Marketing, PR & Production

Marketing, PR & Production

Mara LaGrande and Mary Ann Simonds at the Film Festival in Hollywood for the film Wild Horses in Winds of Change. Mara has received a number of awards for her film. I helped with background information and interviews.

MARKETING -PR     Nature and Horses

Creative Collaboration through Conscious Communication

Nature is great at Networking and Communicating, so using a natural systems model of cooperation has lead to hundreds of co-marketing efforts over the last 35 years.

                   Collaboration is Sustainable . . . . . Competition is not.

The “new norm” should be co-marketing and collaboration. Find audiences who share your values, work together and engage them in your vision –and they will support your products and services.

Having a background in consciousness studies has allowed me to understand paradigms and accurately predict market movements based on current values and belief systems.

Educating and building partnerships started back in 1981 when I created unique partnerships between businesses and non-profits such as at the Contra Costa EARTH DAY event in the Bay area – one of the largest Earth Day events in the country. By aligning businesses with non-profits to come to Earth Day together they educated each other and formed lasting partnerships benefiting both parties.

Horse Marketing

At the same time I started Equines LTD Horse Marketing  and Sales in the Bay Area, CA to try and improve the business practices in the horse industry. Creating The Horse Market, it was the first equine sales magazine in 1981 listed sport horses from the West Coast.

I conducted local, regional and state wide marketing studies on the emerging horse industry tracking various sectors primarily in the H/J and dressage markets. However, I also worked with co-partners to facilitate inter-disciplinary events bridging the western and the english markets and worked such clients as the Contra Costa County and the State of Washington legislature to collect accurate data on horse numbers and the horse industry.

Helping to market the horse industry to new potential customers and engage a broad audience of sponsors I have created projects such as :

Setting up “Open Horse Farm Days“with the San Francisco Chronicle as a way to expose new people to horse farms in the Bay Area, Calif.

Dressage in the Wine Country with Sonoma USDF, bringing wine tasting, dressage and education together.

“Horse Happy Hour” at Golden Gate Fields events for corporate parties connecting potential new horse people with various equine trainers in the area.

Ride for a Green World – campaign to align corporate sustainability values with target     horse audience for their nutritional supplements. Co-marketed events with Whole Foods Markets at Winter Equestrian Festival for Arnenus.

Also partnered with the Ritz Carlton Eau Spa for a Brand Awareness –SORE NO-MORE SPA DAY with free 10 min head and neck massages for riders at the WEF.

Nature & Business

Creating partnerships to protect nature and develop economic incentives for businesses, I have worked with island communities, hotels and local businesses and created a model which helped in the development of Eco-Tourism. Projects have included such things as:

Hanauma Bay, Hawaii – faced with conflicts over protection and tourism development, we outlined a eco-tourism strategy during a 3-day workshop I facilitated at the Conference on Coastal and Marine Tourism –introduced the idea of “rest rotation system and “carrying capacity ” for reefs modeled after what we use for range management. Similar model implemented in Belize on the reefs now after presenting at EcoTourism conferences.

Convincing the Hyatt Waikoloa, HI  (Now Hilton) to recycle after surveying guests who agreed to pay more for their rooms if the hotel recycled which then led to further involvement with the community and environmental protection.

Natural Encounters//EcoVision – facilitating business meetings during nature walks as a way to generate ideas and solutions, while creating awareness and partnerships with natural habitats.

Community Pride Awards, Clark County, WA this started as a way to reward the people who were doing good development, but has now turned into an architectural award. When I developed the first event we rewarded  construction companies who were sensitive to nature, developers who protected trees, and communities who restored nature.


Green Wellington – a platform for businesses, people and organizations to brand themselves as green and find each other.

Sustainable Clark County – campaign to engage businesses to learn about sustainability and build partnerships with County/City governments and academic institutions.

Clark County Horse Symposium – 8 years of partnering Clark College/Washington State University with County and various horse organizations to bring the equestrian community together.

Jump for a Just World – campaign originally used in California in the 1980s to bring awareness to equestrians helping the world now icensed to JustWorld International to do the same thing. – a networking community for women who love hoses around the world. Many partnerships have been formed helping horses and women.

Interspecies Connections – a community for networking people around the world who work with humans and others animals in some form of interaction to benefit both species.


I never thought of myself as a producer, but I produced the first video probably ever professional produced in the horse industry -The Art of Buying a Horse in 1985 with KPIX Channel 5 NEWs, San Francisco. At the time, only 15 % of households even had video players, so it was a stretch to think the horse folks would have video players. Since then I have been involved with a number of productions from the concept and hands on producing to only being the “talent” and getting to educate.

Don Burt and Mary AnnI felt driven to document a part of California Horse history so I started interviewing people like industry leader Don Burt,  horse show vet Dr. Bill Nissen (now deceased) and author/photographer/film maker Robert Vavra to capture some to the wisdom, views and history. I have several hours of professional recorded interviews which I will share with others when the timing is right.

Mary Ann interviewing Don BurtRobert Vavra and Mary Ann Simonds

When I met Robert Vavra, I knew I wanted to capture his deep wisdom, love for adventure and better understand his passion to photograph the beauty of horses. What a pleasure to hear his stories from Pasadena, CA to trekking through Africa photographing wildlife and shooting hundreds of thousand of photos of horses to get the exact spirit and emotional beauty he sought. Being able to review and assist in his final production of Such is the Real Nature of Horses was a real treat.
Robert Vavra and Mary Ann

Here is a list of some of the other productions I done:

Herbs and Aromatherapy for Horses video, dvd

Think Like a Horse- video/dvd

My Space, Your Space – Understanding Horse Culturevideo/dvd

Wild Horses: Understanding the Natural Lives of Horses dvd  with Barbara Wheeler

24 segments on Natural Health and Equine Behavior for ESPN with Painted Pony Productions

Enchanted Kindship With Horses – Meditation with Diane Arkenstone music CD

Giving Up Freedom, Finding Friendships – CD

Wild Horse Wisdom, CD

Some other productions I helped with:

Wild Horses in Winds of Change – by Mara La Grande

AD for Arenus to be seen in stadiums at horse shows.