Achilles Connecticut Leadership Team

EXECUTIVE BOARD

Erin Spaulding, President & Athlete
president@achillesct.org

Erin Spaulding is the current President of the Achilles Connecticut Chapter.  Starting as a volunteer leader, she began working for Achilles International as part-time regional director in 2014.

Erin first joined Achilles in 2012 as an athlete, following a traumatic brain, neck and shoulder injury she sustained in 2010. A life-long athlete, Erin was an avid runner and triathlete at the time of her accident. She used her determination as an athlete in her recovery at Gaylord Hospital, re-learning how to coordinate her walking-and later running. Joining Gaylord’s Adaptive Sports Association and Achilles gave her back that piece of her life which she thought was gone forever. She became the President of the Connecticut Chapter to show others with differing abilities that anything is possible.

Her story and accomplishments with Achilles International have been featured in local media here in CT, in the Cigna GO YOU! campaign (The Road Home), and Runner’s World Magazine (June 2013). In 2015 she was named to the Aiello Inspiration Team for the Eversource Hartford Marathon.  Erin was also a finalist in Nike’s ‘Nominate Your Nike’, and a recipient of the Frederick DeLuca Community Service award.

A graduate of Boston College (BA) and Boston University’s Wheelock College (MS), Erin worked professionally as a child life specialist in hospitals in Boston and Connecticut prior to joining Achilles International. She is active in her community, and volunteers her time and professional expertise with various boards and organizations.

Erin and her husband Michael live on the Shoreline with their three children, Katie, Caroline and Conor, and a goldendoodle named Charlie.  They are all die-hard Red Sox and Patriots fans!

LyLy Hin, Vice President-Operations & Volunteer
membership@achillesct.org

LyLy joined the Achilles CT Chapter in 2016 after witnessing Achilles volunteers guiding athletes. After only a short time of being a guide, she felt she could offer more and volunteered as the Membership Coordinator. In 2022 LyLy took on the role of Vice President- Operations. She brings the passion of running and the need to help every day.   

LyLy is an avid runner that has run many half and full marathons. She feels very blessed she can share her passion of running with those who might not have the ability to participate in events without assistance. LyLy is a proud mother of a teenage boy who also enjoys running. He runs on the high school cross country team and hopes to volunteer with his mother someday in future races. LyLy has a younger brother that is a Special Olympic participant and an avid athlete that loves to compete.

LyLy has been working in the disability insurance industry for over twenty years. This reminds her of the focus and the need to help others.  She enjoys traveling, golfing, and snowshoeing when she has free time. Family and friends help her to stay grounded.

Quote from LyLy:

I feel very humbled when an athlete puts their trust in me to guide them and assist them through a race. Participating with Achilles keeps me from taking everyday activities for granted. I feel a victory and honor every time I assist an athlete in completing a race.

Helping Achilles Athletes is my runner’s high.

Tiffany Bardos, Vice President- Outreach & Athlete
outreach@achillesct.org

Tiffany Bardos joined Achilles in 2015 as an athlete. At the time she was interested in the racing opportunities and training partnerships the chapter provided in order to prepare for a triathlon she was competing in through Gaylord Sports Association. The first race Tiffany ever participated in using adaptive equipment was the inaugural Achilles Hope and Possibility® presented by Cigna in 2016. Since then, Tiffany has grown increasingly active in the chapter, participating in race distances from 5k to full marathons. Tiffany uses a hand cycle or push rim, depending on the race, and also loves to swim. She works as a second-grade teacher and part-time tax preparer. In her free time she cuddles her two orange kitties, and dreams big for her next adventure.

 

Jo-Anne Rankin, Treasurer & Volunteer
treasurer@achillesct.org

Jo-Anne started running when her daughter – as a freshman on her high
school cross-country team – challenged her to run the Manchester Road Race one Thanksgiving. Since that first race, Jo-Anne has gone on
to complete over 10 marathons and is still going strong. When she retired in 2015, Jo-Anne made it a goal to become a more active volunteer … Achilles was a natural way of combining her love of running with her desire to give back. Jo-Anne joined Achilles in 2016 as a guide, and in 2018 increased her involvement by becoming co-treasurer.

Jo-Anne and her husband John live on Bolton Lake in Vernon, CT. If you
can’t find Jo-Anne on the roads running or biking, check the lake for her on her paddleboard.

 

Darin Meder, Co-Treasurer & Volunteer
treasurer@achillesct.org

Darin Meder joined Achilles CT in 2018, after being impressed by their
outreach and leadership. His first encounter with the organization was through his volunteer work with the Madison Jaycees at their annual
Madison Triathlon.

An avid volunteer for many organizations and events over the years, starting in high school and continuing during his days at UCONN and well after, Darin looks forward to contributing to the Achilles team and organization. As a lifelong lover of soccer, he continues to be involved in his kid’s teams both as coach and manager, as well as one daughter’s dance and acting pursuits. He also foolishly puts his old body through the motions on the soccer field as well, competing in a men’s league for the past 20 years.

Darin looks forward to hanging with friends, laughing as much as possible, and tries to live by the motto, “When the Sun is Shining, I Feel Obligated to Play Outside.”  He lives in Guilford, CT, and cherishes living vicariously through his amazing three children, Tatum, Natalie, and Blake.

 

ADVISORY BOARD

Laura Boogaert- Connecticut Radio Information System (CRIS Radio)

Katie Joly- Program Manager, Gaylord Hospital Sports Association

Chaz Koch– Connecticut Sports & Fitness, soundRUNNER

Jason Marshall – Glastonbury Road Runners

Ryan McKeen-General Counsel Pro Bono, Connecticut Trial Firm, LLC

Beth Shluger- CEO/Executive Director, Hartford Marathon Foundation

Dave Stevens– Ability Media, http://www.davestevensspeaks.com

Patrick Turek– Hartford Healthcare

COORDINATORS

Nina Bryant- Registration (registration@achillesct.org)

Aviva Elkayam– Event Volunteers (volunteers@achillesct.org)

Camilo Cardona – Event Coordinator (events@achillesct.org)

Margaret Rorrio– Race Day Operations (events@achillesct.org)

Outreach Team (outreach@achillesct.org)

  •    -Tammy McKay – Northwest & Greater Waterbury 
  •    -Roberta Brown – Greater Hartford 
  •    -Tiffany Bardos – Northeastern & Central CT (Greater Middletown)
  •    -Tracy Parkin – Greater New Haven & Shoreline
  •    -Rebecca Cooperman– Fairfield County (Greater Stamford)
  •    -Trephene Wilf- Fairfield County (Greater Danbury)
  •    -Jo Bennett– Fairfield County (Greater Bridgeport)

Mike Feinberg & Pamela Frost– Website

Taylor Benedum– Marketing/Graphic Design

Claudia Krusch– Social Media 

Grace McGuire, Boya Yang & Marina Yasuna –  Summer 2022 Intern Team

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