Gail Loveland

Executive Director

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Home State: Pennsylvania

Gail has more than 19 years of experience in non-profit program development, administration and recreation. She joined the National Ability Center in June 2010 as Executive Director following five years as the Associate Executive Director and Program Director for the Outdoors for All Foundation in Seattle, WA. She has always been drawn to health and recreation and her career has followed that path including work with Starlight Children's Foundation, the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Habitat for Humanity, U.S. Lacrosse and Vail Resorts.  Gail holds a BA from the University of Vermont, School of Business and an Executive Certification in Non-Profit Management from Georgetown University.

Gail credits her ability to lead such an innovative and dynamic organization such as the National Ability Center to the many mentors, volunteers, board members, staff, friends and supporters she has the privilege to work with and learn from and to her personal passion for sport and recreation as an avid cyclist, skier, snowboarder, sailor, hiker, camper, football fan and ‘retired’ lacrosse and field hockey athlete and coach.  Gail currently serves as a board member for Disabled Sports USA and as a member of the Outdoor Recreation Advisory Committee for the Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation and Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

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Ellen Adams

Program Director

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Home State: Vermont

Originally from Vermont, Ellen grew up with horses and skiing in her backyard. She received a BA from Middlebury College, where she led the Alpine Ski Team to two National Championship titles. Following a successful career in management in the winter sports industry, she turned her sights to non-profit work, and now heads up our Program Department, ensuring her team gives every athlete, participant, family member and guest the best experience possible.

She feels extremely fortunate to be part of an organization that makes such a difference in the lives of so many. All she has to do is look around her to see the joy that comes with the ability to play and recreate without barriers.

And, during her free time you may find her sharing her life-long love of horseback riding and skiing with anyone who is game.

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Jean Slusher

Finance & Business Operations Manager

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Jean is the glue that keeps everything together at the National Ability Center office. From her accounting skills to her Human Resources acumen, Jean is an integral part of our day-to-day operations.

She is proud to be part of an organization that is such a positive influence on its members and enjoys seeing all the incredible accomplishments that happen daily on our campus.

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Janet Fine

Grants Administrator

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Home State: New Jersey

Janet's writing talents are invaluable to the pursuits of this organization. She is also a master at listening and problem solving. Her cheerful attitude is contagious and her laughter resounds throughout the building.

Janet advocates for accessibility, because to her it means being free from barriers - both mental and physical. She greatly values being part of a larger mission that strives to make recreation a part of everyone's life.

Janet also loves horses and participates in the Equestrian Program at the National Ability Center with her daughter.

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Kristen Caldwell

Sports and Recreation Manager

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Home State: New York

Kristen has several degrees and certifications to her credit, including a BA in Psychology, MA in Therapeutic Recreation and she is a licensed instructor in adaptive skiing, snowboarding and water skiing

To Kristen accessibility means independent and uncomplicated access for all. She enjoys introducing people of all abilities to new sports and recreation opportunities that elicit moments of complete joy.

Kristen is an active sportswoman herself who loves skiing on both snow and water. She also likes to spend her free time hanging out with her family.

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Marci Bender

Equestrian Programs Manager

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Home State: Pennsylvania

Marci has taken the lead for our Equestrian Programs. She has a Degree in Recreation and Parks Management with a focus in Therapeutic Recreation. She is also a Professional Association for Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH, Intl.) Advanced Certified Instructor.

Marci's job entails horse training, problem solving, staff mentoring and of course working with our participants. She loves that her job brings something different every day.

When she's not at the National Ability Center you can find her fueling up with a good cup of coffee, skiing or hiking and perhaps even whipping up a batch of her famous cookies.

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Jan Drake

Equestrian Resource Manager

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Home State: Missouri

Jan has been involved with the National Ability Center since 2001. She has become not only a familiar face to many at the ranch, but a beloved member of the National Ability Center's Equestrian Programs. Her passion to provide opportunities for individuals of all abilities through equine assisted activities and therapies is evident.

Jan has a special place in her heart for horses and her perfect day, outside of caring for them at the National Ability Center ranch, is photographing wild horses in the desert.

