Cassandra is founder, owner and trainer of Five Star Equestrian. Born and raised in the equine world, Cassandra has had over 20 years of riding experience, 10 years competing, 8 years starting and working young horses, and 8 years teaching. Cassandra attended her first lead line class at the age 2 on her pony named Candy. From there she excelled into a fulfilling equine career. At age 10 Cassandra was home schooled to pursue a career in showing. A young entrepreneur, she trained and resold young horses to finance her career goals. Throughout Cassandra's riding career, she has had the opportunity to ride with several well known riders - Derek 'O Connor, Harmut Gutsman, Lesley Singleton, Julie Winkel, and her own mother who is a Grand Prix dressage and hunt rider. Cassandra began her teaching career by helping her mother with her equestrian center in California. She managed her mother's business and helped with the training and teaching until one day she seized the opportunity to take some equipment loaned to her by her mother and use a friend's horse and barn to begin her own riding program, Five Star Equestrian. She has brought many riders, young and older, to success in the show arena. She believes that by developing confidence in her riders and teaching them how to build confidence in their horses, they can excel in any discipline. Her unique gift to read horses and people gives her the ability to address individual needs successfully. She strives to make sure that every horse is given the utmost respect and teaches that if a rider understands how his/her horse thinks and moves, they will go far in this sport. She stresses the importance of horsemanship and her ability to see the true potential of a horse, helps her to find her clients lifelong partners to succeed in whichever discipline they choose. Cassandra's experience and knowledge yield great horsemen.
Cassandra and Covergirl waiting for Covergirls close up at a photo shoot 2013
Cassandra, Leah and Dashari 2015
Cassandra Keith and members of her Showteam 2015
Leah grew up in Palo Alto, California and has had horses in her life since she was just a couple of years old. She and her sister spent most of their free time in the foothills, riding from dawn to dusk and even camping out with their horses in forts they built in the woods. When Leah went off the college, she had to sell her childhood horse Blaze, but she never forgot the passion and love she felt for the world of horses. She found ways to ride throughout her life and when she had her own children, her youngest son developed his own passion for horses working for the Square Peg Foundation in Half Moon Bay. There Leah rediscovered her love for horses and working with children. She quickly bought her son a beautiful Thoroughbred mare named Pearl, who was from New Zealand and had come to the United States to run on the track. Square Peg had rescued Pearl and she joined Leah's family. Leah and Pearl spent several years racing in the sport of endurance. During that time Leah also purchased an anglo-arab mare named Halle and it was with Halle that Leah grew in her knowledge of Horsemanship. With the help of Chris Ellsworth and his horsemanship clinics, Leah learned more about herself from Halle than from any other experience. Halle taught her how horses communicate. Sadly, Leah lost Pearl to an injury in 2013 and the loss was so great that she wasn't sure if she would ever find a way to heal. However, by then she had met Cassandra and their friendship would lead Leah not only to purchase five more horses, but to leave her full time career to partner with Cassandra teaching and training. Her extensive knowledge and experience in equine nutrition and wound care have given Leah the opportunity to work with many horses and successfully bring them back to good health. She hopes to one day open a non-profit that will not only help to rescue more horses who have been mistreated or abandoned, but also hopes to help more children build confidence and motivation through a bond with a horse. Leah feels strongly that Five Star Equestrian has a philosophy that lends itself to building confidence in its clients and horses and that Cassandra has a very unique and special gift that allows her to understand how to bring together individual riders and their horses. Leah rides and shows in hunter-jumpers and you will find her at the barn or in a pasture with her horses just about any day.
There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.
- Winston Churchill
Leah and Othello
Leah Meets Bently
Leah and Cali
Leah and Halle
Leah & Dashari
Leah & Martin Endurance Ride
Leah and Pearl
Leah and Cartouche