If you would like to connect with the DSES Board of Directors, please contact Board Chair Steve at SMount@DisabledSportsEasternSierra.org.
Lieutenant Colonel (Ret) Stephen Mount, Chair, is a United States Marine with 22 years of active service. He was designated a Naval Aviator in September of 1999. During his time as a light-attack helicopter pilot, he completed three combat deployments in both Afghanistan and Iraq. While on deployment in 2004 he was shot in the head and through his right eye while his aircraft was receiving ground fire during a mission in Najaf, Iraq. Through the heroic actions of his crew, his Wingmen and Marine ground forces they were rescued and safely evacuated after their aircraft crashed near insurgent forces. Although he was “Down” from flying duties because of the loss of his right eye, he continued to serve the Marine Corps in a variety of Operational, Training, and Leadership roles until his eventual retirement in 2018. LtCol (Ret) Mount culminated his successful career as the Commanding Officer of Wounded Warrior Battalion – West from June 2016 until August 2018. This leadership opportunity was the perfect fit for a wounded warrior to mentor and inspire our current Wounded, Ill and Injured Marines while they recover and transition to post-military life. By sharing his own personal experience, he continues to inspire through leading by example and remains a staunch advocate of mental and physical recovery through sports and outdoor activity.
Vice Chair Tom Parker joined the Mammoth Hospital team as Chief Executive Officer in December, 2018. Parker brings extensive experience in the health care industry to his position, having started working in hospitals when he was 16 as a surgical orderly. Following graduate school, he worked for Legacy Health System in Oregon for 14 years, holding positions from Administrative Associate to Administrator of Legacy at Mount Hood Medical Center in Gresham, Oregon. Tom comes to Mammoth most recently from Snoqualmie Valley Hospital in Snoqualmie, Washington, where he served for eight years, first as Chief Operating Officer and later as CEO.
Tom obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Utah, and went on to earn a Master’s degree in Hospital Administration as well as an MBA from the University of Minnesota.
Tom was drawn to the CEO position at Mammoth Hospital for the scope of services provided, the expertise and commitment of the medical staff, and the high regard the community has for its hospital. He said that once he had the opportunity to meet Board members, managers, and medical staff, he was further convinced that Mammoth Hospital was the place he wanted to be.
Tom’s first winter in Mammoth was a doozy—he and his wife, Kristen, experienced the snowiest February on record as an introduction to town. Luckily, Tom has rekindled his love of skiing in a big way and enjoyed many days at Mammoth and June mountains during his first season. Tom has also gotten to know the highways of the Sierra on his motorcycle, a Harley-Davidson Street Glide. He and Kristen are both active in their church and serve in the local congregation and in the community. The move to California has also allowed the Parkers to be closer to their family and to be able to share with them the splendor of the Eastern Sierra when they come to visit. They have kids and grandkids in Utah and Santa Rosa, and extended family in Arizona.
Tom has been a DSES volunteer since 2009 and Volunteer of the Year in 2014. He has changed the lives of hundreds of children and adults with disabilities through thousands of hours of recreational therapy instruction with DSES. During his tenure at DSES, he has also led the development of the National Wounded Warrior Center Program Plan and has been a successful fund raiser. Tom is certified by the Professional Ski Instructor Association in Alpine, Nordic, Adaptive, and Children’s Ski Instruction. In the summer, Tom can always be found on his road or mountain bike and hiking the trails around Mammoth.
Originally from Vermont, Brent Truax, Treasurer, moved to Mammoth in 2010 with his wife and young daughter to become General Manager of the Westin Monache Resort.
Brent is a graduate of the University of Vermont with a degree in Recreation Management and has an extensive background managing resort properties with an emphasis on health and wellness, including The Peaks in Telluride, CO; Mirbeau Inn and Spa in Skaneateles, NY; Canyon Ranch in Tucson, AZ; and the Mountain View Grand Resort & Spa in Whitefield, NH.
An avid cyclist, Brent recently completed the Sierra Cycling Challenge and is also an active alpine and Nordic skier, hiker, and hunter. Brent is passionate about all our area has to offer and also serves as President of the Mammoth Lakes Chamber of Commerce.
Kathy Copeland moved to Mammoth from Vermont in 1971 and worked for Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort for 29 years starting as a bus girl and ending up as the manager of the Children’s Ski School.
In 1976 she volunteered at the first Winter Special Olympics held at Mammoth and has stayed involved every year since then. In 2003 Kathy founded Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra and her passion for this organization has lead it to become a leader in the adaptive sports industry.
She proudly opened the Second Chance Thrift Shop in 2009 to support DSES, to provide training opportunities in a workplace for local kids and adults with special needs…and to greenly recycle tons of goods!!
Her enthusiasm is contagious…stop by the DSES office and say hi and see Kathy and her team at work!
Carolyn Escoto moved to June Lake in 2008 and became involved with DSES after volunteering at the Second Chance Thrift store. Through the thrift store she learned of the opportunity to become a volunteer instructor at the DSES Ski School and has thoroughly enjoyed teaching with the program for the past seven seasons. Carolyn has earned her PSIA level one and level two alpine instructor certifications after receiving top-notch training from DSES program staff members Mark Spieler and Maggie Palchak. Carolyn’s brother is on the Autism Spectrum which makes the mission of DSES especially personal and close to her heart.
