Get Connected with a Network for Life


Dr. Jack Taunton

(MSc, MD, Dip Sport Med (CASEM), CFPC-SEM, FACSM)

Aimability Advisor

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Background

Dr. Jack Taunton is a Professor Emeritus in the Faculty of Medicine, Division of Sports Medicine at the University of British Columbia. He had a clinical practice in sports medicine at the Allan McGavin Sports Medicine Centre for over 40 years, where he was the director for more than 25 years after co-founding the Centre in 1979. Jack was also the PGY3 Advanced Skills in Sport & Exercise Medicine director in the Department of Family Practice at UBC.

He is very involved in clinical and exercise medicine research with a keen interest in overuse injuries, injury prevention, concussion in sport and cardiac disease in athletes. He is a member and co-founder of Sports Cardiology BC. He has been involved in the establishment of the Chronic Brain Wellness Program at UBC. The program utilizes exercise, wellness and music in the treatment of patients with chronic brain diseases. Over the past two years, he has raised $3.5 million for the new sports medicine centre at UBC, including $1 million for a cancer exercise program and more recently $1 million for the Chronic Brain Wellness program.

He was on the board of directors of the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport for two terms. He was the Clinical Advisor to the Concussion Protocol Harmonization Project for Parachute Canada. He is Chief Medical Officer -ITLS Training Centre – GEMS-ERT: Global Emergency Medical Services – Emergency Response Team – Terranoval International Safety Canada Incorporated. Dr. Taunton is on the National Health and Fitness Institute board and is a board member and Chair of Sports Medicine at Polycan. He is a medical advisor on pandemic development with Catalytic AI.

Thirty years ago, he co-founded SportMed BC while president of the Sports Medicine Council of Canada. He was a member of the IOC Medical Commission from 2005-2010. He was the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games and CMO for Canada at the Sydney Olympics, two Pan American and two World Student Games. Dr. Taunton has worked with distance runners, cyclists, triathletes and other athletes both as doctor and coach. He was the Women's Team Physician and Association Coordinating Physician for Field Hockey Canada for over 25 years. Dr. Taunton was the Team Physician for the Vancouver Grizzlies NBA Team during its time in Vancouver. He was a co-founder of the Vancouver Marathon, the Vancouver Sun Run, and the UBC Grand Prix of Cycling (now PoCo Grand Prix) and is the co-director of the Port Coquitlam Grand Prix. He was the CMO for the IOC –affiliated 1st Regional Masters Games in Vancouver (Americas' Masters Games August 2016).

In 2016, Dr. Taunton and two others initiated the establishment of a sports medicine clinic in Uganda. In May 2017, he and a team of five medical professionals examined over 100 athletes and completed two education days for local physiotherapists and physicians to establish traineeships. Groups continue to travel to Uganda every year. Dr. Taunton co-directed a fundraising event that raised money to send a much-needed MSK ultrasound to assist in diagnosing muscle and tendon injuries seen in 50% of the national team athletes.

Arian Talwerdi

(BA, MA)

Aimability Health Professional

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Background

Arian has her Master of Arts in Psychology, with honours, from Pepperdine University in Los Angeles, California, and her Bachelor of Arts from the University of British Columbia. Upon graduation, she began working as an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University’s Graduate School of Education and Psychology, teaching ‘Diagnosis and Treatment’.

During this time, Arian also worked as a Research Assistant at UCLA’s Anxiety and Depression clinic on a study looking at positive and negative emotions, specifically linking neurobiology to diagnosis. She has done extensive research on mindfulness meditation as an intervention and its positive effects on the biology of the brain specifically looking at the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex. And she is now working on projects focused on bridging the gap between science and psychology (connecting neurobiology with the diagnosis).

Additionally, she has nine years of experience working in marketing management specializing in campaign management, and web marketing for companies such as TELUS.

Arian is presently working on her own private practice and as a high school counsellor supporting youth ranging from ages 13-19. She has worked with clients from many different backgrounds and cultures. Arian is passionate about helping people identify and achieve their personal goals, and also support those with chronic pain. She believes in a holistic approach and evidence-based modalities. Arian is continually advancing her knowledge and education in the field of psychology and neuroscience and she takes great pride in the progress and success of her clients and students.

Dr. Emilio Landolfi

(BA, MEd, Ph.D.)

