Our Staff

Our dedicated team at Healing Heroes Through Horsemanship, Inc. is deeply committed to our mission, driven by the shared goal of empowering Veterans, First Responders, and retired racehorses.

Simon d'Unienville - Executive Director and Co-Founder of Healing Heroes Through Horsemanship

Simon d'Unienville

Executive Director & Co-Founder

Simon d’Unienville brings a wealth of both equine and business experience to our team. For the past decade, Simon has dedicated himself to helping both horses and humans through natural horsemanship training. He served as Executive Director of Hope for Horses in South Africa from 2018 to 2020, and the Monty Roberts group of companies from 2020 to 2023. Simon’s accolades include recognition from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for his “efforts to reduce violence in the training of horses, his dedication to assist veterans and first responders with post-traumatic stress and the development of youth leaders.” As our Executive Director, Simon oversees daily operations, strategic planning, financial management, fundraising efforts, program development, and board relations, and plays a vital role in the organization’s growth and development. Simon also serves as our lead program facilitator.

Yvette d'Unienville - Program Director and Co-Founder

Yvette d'Unienville

Program Director & Co-Founder

Yvette d’Unienville is on a mission to blend her psychology studies with equine experiences to promote resilience and trauma recovery. With a background in graphic design, web design, copyediting, marketing, and social media management, she plays a pivotal role in program creation, facilitation, and management. Her responsibilities encompass program design, curriculum development, and helping the programs align with our mission and objectives, ensuring they remain effective and transformative for participants while also contributing to the sustainability and growth of our organization. Yvette coordinates program logistics, schedules, and participant engagement to create a safe and supportive environment for healing and growth. In addition to her duties as Program Director, she leads grant writing and marketing efforts to further our mission.
Justin Trammell - Development Director and Co-Founder

Justin Trammell

Development Director & Co-Founder

A U.S. Air Force Veteran with three Middle East tours, Justin Trammell has experienced first-hand many of the mental, physical, emotional, and financial challenges that face American Veterans. As a long-time business owner on California’s central coast, Justin is deeply connected to and respected in the local community. As our Development Director, Justin plays a pivotal role in our organization’s growth and success. He leverages his unique perspective and extensive network to drive program development, fundraising, and strategic planning. Justin is responsible for cultivating relationships with donors and supporters, identifying funding opportunities, and implementing fundraising strategies to secure the necessary resources for our programs. Justin discovered a deep connection to the natural horsemanship process and is committed to facilitating similar transformative experiences for fellow Veterans.

Our Board of Directors

Our esteemed Board of Directors plays a pivotal role in guiding our organization. They provide strategic direction on matters of governance, finance, fundraising, and long-term planning, ensuring our continued commitment to sustainable and impactful programs.

Andrew Dibbern, President

Dr. Andrew Dibbern


Dr. Dibbern is a professor at Monterey College of Law, San Luis Obispo College of Law, Empire College of Law and Kern County College of Law. Professor Dibbern teaches Animal Law, Constitutional Law, Student/Life Skills and Wellness. He holds Doctorates in Veterinary Medicine from Washington State University and Oregon State University. He earned Juris Doctorate and Master of Legal Studies degrees from San Luis Obispo College of Law. Dr. Dibbern serves as a legal consultant for expert witness development in various medical licensing matters. He has served as a Subject Matter Expert and a Hospital Inspector with the Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) for the California Department of Consumer Affairs. He currently serves on the Wellness Evaluation Committee for the CA VMB. He is a consultant with Resilience In Healthcare (RIH), partnering with VA clinical psychologists providing training, coaching and facilitation of medical practitioner wellbeing in clinical practice for both physicians and veterinarians.

Andy is enthusiastic about enhancing wellbeing through the positive interactions of the outdoors and with animals. He is a Coordinator for the Central California Chapter of Heroes on the Water, a nonprofit promoting wellness for veterans, active-duty military, first-responders and their families through outdoor experiential therapy. He also serves on the Education Committee for NOMV (Not One More Vet), a nonprofit suicide prevention advocacy organization. He is trained in suicide prevention and is a certified medical Qigong practitioner. Andy is a member of the California Veterinary Medical Association, Society for Veterinary Medical Ethics, Human Animal Bond Association, American Veterinary Medical Law Association, The American Balint Society, National Qigong Association, NOMV (Not One More Vet) Organization and many more.

