Rhonda Smith

Founder and Executive Director

Rhonda profile pic


For native Texan Rhonda Smith, her life's work became clear to her following a near fatal accident involving an 18-wheeler in 1999. After the wreck, she left her job as Corporate Benefits Manager for Dell Computer Corporation and founded Spirit Reins in 2003.

Kris Weixel

Director of Finance and Technology

Kris Weix 

Kris has a B.S. in Business Administration from Minnesota State University - Moorhead. A former fiscal analyst for the Texas Department of Commerce and software engineer for IBM, Kris is in charge of the operations of the organization including financial controls, technology and budgeting. 

Debbie Okrina

LCSW - Clinical Director

Debbie Okrina

Debbie Okrina has her MSSW from the University of Texas. She is a Clinical Social Worker and a Board Approved Supervisor. She has been providing trauma therapy for 19 years and has been doing equine assisted psychotherapy for 8 years. Before working at Spirit Reins, Debbie was Clinical Director at the Houston Area Women’s Center, Clinical Director at Lone Star Behavior Health, and a therapist at Promises Austin. She is trained in EMDR. Debbie is a Senior Faculty member for The Daring Way and incorporates Brene Brown’s shame resiliency work into her practice.

Ryan Authier

LPC- Therapist


Ryan earned his B.A. in Psychology from Texas Wesleyan University and his M.A. in Counseling Psychology from St. Edwards University. Prior to Spirit Reins, he served as Program Manager for Communities in Schools of Central Texas. 


Paula Loring

LCSW - Clinical Therapist


Paula has been a psychotherapist for over 40 years and a horse lover all her life. Her work has always focused on children and trauma in one way or another. She began her career as a child protective social worker and then worked in a psychiatric hospital for adolescents. For the last 20 years she was in private practice and the director of a Bereavement Program in San Antonio. She is trained in several trauma treatment modalities, including EMDR, and has been a Registered Play Therapist. Paula is currently working toward her certification in Natural Lifemanship and is devoted to providing equine assisted therapy to traumatized children and adults and their families.

Jenna Pywell

MSW - Equine Professional/ Co-Therapist


Jenna has a B.A. in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State University and a MSW from The University of Denver. She has six years of case management experience working with youth and and years of horse experience. Before Spirit Reins, she served as an Employment Specialist at LifeWorks.


Kate Van Norman

Equine Professional/Co-Therapist

Kate VanNorman









 Kate has her B.A. in Psychology from Austin College and her M.A. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Denver. Kate is looking forward to combining her extensive riding experience and experience working with kids and families from hard places in her role as Equine Professional/ Co-Therapist.

Privacy Policy

Seals Platinum


Spirit Reins

2055 County Rd. 284
Liberty Hill, Texas

Fax - 512.582.8366