Welcome To Safe Harbor Sanctuary!

Safe Harbor Equine and Livestock Sanctuary was formed by a group of concerned animal advocates in Middle Tennessee to fill a gaping void in the world of large animal rescue. While other equine specific rescues do exist, at the time of our inception there was not one single rescue that provided retirement and respite care to animals in need, while also working on rehabilitation, training and adoption to those that are able to have a full life in a new home. We are proud to be the first rescue of our kind in Tennessee, and that others have chosen to follow our lead. Safe Harbor’s mission extends beyond horses and includes all Equidae and Livestock animals that we have ability and capacity to aid.

We are focused on assisting equidae in their time of need. We work predominantly in Middle Tennessee. Animals in our organization are never subject to time limits or age limits. Our programs are divided into multiple areas of focus as follows:

After The Track: Horses who started their lives in the racing industry.
Rescue: Horses who have fallen victim to cruelty and neglect
Therapeutic Outreach: Programs for at risk youth and special needs adults who benefit from interaction with horses.

Our team includes licensed trainers, holistic equine nutritional experts, compassionate volunteers, and children; who will become the next generation that carry on this cause.We have volunteer trainers who work with the animals in our program, and we do complete full assessments of animals to help them find the best adoptive homes. Our rescue horses have competed in competitive trail rides, gone on pleasure trail rides and competed in Hunter/Jumper and Dressage competitions while in foster! We are passionate about horses, and devoted to making sure our fosters get the best forever homes and find the right match at an experience, temperament, and emotional level.

Safe Harbor is a GFAS Accredited Sanctuary, are registered with A Home For Every Horse, and are an Adopt A Pet Approved Equine Rescue. Our Executive Committee members are DART Credentialed Responders certified by FEMA to assist in times of disaster.

GFAS_AccreditedThe Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS), the only globally recognized organization providing standards for identifying legitimate animal sanctuaries, awarded Accredited status to Safe Harbor Equine and Livestock Sanctuary as of June 6, 2017.

Accreditation signifies that Safe Harbor meets GFAS’s rigorous and peer-reviewed equine care standards which are confirmed by a comprehensive site visit. Accreditation also signifies adherence to standards addressing the sustainability of the organization, ethical principles, finances, staffing, education outreach, security and safety and other operational aspects.

We are funded entirely on private donations, and ask that you consider sponsoring an animal in our care. We welcome visits to the sanctuary on scheduled public open house days, and you can see first hand who your generous support is benefiting.

Please take your time exploring our site, getting to know us, and most importantly getting to know the animals. They are the foundation of our mission of compassion.

Our Director


Elizabeth Howe: is our Executive Director.  Elizabeth is a long term volunteer and has filled many roles with Safe Harbor including PR Manager, Adoption Coordinator, and Trainer.  She is certified in driving, and teaches Safe Harbor’s learn to drive clinics showcasing off track standardbred horses.  Elizabeth works professionally as a marketing professional with over 15 years of experience creating impactful relationships via social media, content marketing and public relations.  She lives on her own farm in Wilson County, TN with horses, chickens, dogs and guineas.

lifesaverOur Treasurer


Sariah Hopkins: is a founding member and currently serves as Treasurer, she is the owner of our Cottontown Training Center.  She has loved horses her entire life and rode for the first time on the King Ranch in Texas when she was 14 years old. With a passion to learn all she could about proper rehabilitation, guided by AAEP principles she formed Safe Harbor with a group of devoted equine welfare volunteers.  She has pursued lessons in equine training and riding for the past several years.  Sariah balances rescue with work as a Chief Financial Officer in the private sector.  Sariah holds certification in Equine Nutrition from the University of Edinburgh, Royal School of Veterinary Medicine.

lampOur Technology Director


Benjamin Fillmore:  Is a founding member and our Director of Technology.  Benjamin has extensive experience in systems design and technology and has worked with corporations in the public and private sector; including those requiring high end government clearance.  Benjamin guides us on all things database and technology related and is a voting member of our board of directors.  Benjamin’s sons take riding lessons regularly, and enjoy time in the barn whenever they have the opportunity.  Benjamin is successfully raising the next generation of animal welfare advocates, and leading by example.

leafOur Race Horse Specialist


Jane-Ashe Gailmard: Is our Thoroughbred Intake Specialist.  Jane-Ashe works in the racing industry, and works directly with owners to direct horses to safe new careers through Safe Harbor.  Jane-Ashe teaches beginner riding lessons, and has been a lifelong competitor in Eventing.  Jane-Ashe currently competes with her 5 year old OTTB, Heath.

 Our Adoption Director


Linda Roca: Joined Safe Harbor first as a foster parent quickly moving into the role of adoption coordinator in 2017.  She resides on a farm in Cottontown, TN with her husband, Mike, 4 adopted horses, and several foster horses along with a lovely group of chickens and rescued cats.  Linda is passionate about equine welfare and understands the challenges faced by adopters who may be newer to horses.

Our Trainer


Your Name Could Be Here!: Being a volunteer trainer with Safe Harbor is a great way to launch your business.  Former training directors with our organization have ended up filling their commercial book with friends of adopters because of the great exposure volunteering with the rescue provides.  Interested in this launch pad opportunity?  Email us!  We are ready for a new training director to join our fabulous volunteer team.

Learn More About The Safe Harbor Difference:

Veterinary Best Practices

Our Standard Veterinary Practices

All Safe Harbor horses receive the following:

  • 5 Way Vaccine
  • Coggins Test
  • Castration (if horse arrives as a stallion)
  • Wellness exam
  • Learn more by clicking here!

Specialized Equine Services

Specialized Services:

In addition to best practices in vetting our horses receive specialized services as needed.  These services include:

  • Chiropractic
  • Acupuncture
  • Massage
  • Hydrotherapy
  • And more…Click here to learn more.