A Horsemanship School for Aspiring Equestrians

Meet Our Trainers

Courtney Cochran - Owner/Head Trainer
  • Courtney

    Courtney Cochran - Owner/Head Trainer

    Taught by Betsy Woods (founder of Ridgewood Farm) from the age of 8, having much success as a junior rider went on to gain a degree in Architecture from the University of Colorado at Boulder. After graduation Courtney formed a construction company and landscape design company which allowed her to ride at a high level with top trainer John Bragg. Winning numerous national, regional and zone year-end awards as well as top honors in all medal finals for three years in a row, including winning CPHA Foundation FInals (and year-end high point), LAHJA Sr. FInals and USEF Adult Equitation Reginals two years in a row. Courtney also Managed RIdgewood Farm from 2006-2009 before becoming Betsy's assistant leading into eventual ownership.

Kimberly Hewson-Budnik - Assistant Trainer

  • Kimberly HewsonBudnik

    Kimberly HewsonBudnik

    Before joining the team at Ridgewood Farm, Kimmi worked as an assistant trainer at the well-known Far West Farms in Calabasas. Prior to working at Far West, Kimmi built her strong base of teaching skills from her position of the Hunt Seat Coach for the Fresno State NCAA Equestrian Team. Having graduated from Fresno State herself this position was extremely meaningful. She rode on the team with huge success making a national name for herself, as well as creating a huge base of knowledge to pass on to her students. Under Kimmi’s impeccable coaching skills, the Fresno hunt seat team had numerous victories including Rider of the Month awards, end of the year awards in the United Equestrian Conference and All-America awards. Her career was started by Foxfield Riding School, another famous institution in the equestrian industry, completing trifecta of huge institutions in this young riders history.

Ellen Thorne - School Program Director

  • 327a6d72-b23f-4f4d-8c43-d9e91556968fEllenThorne

    Ellen Thorne

    Ellen grew up outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and started riding at the age of five. She was a member of the United States Pony Club for four years where she rated to the C-1 level and competed in Dressage, Show Jumping and Eventing. Ellen continued to ride in college at the University of Vermont, where she served as the Dressage Team Captain for two years, while obtaining her degree in environmental science. Ellen joined the Ridgewood team in 2018 and loves teaching students the fundamentals of riding and horsemanship.

Rebecca Hecht - Assistant Trainer/Barn Manager

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    Rebecca Hecht-Assistant Trainer/Barn Manager

    Showed in both Equitation and hunters winning numerous national year-end awards with Suzix Steadman and Shauna Pennell. She joined the Ridgewood team in 2013 and has become a wonderful addition with training and riding skills that are untouchable.

Louise Caccese - Dressage Trainer

  • Louise Caccese- Dressage Trainer

    In addition to her dressage clinics taught weekly at Ridgewood, Louise has her own booming dressage training business and her USDF “L” judge certificate. She also consistently works as a substitute trainer for the Pony Club. She was quite successful in the show ring competeling up to the Prix St. George level on her grand prix horse Juteux.