Board of Trustees
Don Hickman is a veteran, a coach, and an outdoorsman. He served over 25 years in the Air Force and now actively supports the disabled and veteran communities in northern Utah. One of his passions is assuring that everyone, regardless of their ability, has the opportunity to enjoy our great outdoors. Don is or has been a member and board officer on multiple non-profit and for-profit boards of directors, including Ogden Valley Adaptive Sports (OVAS), Ogden Nature Center, Ogden Nordic and Davis Hospital. He has successfully led teams of 2 to over 3,500 employees, has been a senior program manager for a 685,000 employee worldwide organization, and led eleven different business units. Don owns and operates Hickman Group, LLC, and A Helping Hand Financial Coaching, a service-disabled veteran-owned small business. He is a certified professional ski instructor, specializing in the cross country and adaptive disciplines. Don volunteers for the US Paralympic Nordic (Cross Country) Team as a guide and coach, primarily with visually impaired athletes. Through OVAS and the US Paralympic Nordic Team he directly coaches, mentors, and supports fellow disabled US military veterans and other persons with disabilities. The winter and snow are Don’s favorites, and you’ll find him skiing cross country, alpine, and telemark styles at our world-class resorts and parks in Ogden Valley. An avid fly fisherman and backpacker, Don has trekked throughout North America, the Alps, New Zealand, and the Himalaya (Nepal). You will likely find him hiking the trails, on his mountain bike, or riding horses in the mountains and deserts of Utah, Wyoming, and Colorado. He enjoys big and small game hunting as well. Don lives in Ogden Valley with his wife Stacey and their critters (horses, dogs and cats).
Paul Fejtek is a resident of Eden, UT and has always been passionate about skiing and the outdoors. He became an Eagle Scout as a youth and later a PSIA certified ski instructor at Bear Mountain while attending business school at the University of Southern California. He continued teaching skiing part-time for 12 years throughout his early business career which included managing and successfully selling a family business with over 75 employees. Paul went on to receive an MBA from Pepperdine University and work for Citigroup as an investment banker running Merger & Acquisition transactions for private companies. Twenty-five years later he continues this professional focus part-time as Managing Director of Ascendiant Capital Markets.
Paul is the author of “Steps to the Summit – Reaching the Top in Business and Life” which chronicles the adventures and lessons learned while he and his wife Denise climbed the Seven Summits – the highest mountains on each of the seven continents. The couple have been actively involved with the Challenged Athletes Foundation for more than two decades, named as top fundraisers in multiple years, and Paul has received the organization’s prestigious “Most Inspirational Athlete” award. Paul has a personal affinity and enthusiasm for adaptive sports as a result of overcoming obstacles with a birth injury known as brachial plexus palsy.
Peggie Ambrey discovered OVAS when her special needs grandson, who has a rare chromosome deletion, enrolled in ski lessons. She has been a member of the OVAS Board since 2018 and currently serves as the Board Treasurer. She previously served as chair of the Fundraising Committee. Peggie has involved herself in OVAS as a way to help carry out the organization’s mission, given the profound impact it has had, enabling her entire family to experience the outdoors together. She strongly believes that every person has the fundamental right to access nature and sports/recreation. She is a native of Utah with a strong family history of skiing and has always been an outdoor enthusiast. For over 30 years, Peggie was a business owner in the ski industry and has a deep understanding of the multi-faceted operational requirements of running a successful organization. She is continually inspired by the participants in the OVAS program and has personally witnessed the ways in which this program changes lives.
Mona has been an Occupational Therapist for 37 years. The majority of her career has entailed working with children with disabilities in an Early Intervention and Public School setting. Her passion is working with people with challenges to help them maximize their physical, emotional, and social potentials. She has expertise in helping people access equipment, activities, and community resources to allow them to engage and participate more fully in valued activities together with their families. She also has a high level of expertise in identifying adaptive equipment for individuals with disabilities to increase their independence performing activities of daily living and enhancing their quality of life.
Mona is married to a great guy named Pete, and has two grown children, Ryan and Addie. Her family is very active and loves to take advantage of the plentiful outdoor activities that abound in beautiful Utah. Her hobbies include backpacking, golfing, fly fishing, skiing and mountain biking.
Dr. Jennifer Romesser is a Clinical Psychologist at the George E. Wahlen VA Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. Her career has been dedicated to working with U.S. Service Members and Veterans. Her clinical interests include rehabilitation neuropsychology, and adjustment to disability following neurological injury and disease. She serves as Director of a clinical trials program at the SLC VA, and is currently an investigator on four interventional studies focused on trauma, PTSD, and chronic pain. Dr. Romesser has also worked with several neuro-rehabilitation centers in SLC, providing therapeutic services following spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and stroke. Her clinical interests connected her to the Adaptive Sports community in 2007. Dr. Romesser helped Wasatch Adaptive Sports create their Veterans program, and served on their Board of Directors for 11 years. This experience provided her the opportunity to personally witness the value of connection to the outdoors following physical and emotional trauma and has fostered her passion to make outdoor opportunities accessible for all.
