Tanja is an accomplished bilingual professional with extensive experience in both, the legal and equine industry. After completing a 3-year vocational training to become certified as a Legal Secretary with Dietz, Tonhauser & Partner in Germany, Tanja spent over 9 years supporting Managing Partners in Germany as well as working for the Head of the International Department with Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP in Atlanta, GA. She successfully completed her Business Law studies with a Bachelor of Law degree (LL.B.).
Tanja grew up riding and showing horses in Germany. She had her first riding lesson at the age of 7. An Oldenburger gelding named “Noblesse Oblige” became her four-legged partner for many years and started her lifelong passion for horses. Tanja has been actively involved in equine care and horse behavior her entire life. As a teenager she attended horse camps every summer where she learned the basics of equine care. At the age of 14 she passed the “German Horseshoe”, recognized as the equestrian course in Germany that educates junior riders about horse care and management. When Tanja turned 16, she took over barn chores at her training barn to work off the lease for her horse, giving her further insight and knowledge into proper horse care, equine health and behavior from the trainer and farm owner.
Tanja passed the exam to earn the “German Equestrian Badge” as recognition for her advanced knowledge in equine care, nutrition, sickness prevention and medical aid. In addition to over a decade of horse behavior and care, custody and control experience, Tanja also gained extensive knowledge about boarding, buying, leasing and showing horses in the following years. When she moved to the US in 2013, she brought her international equine experience and continued to ride and show horses here in the US.
Tanja started leasing a dressage horse at a private horse boarding facility with 28 horses, just outside of Washington, DC. Before long, clients and boarders noticed her expertise and began asking her advice for equine care questions and trusting her competence to handle, take care of and school their valuable horses. Tanja quickly took over different horse care responsibilities on a weekly basis. Her professional demeanor and her extensive knowledge provided a career path to working with horses fulltime. Tanja turned her lifelong passion into her main profession and accepted the barn manager position.
Tanja has a proven track record of feeding customized equine diets, taking care of injuries, monitoring horses for signs and symptoms of sickness or discomfort, administrating supplements and medicines, managing feed orders, and working together with farriers and vets. Implementing barn rules and protocols and keeping a watchful eye on horses and customers are additional responsibilities of the barn manager position, in order to ensure the safety of riders, horses and boarders.
Her extensive barn management experience includes taking excellent care of the resident performance horses at busy boarding barns, atma modern 20-stall boutique barn, located at the long-established Loch Moy Farm as well as managing the exclusive 8 horse training facility of a USDF Gold, Silver and Bronze medalist and FEI Dressage Rider.
Tanja is now the Director and Park Manager at The South Carolina Equine Park, located in Camden, SC. The South Carolina Equine Park is a 60-acre multiple-disclipine horse competition facility, featuring several show rings and a total of 288 stalls, spread out over 9 barn buildings. With an average of 30 competition weekends each year, consistently producing an economic impact of more than $4 million dollars annually, the park is a major ecomocial driver in the area.
Since 2020, Tanja holds a USDF University diploma as recognition for her continuing education, awarded after successfully completing close to 100 courses and exams on various equine care, horse behavior and dressage topics. Additionally, she is continuously extending her equine expertise with seminars and online course.
As an active member of the United Stated Equestrian Federation (USEF), the United Stated Dressage Federation (USDF) and the Potomac Valley Dressage Association (PVDA), Tanja competes at dressage shows on a regular basis.
Tanja is a member and Director of International Services at The Equine Expert LLC and serves as consultant and expert witness with specialties in barn management, horse behavior and appraising.