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CAF Staff

Challenged Athletes Foundation® couldn't be where it is today without the passion and dedication of its devoted staff. They fuel and execute Board of Director's vision with vigor and drive, making CAF one of the most progressive and unique 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations on the planet.

Virginia Tinley: Executive Director

Kristine Entwistle: Senior Director of Development and Special Events

Nancy Reynolds: Senior Director of Business Development

Carolyn Odom: Director of Programs

Chelle Struve: Director of Marketing

Mark Sortino: Senior Program Manager

Nico Marcolongo: Senior Manager of Operation Rebound

Julia Duggan: Special Events Manager

Kim Rohr: Office Manager

Jenna Loftus: Business Development Manager

Jenna Novotny: Senior Marketing Manager

Travis Ricks: Senior Programs Manager and Athlete Relations

Jennifer Rose: Development Manager

Paul Sapiano: Data Analyst

Amanda Geffen: Special Events Coordinator

Jason Karavidas: Development Coordinator

Maleesa Bottini, CTRS: Programs Coordinator

Jayme Jarvis: Administrative Coordinator

Samuel Nehemiah: Community Outreach and CAF Spokesperson


VIRGINIA TINLEY

VIRGINIA TINLEY: EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Virginia was the first employee hired by CAF in 1998 to provide infrastructure and leadership to an organization that was rapidly growing. She has overseen the growth of corporate relationships; grant writing, staff development and strategic planning. She also has been the driving force behind elevating the crown jewel of CAF, the San Diego Triathlon Challenge to a first class event.

KRISTINE ENTWISTLE

KRISTINE ENTWISTLE: SENIOR DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT AND SPECIAL EVENTS

Kristine began working with CAF in January 2006 to produce the Qualcomm Million Dollar Challenge, a seven-day ride from San Francisco to San Diego. She joined the CAF team full time in January 2009 to oversee the growing event department. Kristine brings years of experience in non-profit event management and hospitality as well as a love of cycling and running.

NANCY REYNOLDS

NANCY REYNOLDS: SENIOR DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Nancy joined CAF in the spring of 2009. Her education and background is in finance and business development and she previously was an entrepreneur with her own business where she worked with many of the finest retailers and companies in the nation. She has an enormous passion to help others and is an avid runner, cyclist and part-time swimmer.

CAROLYN-ODOM

CAROLYN ODOM: DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS

Carolyn brings a unique blend of experience and empathy to CAF. After her brother was injured in a rock climbing accident in 2003 she entered the world of adaptive sports, working at several Model SCI centers across the United States before joining the USA Wheelchair Rugby program. She managed several teams on the club and National levels while serving on the Board of Directors for the United States Quad Rugby Association before joining CAF in March of 2013. Her extensive network of contacts and deep background in adaptive sports are a welcome addition to CAF's Programs Department. Her husband Jeff is the Sports and Recreation Director for the Cal-Diego Paralyzed Veterans of America and a mentor in CAF's Project N.Ex.T. program.

CHELLE STRUVE

CHELLE STRUVE: DIRECTOR OF MARKETING

After being inspired by the CAF mission at SDTC, Chelle was thrilled to join the team in 2014. She brings many years of advertising, marketing and corporate communications experience in industries ranging from nonprofit to transportation, hospitality, healthcare and environmental. She takes full advantage of living in sunny San Diego and enjoys outdoor activities including hiking, running, water sports and especially beachside yoga.

MARK SORTINO, SENIOR PROGRAM MANAGER

Mark brings a unique combination of talents in coaching, Paratriathlon and operational excellence to the CAF Programs Department. A Level II USA Triathlon coach, he has served as Head Coach for all of the highly successful CAF Paratriathlon Camps. Mark is also the Head Coach for Team USA Paratriathlon since 2012 and has run all of US Paratriathlon High Performance Camps since their inception. Mark's passion for sports and background in operations - as both a former Navy Squadron Commander (USNA '90) and entrepreneur who cofounded a successful triathlon business - make him a perfect fit for CAF and its continually expanding program offerings.

NICO MARCOLONGO

NICO MARCOLONGO: SENIOR MANAGER OF OPERATION REBOUND

Nico joined CAF in the spring of 2008 after 14 years of service as a United States Marine Corps Officer. He is a veteran of the Iraq conflict and brings with him over 8 years of fundraising and event experience to benefit challenged military athletes. Nico is dedicated to supporting the rehabilitative needs of our troops and will lead CAF's effort to mentor and provide post-rehabilitation support to American service members who have suffered permanent physical injuries in recent conflicts.

JULIA DUGGAN

JULIA DUGGAN: SPECIAL EVENTS MANAGER

Julia began working at CAF in the fall of 2013 as the manager of cycling events including CAF’s Million Dollar Challenge. She brings with her over 8 years of event planning and fundraising experience and a love of both logistics and working with people. Julia enjoys all things outdoors including hiking, biking, kayaking and running.