Carolyn received her M.B.A. from the University of Colorado and spent most of her career as the Managing Director of the Crail-Johnson Foundation, an organization dedicated to making grants to Los Angeles and non-profits serving low income children and their families in the areas of health, education and social services. Carolyn has also served several other non-profit boards including the Boys and Girls Club of L.A. Harbor and she currently sits on the board of the Mammoth Hospital Foundation.
Allen Joo lives in Southern California and has a second home in Mammoth Lakes, which helps him to log 50+ on-snow days while working full-time. Allen, an accounting/finance professional with a CPA certification, worked for public accounting/consulting firms, automotive firms, and is working for a pharmaceutical company. Allen graduated from Pacific Union College with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and has an MBA degree from University of California, Irvine.
Allen developed his love for winter sports as a child, ice-skating on the frozen rivers of Korea. Learning to ski in California mountains felt very natural and it has been same for more than 30 years. He started volunteering at DSES from 2015, and it has been very meaningful for him and for his children’s development as teenage volunteers.
He holds PSIA Alpine Level II certification in skiing and loves to improve his skills and understanding of the sport. He also trains in cycling, running, triathlons. He believes participating in sports is a privilege and blessing that we should strive to extend to all. He hopes to contribute more for the cause by serving on the DSES board.
Yvette Malamud, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist, certificated substance use counselor, and a Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP) with a Master’s degree in clinical child/school psychology. Dr. Malamud currently teaches as adjunct faculty in the Clinical Psychology doctoral program at University of San Francisco (USF). She also works part-time as a psychologist at a public school in Oakland. Yvette is particularly interested in neuropsychological assessment, multicultural assessment, child and family therapy, neurodevelopmental disabilities, ethics, and statistics. She has co-authored and edited several books, including the Encyclopedia of Emotion (2010) and the 5-volume A Student Guide to Health (2012).
Yvette is originally from Lausanne, Switzerland, and spent her early years in Feigères, a little village in the Jura mountains in France, so she has been skiing from a young age. As a child and young adult she enjoyed acrobatics, dancing, hiking, mountain climbing, camping, and skiing. Her favorite places to ski were Zermatt, Switzerland; Aspen, Colorado; and (of course) Mammoth! After she became disabled almost 20 years ago, she didn’t think she would ever ski again—until she decided to try adaptive skiing at DSES. She has now been skiing (4-tracking) with DSES for 4 seasons, and hopes to continue for many more seasons. Yvette currently lives in Oakland with her spouse, Richard, and their three cats. She has been a street musician on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley and has played fiddle at the Renaissance Faire, Dickens Faire, fiddle contests, and in various Celtic and klezmer groups. She currently plays viola with Prometheus Symphony, a community orchestra in Oakland, and plays chamber music as time permits.
Karilyn Myers recently retired from her position as a Physical Therapist and director of the Rehabilitation department at Mammoth Hospital. She received her Master’s degree in P.T. from Stanford University and has lived and practiced physical therapy in Mammoth for 27 years.
Her job as a physical therapist was helping people to restore movement and function so DSES’s mission is right in line with her work and professional beliefs. “Many of DSES’s local students receive therapy services at our hospital and we see DSES as an extension of the rehabilitation process in restoration of activity, recreation and sport. The positive effect this has on quality of life is evident in the new attitude and the smiles that outdoor recreation can bring.”
Karilyn enjoys giving back to the community and is interested in program development.
Local business owner, Shields Richardson, is a native of Southern California and has lived in Mammoth since 1999. He and his wife, Kathy, own the Side Door restaurant and Mammoth Village Properties both located in The Village at Mammoth.
Richardson has been Chief Financial Officer of Eagle Development, a Registered Investment Advisor, and the Founder and Principal of Shields Outdoor, MallMedia Network and Digital Outdoor. Richardson began his career at Price Waterhouse & Co. after graduating from the University of Southern California with a degree in Finance and Accounting.
He is a Board member of the Mammoth Lakes Foundation, Geothermal Institute of Mammoth (GIO), and Mammoth Lakes Art Center.
Kathy and Shields have three adult daughters and two granddaughters. Shields enjoys being outdoors and spends any spare time horseback riding, paddle boarding, snow skiing, golfing and racing in the La Carerra Panamericana.
John Snelson is a Military Transition Support Specialist and United States Marine Corps Veteran with a Secret Security Clearance. He has 20+ years of proven experience in mentoring and leading classroom based instruction for transitioning military personnel and family members. He’s overseen teams of 250 in a dynamic, fast-paced environment and possesses a comprehensive background in case management, professional mentoring, and supervision for Wounded, Ill, or Injured service members, and administrative program management derived from conducting domestic and global operations in Japan, Australia, the Middle East, and North America. He has been recognized with multiple awards for exceptional performance and professionalism and has a Bachelor’s degree in Public Health.
Rick owns a commercial electrical contracting business in Los Angeles that specializes in fire alarm system installation. Although this keeps him very busy down south he has his own airplane and makes the one hour hop to Mammoth as often as he can. “There is no place on this earth I’d rather be than Mammoth, winter or summer. Volunteering with the DSES Board just gives me one more excuse to get up here, even if its just for a Board Meeting.” He loves to ski and has found summers are now too short for all the activities Mammoth offers “après ski”.
“Mammoth is a very special place to me for many reasons. I am proud that I can give something back to the community. When you see the smiles these volunteers put on people’s faces it will just tug at your heart strings.”