Here’s a word of welcome from our fearless leader:
Paul Saunders (The Blades): President
Meet Adam, he is the newest player on the BLADES Hockey team, a member team of the Canadian Adapted Hockey Alliance! He is getting used to being on skates for the first time in his life with the help of a Kaye Trainer! Thanks to our dedicated coaches, he is gradually gaining stability and soon will be an active participant in our weekly practises, friendly games and tournaments! This is just one of the many reasons why I do what I do!
My day job is as a Realtor with Royal LePage Crown Realty in the Waterloo/Wellington/Wilmot and surrounding communities, now 29 years in the business. Being a Realtor has given me the privilege to meet many diverse individuals and it was after meeting one such individual and his family 13 years ago, that Adapted Hockey struck a chord with me. I have had the privilege of being involved in the start up of two teams in Cambridge, the Cambridge Ice Hounds and the BLADES Hockey. Today I serve as Chairman of the Operations Team for the BLADES Hockey, a member team of the Capital City Condors, and fulfill GM responsibilities as well. I love our athletes, their determination, their ambition to one day play for the NHL and their absolute love for Canada’s game. Our volunteers, on and off ice make this experience possible for what we like to refer to as ‘Exceptional Athletes’, without each and every one, this endeavor would not be possible.
It was a natural extension and an absolute privilege to be one of the 5 founding members of the Canadian Adaptive Hockey Alliance and we will continue our endeavors to grow this Alliance with teams’ right across this country, with those who believe in total inclusion for those who would not qualify to play conventional hockey. Ask any team about the joy and benefit of playing the game where all are included in a safe environment, free from bias or discrimination, and encouraged to play at their individual best. I assure you there will be a common thread of response. This is not always about winning; it is always about being included, having fun, doing our personal best, respecting others and receiving respect in return. Our current board is filled with those who share common goals, who come from a varied background, with varied experience both in the realm of hockey and otherwise. There is a wealth of experience and compassion for Exceptional Athletes which we wish to share and make available to future teams, who are giving serious consideration to being aligned with our Mission, our Purpose and our Mandate.
Welcome to the Canadian Adapted Hockey Alliance, your place in this organization is waiting for you!!
Paul Saunders, President
We’re thrilled to introduce the rest of our inaugural Board of Directors (with a combined 90+yrs of experience in adapted/special hockey, wow!!) here they are in no particular order:
Jim Murphy (Founding Director): Member at Large
Hi, I am James (Jim) Murphy and had been involved with Special Hockey International (SHI) intermittently since 1995. As a university student in the late 1960s, I volunteered my time on weekends to attend a facility for developmentally challenged individuals. I will say from the onset that I always walked away from the facility knowing I had received so much more than I had given. My professional career -38 years in Canadian Corrections – was tremendously rewarding and provided many demanding opportunities, from program development to leading engagement initiatives with Canadians on correctional issues.
My interest with developmentally challenged individuals continued over the years, but it was not until 1995, when I became acquainted with the Ottawa Valley Ambassadors, that I once again became involved with hockey. In 1996 I had the occasion, along with two friends, to have Special Hockey International incorporated. While my interest continued, with varying degrees of involvement, I found myself back with SHI when the incorporation was re-established and I was welcomed to the Board. However, within the past year, I realized the vision which was part of the initial incorporated league was no longer one of inclusion. This led to my resignation and provided me with the opening to eagerly participate in the founding of CAHA and the crafting of its mission statement which indicates that CAHA/ACHA’s mission is “to unite adapted hockey teams who are committed to creating opportunities for those with developmental, cognitive and cognitive+physical disabilities to develop their strength, hockey skills, sportsmanship and life skills while deepening their love of the game and their team.” How rewarding to see the organization growing and how energizing it is to be part of such a dynamic, progressive league.
Theresa Smith (Cambridge Ice Hounds): Co-director of Team Quality Management & Policy
Theresa is a pediatric palliative care nurse for the Victorian Order of Nurses. With certifications in ventilation therapy, tracheostomy placement and care, palliative pain management and adaptive sign language. Theresa’s goal is to help her client’s in the final stages of their journey, transition with as little anxiety and pain as possible and strives to provide care not only for the client but the whole family and school community.
She has 2 children playing for the intermediate squad of the Cambridge Ice Hounds. Her daughter Kyla, who has autism, is in her 9th season and her son Logan, who was born premature and has ADHD, intellectual disabilities and Asperger’s syndrome is in his 3rd.Theresa started on the board of directors for the Cambridge Ice Hounds 6 years ago as the team’s Volunteer Coordinator, then became a director on the board and 2 seasons ago was elected Vice President of the Cambridge Ice Hounds. She is also a coach and leadership team member for Buddy League Canada.
