Effective January 1, 2021
PRESIDENT - Christine Ryan is an attorney, a speech-language pathologist and a parent of a child with cerebral palsy. She currently works as a bureau chief for the NC Department of Labor, ensuring that employees are paid fairly for the work they perform. Inclusion is a focal point for her family. Christine served as a director for The Arc of Wake County for 2 years, assisting with fundraising and policy; and currently serves on the Triangle Literacy Council. She had this to say about The Arc: “I believe that the services provided by The Arc are essential to supporting people with I/DD and their families in the community. I have seen first hand the great things that The Arc has accomplished.” Christine looks forward to joining others in supporting The Arc of the Triangle’s mission on the board of directors. Term: 2018-21.
VICE PRESIDENT - Maia Keller is a Special Education Teacher Assistant at Lincoln Heights Elementary School in Fuquay Varina, and works with students in 3rd-5th grade. Her favorite parts of her job are laughing and having fun with her students and coworkers, watching her students grow and meet goals, and attending the Special Olympics. Maia is also the After School Program Coordinator at Lincoln Heights. Before becoming a TA in 2013, she spent a year and a half living and working with individuals with I/DD at the L'Arche Boston North community in Massachusetts. Maia graduated from Duke University in 2010 with a B.A. in Sociology and Psychology and graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2018 with a M.S. in Aeronautics. Maia enjoys reading, running, hiking, watching movies and sports, and baking. Term 2019-21
TREASURER - Derek Elenbaas is a Certified Public Accountant at Dixon Hughes Goodman in Raleigh. He audits not-for-profits, healthcare organizations, and manufacturing companies. Derek is a graduate of Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Derek is the office champion for DHG Gives and volunteers as a greeter at his church, NewHope Church. Derek has been married to his wife, Callae, for 4 years. He has been a member of The Arc of the Triangle’s Finance Committee since the spring of 2016. Derek is a passionate University of Michigan fan as well as the Detroit Lions, Tigers, and Pistons. Term: 2018-21.
SECRETARY - Josh Ravitch has almost 30 years of experience helping nonprofit agencies as both a volunteer and paid consultant. He provides experience in strategic planning, program assessment, organizational development, budgeting, and grant writing. He currently serves as the Past President of a local nonprofit with over 500 members, and as a leader of the Chapel Hill Human Services Advisory Board. Josh also spends considerable time volunteering for several other local nonprofit agencies including the Arc, as well as helping care for his severely autistic stepson. In addition to currently serving as Secretary of The Arc, Josh has prior experience as Secretary of another local nonprofit for several years. Josh has helped organizations to thrive in both good and challenging times. As well, he can be depended on to provide meetings with many forms of chocolate. Term: 2018-21.
Laura Alden is a Wake County Special Education teacher at Heritage High School in Wake Forest. She works with 9th – 12th grade students enrolled in the Occupational Course of Study (OCS) program. Laura has been teaching with WCPSS since 2008, and began her teaching career in New York in 1995. Laura and her husband Ken have two daughters, Sarah and Erin, aged 14 and 12. Laura holds a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts Education from Hofstra University, a Master’s in Special Education from New York University and a Professional Diploma in both School and District Administration from Queens College, City University of NY, and one day hopes to finish her Doctorate in School/District Administration & Educational Leadership. Working with children with special needs became a passion when Sarah was formally diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at approximately a year old. Upon relocating to North Carolina, Laura found her way to The Arc of Wake County by serving on their Board of Directors for two years. Laura is excited to continue her advocacy work with The Arc of the Triangle. Laura enjoys volunteering with her girls’ schools, Sarah’s dance class, Erin’s seasonal sports teams, taking their rescue puppy on long walks, reading historical fiction, and taking road trips with Ken, the girls, and dog in the family minivan. Term: 2018-21
Allison Baer is a National Board-Certified Special Education teacher she has been teaching for 13 years at Lincoln Heights Elementary in Fuquay-Varina. Allison loves spending time with her daughter Brooklyn and her dog Lily. She enjoys dancing, baking, and shopping. She also loves to plan events. Allison has been working with Arts Access which combines things she is passionate about; access for all and the Arts. She is looking forward to contributing to the Arc through her knowledge of people with special needs and her ability to plan an event.
