Chesapeake Dressage Institute (CDI)



Janet Richardson-Pearson, Founder

Founder Janet Richardson-Pearson created the Chesapeake Dressage Institute in 2003 to create the type of learning environment she dreamed of for herself, and other like-minded equestrians.

Never sitting on a horse until her mid-30's, she started riding dressage at Linda Zang's Idlewilde Farm soon after it opened. Busy in her career as a commercial interior designer, plus raising a family, and commuting to Baltimore left little time for more than a once a week lesson. As time went by, she was able to build a small barn and have a horse at home and was able to ride several times a week, mostly on her own. When she retired from attending graduate school classes and active design work, she was able to purchase the former Mas Que Farm Xmas tree farm and build the facility of her dreams.

She has life-time membership in the Potomac Valley Dressage Association (PVDA), was one of the original founding sponsors of the Global Dressage Institute in Wellington, FL and a supporter of the Devon Horse Show and the PVDA Ride-for-Life. Maryland Therapeutic Riding began on her small farm, with her role as first founding sponsor supplying use of her facility and horses. She is on the Board of Talisman Therapeutic Riding on the Eastern Shore and a supporter of numerous horse related charities, including Days End Farm, Thoroughbred Placement Resources, Retired Racehorse Training Project, USDF, USET Foundation and Brook USA. In her 70's now, she is still riding 4 times a week and hopes to have both her older horse and herself in condition to ride in a Century Ride, hopefully soon, and to get back in the show ring.


Lisa S. Gruen of Ryder, LLC, Trainer

In 1993 Lisa began teaching private and group dressage lessons at Linda Zang’s Idlewilde Farm school program as well as taking horses in training and traveling to local farms to give lessons.

Lisa won the Maryland Dressage Association Trainer of the Year Award – based on students success for the 2003 show season, Champion and Reserve Champion, Winner of Finals Class at the show and Medals for Rider Achievement with scores of 65% or higher.

Lisa was chosen as a demo rider for Hilltop Farm’s Young Horse Training Symposium with Steffan Peters with her 5 y.o. Dutch horse Tai.

In 2008 Lisa was hired as the Trainer and Manager at Chesapeake Dressage Institute. In 2010 she started Ryder LLC operating out of CDI where she currently teaches and accepts horses for training.

Over the years Lisa has had opportunities to clinic and work with some wonderful trainers who have had a great impact on her riding and training philosophy: Steffen Peters, Kathy Connelly, Uwe Steiner, Axel Steiner, George Williams, Oded Shimoni, Alexa Schulten-Baumer, Alex Gerding, Felicitas Von Neumann-Cosel. She works regularly with Jan Brons and Scott Hassler. Lisa just finished an extensive training season with Jan Brons in Wellington, Fl, and continues with his monthly visits to our facility.

Lisa’s training program focuses on a solid foundation of dressage training. Offering training for horse and rider, with focus on correct basics, suppleness and balance of horse and rider. Lisa believes the key to good riding is correct rider position with the ability to feel and sense what the horse needs in order to bring out harmony, relaxation and suppleness. She understands that riders come to this sport with many different learning styles and expectations – whether focusing on moving your horse up the levels for successful competition, or just wanting to enjoy the journey of training to bring out the best of you and your horse. Lisa has the ability to communicate well and break down theory and ideas so each student can experience those “ah hah” moments that draw us back day after day.

Lesson Rates

  • $60.00 for horses boarding at CDI
  • Haul-ins $75.00 (includes $15.00 ring fee)

Lisa’s Blog


Equestrian Center Manager

Angie Burnett, Equestrian Center Manager

Angie has been in love with horses since she was 7 years old. At age 16 she knew her passion and started working on local farms. She brings with her over 22 years of equine experience; managing private and commercial facilities, working alongside trainers and equine veterinarians. Angie manages the day to day activities of our Equestrian Center including the stable, indoor riding center, storage buildings and surrounding grounds. Angie has played a vital role in the principles/practices, proper care/grooming, treatment and safety procedures here at Chesapeake Dressage Institute. Angie is a hardworking genuine person whose love of horses and all animals makes her a great asset to have at our Institute.

Facilities Director

Shari DeMino, Facilities Director

Shari began her position at Chesapeake Dressage Institute in July, 2018. As Facilities Director she oversees all Clinics, Facility Rentals, Staffing, Marketing Events and any other items that keep the facilities operating smoothly while effectively controlling costs. Shari brings to us over 22 years expertise in Business Management, Accounting and Marketing. She has an extensive background working in many different type operations. Her leadership, negotiating and procurement skills have effectively controlled costs, allowing for maximized profitability and company growth. Shari is a Southern Maryland native who lives with her husband, family and household pets. She values Integrity, hard work ethics, and always brings a positive attitude to everything she’s involved with.

Honorary Advisory Board

George Williams

President of the United States Dressage Federation and a member of the United States Equestrian Federation Committee, George is a highly accomplished International Grand Prix competitor that is widely renowned in his field.

George Williams is a prominent figure in international dressage competition whose career highlights with Chuck and Joann Smith’s grand prix mare, Rocher, include: three-time Dressage at Devon Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle, 2005 United States Equestrian Federation/Collecting Gaits National Grand Prix Champion, team bronze at CHIO Aachen, 5th at the 2003 World Cup in Sweden, United States Dressage Federation Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle Horse of the Year as well as being named Dressage Horse of the Year by the Chronicle of the Horse. George was co-winner of the USEF William Steinkraus Equestrian of Honor award for his success in 2005. Mr. Williams has been studying dressage since 1973 when he traveled to Germany to enroll at the Reitinstitute von Neindorff’ where he earned his German Bronze Rider Medal. Upon returning to the US he began training with Karl Mikolka. George has trained in Germany with the former US Dressage team coach and Olympic gold medalist, Klaus Balkenhol, on numerous occasions.

In 1981 George became a resident rider and trainer for The Tempel Lipizzans in Wadsworth, IL in order to continue to work under his mentor, Karl Mikolka. From the summer of 2000 until the spring of 2009 he rode and trained for the Smiths at their Gypsy Woods Farm in Richwood, OH. On May 1, 2009 George started to ride and train for Elizabeth Juliano’s Havensafe Farm of Middlefield Ohio and Wellington Florida. In addition he continues to teach and coach with Williams Dressage LLC.

George has successfully competed several horses for Betsy Juliano. In 2009 the Oldenburg gelding, Don Bailey was Reserve at the 2009 USEF Developing Horse Championships and in 2011 the Oldenburg mare, Horizon was Reserve in the four year old division at the USEF Young Horse Championships. He has had numerous wins, including at the USDF Regional Championships, on Cleopatra and Riccidoff as well.

Debra Wiedmaier

European born and raised, Debra studied with both Nuno Oliveria and the former head of the Cadre Noir, Patrick Le Rolland. She has represented the USET in Europe at International CDI competitions at the PSG and Intermediare I Level. Along with many placings and wins at the FEI Levels in both Europe and the U.S., she also trained 2 horses that were long-listed for the 1996 Olympics. Debra has been a consultant and friend to the Chesapeake Dressage Institute since its inception.

First Founding Sponsors

Plaque Presentation to First Founding Sponsors

Chesapeake Dressage Institute founder Janet Richardson-Pearson and William Pearson, Chris and Rob Desino, Matt Varney, Kimberly and Frederick Boyer, Terri and Devon Kane, Tuny and David Page, and Joseph and Gaye Scarpa.