the Human Team

Joell Dunlap (she/her), Square Peg founder and fearless leader, has taught hundreds of students to ride. An equestrienne since childhood, she has participated in many different disciplines including racing, polo, hunting, jumping, three-day eventing and reining. Joell has worked professionally in many facets of the equestrian industry including racing, marketing, special events, and breaking and training of young horses, in addition to teaching.

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However, Joell has always been passionate about changing the way people teach and is an advocate for alternative education. Joell has been published nationally in equestrian publications regarding a gentler and more creative approach to teaching students and training horses.

Since she started working with developmentally challenged children, Joell has been developing a unique teaching method which resonates. Her philosophy of “Inspire, Guide, Challenge” and her sensitive style of instruction have helped hundreds of students to achieve important goals.

Joell self-published her first novel A Damn Fine Hand in 2021. It can be purchased as an e-book here. All proceeds benefit The Square Peg Foundation. 

Darius Christopher Dunlap(he/him) is Square Peg’s co-founder and Joell’s husband. He is a veteran of four high-tech firms, including 13 years at Silicon Graphics in services and support. Darius has managed large teams, ran multi-million dollar operations, and developed and run programs with global reach. He’s adept at building sustainable businesses and replicating successful programs and ideas into new environments.

Becca Knopf(she/her), Sonoma Chaos Coordinator, was that horse girl as kid—luckily for her, she found a career in the industry after graduating with a degree from Otterbein University in Ohio. Becca participated in 4H with her horse Danny Boy growing up and rode for all three of her university’s equestrian teams. She has been a Certified Horsemanship Association riding instructor since 2012. Since becoming an instructor at Square Peg foundation in 2015 she has helped the program grow in Half Moon Bay and to it’s second location at Cadence Farm in Sonoma. Becca finds joy and success in her work with the kids and retired racehorses by gaining trust through silliness, kindness, and genuine interest in their passions. A native of San Rafael, Becca will dress up in a tutu, T. Rex, or donkey costume to earn giggles from the kids or parishioners during the annual Christmas pageant at her parent’s church. Ask her questions about horse anatomy or the Lord of the Rings at your own risk. Becca manages the Cadence Farm location in Sonoma, email her at .

Emma Bond Coastside Chaos Coordinator, still can’t believe that this is what she gets to do everyday. As she was practically raised in a barn, and hasn’t left yet, Square Peg is stoked to have Emma join us in January 2020. She’s done a lot, from working on a cattle ranch in Hawaii to being a working student for a dressage trainer; and she’s thrilled to have found a home at Square Peg. With a background in the arts and arts education, Emma uses her goofy-ness and humor to get the kids to open up to her, and loves to see her kids express themselves, and think creatively. She’ll do pretty much anything to make the kids laugh, from making up a silly song to rolling around in the grass. Her approach to training horses is the same as her approach to most things in life—by being gentle, empathetic, and patient. When she’s not at Square Peg she’s hugging her own horse, Teddy, or looking at the stars. Emma manages our Coastal location, email her at

Joe Mcintyre (he/him) grew up in San Francisco and was introduced to horses through his mom. After working as a farm hand caring for cattle, sheep, goats, horses, chickens and pigs, for Tolay Springs Winery and then as a wine sales rep for Lunardi’s Joe found his way to Square Peg in 2021. After a year of on-the-job training and exploration Joe received his level one & two english/western Certified Horsemanship Association certification in fall of 2022. Joe is always game for new challenges or learning opportunities when thrown his way. He works at both the Sonoma and coastside locations. If Joe’s not at the barn, you can find him running 6 miles in the morning with his dogs, Dusty and Sleuth or trail riding in The Montara hills. For questions concerning billing or payments contact Joe at

Kemma Peters started out as a volunteer and student at Square Peg. After finishing her degree in psychology at Grand Canyon University in Arizona she joined our staff. Having grown up in the program Kemma deeply understands the ins and outs of our mission and values. Always a hard worker, she brings a curiosity and empathy for others every day to the horses and humans she interacts with. Reach out to Kemma at

Dave Lowth (he/him) grew up in Dublin, Ireland riding gypsy horses through town and county and moved to San Francisco in his early 20s. Dave is well loved amongst the Indian Valley trail riding community in Novato and amongst the construction community in San Francisco after working in the concrete business for over 25 years. We’re so lucky Dave decided to “retire” and join the Square Peg family. He and his black Quarter-Horse, Dodge are non-stop fun, enthusiasm, honesty, and kindness. Dave can fix just about anything at the farm and works full-time at Cadence Farm in Sonoma. 

