Staff Spotlight

Meet the incredible team who make up the AdaptAbilities family.

Michelle Hordal

Founder and CEO

Michelle Hordal

Founder and CEO

Michelle represents the heart and soul of the AdaptAbilities family. As our founder and CEO, Michelle is a leader by setting an example. Her hard work, dedication and leadership inspires our entire team to deliver exceptional services to the families we work with.
Her passion for AdaptAbilities is both contagious and inspirational. When asked about the favourite part of her day, Michelle shares that she “loves seeing the smiles on the children’s faces, the stories families share about how our services are making a difference in their lives and the passion and commitment I see in our dedicated staff.”
Summer time is busy in Michelle’s house. She lets out her competitive spirit on the softball diamond, and by supporting her son’s baseball team as coach.
While being founder and CEO is an incredibly demanding position, Michelle recognizes the importance of self-care and practices it by spending time at the lake in the summer and sharing chai lattes with friends.
Family time is really important for Michelle. Their current family project is training their dog D.J., who has a difficult temperament. While working through these challenges, Michelle’s kids are learning about acceptance and understanding.

 

Michelle's hard work, dedication and leadership inspires our entire team to deliver exceptional services to the families we work with.

James Berge

Chief Operating Officer

James Berge

Chief Operating Officer

As our Chief Operating Officer, James gets to support the organization in many different ways.
James practices self-care by keeping his work/life balance in-check. His goal is to be present and engaged when at work and at home.
And what better way to keep his life-balance in check then by enjoying a burger and fries; his favourite go-to meal.
James chooses to approach life in a positive manner. When asked what he would bring if he was stuck on a deserted island he said, “My wife, that way we could call it a holiday!”

As our Chief Operating Officer, James gets to support the organization in many different ways.

Karen Chow

Executive Assistant

Karen Chow

Executive Assistant

It’s not often you’ll come across someone who lists their favourite hobby as shoveling snow and their favourite travel destination as Hawaii, but you’ve never met our stellar Executive Assistant Karen before!

Karen loves that Adaptabilities empowers those with challenges with the resources to overcome and succeed.

During the summer, look for Karen in her garden or at the Edmonton International Jazz Festival.

Karen loves that AdaptAbilities empowers those with challenges with the resources to succeed.

Anita Penner

Finance Manager

Anita Penner

Finance Manager

Anita definitely is one of those people that use both sides of her brain. As our resident ‘numbers-person’, Anita does a stellar job balancing our books as the finance manager. But in her off-time, Anita flexes her creative muscles by painting on a regular basis.
Anita is grateful for the opportunity to work with AdaptAbilities because of the difference she is able to make in the quality of people’s lives.
Did you know Anita practices self-care by helping others as a volunteer with Scouts Canada?

Anita is grateful for the opportunity to work with AdaptAbilities because of the difference she is able to make in the quality of people’s lives.

Landon Penner

Program Delivery Manager

Landon Penner

Program Delivery Manager

Landon Penner is the Program Delivery Manager for AdaptAbilities – meaning he oversees all of the programming within AdaptAbilities! Talk about a heavy load!
Landon and his partner love traveling in Canada. In fact, one of their travel goals is to see all the legislature buildings in our country. They only have 8 more to go!
Closer to home Landon loves doing almost any type of art. From drawings, paintings, sculpture and woodwork, all his creative pursuits leave a unique and artistic imprint on his home!
Landon shares this home with two dogs who are his pride and joy; a cocker-spaniel named Pepper-Anne and a young shih tzu called Major.

Landon Penner is the Program Delivery Manager for AdaptAbilities.

