top of page


The Whips Board of Directors are a group of dedicated individuals who not only support our club but roll up their sleeves and get to work doing all the necessary background work to make this club successful.

Bob Giles Silver Medal Winner.jpg


Bob Giles

United States Marine, Retired military and retired police officer, Driving Instructor and Trainer

Renowned driving clinician throughout the US and internationally, is also a full-time competitor (and champion!) in both combined driving and pleasure showing.  He is a popular clinician, producer, participant and contestant in many Florida driving events including the Florida State Fair, the Grand Oaks Classic Pleasure Driving Competition (Weirsdale, FL), the Rhinebeck, Germany World Cup Competition (1987) and the Scottish Festival in Ocala. His selection to the USEF Para-Equestrian Driving Team (2014, 2018) was a dream come true for this accomplished competitor, Vietnam War veteran, and Purple Heart recipient. He won a silver medal at the para-driving world championship for Team USA. He is now a well-known Pleasure as well as CDE (Combined Driving) competitor in the Southeast, frequently securing class wins. Giles is also a member of the Four in Hand Driving Club. Certified Haflinger and Gypsy Vanner Judge and a FEI Steward.

A draft hitch driver since youth, Bob Giles could be found doing farm work and logging in the Maine woods throughout his teen years. Later, he owned and operated a driving horse training center, Gentle Brook Farm, in Maine for 14 years. He was a tour carriage driver at the Arcadia National Park in Maine for several years. He and his wife Brenda then started the Winter Hill Driving Center in Morriston, Florida, on fifteen acres with Florida’s Goethe State Forest, which they operate to this day.

Bob has been involved in educational programs geared towards the novice driver for several years and garnered a reputation for starting horses and people in carriage driving, horse and driver training: singles, pairs, tandem, random & four-in-hand. He has done coaching with four-in-hands of Friesians, Gelderlanders, and Morgan for various clients, and driven and competed four and six-horse Clydesdale hitches.

Bob dedicates his driving to the more than 58,000 men and women who lost their lives in the Vietnam War... and to the many foster children of the world. He does not forget his past and always carries toys in his car to give to children in restaurants.


Bob’s life verse toward driving horses - “How Lucky Are We?”

Lauren Reece.jpeg

Lauren Reece is an American Driving Society Combined and Pleasure Driving Technical Delegate, and has been honored to officiate at events across the United States and Canada. She first drove as a 4-year-old in upstate New York, in the 70s.  She never forgot her love, and returned to driving when she moved to Maine in 2000. She has competed several Morgan horses in the New England region in all types of driving events. Currently, being an American Driving Society Board member and the chair of the Rulebook Committee keeps her very busy. Lauren and her husband Dale can often be found , living the good life, driving a Morgan on the back roads of Florida.


SuZi is an experienced scribe through FEI level.  She is a 25+-year LOI volunteer.  She is a former board member of STRIDE, and a former English teacher.  She is a 2023 Zoeglossia Fellow and a poet, writer and artist with multiple titles and publications.  In 2015, she won an ADS Pleasure Driving Achievement award, and currently holds a CAA Level 2 proficiency certification.

I’m a recent full time resident in Florida this year after being a snow bird for 9 Winters. I’ve been horse crazy my whole life, riding  hunters, jumpers, & eventing horses for 35 years before buying a Miniature horse for my Granddaughter and discovering driving. I went from riding a thoroughbred to driving a mini and found I was having more fun driving. I lucked out with several wonderful driving minis, discovered Pleasure shows and then, Combined Driving. I currently have a small pony I will be showing Intermediate Level this year.

Whips Art.1 copy.png

Northern Region Director
Janet Crumpton

Profile coming soon!


Southeast Region Director

Anne Raisner

My name is Anne Raisner and I am the Director for the Southeast/Southwest Region of The Florida Whips. My other responsibilities include providing education clinics and speakers throughout the year. My horse life has included 40 years of showing hunters, judging and 10 years as a USEF steward. I started driving 5 years ago when I inherited a Fjord mare, Ellinoir, from a good friend that passed away. Luckily, I contacted the Florida Whips and met drivers who guided me to driving professionals who helped me learn to drive and to train Ellinoir to drive. I now have a young horse that will start driving soon. In the meantime, I have been navigating for our Member Engagement Chair, Denice Klinger.


Southeast Region Alternate

Bettina Scherer

Bettina Scherer has been driving since 2008 and has been the SE Regional Director for multiple terms.  She has driven a single horse to the FEI level and is currently competing an Intermediate and a Preliminary horse in the Combined Driving discipline.  In addition to driving, Bettina has competed in the hunter and jumper rings and plays a bit of polo with her husband and sons.


Membership Director

Gail Thomas

Gail is a recently retired pediatric Physical Therapist in Ocala, Florida.    A native of northeast Kansas, Gail received her undergraduate and doctorate degrees from University of Kansas.  She is married to Jim Thomas a retired 30-year Army veteran.   They currently live in Ocala, FL with their two dogs, two Dartmoor ponies, and one Welsh pony.  Gail and Jim have 3 children and 7 grandchildren.  Gail began showing horses when her daughters became active in their local 4-H club. Gail also serves as a member of the ADS membership committee. 



Veronica Close

Veronica Close has owned horses since the early ‘70’s, and has competed in Hunter-Jumper, Dressage and 3-Day Eventing at the lower levels.  She has recently retired as a city planning administrator, and has taken up the sport of carriage driving.  She and her young Shetland Pony Flash, seen here with his buddy Dudley eating the same blade of grass, are just beginning, and look forward to participating in future Whips events.

Additional Board


Junior Director

Karen Cherry


Assistant Junior Director

Kami Landry


bottom of page