Current Board Members
Chair, Joanne King
Joanne is an accountant and has been actively involved in the community for many years. Her involvement has included health care organizations and anything her children were involved with. Joanne is married to Mark Huggard and they have four adult children. BIAWE is important to Joanne as she has a family member with an acquired brain injury.
Vice Chair, Dr. Marcus Niessen
Marcus is a plastic surgeon in Windsor. His interest in supporting BIAWE is personal. He was in a London hospital for 4 months after a brain injury. He knows the important work BIAWE does changes people’s lives.
Secretary, Rachel Olsen
Rachel Olsen is a Legal assistant at Wunder O’Brien Personal Injury Law. She regularly attends seminars, webinars and conferences on brain trauma to further her knowledge
Board Members – Directors
Alexandra Carson is an Education Assistant for Paediatrics and Psychiatry at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry- Windsor Campus. Prior to working at the University of Windsor , she had many years of experience in customer service. She graduated from both the University of Windsor (Psychology & Communication studies) and St Clair College (Business Marketing). Having a family member with a brain injury makes being part of this association even more important to her. She hopes to bring her work experience and passion to help those with brain injuries to this role as a board member.
Ann Marie Keough graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 1994 with a Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy. From 1994 to 2015, Ann Marie worked in acute care at Hotel-Dieu Grace/Windsor Regional Hospital-Ouellette Campus, spending most of her time working with patients on the acute neurology unit.
In 2015, Ann Marie left the hospital setting to begin a career in the community by opening Enable Physiotherapy. Her treatment focus remained on clients with neurological diagnoses including stroke, spinal cord injury and traumatic brain injury. The clinic has grown quickly and now employs two other Physical Therapists with a focus on neurological clientele.
Ann Marie is certified with the Neuro-Developmental Treatment Association and has experience treating clients with vertigo, vestibular dysfunction and concussion.
Alix Khanafer presents with a professional background and knowledge in radiation oncology, community health and transitional care. Alix is a Pa-tient and Family Engagement Educator, and Patient and Family Centered Care Consultant with expertise in the patient experience.
Alix has a passion for improving the care experience across the continuum of care. His in-depth knowledge and insight from years of working directly with health care organizations, providers, academic institutions, govern-ment organizations, governing bodies, patients and families complement renowned first-hand experience as a patient and family advocate.
Kim Spirou has worked in the public relations field for over 30 years. As an internationally recognized communicator, she has provided public relations support, expertise, and training for numerous organizations in the public and private sectors.
Her group, the Charity Chix hosted a fundraiser for BIAWE in 2018.
Claudia Town is Masters student at the University of Windsor pursuing her degree in Human Kinetics. She has a Bachelors degree of Human Kinetics – Movement Science and her research interest focuses on head impacts in youth sports.
Theresa Wunder is a legal assistant at Wunder O’Brien. Mr. O’Brien represents people with serious injuries, including brain trauma. As a result she has attended seminars, webinars and conferences on brain trauma (as well as chronic pain) to enhance her knowledge and to help others. Theresa is the mother of an adult daughter.
Lauren Fields is a recent graduate at the University of Windsor for Social Work and continues her career in gerontology. She is passionate about working with BIAWE from her personal experiences and drives to help others. She is looking forward to working with BIAWE members and staff to create a positive and fun environment for everyone!
Sara Pender recently completed her medical training through the University College Dublin. She has a background in financial services, holding CPA, CMA and CBV designations. Sara has developed her interest in and knowledge of brain injuries through clinical research opportunities with the Mayo Clinic Concussion Research team. She hopes to increase brain injury awareness at the community level while contributing to brain injury prevention strategies.
Rachel Shore graduated from the University of Windsor with an honours B.Mus. degree. She attended the Faculty of Education at Nipissing University, North Bay to complete her B.Ed. and taught voice and piano lessons for 15+ years.
Rachel added an Additional Qualification in Special Education through Western University to better understand learners with special needs, including brain injury. She has worked with children, adults and seniors as a Direct Support Provider for 7 years.
Rachel has recovered from multiple brain injuries throughout her life and began exploring the programs and services offered by BIAWE in August of 2021. She hopes to give back to BIAWE and support our local community by volunteering at the yearly Golf tournament and other events and as a member of the Board of Directors.