Heather McHugh, Skipper + Founder

Heather McHugh's passion for nature and the arts shaped the course of her life as a teacher and poet, for some 40 years (she’s responsible for 13 books of poems, essays, and translations. You can see more about her literary career at her Wikipedia page or at her profile at the Academy of American Poets.) But in 2011 the birth of her godson's first child, a specials-needs daughter, inspired McHugh to imagine forms of respite and reinvigoration for lifelong family caregivers—and so CAREGIFTED began.


Hillary Helms, Administrative Assistant

Hillary Helms comes to us from University of Washington with a degree in English. Her favorite part of working with CAREGIFTED is learning stories of the caregivers who have participated in the program-she admires their fortitude and is grateful that she is able to help give them something in return. Outside of work, Hillary enjoys reading, playing board games, watching horror movies, and traveling. She hopes to pursue graduate study in medieval literature.

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Adam Larsen, UNDERSUNG Director/Cinematographer

Adam is an artist, projection designer and filmmaker. He has designed video projections for nearly 100 productions both On and Off-Broadway in the US and abroad. As a cinematographer, Adam has DP’d numerous television pilots (cooking shows to extreme sports), independent films, and commercials. In addition, he produced, shot and edited two short films for TEACCH, North Carolina’s state Autism program and two films for OAR, the Organization for Autism Research. He holds a BFA in Cinematography from the North Carolina School of the Arts. Neurotypical is Adam's first documentary: You can find more of Adam's work at:

Meredith Sallee, Operations Manager

Starting in Georgia, Meredith has followed her heart to study at Bates College in Lewiston, ME, care for a family member in Bradenton, Florida, brave a winter in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and finally settle for a spell in Seattle, Washington with her husband and their three rambunctious pets. She is a professional modern dancer touring (inter)nationally with Khambatta Dance Company and teaching dance technique to children at a local dance studio. Following her passion for a life dedicated to art and caregiving, Meredith is thrilled to join the CAREGIFTED team and interact directly with caregivers who have devoted their lives to others.

Eileen deVerteuil, Vancouver Operations & Concierge

Eileen is a long-time resident of Victoria BC, cherishing the beauty, outdoor activities, and relaxed pace of her coastal city. She received a Bachelor Degree in Sociology in 1987 and since then has worked as an administrator and co-ordinator for a number of community-based and non-profit organizations, as well as a number of years as a content writer in the technology field. She is the mother of two grown children, and also very active in the care and support of her elderly parents. Eileen is delighted and honored to host CAREGIFTED guests in her hometown, and to help make their well-deserved get-away a time to replenish and enjoy.


Patti Van Patten, Accountant and Tax Consultant

Sandee Roulet, Tax Assistant

Rolf Yngve, Special Projects Editor

Eileen De Verteuil, Victoria Concierge

Cameni Williams, Fundraising Consultant

Kavan Peterson, Communications Consultant


Ruth Krauss, Board Member

Fisher Qua, Board Member

Heather McHugh, Board Chair

Past Board Members


Daniel Jiyamapa, Treasurer

Dan is the proud father of two wonderful children, Piper and Zander.  He is definitely still working (has to put those two wonderful children through college) and has an interesting path to date.  Educated as an economist at Northwestern University, trained as a molecular biologist after graduating, and now self-employed as an independent financial planner to select families is the “professional” side of his life.  On a personal side, Dan is an avid cyclist (both road and mountain), photography hobbyist, enjoys hiking, and martial arts. 

A word from Dan: “As a financial planner, sadly, I have seen the effects of deep care on the family, caregivers, and finances – regardless of the age of the person involved.  When I saw the opportunity open for a board position with CAREGIFTED, I knew I wanted to be a part of it.  I endeavor to make a profound positive impact for the ‘undersung’ and for the organization itself.”


Carol Godding, Board Member Emerita

Carol Godding is a retired Boeing executive, with experience in the fields of Information Technology and Human Resources. She served for more than 20 years on the Board of Directors for Special Olympics Washington, responsible for many program and fund-raising events. She and her husband reside in Sammamish, Washington. Carol’s years of experience with Special Olympics athletes and their families have shown her that not only are the athletes themselves brave and loving, but also what heroes their caregivers are. 

A word from Carol, "Whether family members, coaches or volunteers, those in care of special needs children and adults are special people themselves. They provide care day-in and day-out, often without compensation or thanks. Heather brought this need to light with CAREGIFTED, in its recognition of these 'undersung' heroes. I am honored to work with Heather and our other board members and volunteers in helping to provide caregivers with some care of their own."


Robin Black, Board Member Emerita and initiator of Caregifted Art Works literary review offerings

An award winning fiction writer and essayist, Robin has been involved in caregiving since the age of ten when her bedridden grandmother moved in. For the next decade, family life was often dominated by caregiving demands and by the emotional costs—and benefits, too. Robin's more recent experiences as the mother of a special needs child have only strengthened her appreciation for the work done by those who give full time care to disabled loved ones and who lack the means to fund their own (oh, so necessary!) respites. CAREGIFTED is a cause very close to her heart. 

Mike Robinson, Board Member Emeritus