Bonnie Walzack

Program Development Manager

Bonnie Walzack

Program Development Manager

If you have used our services, chances are you’ve had the chance to speak with our Program Development Manager, Bonnie Walzack!
Bonnie loves her job because it helps lighten the heavy load that our families carry every day.
Bonnie approaches life in the most positive way by having fun, enjoying regular massages, and practicing prayer, worship and meditation. If stuck on a desert island, she would love to have the company of The Rock (Dwayne Johnston), because he survives everything.
She has recently surprised herself by watching The Walking Dead. She resisted watching the show for a long time on principle but is now quite captivated by the reflections of human nature and moral questions the show reveals.

Bonnie loves her job because it helps lighten the heavy load that our families carry every day.

Shannon Donogh

Communication and Development Manager

Shannon Donogh

Communication and Development Manager

Shannon’s energy and spirit cannot be missed in the AdaptAbilities office, as she fulfills the important role of Communication and Development Manager.
Shannon is a detail-oriented ninja who loves her job because she can make even the smallest difference in someone’s life. “Seeing the smiles on the faces of participants when they achieve something makes everything worth it.”
Shannon might consider her passport one of her greatest possessions as her favourite hobby is travelling. She loves getting on a plane and discovering a new location, new people and new food!
An animal lover, Shannon enjoys self-care by spending time running with her dogs.
Given her outgoing and high-spirited personality, it’s no surprise Shannon’s spirit animal is a goat. In her words, ‘they have such sassy little personalities and are so smart. They teach us a lot about overcoming obstacles, breaking barriers and snacking on all the things!’

An animal lover, Shannon enjoys self-care by spending time running with her dogs, and dreaming of her next travel destination.

James Saik

Human Resources Manager

James Saik

Human Resources Manager

Like many of our team members, James is keen on adventures that take him beyond Alberta, and often beyond Canada. He enjoys travelling with his wife, experiencing cultures and making memories to last a lifetime.

James is a warm-weather guy, ranking his trip to Ecuador and the Galapagos at the top of his list of trips; but he isn’t afraid to get a little chilly right here in YEG!

Introduced to fishing as a young boy by his father, he loves the serenity of being out on the water, enjoying nature and the company of his wife and fishing friends. He even enjoys staying huddled around a frozen hole on an icy lake during our never-ending winters!

One thing that James wishes he could experience as a superpower is Time Travel – we assume it’s because he’s a travel junkie!

Meet James, the guy who is "hooked" on all types of fishing (he even braves the elements to ice-fish in the winter!

Charles MacKenzie

Strategic Partnerships Manager

Charles MacKenzie

Strategic Partnerships Manager

Charles is hard to miss in the AdaptAbilities office. The newest member of our Fund Development Department, Charles brings wit, humor, and style to the AdaptAbilities office – it’s no surprise that he enjoys the team spirit that runs rampant here!

When he’s not hard at work raising funds (and fun) for AdaptAbilities, Charles can be found relaxing with a cup of tea, a good book (perhaps on Ireland – he plans on travelling there in 2019), and his cat Peanut.

A foodie at heart, Charles says that there’s nothing better in the world than his mother’s beef stew, a meal he could eat every. single. day. He enjoys puttering in the kitchen, whipping up traditional East Coast Canadian dishes, and everything from Indian to Italian. His palate is diverse!

You can usually find our Strategic Partnerships Manager munching or crunching away - his favorite hobby is cooking, and he makes a mean Indian Curry!

Taiba Hamza

Family Liaison

Taiba Hamza

Family Liaison

Taiba’s friendly demeanor and beaming smile can’t be missed at the AdaptAbilities office. With a passion for helping others that is unparalleled, Taiba makes sure she always makes time for herself, practicing self-care and watching a movie or TV show – she’s currently binging on Ballers!

Taiba is a world traveler, who is drawn to positive vibes, cultures, and, of course, the food! A self-proclaimed foodie, she marks Malta as her favorite destination. Catch Taiba eating out around Edmonton and exploring the local food scene as a mini-staycation!

A woman with an adventurous heart and a passion for self-care, Taiba is often the first person families meet when they come to AdaptAbilities for the first time!