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Sarah Jones

Volunteer Coordinator

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Home State: Michigan

We couldn't provide all the programs we do at the National Ability Center without the help of our wonderful volunteers. Sarah is the point person who rallies these wonderful people and matches them to specific programs. Sarah is a tremendous planner. This skill was made very clear in the fall of 2012, when she led the charge for a group of more than 550 volunteers who converged on our campus to provide assistance with some much needed facility improvements.

Sarah has a degree in Recreation Management and it serves her well in this position, as does her desire to make all activities inclusive, no matter one's ability.

In her spare time you'll most likely find her on a board, e.g. surfing, skateboarding or snowboarding.

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Jeremy Houskeeper

Groups & Military Programs Manager

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Home State: Utah

Jeremy comes to the National Ability Center with a Therapeutic Recreation degree and Undergraduate Research Scholar Designation from the College of Health at the University of Utah.

Jeremy is the mastermind behind planning, coordinating and facilitating adaptive and community experience for groups of all abilities, ages and demographics.

He loves working with families and seeing the expressions of love and joy between them as they support each other to break barriers and overcome adversity.

Jeremy says the determination and patience shown by many of the participants drives him to challenge himself.

A little known fact about Jeremy is his incredible tree climbing skills. He is especially stealth when a cat or child finds themself in a tree-climbing predicament.

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Claire Wiley

Public Relations & Outreach Coordinator

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Claire comes to the National Ability Center with a background in all facets of media. She spent nearly a decade working as a TV news journalist and radio announcer before serving as a PR coordinator for an international media relations firm.

After moving to Park City and hearing about the National Ability Center through friends, she volunteered for the annual Red, White & Snow fundraiser in 2010. She has been a National Ability Center supporter ever since. Claire believes strongly in the organization’s mission and is thrilled to spread the word about all the incredible participant accomplishments taking place at the facility.

In her spare time, Claire can be found on Park City's beautiful trails with her both her dog Mocha and Cannon 5D in tow.

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Evan Kessler

Camps & Group Coordinator

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Evan came to the National Ability Center as an intern in 2009 and is now helping lead all group and camp coordination for our facility. His greatest joy comes from interacting with participants and their families. He loves encouraging individuals to take on projects or activities they had never thought possible.

Evan believes that just because something seems difficult it doesn’t mean that it can’t be accessible with the right tools. He strives to help individuals remove the barriers they place on themselves.

His perfect days are when he has the opportunity to hit the trails of Round Valley with a group of participants and either teaches them to cross country ski in the winter or mountain bike in the summer

Evan has a BA in Psychology and Masters of Science in Therapeutic Recreation. He claims he can also make a wicked good breakfast – the jury is still out – but his coworkers are ready to have him prove this

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Jess Roising

Competition Program Manager

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Home State: New York

Jess loves athletics and competition, so it was only natural for this Equestrian Programs staff member to transition into the role of Competition Program Manager.

Each day, Jess is excited for the opportunity to foster joy and personal achievement. She works closely with our athletes and coaches to be sure each one receives the training they need and develops skills that not only apply in the midst of competition, but transfer to every day life as well.

Jess says her best moments on the job are when she sees a participant have that 'eureka moment', when everything comes together and that individual gets closer to realizing his or her goal.

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Jon Serio

Facilities & Capital Manager

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Home State: Rhode Island

We think we have found the source for the term 'Johnny on the Spot'. Jon is the man who keeps everything up and running at the National Ability Center.

As the Facilities & Capital Manager, Jon wears a lot of hats. His desire to make sure we provide the best amenities to our participants is apparent. His day-to-day achievements can be everything from spearheading the construction of a new accessible ramp at the Mountain Center to overseeing the installation of granted solar panels on our administration building.

When off campus, Jon likes to enjoy the amenities Park City provides, including cycling and skiing.

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Kristi Brangle

Customer Relations Manager

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Home State: California

Kristi Brangle has become an integral part of the National Ability Center. She serves as our Customer Relations Manager. With a number of degrees in Communications, Kristi is well equipped to make sure all our participants, staff, donors and volunteers are well taken care of.

