Click here to download our employee application.
Our Service Team
Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch, LLC. & School uses a network of life coaches, educational consultants, spiritual directors, and youth mentors to provide dynamic and effective service plans for the teens who enter our program. By having a service team composed of direct program employees and contract professionals, Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch can draw upon the many external resources available in our local community to create a collaborative system of care that will benefit your son.
Owner/Founder: Jerry Schneider
- B.S. Engineering, DeVry University in Chicago, IL
- Administrating and assisting at-risk youth for 25+ years
- Founder of 3 programs for at-risk young men.
- Awarded Wyoming’s Parent of the Year 2002
- Instructed Catechism at RCIA for 10+ years
- USA Boxing Coach Certification
- Owner/Operator of Schneider Ranch for 48 years
- Rodeo Cowboy, Bareback Bronc, and Bull Rider for 10+ years
- Outfitting Elk Hunts for 5+ years
The Founders of Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch, LLC were honored by the state of Wyoming with the “Parents of the Year” award in 2002. They were recently awarded the “Fidelity Award” from Catholic Central in Michigan for their unwavering dedication to this distinguished private school’s Catholic principles of education.
Perhaps the first ideas for some of the Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch philosophies came from Jerry’s childhood, where he was taught by the Brothers of the Holy Cross in all boys’ schools that he attended. Or maybe it was the all men’s college where he earned his engineering degree. Wherever the ideas came from, only a man with the determination, perseverance, and humble nature of Mark Schneider could have realized the vision.
After two years of working as an engineer, Jerry decided that he was called to something different. He traded in the office chair for the saddle and, in 1967, started ranching in Wyoming. It took a few years before he found his home, but that happened in 1973 when he purchased the land that would one day be Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch. On this land, he and his wife, Mickey, decided they would raise their family of six children.
Jerry’s long resume shows a Wyoming cowboy’s tenacity and hard work. Jerry has worn many hats, from a college instructor to a boxing coach. He has owned and operated five businesses and has been a Wyoming rancher for fifty years.
He learned about raising children by being a father to his six children; Angie, Susie, Danny, and twins: Matt, Mark, and Luke. Each of the Schneider children has grown to desire to give to God in their way; from working with youth, living the missionary life, becoming a priest and Carmelite monk, to obtaining an MBA, each life to give back.
Mickey and Jerry have always felt that their calling was to be parents. Since 1967, when the first youth came to live with them, they have extended this parenting beyond their own family. Over the years, more youth who needed help would stay with the Schneider’s. Then in November of 1991, while working cattle on the mountain, Jerry’s horse somersaulted over the top of him. He awoke in the hospital to find that he had lost movement on one side of his body. Knowing how unforgivable Wyoming can be to a cowboy and how even the strongest sometimes can’t make it, Jerry wondered how he could continue to run his ranch with a disability such as this.
The origin of Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch: After thinking and praying about it, a couple of young men offered assistance to help the ranch stay afloat. After those original two youths, they just kept coming. Through his accident, Jerry learned that his true calling was to help youth find themselves the way God created them. He found the rewards of this greater than those found raising cattle, “so now we do both.”
Mickey was born on August 2, 1945, and is the oldest of 12 children. Mickey and Jerry married in 1963 and had six children of their own. Mickey was a CNA for two years before becoming a stay-at-home mother. Mickey and Jerry started taking youth into their home in 1992, and Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch and Youth Ranch was formed in 1996. Mickey says that “My children were youth, so I understand how helpless other parents feel; the guilt, the “what did I do wrong?” question, and all the whys.” Mickey’s experience with her children as well as the youth she has helped guide through the years, has made Mickey an invaluable member of the Sunlight Mountain Cattle Ranch family.
Ranch Manager: Mark Schneider
Mark Schneider has been married for over 25 years and has two children who graduated from college. Mark has spent the majority of his life working as a mountain cowboy. He has tremendous horsemanship and mechanizing skills. He is a professional rancher and farmer and has earned a Welding degree from Northwest College in Powell, WY. Mark is a professional mechanic and heavy equipment operator.
General Manager and Admissions: Stephen McKay
Magna Cum Laude with a 3.84 GPA
Dean’s List four semesters
Christopher Dawson Award for Humanities & Catholic Culture (Senior Departmental Award) for outstanding performance in the HCC program, Franciscan University, Steubenville, OH
Alpha Chi (National College Honor Scholarship Society) for achieving at least a 3.8 cumulative GPA and finishing in the top 10% of my class.
Heart for Ministry Award 2012-2013 (This person has embraced servanthood…consistently put others before themselves…gone above and beyond…)