Meet Our Board

Annette Pressas

Chapter Chair

Annette Pressas was born with cowboy boots on. At least, that's the way her family remembers it. Since her first trophy earned riding as a toddler in a parade, Annette had the bug to show and ride elegant horses. She already was horse crazy and began showing with her first pony, an ornery Shetland that was gorgeous. Annette collected more horses and rode in 4-H and local schooling shows in western disciplines, never with formal lessons outside of 4-H. She bought her first English saddle for her horse, Gloridel, an Anglo-Arab, but didn't get formal English instruction until a physical education class at Texas Women's University where she began jumping. Annette fell in love with the beauty, precision and athleticism of dressage after attending the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. In 1999, she began her training in dressage. A year later she bought her beloved partner, Frappuccino. Annette joined the CDS in 2001 when she and Frappe won the SVC Schooling Show Series Championship at Intro level. In 2006 Annette and Frappe qualified for championships at first level and first level freestyle. Three weeks before championships, Frappe suffered a career-ending injury. When Frappe was forced to retire, he and Annette had fulfilled one of her dreams to perform a freestyle.

Annette studied the rules of dressage at all levels and became the go-to gal for anybody with technical questions. She began serving on the Sacramento Valley Chapter of CDS in various positions in the early 2000s and has volunteered as a scribe at many shows.

Teree Castanias

Chapter Treasurer

I have had the “horse crazy” disease for as long as I can remember. Being the oldest of five kids and having non-horsey parents curtailed my involvement with horses to just some trail riding as a kid. But the disease does not go away! Rick and I took a trip to England in 1978, and had a great “trail ride” English style – walk, trot, canter and dead run! It was a blast! So, I found time and money to start taking lessons. There are a lot of things to get over when you start riding as an adult – fear being the biggest one. It took me a while to conquer that one to the point where I actually made progress.

Rick and I have had 15 horses over the last 30 years. Everyone has been special and taught us many things. My two most special horses are Coco Chanel and Hartman. I am truly blessed to have had both of them in my life. I am starting at the beginning again with my new horse, San Giorgio, and he promises to be as wonderful as Coco and Hartman! I have been lucky enough to achieve my bronze, silver and gold medals in dressage. It is amazing what can be achieved with sheer determination! I would never have thought that possible when I started in 1978!

In addition to my horse habit, I am a CPA. I worked for over 32 years for KPMG as a tax partner. Now I have my own tax compliance and consulting firm in Dixon. I actually enjoy accounting, and particularly tax! For me, it is a puzzle, and I love working with people to help take the mystery out of accounting and the tax law. So it makes sense that I have been the Chapter Treasurer for more years than I can count!

Julie Smith

Education Coordinator

I have loved horses from my earliest memories. After years of watching from afar, I began riding at the age of 10. From that time, horses have always been a part of my life. I have been a member of CDS for approximately 25 years, with my participation ebbing and flowing as other work/life responsibilities took precedence.

I am now retired from a 30 year career at UC Davis, and live with my husband Stan in the hills of Vacaville. We have country property that allows me to have my horses at home as well as board a few horses too!

I currently am riding a 7 year old Hanoverian mare "Fabrizia". We competed this past year at 1st level and are schooling 2nd level with hopes of competing at that level next year. I also have a 5 year old homebred mare "ReJoyce". We haven't competed yet, but hope to next year. I never thought I would have a redheaded mare, and now I have two and love them both.

Carlee Arnett

Chapter Treasurer

My first memories are of the horse in the pasture next to our house. When I would go missing, I could be found curled up in the grass near the horse. My father says my love of horses started there and there was no point fighting it. As a teenager, I rode hunters at Blue Cloud Farm in Longmont, CO. After graduating high school, I went to Germany and was not involved with horses for 22 years. Then I adopted a retired horse from UCDavis and took an off-track standard bred from a rescue. Not too much later, I was taking riding lessons. After a year, I retired the standard bred and decided to buy a dressage horse. This was an excellent decision! In 2020, we competed at Training Level and it has been a wonderful experience.

Nancy Johnson

Chapter Secretary

Born and raised in California, I’ve been living in Vacaville since 1974. My lifelong passion for horses apparently started as soon as I could talk, as Dad said the first words out of my mouth were: “Dad, I want a horse”. No Dada, pony…horse. And from thence it went! I started out having my horse saddled for me (the saddle outweighed me!) and being led up and down the driveway. Graduated from there to 4-H, riding Western and galloping all around the countryside. As an adult, I decided I wanted to learn to jump and started taking Hunter Jumper lessons. It was durimg that time a guest trainer came in and her discipline was eventing. I was hooked! I evented until my mare decided she didn’t want to jump any more, so we continued with our dressage training, discovered how much fun cows were to move around, packed the mules and trekked up the mountains, trail rode at Pt. Reyes (although never did make it to the beach…that’s still on my bucket list). My last ride on her was at 33 years old, and she passed away at 35. So my “new” guy, who is 26 this year, a Thoroughbred long off a successful racing career is happy just walking down the road. I’ve been offered the wonderful opportunity to ride Julie Smith’s mare, ReJoyce, who is very busy teaching me to RIDE! I’m learning so much from her, and hopefully she’s learning a thing or two from me.

I’m new to CDS, and as Secretary, I’m very trainable. I look forward to working with everyone, learning about the Society and what it offers the riding community.

Nichole Tuscher

Newsletter Editor

I have been in love with horses as long as I can remember. I did not start riding till I was 12 years old on a hot headed Arabian gelding. He taught me the value of persistence, patience, and how to stay on! I started as a Country English Pleasure rider and moved toward jumpers. But as I aged, I found I enjoyed keeping all four of my horse’s feet on the ground and leaned more and more towards dressage. My Arabians proved a bit tricky to ride as they often remember the test better than I do!

It is hard to believe but I have been riding dressage over 23 years! Each of my horses allowed me to become more proficient. I am humbled to be the rider of our Arabian stallion, LL Darkh Image++++//, and his Half-Arabian daughter, SG Kamilah++++//.

These two amazing horses have taken me to levels I never dreamed of while living in our backyard. I just obtained my USDF Silver Medal with hopes of obtaining my Gold Medal. It has been a worth while journey up the levels with both horses and they continue to teach me not only about riding but about team work. I look forward to writing and celebrating milestones and successes of the chapters members.