Board of Directors

Meet the current DABC Board of Directors.

Julia Lamb (Chair)

Photo of Julia Lamb. She is sitting in her power wheelchair on a dock in front of a lake and mountains. She is wearing a white toque and has long brown hair.

Julia joined the Board in 2020. Living with Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), she has been volunteering since childhood alongside organizations such as Cure SMA Canada and Muscular Dystrophy Canada. She recently served on the City of Chilliwack’s Mayor’s Task Force for Inclusiveness, Diversity and Accessibility and led in the creation of the City of Chilliwack’s Accessibility Advisory Panel where she currently sits as Chair.

Personal and community experiences are what fuels Julia’s intersectional advocacy, with a passion for improving day-to-day lives of persons with Disabilities in progressive and meaningful ways.

Julia lives in Chilliwack with her partner and their cat. She likes to spend time on local accessible trails and writing poetry and short stories.

Jake Anthony (Vice-Chair)

Portrait photo of Jake Anthony. He has short brown hair and is posing against a black background.

Jake was elected to the DABC Board in October 2020 . He has been an advocate for people with disabilities for over fifteen years and has a lived experience with a disability (specifically autism). He works as an accessibility consultant, motivational speaker, actor, acting instructor and has his professional designation as a Canadian Certified Inclusion Professional (CCIP). Additionally, he serves as Board President of Low Entropy Foundation and Harmony Movement. He is a former Board President of Kickstart Disability Arts and Culture, past member and chair of TransLink’s Access Transit Users’ Advisory Committee, and sat on the City of Burnaby Access Advisory Committee from 2010-2016. Since 2017, Jake has been a guest lecturer and ASD advisor for Capilano University’s Applied Behaviour Analysis-Autism Program Department.

Michelle Hewitt (currently on leave)

Photo of Michelle Hewitt. She is sitting in her power wheelchair in front of mountains and other picturesque nature. She has medium-length brown/gray hair and is wearing a black shirt and multicoloured leggings

Michelle Hewitt has a long history of volunteerism and advocacy. In 2008 she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of MS and has been in a wheelchair since 2009. Since then, she has turned her volunteerism and advocacy to disability issues, including being a member of the member of the MS Society of Canada Government Relations committee and the Chair of Disability Without Poverty. Michelle is a PhD candidate at UBC Okanagan where her research questions the societal values that leaves working aged disabled adults with chronic illness no option than to live in long-term care facilities.

Prior to her disability, Michelle was a principal in School District 23.

Michelle lives in Kelowna with her husband and dog.

Johanna Johnson (Secretary)

Photo of Johanna Johnson. She has medium length blonde/brown hair and blue eyes, and is wearing a striped shirt. She is a wheelchair and ventilator user.

Johanna became a member of the board in the late 1990’s. Johanna is a classroom and special education teacher with a long history of volunteer involvement with the disability community through the BC Paraplegic Association, TETRA Society, Provincial Respiratory Outreach Program and a support group for women with disabilities.

A member of the Vancouver Elementary School Teachers Association, Johanna is passionate about education and health issues. She currently teaches first grade at Nootka Elementary.

In 2004, Johanna was inducted into The Canadian Disability Hall of Fame and in 2005 received the Courage to Come Back award in the Physical Rehabilitation category.

Johanna loves spending time with her family and friends. In her free time, she likes to enjoy nature, especially in Pacific Spirit Park.

Liss Cairns

Photo of Liss Cairns. Liss is smiling and has multi-coloured long hair. The Board of Directors welcomed Liss to the team in September 2022. Liss is a nonbinary person who has had lifelong mental health related disabilities and is currently their wife’s caregiver. They graduated in 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in Criminology and Psychology from SFU and were provided their first disability-centered experience through the university’s cooperative education program in 2017. Through the various personal and professional experiences with disability Liss has had, their passion for impacting meaningful change and supporting an intersectional and holistic approach to disability management and services has only grown stronger.
Liss is currently one of the Project Managers at Plan Institute (PI), a national nonprofit devoted to improving the lives of people with disabilities. Their work includes managing PI’s free national Disability Planning Helpline Service, supporting the Access RDSP program in collaboration with DABC and BCANDS, and assisting with the Disability Without Poverty movement wherever possible. Liss has also been accepted into the UBC Interprofessional Health Mentors Program as a mentor for the Fall 2022-Spring 2023 term.
Outside of their work and volunteering, Liss enjoys spending time with their family, playing Dungeons and Dragons, being out in nature, and working on their spiritual and healing journey.

