Havah Armstong-Walther, Board President
An active disabilities advocate and nonprofit consultant, Havah travels throughout Vermont and New Hampshire to support families and help individuals find equal access to resources. When she is not working as an advocate, Havah uses her background in communications and program design as Director for Start Change where she and her team help small nonprofit organizations grow. She and her family live on a small homestead in Hartford, VT and Spark!’s open and engaged Community Center is one of their favorite places in the Upper Valley.
John Hamel, Vice President
Elizabeth Larsen, Board Secretary
Elizabeth is the mother of three including a young man with Down Syndrome. She is a health care provider and has worked in the Lebanon/Hanover area for 28 years. Elizabeth has served on several nonprofit boards that serve differently-abled individuals in the greater Upper Valley. In addition to her position on the Board of Spark! Community Center, she is also on the BOD of Visions for Creative Housing Solutions. She is excited to be part of the wonderful opportunities being created in our community to enrich the lives of all.
Phillip Eller, Treasurer
The need for a resource like Spark for people with special needs that also involves the general public in an experience of inclusion was continuously identified by parents and families that I worked with for 15 years at the Special Needs Support Center and served as Director for the last 10. As a social worker, counselor, community organizer, and educator in a career spanning 50 years I have been involved and working with people that are considered on the margins of society. Helping in the creation and ongoing development and leadership of Spark since its beginning has been a great satisfaction and joy for me.
Cheryl has lived in the Upper Valley her whole life and is a mother of two. One of her sons has developmental delays. Cheryl has worked for the last 21 years as a certified occupational therapy assistant working with the pediatric and adult population. Prior to that time, she had her own daycare. Cheryl enjoys being a member of the Spark! Events committee which helps plan Friday Fun Nights, and working on fundraising events. Friday nights she can be found spending time at Spark! sharing time and experiences with the participants.
Bonnie is a retired education teacher. She worked at the Hartford Regional Resource Center as an Employment/Transition Coordinator. Bonnie appreciates the importance of having a program like Spark!, which provides social and educational opportunities for adults with special needs and other community members who enjoy being together.
Rukhaam is a first-year MBA student at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. Prior to Tuck, he worked in the financial services industry primarily on Audit and Accounting projects in the Middle East and the Bay Area. For Rukhaam’s summer internship, he will be working in investment banking to further build his finance expertise. Outside of work, Rukhaam enjoys hiking and skiing with his friends and family.
Shiv is currently a student at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. Shiv has experience working at DuPont and Corteva Agriscience as a Corporate Finance Analyst. Shiv has enjoyed opportunities to work with communities as a mentor and resource through organizations such as the Boys & Girls Club, Big Brothers & Sisters, and La Comunidad Hispana. Shiv hopes to add value by applying best practices he has learned from other organizations to help Spark! advance its impact on the Upper Valley community.