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

Dr. Landolfi's athletic background ranges from competitive ice hockey and lacrosse to recreational cycling, weight training, and running. Dr. Landolfi worked as an Amateur Sport (Grassroots level) Coach with the Toronto Youth Athletic Club, and Youth Activity Coordinator with the YMCA, as well as a Community Activity Centre Administrator with the Department of Parks & Recreation in Toronto. He served as the Strength Training Department Coordinator at the University of Toronto, which involved the physiological assessment and conditioning of high-performance athletes. Moreover, Dr. Landolfi has taught Physical & Health Education and worked as a Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Toronto District School Board.

He is currently an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences (School of Kinesiology) at the University of Fraser Valley. He also coordinates student experiential learning experiences and provides academic and career-based mentoring. Dr. Landolfi is also a member of the International Olympic Academy, qualified as a Clinical Exercise Physiologist with a specialty in High-Performance Sport, and is a Certified Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Facilitator.

Andrea Grabovac

(MD, FRCP(C))

Aimability Health Professional

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Background

Andrea is a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of British Columbia, and practices inpatient psychiatry at Vancouver Hospital. She has 15 years of outpatient psycho-oncology experience. Since 2006, she has facilitated group and individual mindfulness-based treatment programs for mood disorder, sexual medicine and oncology populations, using both Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) and more recently Mindfulness-integrated Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (MiCBT).

Andrea brings a unique combination of clinical expertise in psych phenomenological diagnosis and treatment of psychopathology, a clinically-informed understanding of Buddhist psychological frameworks, and experience with the stages of insight in the context of a 16-year Burmese Theravadin vipassana personal practice to the mentorship process. This amalgamation of experience allows her to clinically manage the complex interrelationship between meditation-induced altered states and primary psychopathology.

She provides annual 5-day MBCT professional trainings, co-facilitates monthly MBCT training focused on inquiry and developing clinicians’ personal practice since 2009, and is an MBCT teacher trainer and mentor with the UCSD Mindfulness Based Program Training Institute.  She is a Founding Co-Director of the North American Chapter of the MiCBT Institute, and trains clinicians in the delivery of MiCBT internationally.

Her academic publications explore the clinical relevance of re-contextualizing mindfulness based interventions within Buddhist psychological frameworks. She has recently co-authored competency-based guidelines for training Canadian psychiatrists in MBIs that include the need for recognition and management of unintended clinical effects of meditation practice. She is Associate Editor for Mindfulness since 2013. She completed her first yoga teacher training in 2020 and has practiced and studied in the Burmese Theravada Vipassana tradition since 2002.

Nate Leslie

(M.Ed., ACC, CEC)

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

Curiosity breeds creativity. Certified Executive Coaching began to lure Nate in around 2008 after completing a Master's Degree in International Education in Madrid, Spain. At the time, he was teaching and coaching in New York City. As a Certified Executive Coach, Nate has helped leaders in telecommunications, technology, sport management, engineering, health care, education, and more.

He speaks English, German, Swiss-German, & French and traveller's Spanish. He played seven years of professional hockey in Europe, in one of the world's top pro leagues, and arguably one of the worst. His adventures have led him to nearly 40 countries. He has lived a life of adventure, achievement, and defeat.

Nate helped shape the future of youth ice hockey in Mongolia, New Zealand, Manhattan, and in his home province of British Columbia. He's watched the sunset on Mount Everest, run out of oxygen scuba diving (more than once), slept in an active volcano, and forgot all the lyrics to a song in his first official gig on stage. Beyond Certified Executive Coaching, he also leads 200+ great people at Leslie Global Sports and the West Coast Hockey Prep Camp.

Inderjit Aujla

(BA, MA)

Aimability Educator and Health Professional

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Background

Inderjit is a well-rounded experienced therapist working in the helping profession for the last 25 years. She started her career as an Early Childhood Educator in 1996 as her first paid job at a student teaching day care center in a university setting. Although the demands of her personal life grew, Inderjit did not give up on her passion to continue in her professional journey as well as raising her two sons who are now 27 and 20 years of age.

She obtained Bachelor of Arts in Child & Youth Care with Child Welfare Specialization from the University of the Fraser Valley. While in the final year of her practicum, Inderjit was hired as a social worker with Fraser Valley Aboriginal Children and Family Services Society. After taking a couple of years off from education, Inderjit started her program in counselling and graduated from City University of Seattle, Vancouver with Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology.

With her desire to continue learning, Inderjit became a trained EMDR therapist. She is registered with EMDR Canada and an International Association EMDRIA as well as BC Association of Clinical Counsellors. To further enhance her skills, Inderjit worked with a consultant for the last two and half years to become an EMDRIA approved Certified Therapist.