Having grown up on the beaches of Southern California, Jen quickly fell in love with the Wasatch mountains during her graduate training. She has lived in Utah since 2007, and is a resident of Ogden Valley. Spending time outdoors and being active is an important part of her personal and family life.
Rich Koski has been a resident of Mountain Green, UT since 2003 and a member of the Ogden Valley Adaptive Sports for well over a decade. He was born and raised in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and spent most of his working career in Minneapolis, MN where he and his spouse, Carol, raised three sons. Rich earned an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering as well as an MBA. Following an initial career as an engineer he spent the balance of his career in technical sales and sales management. Upon moving to Utah, Rich took a ‘retirement job’ with Visit Ogden managing their sales team.
Ironically, Rich’s introduction to the unlimited potential of people with disabilities came at the same time as he discovered his passion for skiing. Working as a project engineer, a colleague, friend and roommate convinced him to go skiing. This friend, who he also golfed and biked with and had lost a hand in an accident, proceeded to teach Rich how to ski and more importantly the ability for people to adapt.
Since retiring fully Rich has served on several boards while enjoying skiing, hiking, traveling and spending time with their grandkids.
Denise has a business management degree and spent more than a decade working as a project manager for Stantec, a publicly-traded civil engineering firm, where she oversaw all government relations, entitlement, permitting, research and relationships with developers. Previously she worked at the City of Irvine Community Development Department interfacing with the building, public works and planning departments.
Her background also includes more than 10 years working in the travel industry and later guiding business leaders on corporate adventure-based retreats to international destinations as the Chief Experience Officer for Step Outdoor Adventures. Denise holds a PSIA certification and is a local Eden resident. She enjoys speaking to corporate and professional organizations sharing business lessons learned while climbing the highest mountains around the world and has been honored to share her story on the prestigious TED platform. Her climbs have been in support of the Challenged Athletes Foundation, an organization providing grants for adaptive sports worldwide. Denise is also the first and only woman in history to complete the “Peak to Heat Double” – the combination of summiting Mt. Everest and finishing the Triathlon World Championship, the Hawaii Ironman in Kona.
Ryan Woolsey brings to OVAS a wealth of ski industry experience having spent numerous years as a ski patroller, assistant mountain manger and has also worked for the United States Forest Service. He graduated from Weber State University with a degree in English and a minor in German. Ryan is currently the Director of Health & Safety for Snowbasin Resort where he promotes safety awareness and supports the health and wellbeing of resort employees and guests through various programs which have received several awards from the National Ski Area Association. Ryan takes pride in helping kids and adults enjoy his mountain who wouldn’t be able to do so without OVAS.
Barbara was born and raised in northern Minnesota. She loves the outdoors and is passionate about supporting others. She spent 27 years as a military spouse where she specialized in fundraising, volunteering, and working for non-profit organizations. She now brings her talent, enthusiasm and passion to OVAS to help kids and adults of all abilities enjoy the many outdoor sports and recreation opportunities that Utah has to offer.
Lisa grew up inside D.C.’s Beltway in Silver Spring, Maryland. She has degrees in Marketing and Organizational Management from Palm Beach Atlantic University. After a 14-year career as an executive in the retail industry, she arrived in Utah in 1997 to develop real estate.
Lisa has been a licensed real estate Associate Broker for the last 17 years selling over 200 properties in Ogden Valley and surrounding areas. She achieved Coldwell Banker International President’s Circle status, Guild member status as a Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist, is a certified Resort and Second Home Property Specialist, and a member of the invitation-only REALM Global network.
Outside of her professional life, she has been extremely active in community affairs. Lisa co-founded the Ogden Valley Business Association and was past Chair of boards of the Ogden-Weber Chamber of Commerce and The Ogden-Weber Convention and Visitors Bureau. She currently sits on the Ogden Valley Land Trust board, the Weber County Tourism Tax Advisory Board and Ogden Valley Adaptive Sports board.
Lisa has served the Ogden Valley Adaptive Sports organization as board secretary and one of the primary organizers of the annual Demo Day fundraiser from its’ inception.
Lisa and her husband Walt are avid skiers and sailors and exemplify all the aspects of living the Ogden Valley Lifestyle.
Skip is a northern Utah native that prefers to spend as much time as possible on a board, whether that is his snowboard, wakeboard or the board of directors. He grew up in the then small town of South Weber where he spent a lot of his free time in the hills below Hill Air Force Base. There he loved catching lizards, practicing his aim with his bb gun, building forts, or swimming in the Weber River. Nowadays if Skip is not behind his desk, you will either find him in the outdoors with his wife and two kids, or watching the Utah Jazz play.
Skip is a Certified Public Accountant with a Master’s Degree in Taxation. He has spent the last 12+ years working in Public Accounting as a tax preparer/consultant. He now specializes in tax incentives, primarily Research & Development Credits. Skip has also served on the Ogden Nature Center Board and was the Treasurer for three years.