Meet The Staff

April Cloutier   |   Ashlee Eikelboom   |   Dennis Cloutier, ES    |  Margot Frost, ES

April Cloutier, LCSW, Equine Specialist

April Cloutier, LCSW

As a summer resident of Maine since 1970, April grew up in the Tenants Harbor-St. George Maine area. She remembers riding horses; whenever she could ‘scrounge up the cash’. She would pay by the hour for a trail ride from a local farm. As a winter resident of Kansas, she started Hunter/Jumper lessons at age 8. Horses have been a part of her life ever since.

In 1991 April graduated with an Associate’s degree in Applied Science from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas. She became a Registered Respiratory Therapist working in the field for 10 years. Inspired by the hospital social workers’ ability to work calmly and genuinely with patients and families in times of crisis, she returned to school. In 1996 April graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Social Work from Washburn University. In 1998 she obtained her Masters Degree in social work, and has worked in the Social Work field since then.

Missing Maine, and the “Way Life Should Be”, April relocated to the state permanently in 2001 (they say you always come back). Initially she lived in the Bangor, Maine area, and was employed at The Acadia Hospital working in the adolescent unit for 2 yrs. Family brought her to the Sagadahoc County area in 2003. She started working as an Outpatient Mental Health Clinician at Sweetser Family Institute (Brunswick)from 2003-2005, prior to her recent employment at Kennebec Behavioral Health in Winthrop Maine from 2005 to 2011.

They say “once a horseperson always a horseperson”. As April settled into the area, she again initiated horse lessons and bought a horse. She was introduced to Natural Horsemanship, which changed her relationships with horses, and life, forever. Similarly, and even more impacting, a year later, in 2005, she was introduced to and received her certification in EAGALA Model EAP. April says she knew then what she was meant to do with her career, and her life. She established Painted Horses, LLC counseling services in 2006. She started to provide outpatient-counseling services at Hearts and Horses TRC in Buxton, Maine. She bought more horses, and in August 2008 expanded these services to Windy Pine Acres in Richmond, Maine.

In Clinical Counseling April works with people from ages “8 to 98” and thinks of herself as a general practitioner who has worked with individuals and families across a variety of settings to include medical and psychiatric social work in the hospital setting, intensive outpatient programs for those with chronic mental illness, and outpatient mental health. In the early part of her career she was involved in co-facilitating a sexual offenders group for men. She worked intensively with community support services for veterans with chronic mental illness. Currently most of her clientele have been individuals/families who struggle with adolescent challenges, victims of trauma, and those striving to cope with depression, anxiety, and Bi-polar disorder. Her specialty is in EAGALA Model Equine Assisted Psychotherapy where she holds a dual role serving as the Clinician and/or Equine Specialist.

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Ashlee Ekelboom, LMFT

Ashlee Eikelboom, LMFT

Ashlee is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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 Dennis Cloutier, Equine Specialist

Dennis Cloutier

Dennis Cloutier,  Equine Specialist

Dennis grew up in the Mid-Coast region of Maine on a large commercial farm where working with animals, including horses, was a routine part of life. The horses with their beauty, power, and inherent wisdom were always of particular fascination for Dennis.  Throughout life Dennis has been caring for horses and attending shows as a support member. Whether it was daily chores, exercising, grooming for a show, or trailering, the hands on time spent with horses has been a rewarding journey filled with abundant learning.

Dennis served in the Coast Guard for 2 years.  Afterwards he attended Southern Maine Technical College for Nautical Science and Boston University obtaining certification in Project Management. Dennis spent the last twenty years working as a Construction Manager and Architectural Designer.

When he was introduced to this model of therapy that combines the love of horses and compassion for people Dennis decided to make a life change.   He gained his EAGALA Certification and initiated work as an Equine Specialist for Painted Horses LLC in the fall of 2013.  Dennis feels he has learned much from horses and people to date; but appreciates the fact that there is always more to learn.  He is pleased that his journey with horses will continue in this new and rewarding manner.

 

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Margot Frost, Equine Specialist

margot-frost

Margo Frost, Equine Specialist

Margot Frost comes to Painted Horses, LLC as a seasoned Riding instructor and Trainer with over 50 years of horse experience. She began her career as a rider and instructor in the hunter jumper world. She become an avid competitor in Three Day Eventing, training under professionals such as Mike Plumb, Jiffy Read and Denny Emerson. Margo owned and operated her own riding school, and taught for 20 plus years in Massachusetts. In her career she worked extensively retraining thoroughbreds off the racetrack in both NH and Mass. Having spent most of her life around people and horses, Margot is excited to expand her personal and professional journey into the world of Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Equine Assisted Learning. She looks forward to sharing in the journey of helping people through horses.

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