creative things. There's an auction. So which which of those have been the most effective in bringing funding in but also bringing attention to the organization.

Emily Dulin  64:30  
So look, without a doubt, I would say Brooke USA says that Polo and White Party is extraordinary. And it's led by Katherine Kaneb, one of our board members. It raises over $300,000 for the year is extremely successful, but we also connect with so many new people each year. One of the things which I don't know if you've heard about is called the Divertimentos and Dressage that takes place in Aiken. I shouldn't say this in front of Katherine but that happens to be my favorite event because it's dressage live to the Spartanburg Philharmonic Orchestra. I am telling you that it's something unseen. And that's led by one of our volunteers. Her name is Sallie Frick and she lives in what's called the Foothills, which is in Campobello. That area, right? It is amazing. Another successful program that we did was called Horse Heroes. And it was back in 2004. To commemorate World War One. We raised a million dollars from that I just celebrated the role of forces in our lives. Wow. And you're right. Most recently we hosted Films for a Cause with the premiere of Hopes Legacy on the Equus Film Channel. It's like a Netflix for equestrians. That is really cool. Yeah. And Brooke USA On The Road with you?

Julianne Neal  65:54  
Well, exactly. We love it. We love it and just trying to get the attention out. But what I like about the things you just mentioned is you've got the Divertimento and Dressage, you've had set up it with the World Equestrian Games that was, you know, all of the different disciplines. And you're hopefully moving out into Texas with some more Western things. So you're approaching a very varied audience, of course, people, but this is also reaching out to people who are not equestrians at all. So you've been really creative in the ways that you've done things. I think that's pretty special. 

Emily Dulin  66:31  
You know, one of our board members, his name is Mark Beausoleil. And I hope you get to meet him. He actually is not a horsey guy, but he is so concerned with female empowerment, and working with communities to help them out of poverty, that this resonated with him. So you don't necessarily have to be an equestrian. You just have to be concerned with others, I think. And that's what makes it really special. Right? Let's talk about the Power of One.

Julianne Neal  67:01  
Definitely, yes. So you launched it with the film event. And now this is going for a year. What has been the response so far?

Emily Dulin  67:12  
So our goal is to raise a million dollars in one year, we have already weighs a bit over 250,000. So we are order there, which is great news, it was only a couple of weeks.

Julianne Neal  67:27  
Gosh,

Emily Dulin  67:28  
But you know what? This campaign is so special. And so dear, because it recognizes the value of every single donation, no matter the size, or every single donor is thanked for what they do. You know, the message is, every donation can help one equine, one person or one community, we all have that power, right? Mm hmm. We have to make that donation, I have to make my pitch. To make a donation to Brooke, USA, please visit www dot Brooke usa.org. or text orange to 71760. And you're welcome. And this is what's most important. Remember that I told you at the beginning that we can make in life a difference in the life of a person because these people are making under $2 a day. That is the nation counts.

Julianne Neal  68:28  
That was my mind. I can't I mean, I can't even imagine it. It's and already. And yes, and it's so we've talked about the relationship that you have internationally with the sister organization, The Brooke. But you've also branched into the United States quite a bit with all the recent storms or ongoing storms, I should say, because every time The Weather Channel comes on, there's a new one coming in, or the wildfires in California. How did you decide to bring that support home? And what has what the response been to that?

Emily Dulin  69:00  
You know, I think our board has been very, very savvy and understanding that window is a crisis at home, we need to respond to that kind of that old concept of charity begins at home. So when any disaster arises, we're right there, whether it's the Hurricanes two years ago in Louisiana, Florida, Texas, and Puerto Rico, on other wildfires in California, Oregon and Washington, or even COVID-19. You know, where US based organization we know we've got to do what's right for our country. I just wanted to let you know that through that we just donated fourth that $40,000 in micro grants to organizations throughout the US to help them do in COVID-19 because there's been a huge surge in horse abandonment and lack of feed. You know, people don't have the means to care and veterinary care. So we're very, very proud of what we've been able to do to help

Julianne Neal  70:00  
That's special. It really is. So, yeah, I mean, I hate to hear it, but it's it's a special thing to be able to do that. So let's talk about future. First of all, what's next for you? I mean, you're going to be with Brooke USA for a long time I can I can see it or see it. But what else do you think is next for you besides having your own horse already?

