Julie Kiewtt, therapist

Julie Kiewatt

Equine Assisted / Facilitated Therapist (LCPC) and Owner 

Julie is an owner and lead therapist at Firefly Horse Co and Firefly Healing Arts.  She’s had a private counseling practice for 10 years and is a Certified Equine Assisted Therapist through Human Equine Alliances for Learning (HEAL).  Horses have always been a mainstay in Julie’s life and she feels truly blessed to be able to work with them daily to assist humans in the growth and healing process. She was in 4-H growing up and showed multiple horses in Western Pleasure and English Equitation, as well as barrels / speed events.  She also started and trained foals from the ground up.  Julie now focuses primarily on Natural Horsemanship, and the horse / human connection, and feels this can heal humans AND horses.

Julie has a Bachelor’s Degree is in Education, specializing in Spanish.  She also was near completion of a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Development when she decided to switch into the Psychology field.  Her Master’s Degree is in Mental Health Counseling specializing in Alternative and Holistic Therapies and she is licensed therapist in the state of Montana.  She has many additional certifications and specialties that are body and trauma focused including mindfulness-based therapies, meditation, tapping (EFT) and ThetaHealing (energy work).  Julie includes movement and mindfulness into her practice and works with each client differently depending on their needs.

Julie is also an owner of Firefly Children’s Center a holistic, nature based child care and preschool in Kalispell, MT.  She has 2 animal loving girls ages 5 and 8 and they love to hike, ride horses, and enjoy the great outdoors together.

Rachel Younger

Barn Manager & Riding Instructor

Rachel Younger offers twenty plus years of professional experience working with horses. She started her formal riding education at the age of five under the tutelage of a renown Hunter-Jumper trainer based outside of Atlanta, Georgia. During her youth she competed heavily in local and state rated shows aboard borrowed horses. She moved to Colorado to attend college and attained a Wilderness Studies Degree with an emphasis in Outdoor Education. While in college, she continued riding and working for various trainers in both western and english riding disciplines as well as volunteering for a therapeutic riding center. Eventually she worked her way into barn management, where she found a passion for equine wellness, nutrition and preventative care. She was able to work with equine athletes recovering from illness or injury. In doing so, she developed a keen interest in the management and rehabilitation of horses post injury and surgery. At that point, she decided to pursue a position in equine medicine and attained a job as an equine veterinary technician at an equine surgical hospital and mixed animal practice. She received primarily all “on the job” training and was able to work in a vast variety of settings: emergency ambulatory work, annual wellness and dental care, reproduction work, lameness evaluation and equine surgery. After five years working in equine medicine, Rachel decided to put her career on hold to raise her three young sons through their toddler years. During this time she and her husband took an opportunity to move to northwestern Montana and found themselves in Columbia Falls. After relocating, Rachel reached out to the local equine community and heard of the mission at Firefly. She was able to connect with the staff and was hired on as barn manager in early May. Her position involves managing the direct care of the equine therapy herd and the boarding clients. Her goal is to offer the best care possible to the horses and help them achieve optimal health. Her favorite part of working at Firefly is learning. Horses are constantly teaching those who choose to listen and Firefly harbors an ideal setting for just that. Rachel is thrilled to be a part of the Firefly team!