Staff Bios

National

Scott Strode
Founder and Executive Director

Jacquelyn Hillios
Director of Research

Orange County, California

Kaitlin Honeycutt
Instructor

Lauren Slivinski
Director of Programming and Partnerships

Mario Rossi
Instructor

Boulder, Colorado

Mike Britton
Boulder Chapter Manager

Rob Baumgartner
Boulder Chapter Coordinator / Senior Instructor

Sean Cahill
Senior Instructor / Manager

Denver, Colorado

Brett Wyker
Enrollment and Evaluation Associate

Kelly Cave
Administrative Assistant / Instructor

Kristen Starra
Instructor

Kyle Nesbett
Instructor

Colorado Spring, Colorado

Roslyn Beall
Development Manager

David (Todd) Jones
Instructor

Boston, Massachusetts

Pat Denbeau
Instructor

Sydney Durand
Development Coordinator

Chris Daggett
Boston Chapter Manager

Colorado

Dana Smith
Partnership Manager

Brian Doyle
Gym Manager

 

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“Sometimes we motivate ourselves by thinking of what we want to become. Sometimes we motivate ourselves by thinking about who we don’t ever want to be again.”

– Shane Niemeyer

Scott Strode

Founder and Executive Director


I am a Pennsylvania boy who landed in Colorado after eleven years in Boston. I found sobriety on April 8, 1997. One of the most influential factors in my sobriety was getting involved in boxing and climbing. I have since developed a passion for CrossFit, mountain biking, triathlon, running, cycling, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and almost anything that keeps me active. My big passion is teaching, coaching and sharing my excitement for all of these activities with others. So, let’s get out and do it! Certifications: Certified Personal Trainer NASM, USA Triathlon level II Certified Coach, AMGA Certified Single Pitch Instructor, Wilderness First Responder, CPR and have been working, instructing, coaching and guiding in the outdoors for the past two decades.

Jacquelyn Hillios

Director of Research


I’ve been an avid climber and outdoor enthusiast for a number of years and met Scott Strode while climbing in Boston. When talking with Scott about his idea to create a program like Phoenix Multisport, I was quickly drawn to the concept. It just makes sense. As a clinician who had been working with youth and families struggling with mental illness and substance abuse, I was intimately aware of the destruction that was caused when addiction took over. I was also aware that while we were doing all we could as clinicians to treat people who were suffering, we often fell short. While clinical treatment for many is necessary and critical, it is not the best modality to help people with daily life. Enter Phoenix Multisport, offering real life solutions for the everyday and enabling individuals to re-define themselves in an environment free from the stigma of addiction. The idea was and is Brilliant! The launch of Phoenix Multisport occurred in parallel with my professional shift from clinician to researcher. After working for Phoenix Multisport in Colorado, I moved back to Massachusetts to finish my PhD and subsequently helped found a Phoenix Chapter here on the East Coast. As the director of Evaluation and Research for Phoenix Multisport, I have sought to ensure that all Phoenix does is grounded in scientific theory and that we are collecting data to be able to demonstrate how participation in a sober active community enhances recovery outcomes for those we serve.

Kaitlin Honeycutt

Instructor


Hey everybody!!!! I’m so, so, SO excited to be a part of Phoenix Multisport and help people in their recovery gain community and support through health and fitness. I’ve been spinning for a little over three years and I also teach vinyasa yoga. I find that doing both enables me to have the perfect balance. In between the namaste and sprinting out of the bike seat, I like to do CrossFit, surf, run… anything that enables me to push past my limits and exceed my own expectations. I’m from Ohio, I came out to California to get sober in 2009 and have been blessed by God’s grace to stay ever since. I have been involved with Phoenix Multisport since it started in Orange County. Through working in treatment of every capacity, and finishing my bachelor’s degree in Psychology, I have found Phoenix to be my saving grace. I was a private yoga contractor for some time, utilized other classes that were taught at Phoenix, and enjoyed lots of activities outside of Phoenix with people I met here, like attending the CrossFit Games and participating in the Tough Mudder. I am so incredibly excited to be a part of the team, and transform my sobriety, my story, my journey and my experience even more, and in turn share that with others and help them to achieve what I have been given. Thank you for the opportunity and for being so welcoming!!