Peter Chae is a Certified Public Accountant at Dixon Hughes Goodman in Raleigh. He works on assurance and attestation engagements across a wide range of industries with a focus on healthcare entities, various nonprofit organizations and governmental units. Peter is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a BS in Economics and a Masters in Accounting. Peter participates in various community outreach and volunteer activities through his firm at Dixon Hughes Goodman. He is excited to give back to the community through serving on the Finance Committee for The Arc. Peter enjoys weightlifting, traveling, and hiking. Term: 2018-21
Kenzie Clark is the Founder and Manager of Able Transition Consulting. As a former Special Education Teacher, Kenzie saw the need for transition services and sought out a Master’s Degree in Secondary Special Education and Transition through the University of Kansas. The transition process and preparing all families and individuals for high-quality lives is her passion. Kenzie's masters degree provides her with expertise and knowledge regarding all things transition. Kenzie is happy to be supporting families to ensure successful post-school outcomes and peace of mind. Through building unique and comprehensive person-centered planning, she knows that clients will be able to access high quality and happy adult lives! She lives with her amazing husband, Alex, and sweet pup, Mae, in Raleigh, NC. On the weekends you can find Kenzie hiking, reading a book, teaching yoga, going to church and spending time with family and friends.
Robert Faircloth is an active member in several Arc Community Programs: Supported Retirement Program, Grace Notes Choir and Triangle Self-Advocacy Network. He joined the Supported Retirement Program & TSAN in September 2016. He joined the Grace Notes Choir in August 2015. In his spare time, Robert likes to sing and listen to various Elvis Presley songs and is a very avid bowler. Robert is very excited to have been recently selected to the Arc Board of Directors and he is looking forward to providing his years of experience within the self-advocacy volunteering community to help strengthen the Boards position to serve the community as a whole. Term 2019-22
Nick Keller is a Senior Accountant at United Methodist Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization in Garner. Prior to his career there, he was an auditor at Dixon Hughes Goodman in Raleigh where he worked primarily on healthcare and non-profit clients. Nick obtained undergraduate and graduate degrees in accounting from Appalachian State University and is a Certified Public Accountant. He enjoys traveling and weight training and is an avid fan of App State sports and Japanese culture. Term: 2018-21
Hillary Laster is a Kindergarten teacher at Franklin Academy in Wake Forest. Hillary graduated from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington with a BA in Elementary Education and concentration in Behavioral Studies. She has been teaching for eight years. During this time, she has served on Student Intervention and Support teams and has enjoyed creating an inclusive classroom for her students. Hillary loves dancing, exercising, fishing, boating, and being on the coast. Hillary is an active member in the Junior League of Raleigh and is excited to continue serving others in the area through The Arc. Term 2019-22
Rusty Mumford serves as North America Commercial Data and Partner Operations Manager for Red Hat. He holds an MBA from Liberty University along with a B.S. in Communications. Rusty enjoys reading, running, traveling, writing, and developing his personal coaching business – Steadfit Coaching. He is married to his wife of 16 years, Jennifer, and is the father of two beautiful daughters (one of which is on the Autism spectrum). Rusty previously served on the Board of Directors from 2013-2015 for The Arc of Wake County and is excited to return for another term. Term 2019-22
Paul Yokabitus is an experienced Estate Planning Lawyer in Cary, NC who was born and raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The economic downturn led Paul and his wife, Alix, to the Triangle where Paul attended Campbell University School of Law and later planted his roots in the Cary community. His focus on the client-attorney relationship and the peace of mind of his clients sets Paul apart from other traditional lawyers. When he’s not helping families and business owners, you can find Paul spending time with his wife, Alix, and his sons, Mason and Conor. Term 2019-22