JENNIFER MATTHEWS WILLIAMS
They say that if you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life. Nothing rings truer for Jennifer Matthews Williams, co-owner of the Heart of Texas Equestrian Academy (HOTEA) and JWB Performance Horses, who has spent the last 25 years in the horse industry as a rider, competitor, instructor, and trainer. She is a Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA) Master Instructor, an Approved Judge for the American Stock Horse Association, and holds a degree in Equine Training & Management.
Jennifer loves every aspect of the horse world, which is why HOTEA offers lessons and training in both English and Western riding. She designed her programs to suit every level of horse and rider from complete novice to seasoned competitor. After riding with top trainers in the industry over the years, she witnessed the overwhelming stress put on the students and horses to the point where riding was no longer fun. Students will be stretched and will grow in HOTEA's program. However, HOTEA values the stress-relieving aspects of horses and making sure that every student feels welcomed and uplifted, encouraged and confident, and enjoys themselves while improving their skills.
Like Jennifer, Katelyn brings a wide range of talent and experience to the Heart of Texas Equestrian Academy lesson program. She began her journey in the horse world at the age of 6 and has competed in Hunter/Jumpers, Classical Dressage, Reining, Cutting, Barrel Racing, Western Dressage, and Cow Horse events with her horse Nikki. She's drawn upon these experiences daily for the last 5 years as an English and Western riding instructor. Katelyn loves teaching children important life skills such as responsibility, respect, trust, and unconditional love through horses.
Katelyn's background doesn't end there -- she is a certified equine massage therapist and operates Equine Massage by Katelyn Lauer out of the HOTEA barn. She has helped over 100 horses prevent and rehabilitate injuries through her work.
Brian has always had a passion for horses but didn’t begin riding until later in life. His first horse was a five-year-old baby mare who would crow hop every time he got on her back. Brian quickly realized how little he knew about horses while riding on the shoulder of busy roads. His mare often ran out in front of cars. Brian’s time with his baby mare was brief and he didn’t have any real contact with another horse for about 16 years when he met (and later married) Jennifer.
Brian desperately wanted to learn how to ride but his pride held him back – he didn’t want to embarrass himself in front of his wife when she made it look so easy. He finally let go of the feelings that were preventing him from accomplishing his dream, although taking criticism from Jennifer was difficult. He found out the hard way through trial and error that it was much easier to learn when he opened his ears and shut his mouth. Brian went from knowing nothing to winning small open shows, and then to winning money in the cutting pen and reined cowhorse; he even qualified for the NRCHA World show in 2018.
“I could go on forever about my ongoing journey to becoming a true horseman, but why not come meet me in person and we can talk about both of our horsemanship goals together and make them a reality. Enough said for now. Let's get riding.” – Brian