Executive Board

Neda DeMayo
Neda DeMayo Founder/President
Neda has had a lifelong interest in animals, especially horses, and has provided care and rescue for horses and animals throughout her life.

More on Neda
Jack Carone
Jack CaroneVice President
Jack joins RTF with a broad background in animal rights and protection. He was Co-Director and Media Spokesman for Los Angeles-based Last Chance for Animals (LCA) and now serves on its Board of Directors.

More on Jack
Kevin Beckmen
Kevin BeckmenBoard Chair
Dr. J. Kevin Beckmen serves as Chief of Staff for the Santa Ynez Valley Cottage Health System and is a prominent and active member of the local community.

Kevin has 4 horses including 2 Choctaw Tribal strain horses adopted from Return to Freedom.

Elizabeth Hines
Elizabeth HinesSecretary
Liz Hines is a certified Shorthand reporter, freelance deposition reporter and court reporter. But aside from that, Liz is an avid photographer and a dedicated volunteer for Return to Freedom!
Tony Stromberg
Tony StrombergDirector
A celebrated published equine photographer, Tony joins RTF’s Board of Directors with not only a deep understanding of Return to Freedom’s mission and wild horses, but expertise in ranch and business management.

Tony Stromberg had a successful 20 year career as a high-end advertising photographer in San Francisco. When horses came into his life in the mid-1990’s, he realized that he had found his teachers, and the connection he has developed with horses took his life in a completely different direction.

Tony’s work is an homage to the equine spirit, and to the archetypal role they play in our lives. This is why he always photographs them without riders, saddles, bits, bridles or any other device that would interfere with their pure essence.

After publishing his first 2 books “Spirit Horses” and “The Forgotten Horses”, his third book is entitled “Horse Medicine”, and was released in the fall of 2014.

Dr. Angela Kelly
Dr. Angela KellyDirector
Dr. Kelly joins Return to Freedom’s Board of Directors with a strong backround in development, animal advocacy, and meaningful volunteer commitments for various equine non-profits since 1989 and community involvement for social justice.

Dr. Kelly has a Ph.d in Human Development, Master of Arts in organizational and non-profit management, Bachelor of Fine Arts as well as many other accolaides primarily in the arts and social justice.

Education, Advocacy and Conservation

Robert Redford
Robert RedfordBoard Member
Respected Actor and Conservationist, Robert Redford joined forces with Return To Freedom in 2014 after a long standing relationship.
Diana DeMayo -Brown
Diana DeMayo -BrownCo-Founder Emeritus, Honorary board member
Diana received her B.F.A. degree in Drama from the University of the North Carolina School of the Arts.

Diana has faciltated various special youth programs at the sanctuary since it’s inception.

Diana teaches acting and is head of production for the Academy of Dramatic Arts, Hollywood California.

In Memorium:

William DeMayo - Co-Founder
William DeMayo - Co-FounderCo-Founder- 1922-2014
Bill began his career as a field examiner for the IRS and is a retired partner of Ernst & Young. Turning attention to education, he then became a full professor at the University of New Haven, Connecticut, where he also served as Treasurer and a Planned Giving Officer. He has served and been honored by numerous professional associations devoted to taxation, financial management, and estate planning. Bill is a graduate of the Wharton School, holds an M.B.A. in taxation, and is a C.P.A.

On May 4th of this year the DeMayo and Return to Freedom family said goodbye to
Bill DeMayo, who leaves a legacy of joy and brotherhood, love and perseverance. Read More about the Legacy of Bill DeMayo here.

More on Bill

Advisory Board

Policy Issues and Advocacy

  • Virginie L. Parant, ESQ., Attorney
  • Laura Moretti, The Animals Voice

Honorary Board Members

  • Wendie Malick – Advocacy
  • Diana DeMayo-Brown


  • Carolyn Resnick, Dances With Horses
  • Angelique Midthunder, Media
  • David Midthunder, Native American Cultural Advisor


  • Michele Cardela
  • Pat Hines
  • Signa McCormick – events
  • Andrea Eastman

Equine Wellness & Conservation

Habitat Restoration

  • John Bechtold
  • Natasha Lohmus, Fish & Game, Santa Barbara, CA


  • Youth Ambassadors: Aly & AJ Michalka

Wild Horse and Burro Wilderness Preserve Committee