Lauren Slivinski

Director of Programming and Partnerships


I am an active nature enthusiast and nutrition nut! I grew up playing soccer year-round, spending time in nature, and my favorite family vacations involved back-packing or skiing. Despite early signs of alcoholism, I was fortunate to get through high school in Chicago (go Cubs!) and receive my Bachelor’s in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Boston University. After college I moved back to Los Angeles where drugs and alcohol took over. Desperate for a solution, I arrived in Orange County in 2007 by way of rehab and aftercare. Feeling a bit lost, I turned to fitness for solace and strength and found a fledgling career for myself at a gym. It was a safe environment that had just enough excitement to keep me engaged and I got the privilege of helping people get healthy! I could feel myself changing physically, mentally and emotionally in my own fitness journey and career path. After a few years in management, I decided to take it to the next level by becoming a certified personal trainer and nutrition coach. The body-mind-spirit approach to sobriety truly clicked for me when I became certified as a Holistic Health Practitioner at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in 2012. Sobriety can be a whole lot easier when life is lived in true balance! I believe a holistic approach – that is, treating the whole individual, not individual symptoms – is crucial to long-term health and sobriety. Since then, I had an opportunity to open and manage three new group fitness studios in Orange County. Here I saw how the community formed in group fitness truly challenged and supported the individuals within. The biggest reward for me is seeing people achieve something they never knew they could, and coming back the next day with a new goal and new friends. Throughout everything, I have always wanted my career to take me to a place where I could support others find an empowering path in sobriety. I was drawn to Phoenix Multisport the instant I became aware of their mission and couldn’t imagine a better fit. I am so grateful for the opportunity to pursue my passions in a community like Phoenix!

Mario Rossi

Instructor


I have always loved the outdoors and competitive sports! Growing up hunting, fishing, hiking, rock climbing and mountain biking, I felt a deep connection with nature. When I began drinking and partying in high school, I slowly lost touch with what was important to me. I was separated from the enjoyment of sports and outdoor activity as my priorities shifted to drinking and partying. Like all of us that struggle with substance abuse, there came a point that I felt as though I had lost everything.

When I got sober on July 22nd, 2012, I was isolated from all my peers. I thought that everyone my age still drank and partied. About three months later, I found Phoenix Multisport. When I walked through these doors, I met people who heard my story and related, who’d been there before. This feeling of acceptance kept me coming back. I was introduced to ice climbing in the winter of 2013 and immediately began to feel that old, familiar love for nature. Piece by piece I rekindled my love for the outdoors and other sports like CrossFit and boxing by realizing that I hadn’t thrown everything away, that I hadn’t lost that part of me.
During that process, I began to realize that I could help others discover these amazing things and, by doing so, help facilitate a similar change in their lives. As a Phoenix instructor, I often have the opportunity to take Team Members climbing for the first time. To see how people change, even over the course of that single day, is nothing short of inspiring. Sharing rock climbing, as well as boxing and CrossFit, allows me to give back to people something that has directly enhanced my life in recovery. The opportunity I have been given has become a fundamental part of my life and I am grateful every day to be a part of an organization that gives back in such a meaningful way.

Going forward, I am looking for ways to help impact and change the way recovery is viewed in the world. I see peoples’ lives change on a daily basis due to Phoenix Multisport. Not only does it have a drastic effect on the lives of individuals but, it has an equally dramatic effect on society by lowering the rate of treatment costs due to relapse and as well as incarceration due to drug possession. I am honored to be a part of such an organization.

Certifications: AMGA Single Pitch Instructor, NOLS Wilderness First Responder, CrossFit Level 2, IKLF Level 1, GSCA Addiction Recovery Empowerment Specialist

Mike Britton

Colorado Regional Manager


I feel very lucky to be working for Phoenix Multisport! It is a dream job that fits amazingly well with my interests and experiences! I’ve always been passionate about the outdoors, nature and being physically active. On Sept 23, 2003, I made the decision to live a sober lifestyle in recovery from substance abuse. I feel very fortunate that I have had the privilege to get sober in Boulder with its endless possibilities for outdoor activities. My interest in being active in the mountains expanded significantly in sobriety as a result of clean living and much more free time. My current active interests include skiing, mountain biking, hiking, long boarding, yoga, frisbee golf and photography. I studied psychology as an undergraduate and worked in the social services field for five years. I worked for three years as a counselor/teacher at an alternative middle/high school for at risk youth. Before starting with PM, I was a Volunteer/Outreach Coordinator for a couple of programs – mentoring and family assistance. These work experiences, my dedication to sobriety and the benefits I have received from living an active lifestyle have contributed to my strong belief in importance of the Phoenix Multisport Mission! As a Manager for the Colorado Region, I hope to provide excellent programming, establish a locally supported funding base, increase collaborative relationships and contribute to the continued growth of PM.