Kristi enjoys the opportunity to meet participants and their families. She loves listening to their stories and feels happy to be part of a team that creates even more wonderful memories for them.

An avid equestrian herself, Kristi especially likes spending time at the Equestrian Center with the horses. She says that horses just have a way of making everything better.

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Larry Finan

Assistant Facilities Manager

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Home State: California

Larry is a friendly and familiar face to many at the National Ability Center. He has spent nearly 18 years ensuring we deliver the highest quality of programming each and every day.

Larry began his career at the National Ability Center by heading up a number of our programs. He has now transitioned into the role of Assistant Facilities Manager. Larry works closely with Facilities Manager Jon Serio to keep everything running smoothly at both our main campus at Quinn’s Junction and the Mountain Center at Park City Mountain Resort.

Larry has a sincere passion for the National Ability Center’s mission and loves that every task he takes on helps contribute to the growth and sustainability of the organization.

A big fan of water sports, on his days off Larry can be found spending time on his boat alongside his lovely wife.

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Shalese Larsen

Front Desk & Registration Manager

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Home State: California

Shalese Larsen is our Front Desk and Registration Manager and comes to the National Ability Center with a degree in business, fluency in Spanish and a great attitude.

Shalese makes sure program registration goes smoothly and everyone who enters our doors is greeted with a smile. She is a fantastic new addition to the National Ability Center and has already made a tremendous impact with her hard work and great ideas.

Shalese loves to be outdoors and through the National Ability Center has discovered the incredible benefits of Nordic skiing. You'll be sure to see her enjoying the trails around Park City.

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Tracy Meier

Training & Education Manager | Therapeutic Recreation Internship Supervisor

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Home State: Virginia

Tracy Meier refuses to be limited. She believes every challenging situation provides a way to learn, grow and find success through adaptation.

Tracy’s laugh and positive energy have become mainstays at the National Ability Center. She became part of the team in 2002 as a Therapeutic Recreation intern. Now, as the Training and Education Manager, as well as the Therapeutic Recreation Internship Supervisor, Tracy is sharing her skills and insights with a new generation.

Tracy loves the benefits found in the multitude of activities available at the National Ability Center and enjoys working with individuals to find their greatest potential.

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Ray Watkins

Head Alpine Team Coach

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Home State: California

Ray is in the business of helping others achieve their goals. This is why he is the perfect person to have at the helm of the National Ability Center’s Alpine Ski Team

Ray embodies the true meaning of coach. He trains, teaches and motivates his athletes to attain academic and athletic excellence, demonstrate exemplary behavior and deliver medal-winning performances.

He holds degrees in both Exercise Science and Recreation and Parks Management. In 2010, Ray was named United States Olympic Committee Paralympic Coach of the Year and the United States Ski Association International Adaptive Coach of the Year

Ray believes that regardless the challenges, everyone can fly.

Jim Murphy

Director of Advancement

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Home State: Delaware

Jim has spent the majority of his professional career in education and with nonprofit organizations throughout the country. Career highlights include heading up statewide Special Olympics programs in both Utah and Vermont and serving as Assistant Dean in the College of Fine Arts and Communications at Brigham Young University. He directed the 1985 International Special Olympics Winter Games held in Park City and Salt Lake City, Utah.

Jim has also worked with the Hale Center Foundation for the Arts and Education, Intermountain Health Care, the 2002 Paralympic Games, University of Utah, ScenicView Academy, Huntsman Cancer Institute and the Moran Eye Center.

Jim holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts and a Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology from Brigham Young University. He enjoys spending time with family and friends, performing in live productions at local and regional theaters, tennis, water sports, riding his vintage Harley-Davidson, playing tuba, advocating for human rights, and cruising around in his 76’ Volkswagen Camper listening to his favorite tunes.

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Heidi MacNaughton

Volunteer Coordinator

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Home State: Oregon

Heidi’s enthusiasm for our mission, the great outdoors and propensity to wear a smile make her the perfect person to greet visitors and participants.