Joseph Halsell

Joseph Halsell


Joe Halsell was born and raised in the Santa Maria Valley in a family of eight children. He attended St. Joseph High School and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Economics and Finance from St. Mary’s College in 1998. He began his entrepreneurial journey early and started a branch of Halsell Construction in the Bay Area just 12 months out of college. After a successful start to the business, he moved back to Santa Maria in 2002 to begin raising his family and join the family business, Halsell Builders.

His commitment to excellence and his family’s commitment to their community has led to many positions of leadership over the past 20 years in business on the Central Coast. He is a long-standing board member and past president of EconAlliance; Santa Maria Valley Contractors Association and the Home Builders Association of the Central Coast. His active role in sustainable, efficient construction standards led to the establishment of Energy Upgrade Central Coast in 2014, which eventually led to a Tri-County program that enables homeowners all over the coast upgrade their homes and access rebates for energy-efficient projects.

More recently, his love of the Rodeo and his big heart led to his involvement in the Golden Circle of Champions – a program that takes families and their children to rodeos across the country for VIP weekend events. After his own family became a recipient of the Golden Circle’s generosity in 2022 and 2023, Halsell sought to make a difference in the lives of others who were in need and decided to help establish and join the board of Healing Heroes as their Treasurer.

Chad "C.J." Huck, Secretary

C.J. Huck


C.J. Huck is a Navy Veteran and an Investigative Tech/Legal Office Professional for the County of Santa Barbara Office of the Public Defender (North County Speciality Courts). C.J. was born and raised in a small southwest Kansas town, Coldwater, where he grew up on a working cattle ranch, raising American Quarter horses, which he continues to do in partnership with his father. C.J. grew up rodeoing as a saddle bronc rider and team roper; he broke and trained the colts he bred and raised. Following high school, C.J. played college football until a series of concussions and other injuries made for premature retirement from the sport.

In early 2001, C.J. joined the United States Navy and made three combat deployments to Iraq as a member of a special operations unit. After a traumatic injury, he had to have both hips replaced, and was consequently medically retired after 14 years of honorable service. While on active duty, C.J. earned an Associate’s Degree from Coastline Community College and then went on to earn his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Oklahoma in Administrative Leadership. C.J. retired in Port Hueneme and worked as a government contractor, but started to develop a desire for the law. C.J. was accepted and enrolled into the JD program at the Ventura and Santa Barbara Colleges of Law at the Santa Barbara campus.

In his spare time, C.J. was a college baseball umpire, until an injury caused an early retirement. He hopes to bring some horses from Kansas to start team roping again. C.J. recently married his beautiful wife, Joleen, a sixth-grade teacher in the Orcutt School District. In May 2022, C.J. began as an intern assisting Maria Martino at the North County Public Defender’s Office. He has found a level of passion rarely seen in assisting clients who suffer from mental health issues, and veterans who have wounds we cannot see. C.J. hopes this experience will help him become a more well-rounded advocate. After he passes the bar, he hopes to continue with the office, providing service to the vulnerable and indigent in this community.

Dr. Mary Ann Evans, Board Member

Dr. Mary Ann Evans

Board Member

Mary Ann Evans, Ph.D. is a licensed clinical neuropsychologist with over 22 years in private practice and previous university teaching experience. She has been a serious equestrian for nearly 40 years, riding dressage, as well as founding and instructing at a therapeutic riding program for disabled students. She is a NARHA/PATH certified instructor. She has practiced meditation for 30 years in several traditions including Bhddhist traditions and Christian Mystical traditions. She has been a mindfulness teacher for the past 10 years, offering programs in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy to various groups and individuals with psychological challenges, cancer, chronic pain, and other health and stress related issues. She has been certified in the EAGALA program as both a mental health specialist and equine specialist to practice equine assisted psychotherapy and learning. She has conducted this work for several years with individuals and groups as diverse as incarcerated and at risk youth, foster children, survivors of trauma, brain-injured individuals, families in crisis, and those with depression, anxiety and stress related disorders. She works with both children and adults.

Rashun Drayton, Board Member

Rashun Drayton

Board Member

Dale Carrillo, Board Member

Dale Carrillo

Board Member

Lawrence Carrillo, Board Member

Lawrence Carrillo

Board Member