Sarah Cheung

Photo of Sarah Cheung, who is sitting in her wheelchair in front of a waterfall. She is wearing sunglasses and has medium-length dark hair.

Sarah Cheung joined the Board of Directors in March 2019. She was born with a degenerative condition called Spinal Muscular Atrophy, and this sparked her passion for improving the lives of persons with disabilities. Sarah graduated with a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of British Columbia in 2018, and she uses her education and experiences to eliminate barriers in society, improve accessibility, and advocate for the health and well-being for persons with disabilities (i.e., affordable, specialized health care, increased funding for personal care and medical support, more subsidized, accessible housing, and easy access to accessible transportation). In addition to working with the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, she has served on numerous advisory committees over the years, such as the City of Vancouver’s Persons with Disabilities Advisory Committee, TransLink’s Users’ Advisory Committee, and the Board of Directors for Cure SMA.

In her spare time, Sarah loves to explore local coffee shops and bakeries (she is a foodie!), go for walks along the seawall, and watch reality TV.

Pam Horton (Treasurer)

Portrait photo of Pam Horton. She is wearing a blue button up shirt and glasses and is smiling. She is in front of a yellow wall.

Pam has lived with Multiple Sclerosis for over 30 years. She has held many roles at DABC since its inception, including the Chair of its Board of Directors.

Her contributions to both the disability community and the broader community are vast. She has worked for decades to ensure that public transportation in BC is accessible: more recently, she participated in the development of TransLink’s first Access Transit Strategy in 2007-2008. This led to the establishment of a formal advisory committee for TransLink – the Access Transit Users’ Advisory Committee (UAC). Pam has served on this committee for many years, and her roles have included Chair and Vice Chair. She has also sat on HandyDART Users’ Advisory Committee (HDUAC).

She has been a powerful advocate in her home community of the City of North Vancouver through her participation on committees and boards, and presentations to City staff. For several decades, she has played a key role within the City of North Vancouver’s Advisory Committee on Disability Issues. She also participated on the Board of the North Shore Disability Resource Centre for 15 years.

Pam has been involved in North Vancouver’s Affordable Housing Task Force, Centennial Theatre Renovation Committee, Parks Advisory Committee, library boards, gender-based violence organizations, and more.

Elizabeth Lalonde

Photo of Elizabeth Lalonde standing, holding her white cane. She has blonde hair.

Elizabeth Lalonde, blind since birth, is a single mother of two teenaged sons. She has served on the Board of DABC for six years.

She has been an advocate and mentor in the blindness and disability communities for over 25 years.

In 2011, Elizabeth founded the Pacific Training Centre for the Blind (PTCB) – a grassroots nonprofit organization run entirely by blind people that teaches blind adults independence skills. She is now the Executive Director of this Centre. Currently, the PTCB team is partnering with COBD: Camp Bowen to build a facility that will provide campus-style intensive non-visual training, camps and other services to blind Canadians.

In 2009, Elizabeth attended an intensive nine-month blindness immersion program at the Louisiana Center for the Blind (LCB); she learned the blind-lead, positive-solving model of teaching, now used at the Pacific Training Centre.

Elizabeth also teaches grant writing, served as president of the Canadian Federation of the Blind for nine years, worked as a communications coordinator in the early 2000s, and was a self-employed property developer for the Province of BC from 2005-2009.

Elizabeth works hard to promote social justice, human rights and a greater awareness of the abilities of blind people and all people with disabilities.