BrainTrust Staff

Adminstration

Mia Burgess

MIA BURGESS
Chief Executive Officer

Mia joined BrainTrust as the Director of Programs in 2019 and was promoted to CEO in July 2020. Mia is a passionate advocate committed to increasing awareness about acquired brain injury and building collaborative networks and partnerships. She is dedicated to leading the BrainTrust team to deliver exceptional services and programs that have measurable impact and building a strong, healthy, and inclusive community for everyone. Mia has worked in the non-profit sector for over 10 years and is experienced in leadership, developing collaborative networks, system change, community development, advocacy, and program development and delivery.

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MOLLY RAPOSO
Office and Communications Manager

Molly joined BrainTrust in April 2021 with six years of experience in the non-profit sector.  She loves organization and finding ways to be innovative and more efficient in her work. Molly’s knowledge in marketing, communications, and donor relations make her a welcome addition to the BrainTrust team. Molly’s father has been affected by brain injury for over 10 years and she knows first-hand the role caregivers and family play in the lives of people with brain injury. In her personal life, Molly and her young family enjoy soaking up the sunshine and trying new things in the Okanagan.

Lori Hamilton

LORI HAMILTON
Controller

A chartered professional accountant, Lori provides financial oversight to several nonprofit organizations.  She enjoys supporting those who are ‘doing good’ in the world. This financial guru understands the nonprofit world well. She frees us up to follow our mission, making sure we're following money rules and regulations, and spending wisely. Lori grew up in a lighthouse station on Vancouver Island and was home-schooled until age 14. This no doubt contributes to her ability to work so well independently. She and her husband, Tim, have four adult children and three dogs. They live in Lake Country and enjoy camping, boating, and the occasional wine tour.

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TRIANA KETLER
Inquiries and Office Facilitator

Triana started at BrainTrust as a practicum student while completing her Administrative Assistant Certificate at Okanagan College. She came back to BrainTrust as a volunteer before beginning her position as Community Support Facilitator. Along with being a Certified Administrative Assistant, Triana is a Certified Health Care Assistant and carries her education and passion for working with clients into her work at BrainTrust. Working one-to-one with clients and ensuring they feel seen and heard is a very important part of what Triana brings to her role here. Outside of work Triana enjoys spending time with friends and family.

Client Support

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AMANDA MCFARLANE
Senior Manager of Programs

Amanda combines her deep fascination with the brain and her passion for helping in her work at BrainTrustJoining the team in 2011, she has developed a strong understanding of the needs and approaches that work for people with brain injury. She is responsible for successful community rehabilitation management for clients with an acquired brain injury overseeing several of BrainTrust's major programs, including our Crime Prevention and Reduction Program, Group Programs and our Interior Health Contract. Amanda is a mother to Caidence and Cohen. She says her children are the driving force behind her will to thrive in her career. On their down time you might find them somewhere in nature, surrounded by friends and family.

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ERIKA MCLEAN
Case Manager

Erika has always been drawn to helping people. She joined Braintrust in January 2017 after taking her Diploma in Counselling and Psychology. She has worked in a few different roles over the years but is currently Case Manager of the Interior Health contract. She has a passion for working with people and mentoring staff while ensuring clients are being served to the best of her ability. She loves spending her free time with her husband and young daughter, preferably outdoors.

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LAURA PLUMMER
NeuroRecovery Centre Manager

Laura has been with BrainTrust for 5 years supporting individuals with acquired brain injuries from all walks of life. Laura holds two Diplomas in Associates of Arts and Human Service Work.  In her time at BrainTrust, she has worked as a Community Support Coordinator in Vernon and managed BrainTrust’s partnership with Foundry supporting youth with ABI. She currently coordinates and leads services for our NeuroRecovery Centre, working one on one with clients to support long term cognitive change with the therapeutic use of neuroplasticity so they can return to life and work. Laura enjoys spending time in nature as much as possible by camping, kayaking, or sailing.

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MICHELLE VAN BILJON

Occupational Therapist

Michelle has worked as an occupational therapist for twenty years. For the last ten years she has specialized in community rehabilitation, functional assessments, and return to productivity/work for clients with physical and cognitive difficulties. She brings these skills and experience to her role in our NeuroRecovery Centre. Michelle assists clients in identifying their goals for the program and provides general program oversight. She also helps develop individualized transition plans for clients upon completion of the program. Michelle, her husband, and young son spend their free time discovering all the Okanagan has to offer and touring local lakes on their boat.