Katelynn Stoesz

Program Coordinator, Hearts in Action

Katelynn Stoesz

Program Coordinator, Hearts in Action

Katelynn is a valued program coordinator for our Hearts in Action summer camps.
In her spare time, you’ll find Katelynn being crafty by latchhooking (aka making rugs!), and playing floor hockey. Katelynn practices self care by enjoying daily bubble baths and reading books!

Katelynn practices self care by enjoying daily bubble baths and reading books!

Dayna Walker

In Home Coordinator

Dayna Walker

In Home Coordinator

Dayna is AdaptAbilities’ newest Coordinator. She loves practicing self-care by doing things around her house – weed whacking, mowing the lawn, and vacuuming. She finds a clean house very calming, which is hard to do when you have kiddos.

An animal lover, she had the opportunity to swim with wild dolphins in Cuba – so it’s no surprise that they are one of her favorite animals! Like Dayna, dolphins are incredibly intelligent, nurturing, motherly, and instinctual.

A busy mom, Dayna reflects that watching TV is a thing of the past. When she has a few hours to herself, she relaxes watching The Handmaid’s Tale.

Meet Dayna! Our newest coordinator, Dayna has had opportunities to swim with wild dolphins in Cuba, and release baby turtle hatchlings in Mexico!

David Tao

Program Coordinator

David Tao

Program Coordinator

David Tao is one of our amazing program coordinators. He enjoys spending time and having fun with AdaptAbilities participants.
He balances work and life by practicing self-care such as turning off his cell phone when he can and spending time with his wife.

If David could eat one meal for the rest of his life it would be pizza. And that might be a very long time because if he had one superpower, it would be immortality!

He balances work and life by practicing self-care such as turning off his cell phone when he can, and spending time with his wife.

Hannah Rumpel

Program Coordinator

Hannah Rumpel

Program Coordinator

Hannah keeps busy as our Program Coordinator, overseeing Meadowlark Centre and McKernan House.
What Hannah enjoys most about her job is the relationships she has built with the AdaptAbilities participants. She says, “There is no better feeling in the world than seeing them accomplish their goals and to know you helped them get there.”
To de-stress from a hectic schedule, Hannah takes on something active every single day. Between hockey games or by taking a relaxing walk Hannah believes that staying active is the best stress relief.
An avid traveler, Hannah’s favourite spot is Belgium because in her words, “who doesn’t love Belgian chocolate?”

To de-stress from a hectic schedule, Hannah takes on something active every single day.

Laurie Morin

Team Lead - Meadowlark Centre

Laurie Morin

Team Lead - Meadowlark Centre

Laurie is one of our amazing team leads. She loves working at AdaptAbilities because of the friendships she has with co-workers, the awesome participants she works with and the feeling of doing something meaningful while making a difference.
The force is strong with Laurie because her favourite hobby is collecting Star Wars memorabilia. She counts Edmonton Expo (Comic Con) as one of her favourite festivals to attend in Edmonton.

She loves working at AdaptAbilities because she enjoys the feeling of doing something meaningful while making a difference.

Sarah Farrants

Team Lead - Orange Hub

Sarah Farrants

Team Lead - Orange Hub

Sarah is a bookworm – and a proud one! Listing an unlimited amount of books as one thing she’d like to have on a desert island, she also lists her desired superpower as speed reading and the ability to retain it all, sharing that “there’s never enough time in one lifetime to read and learn everything.”

A proud mom, she shares her passion for literacy with her daughter, and loves Gilmore Girls because of the relationship between Rory and Lorelai (even moreso because Rory is a bibliophile!)

Travel is also high on Sarah’s bucket list. Any time she can throw on a pair of hiking boots and explore the culture, history, and architecture of a destination is where she’d like to be! Rome, Wales, and Tibet are on the top of her dream destinations.

Sarah is passionate about self-care! Whether it's making jewelry, walking, kayaking, or mindfulness and meditation, Sarah aims to live a well-balanced, centered life with her daughter.