Heidi truly enjoys interacting with guests, participants, their families and our staff.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Master of Arts degree in School Counseling, both from the University of Redlands in Redlands, CA. An avid outdoors woman, Heidi spends her summers mountain biking and winters splitting her time between skiing and snowboarding. She is a great person to have on hand out there, too, because she is a certified Wilderness Responder.

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LaDonna Yancich

Front Desk Receptionist

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Home State: Florida

LaDonna’s nurturing and gentle nature make everyone feel right at home when they enter the National Ability Center.

She loves being the point person for questions and conversation with participants and guests. All National Ability Center visitors can be assured that LaDonna is here to make sure they are comfortable and taken care of in the very best way possible.

LaDonna graduated from the University of Central Florida with a major in Elementary Education. When not at the office she enjoys spending time with her family. She is happiest when there is a lot of laughter in her house.

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Chris Bova

Military and Group Program Coordinator

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Home State: Utah

Chris holds the post of Military and Groups Program Coordinator at the National Ability Center. He comes to us with an extensive military background, having served in the United States Marine Corps.

Chris believes strongly in the impact our military programs can have on veterans and active-duty soldiers. He works hard to ensure our mission reaches as many servicemen and women as possible.

His favorite activity at the National Ability Center is the Challenge Course. He loves to see the confidence people gain when they take on the High Ropes.

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Ben Beaudreau

Equipment & Rental Coordinator

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Home State:Virginia

Winter sports have always been a passion for Ben, so it was only natural that he would take his Therapeutic Recreation degree from Longwood University and begin a career as a ski and snowboard instructor.

Ben first came to the National Ability Center in 2009 and spent a couple seasons with us as an AASI Level II snowboard instructor and clinician. Prior to that, Ben managed the Wintergreen Adaptive Sports winter program in Virginia.

In 2013, Ben came back to the National Ability Center and took on the role of Equipment and Rental Coordinator. Ben makes sure our adaptive equipment is accessible to everyone. From mono and bi skis to hand cycles, he customizes each piece of equipment for the participant.

Ben’s perfect day consists of inhaling a monster breakfast and then hitting the backcountry on a powder day.

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Amanda Smith

Equestrian Instructor and Equestrian Program Volunteer Instructor

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Home State: Tennessee

Amanda began her career with the National Ability Center in 2008 and has been involved in just about every program we offer, including spending time as a water skiing assistant and an alpine ski instructor. Now, we are glad to have her serving full time as an instructor in our Equestrian Program.

Amanda loves sharing her knowledge and skills with participants, staff and volunteers. She feels grateful that every day she has the opportunity to teach something new as well as learn something new from the participants.

When she’s not hanging out with our horses, Amanda can be found either water or snow skiing, depending on the season.

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Whitney Thompson

Marketing Manager

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Home State: Utah

Having called Park City her home since childhood, Whitney is excited to help grow the mission of the National Ability Center as our Marketing Manager.

Whitney draws from her experiences as an Art Director, Graphic Designer, Account Manager and Copywriter in both Non-profit and For-profit sectors. She also holds a B.A. with Honors in Studio Art from Williams College in Williamstown, MA.

In her spare time, Whitney can be found enjoying the snow and dirt. She is an avid telemark skier and competes around the west in slopestyle mountain biking.

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Andrea Thompson

Camps & Custom Groups Supervisor

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Home State: Michigan

Andrea has been working with our camps and ski and snowboard programs since 2008. After 5 years working as a universal staff member, Andrea took on the full-time role as our Camps and Custom Groups Supervisor.

Andrea is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) and holds a Level 1 instructor certification through Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA).

It is clear Andrea is fully invested in our programs and works tirelessly to create the best experience for every camper that comes to the National Ability Center. She loves helping facilitate the process of discovery and feels the greatest reward when she sees a camper’s confidence grow with each accomplishment.

As a result of her camp experience, Andrea has become very skilled in the art of tie-dying and enjoys a good round of hula hooping.

When not on the main campus, you can find Andrea working with our ski and snowboard program at the Mountain Center in the winter, and in the summer you will find her at Jordanelle State Park tubing, canoeing and kayaking with the campers.

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