She is the glue that has kept Horse Guard together and thriving for over 40 years. Many of you may know her, while many others may not. Lori Johnson is not only the wife of the founder, Del Johnson, and mother to Kelsey and Ty, but she is the CFO and treasurer of Horse Guard. She helped Del build this company from the ground up, many times bringing his head out of the clouds and back down to earth.
A Passion for Horse Led Her to Her Destiny
Lori had a passion for horses as a young girl, showing in 4-H, and raising and breeding a few Appaloosas herself. In 1975, she was the Pendleton Round-Up Queen, which is a huge honor, and you can still see her picture hanging in the Pendleton Round-Up Hall of Fame. The year she was on the Round-Up court she met Del at Washington State, where they were both attending college.
Working in a Man's World
After finishing her bachelors' degree from Washington State, Lori went to work for a large feed company as a sales representative. She entered a man's world and was one of only a few women in the company at the time. However, growing up with two older brothers and a father who was a large animal veterinarian helped her learn how to hold her own, and gain credibility. She thrived in her sales position and developed lifelong friendships with the people she called on.
Taking a Leap of Faith
During this time, Del started developing a vitamin-mineral supplement that was the first over-the-counter supplement to contain selenium for horses. Del was a nutritionist, not a businessman. Lori had the business sense to help Del start building a successful company. Just a few years after the development of Horse Guard, Lori took a leap of faith a quit her sales job and started running the financial side (along with helping on every other aspect) of Horse Guard. Since then, Horse Guard has grown tremendously, which wouldn't be possible without Lori. She not only managed all the finances of Horse Guard but raised two girls that are now working in the company as well. Talk about a successful woman in both career and family! Thank you Lori for all that you do!