 

KIM ROHR: OFFICE MANAGER

Kim’s first involvement with CAF was in 2009 as the community relations manager with Sony Electronics. She joined the staff in the summer of 2014. Kim brings over 15 years of experience working with nonprofits, volunteer management, and expo coordinating. Kim has a love for supporting nonprofits and helping others. She has sat on several boards and helped with their fundraising and event needs. In her spare time she enjoys anything outdoors- walking her dogs, hiking, beach camping and spending time with her boys. Her enthusiasm, strong work ethic and passion for helping others make her a great addition to the CAF team!

JENNA LOFTUS

JENNA LOFTUS: BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

Jenna is a Southern California native with a communications degree from San Diego State University. She joined CAF in July of this year after returning from working in the internet marketing industry in Sydney, Australia. She enjoys running, triathlons, traveling, art and any type of outdoor activity. Jenna is motivated by CAF’s athletes and is eager to make an impact on our mission.

JENNA-NOVOTNY

JENNA NOVOTNY: SENIOR MARKETING MANAGER

Jenna was first involved with CAF as a fundraiser in 2002. She joined the CAF team in July of 2011 and brings with her over 7 years of marketing experience. Jenna grew up surrounded by the business of endurance sports and her passions include marathons and triathlons.  If you don’t see her at the finish line cheering on our challenged athletes she’s most likely in the race competing with them. Her energy and focus are a wonderful addition to the CAF team.

TRAVIS RICKS

TRAVIS RICKS: SENIOR PROGRAMS MANAGER AND ATHLETE RELATIONS

An above-knee amputee challenged athlete, Travis started with CAF as a volunteer and mentor in 2004. Now Travis coordinates the Catch a Rising Star workshops, grant evaluations, athlete relations and community outreach. He likes to stay active through participation in snowboarding and triathlon events.

JENNIFER ROSE

JENNIFER ROSE: DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

Jennifer joined CAF in the spring of 2005 bringing with her several years of non-profit experience in the athletic industry. She is a valuable addition in assisting with special events, program coordination, and communication. Her go-getter attitude and smile are contagious to the whole team.

PAUL SAPIANO

PAUL SAPIANO: DATA ANALYST

Paul joined the CAF team in September of 2011 bringing with him twelve years of non-profit experience. Originally from England, Paul moved to San Diego in 1999 and began pursuing various roles in non-profit development, theater arts and data analysis. Paul earned a degree in media studies in England where he was also an avid Rugby player and fan. Paul, with his expertise and humor, is a welcomed addition to CAF. He is also CAF’s in-house photographer.

AMANDA GEFFEN

AMANDA GEFFEN: SPECIAL EVENTS COORDINATOR

Amanda began working at CAF in the summer of 2013 and brings with her over 5 years of event planning experience in the non-profit sector. Originally from Vancouver, British Columbia Amanda moved to San Diego to complete her Master's Degree in Communication. She has a love for soccer, a passion for running and is a great addition to the CAF team.

 

JASON KARAVIDAS: DEVELOPMENT COORDINATOR

Jason joined the CAF team in 2014 bringing with him over 6 years of experience in non-profit development and campaign management, event planning and corporate recruiting. He is a native Southern Californian and a passionate athlete and competitor. Jason represented Team USA in the 2014 Duathlon Age Group World Championships and tries his best in the water as a triathlete.

MALEESA BOTTINI

MALEESA BOTTINI, CTRS: PROGRAMS COORDINATOR

Maleesa joined CAF in January of 2014 having been previously employed as the Program Manager for the Adaptive Sports and Recreation Association and for the City of San Diego Parks and Recreation Therapeutic Recreation Services. One of Maleesa’s largest achievements at ASRA was organizing their annual Junior Wheelchair Sports Camp, a 5-day, 15-sport camp for kids ages 4-18. Maleesa’s positive attitude, coupled with her background, passion and experience make her a wonderful asset to CAF.

JAYME JARVIS

JAYME JARVIS: ADMINISTRATIVE COORDINATOR

Jayme joined the CAF team in July 2012, shortly after graduating from Chapman University with a degree in Communication Studies. A native San Diegan, she grew up playing competitive sports and was recruited to play college softball at Chapman. Jayme has a passion for serving others and giving back to the community, which is why she loves working at CAF. She is very involved with her church, and in her spare time, you are likely to find her at a country music concert or a Chargers football game. Jayme is a team player and is always ready to lend a helping hand to those who need it, making her a great asset to the CAF team!

SAMUEL NEHEMIAH

SAMUEL NEHEMIAH: COMMUNITY OUTREACH AND CAF SPOKESPERSON

Born and raised in Nigeria, Africa, Samuel grew up in an orphanage for people with physical disabilities after contracting Polio at four years old. At 16 years old, Samuel transformed his life of neglect, abuse and hunger into one of ambition and change. Samuel found the world of wheelchair sports, started traveling to represent his country and was nominated the best athlete of the year in 1994 in the world stoke Mandeville games in England. Samuel moved to the U.S. in 2000, was granted a racing and basketball wheelchair by CAF, and began a public speaking company called "champsheart" to encourage people with disabilities to never give up. Samuel joined the CAF staff in July 2011 and plans to help physically disabled individuals in any way he can.