Carolyn Jasculca (she/her) is a San Francisco local; born, raised and filled with city pride.  As a child she could be found frolicking in the waves, dancing in a ballet studio, trying to make friends with horses, or in therapy. Carolyn received her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Exercise Science and Fitness from San Francisco State University in 2005. Then worked for five years at the Marin YMCA as the Director of Cardiac Therapy and Wellness during which she also received a Masters in Public Administration for Health Care Services from the University of San Francisco. Having found her true passion in clinical based case management, she returned to the University of San Francisco and graduated with a Masters in Counseling Psychology in 2016. As school had never been an easy space for her, Carolyn is extremely proud of her academic achievements. In 2020 Carolyn opened her private practice serving couples, families and individuals with the intentions to provide unconditional compassion, humor, and sometimes a dose of reality. Carolyn strives to do things differently than how she was taught in the western model of mental health. Being able to integrate the magical wonder of natural horsemanship through the instruction of the Square Peg team–in Carolyn’s own words, “has saved my life and allows me to help invite that change for my clients.”  After sharing human skills and displaying her growth and respect for the horses, Carolyn transitioned from volunteer to staff in 2022. When not at the barn, Carolyn is on a fun run somewhere in SF, snuggled cozy on her couch watching something mindless while twirling her hair, writing stories, shopping, or cooking in the kitchen for her friends. Carolyn works part-time at both locations and at her own private practice, you can get in touch with her at

Ruby Bodas is a bilingual pediatric occupational therapist since 2000. She lives in Half Moon Bay with her husband and is a mother of three children, a boston terrier dog and a fluffy siamese cat. Her love for horses and being in nature began as a young child and continued into high school years. Once in college, Ruby veered away from horses and went onto a career path and having a family. About 30 years later, she has come full circle and has returned to a never-forgotten passion of being with horses, humans and nature with Square Peg Foundation. Ruby also works at Coastside Pediatric Therapy Center. Outside of work and farm life, she likes to run, design interior spaces, and spend time with friends and family. Her educational experience includes sensory processing, developing fine/gross motor skills, neuroplasticity and social/emotional intelligence. Her volunteer background includes CoastPride founder, Hatch Elementary School, Thunder Road Adolescent Chemical Dependency Program and Xenophon Therapeutic Horseback Riding Center. 

Katja Svensen, works part-time as an instructor and intern supervisor for Square Peg at our Sonoma location. While not working for Square Peg you can find her leading education hikes with the Sonoma County Regional Parks discussing and teaching fire mitigation and native ecology. Ask Katja about native plants and indigenous lore and she’ll be able to paint a picture of the interconnectedness of all things. You may also see Katja watching her teenage son play baseball or on a 5am walk around her neighborhood as she looks for owls. Katja’s teaching is straightforward, confidence boosting, goofy, and a whole lot of fun.

Davis Finch, has been a part of the Square Peg community for many years. As an adult with autism, Davis serves on our advisory board helping the organization understand the perspective of the autistic individuals we serve. Davis rides weekly and completes our invoices. Learn more about Davis’s experience during the pandemic in his blog post here. You can reach Davis by emailing him at

Mora McWaters, Square Peg Lead Intern,  has been part of the Square Peg tribe on a volunteering and working student position for several years. She became an official team member in July 2019. Mora loves all animals, but especially horses. She revels in the peace and quiet of the ranch and finds working with the horses to be very rewarding. Her favorite Square Peg horse is Cecil. Mora works at our Coastside location.