Meet the team
Maria Wright, DVM
Duke University 1998
University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine DVM 2003
Mid Atlantic Equine Medical Center, Ringoes, NJ Equine Internship 2004
Infectious Disease Control
Endocrine Disease Management
Dr. Wright is the founder of Alliance Equine Health Care, and was one of the original founding veterinarians of our predecessor practice, Brandywine Equine Veterinary Associates. She grew up in Rapid City, South Dakota. She started riding at a young age and soon was competing with her Quarter Horse in 4-H and regional western, hunter, and dressage shows. By high school she was competing successfully on the national AQHA circuit, and she achieved numerous high placings at the AQHA Youth World Championship Show and the Quarter Horse Congress. Dr. Wright has experience with a diverse range of equine breeds and disciplines which was gained through traveling around the country with her own horses during her years in college and veterinary school. Some of the highlights were training at an AQHA/NRHA Champion breeding and training facility, boarding at Canadian Equestrian Team member Harold Chopping’s farm in North Carolina, a Saddlebred show horse stable in Ohio, a Champion Morgan Horse breeding and training farm, and interning at a Standardbred racetrack in Ohio.
These days Dr. Wright divides her professional time between directly caring for her patients and working to improve our overall practice’s care of our patients and clients. She spends her down time caring for her own horses “Vegas” and “Doodlebug.” Dr. Wright also volunteers with Chester County’s branch of the Pennsylvania Animal Response Team, a part of our region’s emergency response network. Her other passions include gardening, playing the violin, and singing in a local choir. Her husband Robert, a neuroengineering research scientist, sometimes joins her during after hours emergency veterinary calls. Together they also enjoy hiking, camping, skiing, scuba diving, and rooting for the Duke basketball team!
Julia Miller, VMD
Delaware Valley University 2009
University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine VMD 2013
Pilchuk Veterinary Hospital, Snohomish WA, Equine Internship 2014
Dr. Miller joined Alliance Equine in 2017. She grew up in Media, PA and started riding, showing, and training horses at a young age. She and her sisters (who are both also still involved in our local equine community) began their equine experiences through the Delaware County 4-H, and graduated to horse ownership and local hunter/jumper competition soon after. Dr. Miller stayed close to home through college and veterinary school and continued to be active in the southeastern PA equine community throughout that time, including spending a few years as a part-time veterinary assistant at New Bolton Center before she became enrolled there as a veterinary student. She then moved to Washington State to complete an intensive internship at a large equine hospital there, before settling back down on the East Coast a few years ago.
Dr Miller loves all aspects of equine veterinary medicine, especially preventative health care, emergency medicine, anesthesia, lameness, and dentistry. Her positive character and passion for helping horses fits right in with the philosophy of the rest of our team here at Alliance Equine. Besides her time helping our patients, she enjoys riding her warmblood mare “Madison,” and spending time with her husband Josh, her family, and her two dogs.
Sarah Varnell, DVM
Malone University 2013
University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine DVM 2017
Manor Equine Hospital Internship 2018
Dr. Sarah Varnell grew up near Wilmington, Delaware where her family still resides. She was introduced to horses at a young age at camp in Chester County. After catching the horse bug she continued to feed her equine interests by exercising and caring for horses in Warwick, MD. Over the years she has ridden a range of equestrian disciplines from Western Gaming to Hunter Jumpers. She has also worked with disciplines from dressage to Thoroughbred racehorses. Dr. Varnell traveled to Ohio for her undergraduate degrees before heading across the country to attend the top veterinary school, University of California, Davis. During her time in veterinary school she worked as an equine technician, ran the student chapter of the American Association of Equine Practitioners, and traveled abroad to work with surgeons in Australia. After graduating in 2017 with her D.V.M, she completed a yearlong internship and worked in general practice where she honed her lameness evaluation and ultrasonography skills under a board certified surgeon and lameness experts. Dr. Varnell is excited to join the Alliance Equine Health Care team and bring her experience with her. She has a variety of professional interests including lameness evaluation, field surgery, ultrasonography, sport horse medicine, and preventative care. Outside of work she can be found spending time with her tripod cat “Minnie”, baking, and enjoying the outdoors hiking and walking gardens.
Client Care Team Lead
Jennie has been a veterinary technician with Alliance Equine since the beginning of 2019. She was born and raised in Chester County and currently lives in Berwyn with her wife Tracy. She spends her free time with their dogs Wesley and Louie, playing rollerderby with Brandywine Rollerderby, raising lots of succulents, and has big dreams of one day starting her own Arabian to continue her love of endurance racing and pursuit of utilizing equine-assisted psychotherapy to help others heal and grow.
Born and raised in Chester County, Brett has been involved with horses most of her life. She showed in the local Chester County hunter/jumper shows for several years before taking a step away from horse showing for her mare to heal from an injury. During her time away from the horse show circuit, Brett spent her time working at a lay-up barn specializing in racehorses and worked there through most high school and college. Brett has her Veterinary Technician degree from Harcum College and spent her first year after graduation working as a vet tech at New Bolton Center. Brett joined the Alliance Equine Health Care team in December of 2020. Outside of work, Brett enjoys spending her free time at the barn and volunteering as an EMT with one of the local fire companies.
Desiree grew up in the heart of Chester County horse country, participating with her grandfather in fox hunting with the Cheshire Foxhounds. She worked as an exercise rider in a local steeplechase/fox hunting stable and competed in steeplechases and hunter/jumper events herself during high school. Desiree then set aside her passion for horses for 16 years in order to focus on her family, raising two fantastic kids!
Horses are once again a huge part of Desiree’s life. She and her family currently own two Thoroughbreds and two miniature horses, as well as a menagerie of other animals. She competes in local hunter/jumper competitions with her Thoroughbred, and fun miniature horse shows with her minis. Desiree is also a great humanitarian- her philanthropic activities include volunteering with local aid organizations and frequent mission trips to Guatemala. She joined Alliance Equine in 2013, and her compassionate spirit and love for animals make her a great member of our team!
Sarah Mills hails from Virginia, where she grew up with a deep love for horses. She graduated from Bethany College, where she participated in Intercollegiate shows before refocusing on training and pleasure riding. She moved to southeastern Pennsylvania and has since held positions in an equine hippotherapy program, at New Bolton Center and has volunteered in an OTTB training program. In her free time, she enjoys riding, spending time with her friends, practicing yoga, working on her photography skills, and snuggling with her cats and dog.