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Meet The Plaid Horse Team

The Plaid Horse is made possible through the collaborative efforts of a team of dynamic women, powered by one common denominator; a love of horses.

Piper Klemm, PhD

Publisher & Editor-in-Chief

Hartford, Connecticut

Piper began her tenure as the Publisher of The Plaid Horse Magazine in 2014. She received her B.S. with Honors in Chemistry from Trinity College [Hartford, CT] in 2009 and her Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley in 2012.

She is an active member of the hunter/jumper community, owning a fleet of lease ponies and showing her horse MTM Sandwich in adult hunter divisions. Her goal is that everyone would take the time to be as educated about horsemanship and hunter/jumper sport as possible.

Connect with her on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram.

Learn more by clicking here.

Publisher of The Plaid Horse since 2014

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Rennie Dyball


Baltimore, MD

Rennie oversees editorial coverage for The Plaid Horse magazine and has co-authored most of the company’s books to date. She is the creator and co-author of the middle-grade fiction series Show Strides, the author of Good Boy, Eddie, and she ghostwrote Traci and Carleton Brooks’s hit nonfiction guide, With Purpose: The Balmoral Standard. Rennie is also the author of the picture book B Is for Bellies: A Celebration of Every Body, among other titles. She lives in Maryland with her family and competes in the adult amateur hunter and equitation divisions.

Check out all of her books in the Plaid Horse library

TPH Team Member since 2018

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Cira Pace Malta

Subscriptions Manager + Plaidcast Manager

Bethel, CT

Cira began riding on her first birthday and has never looked back. Daughter of a prominent trainer in Connecticut, Cira has spent her life around ponies and horses. Cira went to Lynchburg College in Lynchburg, VA where she graduated with honors and a BA in Communications Studies. Cira was a member and captain of the school’s varsity IHSA Equestrian Team. Outside of the office, you can find her competing in the Amateur Owner Hunter division with her “sale horse” turned horse of a lifetime, True North.

Check out some of her articles: “Controlling the Uncontrollable with Horses”“Enter at Your Own Risk: Let’s Make the Schooling Ring a Safer Place” and “Following Your Why in Challenging Times”

Listen to The PlaidcastSubscribe to The Plaid Horse.

TPH Team Member since 2019

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Dawn Kirlin

Advertising Executive

Francestown, NH

Dawn comes to The Plaid Horse with over 20 years of experience in equestrian retail, wholesale, marketing and advertising. She is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire and the University of Maine with a B.S. in Animal Science, an A.S. in Veterinary Technology and has been a licensed Veterinary Technician since 1993. Dawn is an event rider and foxhunter at heart but most days can be found working around her farm and taking care of the tribe of retired OTTB’s she owns with her husband and daughter in New Hampshire.

TPH Team Member since 2018

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April Bilodeau

Senior Editor

Amesbury, MA

April began riding at the age of three and spent her junior years showing in the pony hunters and big eq. She graduated from Stonehill College in 2014 with a degree in Communication and Journalism. While she continued riding after college, she spent six years working as a marketing professional at multiple biotech companies. In 2020, she bought a farm in Massachusetts and began building her own program. In 2023, she left her corporate job to join The Plaid Horse as the Online Editor while continuing to operate her farm, Dove Hill, where she acts as Head Trainer, working with students both locally and nationally. She sits on the board of the Massachusetts Horsemen’s Council, is a member of the USHJA Zone 1 Committee, and is the Head Coach for The Derryfield School Equestrian Team.

TPH Team Member since 2023

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Payton Medford

Web Manager

Clemson, SC

Payton has been an avid equestrian since she was able to take her first steps. She has been involved in eventing and stadium jumping with small, local farms and organizations in South Carolina.

Payton graduated early from Clemson University with a B.S. in Animal and Veterinary Science in 2022. Since graduating, Payton has worked with The Plaid Horse and has started her own small business training and teaching lessons. When she’s not working or teaching, Payton is typically found spending time with her high school sweetheart and rescue dog at the barn.

TPH Team Member since 2023

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Willow Kauffman

Advertising Executive

Baltimore, MD

Willow has been riding since she was 9 years old when her mom got her a riding lesson for her birthday. She has been hooked ever since and was gifted a pony only 9 months shortly thereafter. Growing up she competed locally in the pony hunter & equitation divisions in Baltimore County, competed IEA in 2012 where she made it to Nationals in Syracuse NY and has done the Adult Amateur Hunters and the 3ft MHSA. She started working right out of high school for a construction company doing accounting work and has always done horses part time until 2019 when she made the switch to horses full time. She then opened her business, Kauffman Equestrian, LLC. from 2020-2022, where she ran her own boarding, lessons and training operation.

In October 2021, she had her first child and in October 2022 she had her second, opting to put her family first and close her equine business in late 2022. With family taking priority, she now enjoys her horse time with her personal horse in the 1.0m jumpers.

TPH Team Member since 2023. 

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Summer Grace

Operations Manager

Hollywood, FL

With a passion for press coverage, videography, photography, and more, Summer Grace is your go-to for everything promotion and advertising, content, and strategy. Involved in riding and horse care since the young age of seven, and enveloped in the family business of video production from even earlier on, Summer has long studied and reimagined the role of marketing and media in the equine space.
As a child, her free time often consisted of creating and editing content just for her own entertainment. It comes as little surprise, perhaps, that she would go on to pursue a degree in multimedia journalism at Florida Atlantic University. Following her graduation in 2017, she began building dynamic relationships with some of the equine industry’s top agencies, including Jennifer Wood Media, Phelps Media Group, and EQMedia, all while fostering connections to her own clients.

In 2021, Summer officially launched Flaxen Mane Media. With an eye for capturing unique content and extensive experience in all things equestrian, her work through the firm brings a fresh public image solution to brands and businesses throughout the East Coast and beyond.

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Elle Elizabeth Gibbs


Since her first riding lesson at four, Elle has always had a dream of becoming an equine veterinarian. After showing on the hunter-jumper circuit for nearly 15 years, she redirected her focus towards veterinary internships and academics. Currently, Elle is pursuing a biology major, animal science minor, and economics minor at Cornell University. She is a member of the professional agriculture sorority, Sigma Alpha, Cornell’s Dairy Science Club, and is a working student at Finger Lakes Equine Practice under Dr. LaPoint, Dr. Olson, and Dr. Nash in Ithaca, NY. Outside of school, Elle enjoys coding, studying data analytics, and taking equine-related courses.

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Sarah Welk Baynum

Blog Editor & Senior Editor

Columbus, Ohio

Sarah began riding at the age of twelve and still actively rides and competes in showjumping and eventing with her two mares. Her first horse was an OTTB, and Sarah has owned / been an advocate for OTTB’s ever since. She attended Otterbein University, has a degree in Equine Business and Facility Management, and was on Otterbein’s IHSA Equestrian Team. Since college, she has had a number of jobs in the equine industry such as professional groom, barn manager, and working for FarmVet.

Today, Sarah is a freelance writer for a number of equestrian businesses and publications, a published equestrian fiction author, and joined The Plaid Horse as the blog editor and editorial writer in 2024.

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