Board of Directors

Tom_KissingerThomas V. Kissinger, President
Tom has been a volunteer ski instructor with Ignite since 2009. He has been skiing and snowboarding for longer than he cares to admit and is a PSIA certified instructor. He is married with two teenage daughters. For Tom, Ignite is a family affair. His wife and older daughter are both Ignite instructors and his younger daughter is vision impaired. Tom focuses on working with handicapped skiers in the winter and diabetic bikers during the summer. He volunteers for Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF) as a USA Cycling certified coach. In addition to his volunteer activities, Tom is the President and CEO of BSI, llc. BSI is the foremost manufacturer of custom equipment used in the food service industry. Before taking over the reins at BSI, Tom held various management positions in the pharmaceutical, financial services and automotive industries. His expertise in business is in turnaround, change management and growth strategies. He earned his BA degree at Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Tom lives in Boulder, CO with his wife, daughters and their dog.

JohnLoporto-220John LoPorto, Vice President
John LoPorto is a technology and energy entrepreneur and investor. He is currently the CEO of SunTech Drive a manufacturer of off-grid solar water pumping and telecommunications power systems, primarily serving developing markets. He originally learned to ski on the ice of New England before moving to Colorado full time in 2001 and never wants to go back. In addition to his work with Ignite, John is also the Director of Elves and CEO of Talk to Santa, a seasonal fundraising vehicle for Toys for Tots. He is also on the board of the Boulder chapter of Trout Unlimited and previously served on the board of the Emergency Family Assistance Association (EFAA). John lives in Superior with his wife Donna, their dog and 2 cats. They have 2 grown children and 6 grandchildren. When not skiing, John’s hobbies include mountain biking, hiking, fly fishing, sailing, woodworking, cooking and getting together with the grandkids.

david-beermanDavid Beerman, Secretary
David moved to Colorado with wife Linda in 2010 to enjoy four seasons outdoors after a long career in the defense industry. He earned a BS in Mechanical Engineering from The Ohio State University and an MS in Systems Engineering from the California State University (Fullerton), and is still a Buckeye at heart. David started at Ignite as volunteer instructor for snowboard and alpine students in 2013, and has helped to recruit new instructors. He has also volunteered at Winter Park and Breckenridge. He developed the protocol for using a 3-ski cambering vehicle with adaptive students, and has authored a teaching progression for instructors. He has led clinics to train instructors from around the U.S., Canada and Europe for the Adaptive Congress at Mount Hood, the Ski Spectacular in Breckenridge, and at the National Sports Center for the Disabled in Winter Park. When David is not snowboarding, he enjoys playing baseball, golf, basketball, and racquetball, and is an avid travel photographer.

Stuart Ollanik, Treasurer
Stuart Ollanik is a volunteer alpine skiing instructor at Ignite. His love of the outdoors took him to Alaska for several years, and then to Boulder, where he lives with his wife Wendy Block. He is a father and – recently – a grandfather. Stuart has long represented people with disabilities, including paralysis and traumatic brain injury, in his work as a product safety and catastrophic injury attorney with Ollanik Law LLC in Boulder. His work clients – and now his Ignite students – are his heroes, for the ways in which they accomplish so much despite the challenges placed in their way. Stuart is also a volunteer tutor and mentor with the I Have a Dream Foundation and was a long-time board member of the Public Justice Foundation.

Board Member Art Heimbach
Art Heimbach
Art Heimbach, Ph.D., grew up in Rochester, NY, and learned to ski on “real” ice! He came out to Colorado for undergraduate studies (i.e., skiing) at CU and has never moved east of here since. Art’s professional background has focused on understanding and statistically modeling consumer behavior, with extensions of this into brand management and integrated brand/organizational culture. He has provided market research and strategic consulting services to a wide variety of companies and industries, with his favorites being several leading ski resorts and manufacturers. He has also taught alpine skiing part-time for 10 years at Winter Park. Besides relating to the skiing aspects of Ignite, Art suffered a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) in 1988 that has dramatically shaped his life. He personally knows the great restorative and therapeutic value that skiing can provide, and is very excited to be able to support those connections for others now that he’s involved with Ignite. Art has a wonderful and patient wife of 10 years, Gail, and two amazing kids Alex(andra) and Shawn. His other interests include all things MINI (Mini Cooper), aerobic Frisbee, mountain biking, hiking, inline skating, international travel, and learning in all sorts of directions.

Robert Garelick
Robert Garelick has a passion for great causes and philanthropy and is currently serving as Director of Development for the School of Arts and Sciences at CU Boulder. Prior to this role Robert worked as an Executive Director for several years in the Healthcare space. Robert, a graduate of the University of Colorado, also owned his own business for 12 years in Boulder, Denver & Colorado Springs and later ran an international manufacturing business for 10 years in the private sector. He spent his formative years in the UK, but was also fortunate to have worked in many other countries throughout his career. Robert has called Boulder home for more than 20 years. Robert has served as a volunteer in both the homeless and literacy communities for many years and enjoys serving on non-profit boards in the Denver metro area.

Jana Ward
Jana grew up in Westport, CT and moved to Boulder in 1981 to attend CU. After earning a degree in Environmental Conservation, she never left. Married to the same wonderful man for 28 years, Jana raised four children, one of whom has special needs and is an Ignite student. Jana has extensive fundraising experience by chairing multiple Galas for Children’s Hospital Colorado. Prompted by her son’s medical needs, Jana became a certified Emergency Medical Technician, and volunteers with the Boulder County Medical Reserve Corps. Also an avid horsewoman, Jana recently joined the Mounted Search and Rescue team with the Boulder County Sheriff’s Department. She is also working toward her certification to be a USDF dressage judge, competes as a dressage rider, and volunteers with 4-H of Boulder County. Her love of the outdoors leads her to spend spare time hiking, boating, and riding her horse in the mountains.

Paula Galloway, Emeritus
Paula is a web and database design consultant currently developing a water quality database for the National Park Service. Paula has a PhD in chemical engineering from the University of Washington and a BS in chemical engineering from the University of Missouri. Paula first became involved with Ignite through her husband, Stan Slater, who is an Ignite student and former Ignite board member. She has also volunteered with CASA, Ensight, and KRFC radio. Paula is passionate about skiing, has volunteered with Ignite since 2003, and is a member of PSIA. When not skiing, her hobbies include fishing, gardening, photography, and painting.

David Levin, Après Skier
David Levin was an Investor and avid balloon pilot. Originally from New Jersey, David moved to Colorado in 1976 in pursuit of his love of skiing, hiking, and aviation. He owned and operated The Balloon Ranch, a full service resort located in the San Luis Valley of Colorado and specializing in Hot Air Ballooning. He sold the Ranch in 1982 and moved to Boulder. David had degrees in Business Administration and Law from Boston University. He had been a commercial balloon pilot and balloon competitor since 1977. He was an active member of the Balloon Federation of America and had won National and World Championships in Gas and Hot Air Ballooning. Having retired from balloon competition in 2001, David had served as the Event Director for the U.S. National Hot Air Balloon Championships from 2003 to 2011 and the World Championships in Austria and Battle Creek, Michigan. David lived in Boulder with his wife Roberta and their children, Matthew and Rebecca. David joined Ignite in 1998 through his friendship with Michael Travis, and had been an Ignite Board Member since 2004. He was a member of PSIA and was certified in alpine, telemark, and adaptive instruction. He was also on the Board of the Boulder Jewish Community Center. His other interests included paragliding, hiking, golf, sailing, and scuba diving.

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