As a trained EMDR therapist, Inderjit specializes in working with Trauma, PTSD, Anxiety, Depression, OCD, Substance Use, Chronic Pain, Anger Management, Mood Disorders, Self-esteem issues, Childhood issues, Abuse, and Relationship challenges. She is also trained in Emotion Focused Individual/Couple Therapy, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy as well as other Attachment, Mindfulness based, and Trauma Informed Practices. Her main goal is to walk alongside her clients while doing everything in her power to meet their unique needs. She finds that EMDR has a way of helping people heal in an organized manner where there is a beginning, middle, and improved cohesive self for future.

Currently, Inderjit is the owner of a small private practice working with children, youth, families, and individuals from all walks of life with various cultural backgrounds. She also feels honored to work with First Responders and Indigenous populations. In addition to her work as a therapist, she is also serving as a Director of Operations for Resources and Family Strengthening with Fraser Valley Aboriginal Children and Family Services Society.

Inderjit most recently completed training in Treating Headaches, Guilt and Shame as result of small or big traumatic events, Personality Disorders with Complex Traumatization, Dissociation, EMDR Play Therapy, and Memory Reconsolidation. She is committed to lifelong learning and continues to take advantage of ongoing trainings, webinars, as well as annual conferences offered through various organizations. Inderjit believes we are all worthy of living a meaningful life reaching our full potential regardless of the adverse experiences that may arise along the way. We can find hope and tranquility when have the love and support of caring individuals around us.

Laura Dowling

(BA, MSc, PCC, ECPC)

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

As a personal and professional coach, certified and recognized by the International Coaching Federation, Laura is passionate about humanizing leadership in work and sport. Her sporting background includes decades of playing and competing in field hockey on the national & international stage, international sport development and administration.
Laura was an athlete-scholar with the UBC T-birds and while completing her master's degree in Northern Ireland. While growing up and competing across the globe, she has lived in 8 different countries and summitted peaks including Mt Kilimanjaro and Machu Pichu.

Currently, she is the Director of Coaching Certification Programs at Maslow Center for Executive Leadership and runs her own consulting business, based out of Vancouver, Canada. Her past work includes career coaching at Sauder School of Business, working with Canada’s Olympic and Paralympic athletes transitioning out of sport, international development and facilitating leadership development curriculums to help teams and organizations create high performance constructive cultures. She specializes in strengths-based leadership, emotional intelligence and mindset education helping leaders unlock talent, build confidence and work towards becoming self-actualized.

Travis Thomas

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

Travis is a performance coach who specializes in mindset, leadership, culture, and team dynamics. He has worked with many youth, college, and professional sports teams in the United States for the past 10 years. He is currently on staff as the Leadership and Team Dynamics Coach for the United States Men's National Soccer Team. Previously he was a Leadership Coach for IMG Academy in Florida.

Travis is a keynote speaker, and trainer helping develop high-performance cultures in corporate, education, and sports environments. He is an improvisational actor and instructor and uses improvisation principles to teach purpose, authenticity, and collaboration. He has been a college professor for the past two years and is the author of "3 Words for Getting Unstuck: Live Yes, And!"

Derek Covington

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

Derek has created systems for elite performers and teams across the globe. His career spans twenty years and nine Olympic Games, most recently as the Director of Olympic Performance for the Canadian Olympic Committee.

Known for being innovative and visionary, Derek has a track record of world-leading excellence in designing systems for individuals and teams to perform their best in complex, high-pressure environments.

As a certified mindful performance coach (mPEAK) through the Centre for Mindfulness at the University of California, San Diego, he works with individuals, companies, and teams to enhance their capacity for peak performance, resilience, focus and flow.

As a former competitive national level athlete and coach, he learned first-hand the importance of mindfulness in achieving success – more than a series of techniques, but a personal journey.

Through his company, First Water Performance, Derek helps clients and teams perform their best from a place of well-being, achieved through mindfulness practice, applied science, and Olympic experience.

Renae Stevenson (Wheatley)

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

Based on the West Coast, Renae Stevenson splits her time between Vancouver Island and Greater Vancouver. Renae is a IMTA certified Professional Mindfulness Teacher. After completing an interdisciplinary graduate degree in Leadership, Education and Mindfulness, she obtained her teaching designations in both MBSR and mPEAK from the UC San Diego's School of Medicine. She is a fierce advocate for mindfulness and compassion skills training for emergency services personnel, with over two decades of service as a municipal police officer across a variety of specialty assignments.

Renae is a former professional hockey (NWHL) player, as well as a Hockey Canada Certified Coach specializing in hockey training from Timbit to U21. She knows first hand the needs of elite athletes and first responders. Renae's greatest passion is her service work for First Water Performance, leading philanthropic programming to eliminate financial barriers to mindfulness skills training — for non-profit organizations schools, First nations, and youth.