Certifications: NOLS Wilderness First Responder, Wilderness First Aid and CPR, Certified Level 2 USA Cycling Coach.

Rob Baumgartner

Colorado Regional Manager & Senior Instructor


I grew up in Boulder and spent a lot of time camping, skiing, and hiking. My love for the mountains was one of the reasons I chose to go to school at CU-Boulder, but while I still found time to ski, my priorities began to shift as I spent more and more time partying, then took a job as a bartender my junior year. Ten years later, I was still at the same job, drinking too much and wasting my potential.

I got sober on November 4th, 2007, after one too many car wrecks helped me realize I was on the wrong path. A few months later, my dad sent me an article about Phoenix Multisport. Despite my anxiety about meeting new people, I had always wanted to try rock climbing, so I checked out an event at the Boulder Rock Club, and found the Phoenix events were a great way to make sober friends. I soon discovered that I really loved climbing, and that without drinking holding me back, I also found more time for running and skiing. It wasn’t long before I was competing in climbing in Eldorado Canyon, training CrossFit with other Phoenix members, and hitting huge PRs on my marathon and 10K times!
I began volunteering at Phoenix events soon after becoming a member, and found that passing along my skills and knowledge was very rewarding. After a year or two of helping out at climbing events, I was hired full-time in January of 2011. Since then, I’ve worked in many different capacities, including writing grants, training new staff, organizing fundraisers, and editing written correspondence, but I still find time to work directly with participants in the Climbing and Running programs. I love what I do, and I couldn’t be more proud to represent this great organization.

Certifications: AIARE Avalanche Level One, NOLS Wilderness First Responder, AMGA Single Pitch Instructor and Climbing Wall Instructor, CrossFit Level 1 Trainer

Sean Cahill

Senior Instructor / Manager


I am very honored and excited to be a part of the Phoenix Multisport staff. It is awesome to have the opportunity to work with an organization that I so strongly believe in! I was born in Connecticut, and grew up bouncing between there and New York. After high school I moved to Wisconsin, where I attended Marquette University and competed in Division I wrestling. I lived there until moving to Colorado in the early 1990s. I had been active, but as my addictions took over, I had ceased to really participate in any meaningful physical activities. Since getting sober on July 16, 2008, I have discovered several new passions – climbing, both rock and ice, distance running and boxing. They have each become huge, key parts of my recovery. It really is awesome to get to share these with anyone I get the chance to introduce to the sports. I have also been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to rekindled my interests in snowboarding, hiking, camping, mountain and road biking. The members and staff here are truly an inspiration to me.

Certifications: AMGA Single Pitch Instructor, AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor, AMGA Climbing Wall Provider, Wilderness First Responder, Red Cross First Aid and CPR/AED

Brett Wyker

Evaluation Manager


Hi. I’m Brett and I’m so excited to be a part of the Phoenix Multisport team! I have a long history of studying the benefits of physical activity and, as I’ve become more and more involved in trail/ultra running over the past few years, I have seen first-hand the support and motivation that is shared among members of this community of athletes. I was absolutely thrilled to find an organization that is building these and other active communities to support recovery from alcohol and substance abuse and enthusiastically jumped on the opportunity to help Phoenix evaluate this work.

Before moving to Colorado, I had lived on the East Coast my whole life – grew up in and around Philadelphia, spent some time in Miami and upstate NY and then settled in Brooklyn for the past few years. While I enjoyed the excitement of city life, during long hours spent competing in ultramarathons on mountain trails around the country, I rediscovered the importance of connecting with nature and decided it was time for this flatlander to head West.
In addition to a deep commitment to the mission of Phoenix Multisport, I bring with me many years of experience evaluating non-profit and government social service programs and I love being able to bring this experience to Phoenix. I also enjoy connecting with members of the Phoenix community and occasionally trying out a new sport or two.

