Corolla Wild Horse Fund appoints new CEO  

By on August 14, 2023

Chris Winter has significant executive experience in nonprofit world. 

Chris Winter (credit Corolla Wild Horse Fund)

The Corolla Wild Horse has announced the appointment of Chris Winter as its chief executive officer effective the end of the last month. The Aug. 14 announcement said that Winter, with extensive nonprofit experience, was most recently the President and CEO of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Eastern North Carolina.

In a brief interview with the Voice, Wild Horse Fund Chief Operating Officer Jo Langone indicated that the organization was undergoing “a bit of a restructure,” noting that she will be moving elsewhere for a brief period of time and that a new operations coordinator is being hired. “I’m transitioning,” she said, before declaring that “I will always remain a strong advocate for the horses.”

Here is the full release from the Wild Horse Fund on the hiring of Winter.

The Corolla Wild Horse Fund is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Chris Winter as Chief Executive Officer, effective July 31, 2023. Founded in 2001, the Corolla Wild Horse Fund’s nonprofit mission is to protect, conserve, and responsibly manage the herd of Corolla wild horses (Bankers) roaming freely on the northernmost Currituck Outer Banks, and to promote the continued preservation of this land as a permanent sanctuary for horses designated as the State Horse and defined as a cultural treasure by the state of North Carolina.

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the CEO will have overall strategic and operational responsibility for the Corolla Wild Horse Fund’s staff, programs, expansion, and execution of the Fund’s mission and desired impact. The CEO will adhere to the Fund’s Strategic Action Plan and the implementation of the Wild Horse Management Agreement. As CEO, Chris will represent the Fund to the public, fostering important partnerships with key organizations, all government agencies, community and business leaders, and other relevant stakeholders. Through his work, Chris will develop and execute comprehensive fundraising strategies.

Spending much of his career in the nonprofit world, Chris Winter brings more than 11 years of nonprofit executive level experience to the position. Most recently, Chris was President and CEO of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Eastern North Carolina. Before Make-A-Wish, Chris worked as the Director of Development for Living Water International. This faith-based nonprofit organization helps communities in developing countries to create sustainable water, sanitation, and hygiene programs. Chris cares about the world around him and will bring exciting new energy to the Corolla Wild Horse Fund.

“We are confident Chris can guide the Fund into the future, expand our resources, improve our programs, and continue to help the wild Banker horses of Corolla thrive for generations to come,” said Kimberlee Hoey, Corolla Wild Horse Fund Chairman of the Board.

To learn more about Corolla Wild Horse Fund visit


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  • surf123

    First move should be to put an end to the horse hunting “safaris” which traumatize the animals and acclimate them to humans.

    Monday, Aug 14 @ 3:51 pm
  • Just saying

    Just seems a bit strange with all the shifting and such with the Corolla wild horse embezzlement fund. Give me a break! People can see through this malarkey. If by chance the embezzlement fund was truly concerned about the well-being of those horses there would be more push to stop the wild horse tours! But of course not because all of the tour passengers are encouraged to go to the museum to spend their money. Then everyone wonders why horses are getting hit by vehicles it’s because of the relentless corralling and chasing them down for profit.

    Monday, Aug 14 @ 6:54 pm
  • Dethrol

    Whoa there pardners! The Corolla Wild Horse Fund is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization. They don’t create, implement or enforce laws. They have nothing to do with legitimate, licensed and insured businesses that operate on the Outer Banks. The usual suspects never met a situation that couldn’t be made worse by proposing more governmental intrusion and they love the idea of a new law or three hundred…. Excellent article that provides great information about an organization doing good in our community. Accusing people of committing felony federal crimes is not a good look, either. Lucky the Wild Horse Fund and their employees and volunteers are such good community partners, otherwise they might take slander and defamation personally (as well as professionally) and defend themselves in court.

    Monday, Aug 14 @ 8:03 pm
  • Horse Pucky

    The Corolla Wild Horse Fund and the numerous horse tour companies have created a large profitable industry by imposing these feral horses on other people’s private property. The feral horse tour companies gross millions of dollars per year. The “non-profit” Horse Fund has annual revenues of nearly $1,000,000 per year and pays employees over $400,000 per year in salaries and benefits. The Horse Fund currently has net assets of over $1,000,000.

    These companies make these large profits off the backs of the Carova property owners. They have turned Carova into a giant zoo, both literally and figuratively. This abusive arrangement is not likely to change any time soon since the guy who owns the largest horse tour company is the Chairman of the Currituck County Board of Commissioners and also the Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Horse Fund. Go figure.

    Monday, Aug 14 @ 9:11 pm
  • Stuck in traffic

    Maybe Chris will keep a better check on the people that help him out.
    Some of the wild horse people are worse than having to pick up after the horses themselves.
    They have zero respect for anyone’s property or other animals that might be around.
    The last two ladies that were in charge, I have several pictures of them trespassing on a large property I take care of. Goes back several years.
    Hopefully Chris didn’t learn how to trespass from them!
    We’ll see if ol Chris has any plan for keeping the same ones outta corolla this year. Then his people don’t have to make up stories and call the cops on people that actually live here. Not ride around in jeeps with VA tags and act like the horses are finally safe now that they’re here. Never mind the last 300 years they did fine without you.
    And really, it’s time to stop calling them Corolla wild horses. They live in Carova!

    Monday, Aug 14 @ 9:16 pm
  • M

    I appreciate the work the Fund does and the people that work and volunteer, but they are also a big part of the problem with their constant social media post; they are the best advertising tool on the beach! I do not live in the 4×4 area, but agree, it has been ruined by the Fund, tours and tourism boards of Currituck and Dare. If they keep it up, they will have to be moved, again or just die out. Shame on all of those who are exploiting them!

    Tuesday, Aug 15 @ 9:14 am
  • In Cahoots

    The Corolla Wild Horse Fund website says they were founded in 2001 as a conservation organization to protect and preserve the wild horses. In reality the Horse Fund was created by the horse tour companies to protect and preserve the horse tour companies. The Board of Directors of the “nonprofit” Horse Fund is controlled by the commercial tour operators.

    If the Horse Fund was a legitimate conservation organization their highest priority would be to actually protect the horses by doing everything they could to stop the out of control horse tours that negatively impact the wild horses. Instead their website includes the following notice: “We do not offer tours to see the horses, but we are glad to share information regarding commercial tour operators and their services. Please contact us.”

    On the other side of the coin, as “Just Saying” pointed out, the horse tour operators always encourage the tourists to go to the Horse Fund farm to spend their money and donate to the Horse Fund. One dirty hand washes the other.

    Tuesday, Aug 15 @ 11:49 am
  • Neigh Thanks

    I and my family have come down there almost yearly for decades… Never once went to look at, harass. stalk, choose your favorite term the horses. Never understood why it’s such a draw… I drive past horse farms and pass numerous Amish daily… Once you’ve seen one horse you’ve seen them all…

    Tuesday, Aug 15 @ 5:40 pm
  • Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice

    Neigh, I’ll bet that’s what horses say about humans.

    Tuesday, Aug 15 @ 6:19 pm
  • Kristy

    The Corolla Wild Horse Fund is a scam. The horses are not protected but have been put on display for profit. The herd has been harassed by tours for years. The Power, Tours and Profits have increased year by year, which is not in the best interest of the herd.

    Tuesday, Aug 15 @ 7:56 pm