“I am the world’s richest man because I get paid in hugs and smiles, the most valuable currency that exists. I love my children and I love my job.”
In 2001, Charles I. Fletcher at the retired age of 62, combined his passion for horses and his love for children to start SpiritHorse Therapeutic Riding Center.Charles has over fifty years of experience in training and successfully showing all types of horses in almost every discipline. He has trained and shown American Saddle (five gaited) horses, five harness horses, Standardbred horses to sulkies, and thoroughbred hunters and jumpers. He and his jumper, Houdini, were reserve champion for the State of Texas in the Jumper Division in 1980. Charles was Master of Foxhounds for the Hickory Creek Hunt (Dallas’ foxhunt) for ten years and recognized nationally for the success of this hunt, the quality of his hunt horses, and for his hounds’ success at shows all over the country. He is a well-known author who has published many stories on foxhunting. Charles has instructed riders for over forty years. He is a certified North American Riding for the Handicapped Association (NAHRA) instructor in both riding and carriage driving. He is a NARHA Driving Clinician and had conducted free carriage driving clinics for over 175 riding instructors from around the world. He is nationally recognized for his contributions to therapeutic driving.
In addition to teaching horseback riding to children with disabilities and horse carriage driving, he is well known for training abused horses and currently competes in the jumper division in “A” rated shows, as well as combined driving shows.
“When I wrote Charles’ story, I realized that the founder of SpiritHorse is in effect an essence of a philanthropist. A kindred spirit if I may.”
—-Jacqueline Beretta, President of Texas Non Profits
Charles Fletcher started SpiritHorse at the retired age of 62 and guides the organization on two founding principals:
1) Love the children, and
2) Make every decision in favor of the child, not the center.