Dr. Kristina Sachs-Barrable

(MSci, PhD)

Aimability Mentor and Educator

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Background

Dr. Sachs-Barrable is a scientist and clinical researcher by training with more than 20 years in academia and biotech. She holds a PhD in Biochemistry/Biophysics and a Master’s of Science, both from Humboldt University in Berlin, Germany. After her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley she moved to Vancouver to pursue her career at The University of British Columbia. She has a background in many aspects of clinical, pre-clinical, neuroscience, and brain research. She is also trained and certified in Nutrition and supports athletes as a Sports Nutritional Advisor. She feels strongly about the connection of food and health outcomes as well as concussion recovery.

Over the years she has served on several boards including the Gifted Children Association of BC and consulted to different organizations such as SportsCardiology BC, and Human in Motion Robotics.

She has a passion for bridging the gaps between scientific evidence and implementation for better health outcomes. The desire to help change behaviour led her to start her consulting business. C.A.P.T.U.R.E. Learning which specializes in helping parents better identify their child’s learning needs and provides learning strategies and support.

Dr. Sachs-Barrable has received additional training and certifications in Regulatory Affairs for Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices (RAPS), Knowledge Translation (Sick Kids & U of Toronto), Project Management (Sauder, UBC), Quality Management Systems (bsi) and the Orton-Gillingham teaching method.

Paul Bundy

(BASc, PGCertEd, ChPC)

Aimability Mentor and Educator

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Background

Paul is an experienced performance coach who creates performance cultures and systems for teams and programs. With over 20 years of coaching experience in professional field hockey, Paul has worked through the coaching spectrum, from grassroots programs to High Performance. He specializes in facilitating and leading high-performance program systems.

Paul holds a degree in Sports and Exercise Science – Majoring in Coaching and Exercise Physiology along with a Postgraduate Certificate in Education. He began his field hockey coaching career in the UK, where he played and coached extensively. He won national titles and medaled in European Club Champions Tournaments. He returned to home soil to lead the National Field hockey program, coaching the Women’s National Team from 2009-2012 and the Men’s National team from 2012-2020. As a Professional Registered Coach with Coaches of Canada, Paul has more than +250 international games under his belt. During this time, he coached at multiple World Cups, Commonwealth Games and Pan American Games. Most significantly, under his leadership, the Canadian Men’s Team qualified for two consecutive Olympic Games.

As a former High-Performance Director and National Head Coach, Paul is known to be an innovative instructor with a wealth of system knowledge and technical leadership experience. He exhibits a commitment to meeting and exceeding set aims in a competitive fast-paced environment, with a proven international competition record.

As a consultant, Paul strives to engineer and channel a program to its true potential, by fostering a performance culture and developing the competencies, skills and systems needed to excel in any environment.

Andrea Wooles

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

Andrea Wooles is an ICF accredited coach (ACC) who obtained her training through the University of British Columbia’s 8-month Organizational Coaching program. Prior to becoming a certified coach, she obtained a research-based M.Sc in Exercise Physiology and began a career in performance science with British Cycling. This was followed by time spent as a strategic consultant for other National Sports Organizations, and over a decade as the Science, Medicine & Innovation Manager for Cycling Canada. Her background in science provides her with a strong understanding of the ethics of working with people, while her 20 years of experience with athletes and staff in a high-pressure performance environment aimed at winning Olympic and Paralympic medals has given her insight into the behaviour people under stress and the impact of team culture. Her approach to coaching is to bring authenticity, empathy, and curiosity to the conversation. Andrea lives in North Vancouver, Canada, where she runs Beyond the Podium Coaching and works as a Module Facilitator with the UBC Organizational Coaching program

Silas Barnes

Aimability Mentor and Coach

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Background

Silas, the youngest member of the Aimability team, is a recent Kinesiology graduate from the University of British Columbia and is currently studying for the MCAT. He has a background in many different sports, including rugby, soccer, weightlifting, cycling, and running. Being a recent student and currently furthering his studies, he understands the struggles and stresses of balancing the many different facets of life simultaneously, between being a full-time student and a high-level athlete, working, and finding time for social and individual life. He works at Forerunners Main Street, performing gait analyses with runners with skill levels ranging from casual to Olympic level. Working with athletes and the public has helped him build on a strong foundation of insight and understanding of sport, athletes, sciences (particularly physiology and psychology).

Continuously learning and achieving, Silas looks forward to spreading the knowledge.