Robert Susut

Team Lead - McKernan Centre

Robert Susut

Team Lead - McKernan Centre

Robert Susut is a valued member of the AdaptAbilities family, and works as a team lead for one of our centers.
Robert’s favourite animals are giraffes because as he points out, ‘what else has a purple tongue?’
Quantity is the name of the game for Robert, as he is the first person to admit he plays a big variety of sports, but rather badly. He practices self-care by travelling, exercise, massage and mind-reading (we’re just kidding on the last part).
Robert loves his job because of the wide variety of people he works with.

Robert loves his job because of the wide variety of people he gets to work with.

Sandra Walter

Team Lead - McKernan House

Sandra Walter

Team Lead - McKernan House

Sandra is a woman with wings. When not supporting our staff and families at McKernan House, she is usually found outside, practicing yoga, climbing mountains or travelling the world.

Given New Zealand and Germany are her favourite travel destinations it’s no wonder if she had one superpower she would choose teleportation! She would save a lot of time and money on those 24-hour flights!

At AdaptAbilities, Sandra enjoys seeing the passion of staff working with participants, all working together in support of a positive change in their lives.

Sandra is the Team Lead at McKernan House. She enjoys yoga, hanging out with friends and eating pizza.

Cedar MacRae

Payroll and Benefits Administrator

Cedar MacRae

Payroll and Benefits Administrator

Cedar supports AdaptAbilities as our payroll and benefits administrator.
He practices self-care by working out and watching Altered Carbon on Netflix.
If stuck on a desert island with only three items, Cedar would bring along a tarp, an axe, and yes, even a mirror (to look at himself)!

 

Cedar supports AdaptAbilities as our payroll and benefits administrator.

Pauline Lam

Finance Assistant

Pauline Lam

Finance Assistant

Pauline is the newest member to our Finance Team! She practices self-care and stays active by playing badminton in her spare time, something she enjoys just for fun!

An avid traveller, Pauline lists her favorite destination as Hong Kong – there is just something so attractive about the hustle of such a big city (and being a shopper’s paradise, doesn’t hurt either)!

Pauline joined AdaptAbilities because she felt aligned with the organization’s vision – helping individuals become their best self through empowerment. The mission and vision resonated with her, and she uses her role to help families achieve peace of mind.

 

 

Pauline loves the vision of AdaptAbilities - helping individuals improve their lives by empowering them to grow, succeed, and belong.

Juan Pablo Reynaud

Recruiter

Juan Pablo Reynaud

Recruiter

Juan Pablo is the newest member of our Human Resources department. As a newcomer to Edmonton, he hasn’t yet had the chance to explore Edmonton’s many festivals, but he is excited to check them all out!

Juan collects stamps on his passport, stating that it’s hard to pick his favorite travel destination, but finally listing his top three as Barcelona, Paris, and New York. He’s a big city guy!

An avid guitar player, he shares that if he is ever stranded on a desert island, he would bring his guitar, a pick, and a couple of extra strings – he’s not in a rush to leave!

We welcome the newest member of our HR team, Juan Pablo! A talented musician with a breadth of knowledge in recruiting for high-powered teams, AdaptAbilities is excited to have him on board!

Lisa Budden

Receptionist and Administrative Assistant

Lisa Budden

Receptionist and Administrative Assistant

Chances are you’ve probably spoken with our friendly administrative assistant Lisa.
Lisa is an island girl at heart. Lisa’s all-time favourite destination is her home province of Newfoundland and Labrador where she enjoys watching the ocean from her patio with a glass of wine. She is a proud Newfoundlander who will gladly share with you the famous ‘newfie’ delicacy of wings, chips, dressing and gravy.
If she could harness any superpower, Lisa would zap away any worries about the little things in life we don’t have any control over.

Lisa is a proud Newfoundlander who will gladly share with you the famous 'newfie' delicacy of wings, chips, dressing and gravy.

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