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NICOLE AUBRECHT

Community Support Coordinator

After graduating with her Bachelor of Human Kinetics degree from the University of British Columbia, Okanagan, Nicole joined the team as a Community Support Assistant in May 2021. Through group program facilitation and individual work with clients, her interest in brain injury and passion to create a positive therapeutic environment led her to the Community Support Coordinator position. Growing up in the Rocky Mountains Nicole is eager to participate in any outdoor activity, her favourites being skiing and hiking!

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JOLENE HANSEN
Community Support Coordinator

Jolene joined BrainTrust in February 2021 as a Community Support Coordinator for both the Vernon and Kelowna areas. Jolene’s passion for working with individuals with brain injuries began during her 6 years working in an adult brain injury program at GF Strong as a SLP-Assistant. Her ability to find unique and creative ways to support her clients struggling with communication difficulties has transferred over to her approach when supporting her BrainTrust clients. Through the perseverance and motivation of her clients, Jolene has become passionate about being a strong advocate and community educator for individuals with Brain Injury. When Jolene is not at work you can find her playing softball and enjoying the outdoors with her husband, their 2 kids, and their dog.

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LYDIA WOOD

Education & Prevention Coordinator

Lydia joined BrainTrust in October 2021 as the Education & Prevention Coordinator after completing her Bachelor of Science Honours degree in Psychology at the University of British Columbia Okanagan. She is passionate about brain injury education and evidence-based interventions: Lydia has over three years of experience in neuropsychology and rehabilitation research and has worked with stroke patients at Kelowna General Hospital. She is a strong mental health advocate and is eager to build and foster partnerships in the community. In her free time, Lydia enjoys hiking, volunteering, reading books, and playing soccer.

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BRITTANY MARSHALL
Community Support Facilitator

Brittany holds a diploma in Criminal and Social Justice, and has previously worked with individuals involved in the Criminal Justice system as well as those experiencing homelessness and substance use disorders. She is a strong advocate for client-centred services and meeting each individual where they are at in their walk of life. She is drawn to this work from a deep fascination with the brain. When not working Brittany enjoys being out in nature or supporting local businesses.

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RACHEL STEINBACH
Community Support Facilitator

Rachel recently completed a two-year Human Service Work Diploma at Okanagan College, following her passion for advocating for those affected by brain injury she joined BrainTrust Canada. She is eager to learn and excited about our mission and desire to enhance the lives of people we support both in their homes and in our community. Originally from the Kootenays, Rachel is passionate about coffee and cooking. In her free time she likes to get out and support local businesses, and spending time with friends and family.

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CHANEL YAWORSKI
Community Support Facilitator

Chanel values kindness and compassion which is why she has a strong desire to help and support people. Chanel holds a Human Service Work diploma and has worked with those experiencing homelessness, substance use disorders, mental health, and divers-abilities. Chanel is always eager to learn and grow, which is why she is excited to be a part of such a supportive and inclusive team. She is passionate about advocating for those affected by acquired brain injuries so they can feel seen and heard. In Chanel’s free time she writes free verse poetry, enjoys going for walks with her dog, camping, and staying connected with her family and friends.

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JORDAN BURNS
Crime Prevention and Reduction Facilitator

Jordan is born and raised in the Okanagan. He has spent time on the Sunshine Coast of BC, in Central Alaska, and in Regina, Saskatchewan while pursuing his Bachelor of Human Justice degree. Jordan joined BrainTrust recently as a Practicum Student and quickly moved forward into his current role. When he is not supporting his clients, Jordan can be found fishing, playing hockey, softball, or golf, or up in the mountains either walking his pup, skiing, or riding his mountain bike.

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KATELYN STOODLEY
Community Support Facilitator

Kate started her BrainTrust journey as a practicum student as part of her diploma in Human Service Work at Okanagan College. Recently graduated, Kate grew passionate towards supporting individuals with acquired brain injuries and found herself starting her career in the social support sector. Originally from the Kootenays, Kate enjoys all that the Okanagan has to offer. In her free time, you can find her spending quality time with friends and family, going for bike rides, curled up with a book, or playing some video games. Kate is excited for her future with BrainTrust.