Equine Expert Witness

Susan Smith has a unique combination of education and experience which has distinguished her as a desirable expert witness in the field of equine behavior, training, teaching and management.



Master of Science in Agriculture, Equine Behavior – August 1989
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona

Bachelor of Science in Animal Science, Animal Production – June 1984
Minor-Agricultural Business Management
Graduated cum laude
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona


Specialist in equine learning behavior
Strong background in zoology and animal psychology
Experience in behavioral testing design and analysis, and practical application
Prize winning research in equine color vision
Services retained as expert witness in personal injury cases involving horses


Render expert opinions regarding equine behavior as it pertains to the equine species
Render expert opinions of equine behavior as it pertains to horse training and management, riding instruction and equestrian safety
Render expert opinions regarding equine related management
Provide consultation, horse evaluation, site evaluation and accident reconstruction, deposition and testimony
Courtroom testimony experienced in Orange County, CA and San Bernardino County, CA


Experienced in behavioral training procedures
Professional horse trainer 30 years, specializing in Hunters/Jumpers/Equitation
Prepare horses for formal show-ring competition
Preliminary breaking and training of young horses
Reform problem horses using conditioned response training techniques
Conduct training for mounted police officers
Trainer of many breeds including, but not limited to, Thoroughbreds, Warmbloods, Quarter Horses and Arabians for show and pleasure


Currently own and operate, since 1990, a full-service hunter/equitation training and boarding facility in Norco, CA, including supervision of all training and boarding activities and supervision of personnel


Instruct beginner to advanced students of all ages to ride hunt seat
Prepare students to compete in show-ring competition
Produce successful medal and equitation winners at county, regional and national levels
Produce year-end champions in equitation and hunters
Instruct students on basic horse care and horse management
California Mounted Officer’s Association (C.M.O.A.) Equitation and Equine Behavioral Instructor,
Basic Class 2005, 2006
California Mounted Officer’s Association (C.M.O.A.) Conference speaker; Sensory Perception in
Horses, How the Rider Effectively Influences the Horse
Six years teaching experience as an assistant for top Southern California horse trainers
Four years experience as volunteer riding instructor for California State Polytechnic University, Pomona


Twenty five years as a professional rider, successfully training and showing client’s horses
Over 22 years riding experience under the instruction and guidance of highly qualified Hunter/Jumper trainers
Awarded numerous champion, reserve champion and year-end circuit champion titles at Hunter/Jumper horse shows
Shown many prize-winners on the Hunter/Jumper, Arabian and Quarter Horse circuits
Qualified several horses for the Arabian Nationals
Received the 1987 West Coast Intercollegiate Horse Show Champion Hi-Point English Rider award


Color Discrimination in Horses. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 62 (1999) 13-25.
Behavioral Study of Equine Color Vision. September, 1989


Owner, Trainer, Cornerstone Equestrian Center, Norco, CA – Nov.1990 to present
Co-owner and show manager of Parkside Horse Shows, a county level sanctioned hunter/jumper horse show series established 2011.
Clinician – Hunt seat equitation and hunters; Stimulus acclimation training
Horse Show Judge – Hired to judge hunter/jumper competition horse shows


Membership associations include: United States Equestrian Federation (USEF), United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA), Orange County Horse Show Association (OCHSA), Greater San Diego Hunter Jumper Association (GSDHJA), Equestrian Trails Incorporated (ETI), and Inland Empire Hunter Jumper Association (IEHJA)
IEHJA Board of Directors – Treasurer 2010-2017
Awarded Western Psychological Association Scholarship in recognition of excellence in research work on equine color vision – 1990
Member – Gamma Sigma Delta – Honor Society
Received the Herbert H. and Grayce Reese Scholarship – 1980 – 1983
Received the Arabian Horse Association of So. Cal. Scholarship – 1985
Member – West Coast Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (WCIHSA) 1983-1987
President – 1983; Vice-President – 1986
Member, Captain – California State Polytechnic University Equestrian Team 1983-1987

For complete Curriculum Vitae, please call 951-371-6190 or email cornerstoneeqcntr@earthlink.net