Glen Mulcahy

Aimability Mentor and Educator

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Background

Glen grew up playing multiple sports across Canada (including Baffin Island in the Northwest Territories) and played on Provincial winning teams in Hockey, Football and Rugby. He graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in motor control and performance. Upon graduation at UBC, he started coaching and has now coached men, women, boys and girls in slow-pitch, hockey, baseball, softball, rugby and ball hockey for over 2 decades, and has facilitated workshops, clinics and delivered keynotes for thousands of coaches and other youth sports stakeholders.

With decades of experience as a player, then coach, and now a coach of coaches he brings a unique “360-degree view” of what it takes to mentor coaches to support players in the recreational, competitive and high-performance streams so they love the game more at the end of the season than they did at the beginning.

Glen currently wears a number of hats in the youth sports space including the founder of PARADIGM Sports, co-founder and Executive Director For The Love of The Game, Speaker for Changing the Game Project, Coaching Association of Canada (CAC) National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) Certified Learning Facilitator and Regional Evaluation Coordinator for BC Hockey.

He is happily married, resides in Delta, BC and is the proud father of a son and daughter who played both recreation and competitive sports.

Diane Rizzardo

(MPT, BA, STOTT)

Aimability Health Professional

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Background

Diane holds a Masters of Physical Therapy and Bachelor of Kinesiology, both from the University of British Columbia, and has completed continuing education in Pelvic Health, Pain Sciences, Dry Needling (IMS), Sports Physiotherapy and STOTT Pilates Rehab.

She strongly believes that Physiotherapy should encompass both pre-habilitation and rehabilitation to provide everyone with the best opportunity to participate in their daily life and athletic endeavours at their peak performance.

Treating the whole person and taking a biopsychosocial approach to treatment and care allows her to create meaningful goals and treatment plans for her patients. Diane combines Clinical Pilates, Orthopedic and Neurological principles and treatment techniques in order to assist clients to get back to full activity participation following an injury and strives to empower clients with the tools to stop injuries from reoccurring. The psychology of injuries and exercise is highly incorporated into the work she does with patients.

Diane has a particular interest in pelvic floor dysfunction including incontinence, hip injuries including labral tears, and core injuries such as inguinal and sports hernias.

She is the founder of Elevate Pilates & Physio, an online platform offering specific demographics accessible and affordable exercise and educational programs. They are breaking down two of the main barriers preventing people from accessing physiotherapy treatment and offer current programs for postpartum, osteoporosis, golfers, runners and desk professionals.

Prior to working as a Physiotherapist, she was the manager of the SportMedBC RunWalk program including the Sun Run InTraining program, Sports Safety program and Aboriginal RunWalk program.

Having had injuries herself, after a career as a varsity/ junior national level soccer player and current marathon/ ultra-marathon runner, she appreciates first-hand how Physiotherapy can help you achieve your health and athletic goals.

Shayna Hornstein

(B.Sc., Reg.PT)

Aimability Health Professional

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Background

Early in her career as a physiotherapist, Shayna travelled across Canada and internationally, supporting elite athletes with disabilities. At the PanAmerican Games in Puerto Rico, the Stoke-Mandeville Games in England, and the Paralympics in South Korea, she worked with track, swimming and wheelchair basketball teams. Her strengths-focused approach reinvigorates confidence and well-roundedness in athletes.

Shayna is an adult educator, a somatic therapist and coach, and a registered physical therapist with 30+ years of experience. She works in the social impact sector, supporting leaders and teams of front-line service providers, as well as people working behind the scenes. Through experiential learning, Shayna helps people reduce the physical impact that stress has on the body, while teaching about the importance of continued intervention for teams and individuals.

Shayna studied physical therapy at McGill University, and continued her education at the University of California at Berkeley, the University of British Columbia (UBC), and Simon Fraser University. She also completed training with the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute, and earned a graduate certificate in adult education and learning from UBC.

Shayna has facilitated self-care, burnout prevention and resilience workshops with medical, educational, and workplace professionals—from coast to coast across Canada. She also co-presented an experiential session with adult educators on “The Body as Teacher” at the 2018 Interrogating Transformative Learning Processes conference in Milan, Italy. Shayna’s work and research address complex power dynamics that exist within teams and organizations.

Shayna has also worked as a consultant and project manager for health organizations and educational institutions, including the College of Physical Therapists of British Columbia, the Justice Institute of BC, and the Provincial Health Services Authority. She has also represented workers in rehabilitation case management, where she advocated for whole-person wellbeing.

Much of Shayna’s work at present—and throughout her career—focuses on developing supports for people with experiences of trauma or injury, front-line teams, and people living with disabilities.