Red White & Snow

Ali’s Story

Ali Steenis

National Ability Center 2014 COACH Intern

Your support at Red, White & Snow helps fund new possibilities for individuals of all abilities at the National Ability Center. Every dollar you donate and every hour you give helps people like Ali Steenis discover possibilities while pursuing their dreams – be they for social change, for new skills and independence, or for the chance to enjoy recreational time with family and friends.

From an early age, Ali Steenis was fearless. Whether climbing the monkey bars despite protesting teachers or racing any boy who dared to challenge her, Ali, who was born with a visual impairment, never let her lack of sight get in the way. Her independent spirit grew when Ali’s parents enrolled her in therapeutic horseback riding lessons. She found her passion in horses within the supportive world of therapeutic riding, and with the desire to compete alongside able-bodied peers, Ali transitioned out of therapeutic riding and into dressage.

Ali received her first guide dog the summer before her senior year and graduated with honors, going on to attend Seattle Pacific University for business management. Following her freshman year, Ali discovered the National Ability Center, and was accepted into their COACH internship program. Taking a leap of faith, she moved to Park City for a summer that would change her life.

Through her time as a COACH intern, Ali contributed to making therapeutic horseback riding meaningful and empowering for participants, and transformed her perception of her own abilities. Now a sophomore at Seattle Pacific University, Ali is heavily involved in student leadership with the goal of bettering the lives of her peers through inclusion, empowerment and relationship. She strives to utilize a career in business as an opportunity to positively impact lives and create greater social change.

National Ability Center | Park City, Utah USA