Emily Dulin  70:23  
I think if I get a horse, it's going to be a mini. Okay, mini donkey. My passion is mini donkeys. Love donkey. Love. I don't think that my neighborhood would allow it. But they may think it's a dog. I don't know.

Julianne Neal  70:35  
That's right.

Emily Dulin  70:37  
My German Shepherd weighs 106 pounds. So I'm hoping it would fit right in it would fit right.

You know what, you're right. I hoped to retire from from Brooke USA when I took the job. I told them you have me for 10 years. So here we are year five, so at least five more. But nowadays, we have to retire later. So it will probably it will probably be 10 more. But it's about my career mission. I think that what we really really want to do is expand this organization and grow it so that we can help more and more and more people and animals. Let's keep in mind this what 600 million people in the world who depend on 100 million working equines and we're only scratching the surface with about 2 million. Right? So the work is there is so much more to do. So I want to see those numbers raise and do more. Definitely. 

Julianne Neal  71:30  
So what do you see in the future for Brooke USA?

Emily Dulin  71:34  
You know, I think that, um, Brooke USA has an amazing future. There's this extraordinary people on the equestrian world who want to help us. There's a ton of people that once they understand what we do in terms of humans, I think we'll jump on board. Honestly, the pandemic that set us a little bit back, and it's been a little bit worrisome. But the good news is we've given out more money this year to other organizations than we ever had, which is exciting. So I think growth is what you'll see.

Julianne Neal  72:06  
So I'm excited about that, I would think. So if you were going to give three points to anyone who might be listening three things you would ask supporters, what would you ask them to either do or say or whatever.

Emily Dulin  72:21  
So I think that we asked our donors and our supporters of for so much all the time that it wouldn't ask them for anything else. But to support that Power of One campaign, which is a small thing to do, but will have a great impact. Because our donors, our donors, and friends are volunteers and advocates, and you're one of those, they give their talent, time, treasure and a truly amazing. The only thing I can say is that we thank you all for keeping our cause in your minds and for helping working equines and putting them at the forefront of your thoughts. And just be sure to tell others about us. That's what's important. I think that, that if I was to ask for anything in particular, it would be yes, donate to the Power of One. But also be sure to tell others about what we do. And to that, just look at a website, you know, www.brookeusa.org gives you all the information you need to know and it has my phone number there. It has Kendall's phone number there and Amanda's phone number just pick up the phone and call us. 

Julianne Neal  73:30  
Yes. Well, and the websites amazing. I mean, there's so much information and so many different avenues to go down. So it's it's a wonderful website. And I'm going to ask one last question. In every single interview when your name comes up, they say, and I kid you not, "She's a force of nature." So what is your response to that? 

Emily Dulin  73:53  
I think.. I'm not sure that's good or bad.

Julianne Neal  73:56  
I think it's the most amazing compliment I've ever heard. So what's your reaction?

Emily Dulin  74:00  
Why do you think this is telling you? I'm a pushy broad, telling you? Um, no, I think I think what it means to be honest with you is, you know, we have a yearly plan in fundraising. And we have a year three year strategic plan. And what I do at all points when I meet with our board members, and I meet with our ambassadors, is remind him of the commitments that we made towards meeting those goals and the strategic plan. So I think that force of nature means also I'm a nag, but I'll take it.

Julianne Neal  74:30  
But your passion comes through and everything you do, and I think that is that's the that's the emphasis to me. 

Emily Dulin  74:38  
And, and that's, there is no other organization that I can think of right now. And it's even out of the question world that can help both humans and animals alike. And this is an extraordinary cause. So we want more people to get involved on their own about us. I don't know what to tell you. 

Julianne Neal  74:58  
Well, I think you've said enough right now. I think you you have said it all. So thank you so much Emily for everything that you've done, for sitting down and talking with me today and spending 45 minutes at you know, having a conversation when I know there are a lot of things you can be doing but it has helped a lot and understanding your reasons behind what you do and I think it's pretty special.

Emily Dulin  75:19  
Thank you.

Julianne Neal  75:23  
If you'd like to support Brooke USA and help this work continue, you can donate by texting orange to 71760.