Theresa is excited to be co-director of Team Quality Management and Policy with Lloyd Lewis. Together they will work to provide our member teams with clear, concise policy and medical forums so all coaches and volunteers will be prepared to give our amazing athletes an unforgettable hockey experience.
Cam Linwood (Cambridge Ice Hounds): Vice-President
Lloyd Lewis (Capital City Condors): Co-director of Team Quality Management & Policy
Lloyd lives in Kanata with his wife Linda. He is a Project Manager at Horizant. Lloyd has been part of the Captial City Condors’ adaptive hockey coaching staff since its inception in 2008. Over that period of time, he has advanced from a one-on-one coach to an assistant coach, to a Head Coach and recently took on the role as Director of Coaching. Lloyd has been an active member of the Capital City Condors’ Board of Directors for a number of years.
Lloyd has joined the inaugural CAHA Board of Directors as a Co-Director of Team Quality Management. He hopes to use his personal medical condition experiences, his extensive adaptive coaching experiences, as well as his professional experience as a company first responder, process certification auditor all in a supportive role to the extensive coaching/medical contribution being made by the other Co-Director Teresa Smith.
Terry White (Capital City Condors): Member at Large
Terry loves the great Canadian game of hockey and is thrilled that his son Brennan, now 16, has been an enthusiastic player with the Condors for the past nine years. Terry is a retired teacher who enjoys being an involved hockey parent, especially with the Condors families. Terry began as a hockey parent, then “graduated” to an on ice coach, and later joined the Condors board of directors, first as member at large, then as vice-chair and most recently as chair. Terry is involved, along with his son, in special Olympics in both soccer and basketball as a team coach. Terry feels honoured and is very pleased to have joined the inaugural CAHA Board of Directors as a member at large and is looking forward to contributing to the board in whatever way possible by drawing from his 38 years of teaching/coaching experience.
Carol Kleinstuber (The Blades): Treasurer
Carol Kleinstuber is the Treasurer of the Canadian Adapted Hockey Alliance. She works for a major consumer packaged goods company as their Canadian Credit and Collections Manager.
Carol’s initial involvement with special needs sports was as a player parent. Her son, plays hockey with THE BLADES Special Hockey team in Cambridge Ontario as well as bowls and plays basketball and baseball with Cambridge Special Olympics. Seven years ago, she joined THE BLADES special hockey team’s operations team as treasurer. She also volunteers as a coach for the Cambridge Special Olympic swim team.
Sports and fitness in general, have been a lifelong hobby of Carol’s. Her goal is to help individuals with developmental, cognitive and cognitive+physical disabilities experience and embrace sport and the benefits it provides. She is pleased and honoured to be involved with an organization that is adaptive and encourages inclusiveness so that every athlete has that opportunity.
Jim Perkins (Capital City Condors): Director of Media Communication & Expansion and Shana Perkins (Capital City Condors): Secretary and Registrar
Jim and Shana live in Kanata, ON (a western suburb of our nation’s capital, Ottawa) and have 6 great kids, 2 great in-law kids and three amazing grandchildren with a fourth on the way! The house is full with family, friends, 3 dogs, and a cat who runs the show! In their professional lives: Jim is a Certified Counselor, Coach, Public Speaker and Pastor; Shana is a Certified ASL/English Interpreter.
The Perkins have been involved with adapted hockey since founding the Capital City Condors with a small group of friends back in 2008. Over the last 11 years, the Condors have grown from 3 players to just over 120 players across Ottawa and helped support the founding of The Blades adapted hockey team in Cambridge, ON as well. The Condors families and so many people they’ve met in the community through the Condors, continue to inspire and motivate Jim & Shana daily.
The Condors have taught them that being included, being accepted, and knowing you belong are crucial aspects of a life-journey and personal development. Each aspect is one that ALL individuals should know and experience, regardless of physical and/or cognitive ability.
After serving in leadership roles in the world of adapted/special hockey for the last 11 years, the Perkins are so proud and honoured to be part of the founding Board of Directors for the Canadian Adapted Hockey Alliance/Alliance Canadienne de Hockey Adapté and look forward to supporting both existing and new adapted hockey teams across Canada as we seek to keep adapted/special hockey as inclusive as it possibly can be.