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Meet our Instructors

We teach our students to feel confident and proficient in every aspect of horsemanship. Self-assurance, confidence, and discipline come not only from riding but also the time the students spend working with the horses in the barn outside of lessons. Inevitably, riders (and parents) become part of the close-knit VRA family. Friendships form while students perform chores, assist each other, and bond over horses.

Owner & Instructor

Anneliese Vogt-Harber is an accomplished, award-winning rider across multiple equestrian disciplines - dressage, hunter/jumping, seat equitation, eventing, western and saddle seat. She has competed in United States Equestrian Federation (USEF), United States Dressage Federation (USDF) and Georgia Dressage and Combined Training Association (GDCTA) recognized shows, most recently with her mare, Hot Black Chocolate, winning at the local, state, regional and national levels.

As a trainer and coach, Anneliese has coached many Adult Amateurs as well as supporting several generations of Junior/Young Riders, helping students reach both their individual and team goals. Many of her students have competed at local USDF recognized shows, winning and moving on to regional and then national competitions. In addition, Anneliese has coached students at the USEF Festival of Champions and the North American Youth Championships (NAYC), including Ellen Wall, Vanessa Barnes, Isabell Braden, Marline Syribeys, Juliet Hess, Virginia Woodcock and most recently Lauren Polk. In addition,

Outside of the barn, she volunteers on the USDF Regional Championship Committee along with several other sub-committees.  


Vanessa began riding at the age of seven at Vogt Riding Academy, where she immediately fell in love with the sport and horses. She rode consistently through high school, leasing several school and privately owned horses during her tenure. From the age of 12 she began competing at USDF and GDCTA shows on the pony Higgy. From then, she competed in several Regional Championships and traveled all over the south-east, campaigning a total of eight different horses as a student of Vogt Riding Academy. A highlight of her competitive career was campaigning for the FEI NAYC in 2013, where she was the first reserve for a very competitive team. In the same year, Vanessa competed in the USEF Dressage Seat Medal Finals in Colorado where she won the Reserve Champion medal for the 14-18 year old division. In 2023, Vanessa returned to Atlanta after almost six years living in England. She jumped back into VRA and began teaching lessons.

Outside of the barn, Vanessa works in corporate philanthropy for Novelis and lives in Cabbagetown.

Claire with Bulsara.jpg

Claire has been riding for 20 years, starting as a child at 6 years old, riding rescue ponies and horses with her sister. In 2013, she came to the Vogt Riding Academy, bringing Bulsara, the beloved school horse, with her. After several years of riding at Vogt, she began competing in USDF and GDCTA recognized shows with her horse Zennadu, winning at the local, state and regional levels. 

Outside of the barn, she is working on your Masters of Fine Arts in Printmaking and lives with her two dogs - Lola and Hector.  

Mentor & Part-time Instructor

Marline began riding at VRA as a vaulter, at just 6 years old. She worked her way through private and group lessons, competing at GDCTA, USDF and USEF shows. She's competed at local, regional, national and international shows, beginning with one of the VRA school horses and eventually owning her own beloved horse, Hollywood.

Marline and Hollywood competed 5 consecutive years at the North American Youth Championships (NAYC), successfully medaling multiple times, winning an individual freestyle bronze and multiple team gold medals. She has also competed at the National Festival of Champions in Illinois, finishing with several top 3 finishes. Continuing to ride and show Hollywood through college, Marline earned her USDF Bronze and Silver medals and has successfully shown Hollywood through FEI Intermediate I.  Marline and Hollywood were schooling and preparing to show Grand Prix when Hollywood was diagnosed with EPM and had to retire. 


Marline now lives in Columbus, GA with her husband, Dalton, and crazy goldendoodle, Bailey. She is grateful to have Hollywood living his best retired life only 15 minutes from her house, and she is excited to be giving back to the program, mentoring younger students.

MELANIE SOUTHARD   Part-time Instructor 

Melanie began her riding career at the Vogt Riding Academy in 1966 at the age of 9.  During the 1960's and 70's, the Vogts bred Lipizzans and Thoroughbreds, giving Melanie the opportunity to learn how to develop and train horses from foal to full maturity.  Melanie showed hunter/jumper and equitation with Anneliese during her high school years, and then went on to pursue her own professional riding career, pursuing her dreams of becoming a Grand Prix dressage trainer.  She earned her Bronze, Silver and Gold USDF medals with her horse Egor, and in 2002, she became a USDF Certified Dressage Trainer. 


Outside of the barn, Melanie is a certified K-8 math teacher, 

with almost 20 years of experience teaching.  

Vaulting Instructor


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