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Board of Directors

Dave Desmarais


Dave has been with the Center since its inception in 2004, as one of the original founders. He is a retired Deputy Fire Chief of West Hartford FD, and former Bristol resident for over 35 years. He is a craftsman and our in-house facilities expert!

Larry Gonzalez

Vice President

A native Floridian, Larry and his wife Jennifer moved to Connecticut to attend graduate school. They became involved in the farm through their involvement in the thoroughbred industry. He’s an attorney who works for Allied World Assurance Company in Farmington, and has lived in Bristol for more than 15 years.

Brett Krohl


Brett is in the final stages of his Master’s in Accounting and C.P.A. candidate. He became involved with Shepard Meadows in the fall of 2018 and has been a tremendous resource as we set our strategic plan in place. He is employed by Adams Samartino, Certified Public Accountants.

Daniel Zakin


Daniel became involved with Shepard Meadows as a volunteer with facilities, then program, as a rider and finally as Board Secretary. A resident of West Hartford, he’s an engineer at Pratt & Whitney.

Liz Ferrari


Liz Ferrari chairs the Fundraising Committee. Growing up in Vermont, she spent a great deal of time with her Morgan horses and she’s happy to be back in the saddle again. Liz brings her expertise in the area of Development to the organization.

Liz Lefrancois


A Bristol native, Liz is a retired Guidance Counselor from the Bristol School District. She has been volunteering at the center for over 10 years in a variety of capacities. She helps with facilities, program and even takes riding lessons under our volunteer/community riding program.

Jon Rondeau


Jon is the President and CEO of New Wave Industries, Inc. He and his wife Shelby live in Burlington, and in his spare time he swings the mallet and plays some polo. Jon always has apples for his favorite equine, Moses.

Michael Suchopar


Michael has spent his entire life in the Human Services field. He has served as a Peace Corps volunteer, high school teacher, an oncology nurse and as a psychologist. He came to the Bristol Boys & Girls Club in 2007 where he developed a solution focused management model that created multifaceted programs. The organization’s total youth served is now nearly 40,000 annually.

Matthew Ragone

Advisory Board

Former Treasurer of the Board, Matt is recently retired from the family real estate business in Manhattan. He is a resident of Westchester County who provides guidance to the organization with special projects.