Kelly Cave

Administrative Assistant / Instructor


I am very excited to be a member of the Phoenix Multisport team as an Administrative Assistant and CrossFit Instructor in Denver! I found Phoenix Multisport when I first got sober a few years ago and I haven’t looked back since. Despite growing up in beautiful Colorado I did not come from a very active background, even before my struggles with addiction began. But soon after getting sober I heard about this amazing organization and I felt inspired to make a change. I regularly attended the yoga events for a few weeks before diving head first into the CrossFit and Olympic Lifting programs, which helped me gain confidence as well as physical and emotional strength. I also built up the courage to try rock climbing as well and it has since become one of my favorite activities. I’m incredibly grateful for the gifts Phoenix has given me and enjoy giving back to this community. I love meeting new people and sharing about my experience here.

Certifications: CrossFit-Level 1 and CrossFit Mobility

Kristen Starra

Instructor


I am an instructor with the Denver Chapter of Phoenix Multisport, and my passion is being active, in motion, training for anything the great outdoors has to offer, and helping others on the path of recovery. I started out with Phoenix as a team member and volunteer from 2007-2010, then began contracting as a personal trainer in 2010, and in 2012 came on board as an instructor at the Denver Chapter. I teach kettle bell training, ski conditioning, boxing, and CrossFit, and one-on-one personal training at West Pines.

Being one of the first 100 members, it has been an amazing journey and an honor to be a part of this awesome, ever-expanding organization, and working to better the lives of the people that walk through our doors.

Certifications: NASM CPT & CES, Gray Institute CAFS, Dragon Door RKC Instructor, Heartzones Indoor Cycling Instructor, CrossFit Level I, NOLS Wilderness First Responder

Kyle Nesbett

Instructor


I remember the first night I walked into our Champa Street location very well. It was a Wednesday night, and boxing class was in full swing. I stood at the door, in awe of all the people so involved in the class. Heavy bags being hit, mitts being worked, people laughing, and some so focused and immersed in the determination to work a bit harder than the week prior. At that moment I knew I had found another big piece to the puzzle in my life of sobriety. It did not take long for me to get involved in a lot of the classes Phoenix has to offer and figure out how I could give back. What started as cleaning and facility maintenance led with time to assist coaching, then to coaching, and finally to a full time job, a position for which I’m very grateful.

I truly believe Phoenix is a place for people to put aside or drop all of the negative stigmas or labels society – or even they themselves – have put on themselves while in the grips of their addiction. Phoenix gives them the opportunity to redefine who they really are and what they are truly capable of achieving. What I love most about Phoenix is seeing a new person come in on their first night – shy, reserved, without much confidence – and make a connection with the community, and as the weeks pass, seeing them walk through the door a bit taller each time, regaining lost self-worth and confidence. I’m a big advocate and believer in the small achievements we make on a regular basis with this community. Our values are internalized and have a positive effect on our lives outside of Phoenix. This has a big place in my heart, because I too have a story that includes many years of bad alcohol and drug abuse that led me down a road I didn’t know I’d make it back from. To have the privilege to be alive today and be another set of helping hands to help others recover from a hopeless state of mind and body is a true blessing.

Now that I’ve been established for a few years, my time now consists of running multiple programs, focusing on and investing in the community, and helping people grow beyond their current capacity – as was done for me when I first walked through the door. It’s incredible to see our community grow by the day, week, month, and year. If you’re reading this and haven’t been to a Phoenix event, I highly encourage you to come in, join the community, and experience the fun we always have!

Roslyn Beall

Development Manager


I grew up and lived in the Washington DC metropolitan area, except for three years when my mom and I lived in a commune in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. In 1998 I moved from DC to Colorado Springs to get away from my lifestyle of alcohol and drug addiction. Of course, the “geographic” didn’t work and I continued using until November 5, 2004 after 25 years in my addictions.

I cannot even express my gratitude for Phoenix Multisport. It has changed my life forever by building life-long friendships and helping me find my passion for rock climbing. I know if Phoenix Multisport was around on my first attempt at sobriety at 21 years old, I would have stayed sober. The Phoenix Multisport model of peer-to-peer recovery in an active sober community really works!

Since becoming sober, I have volunteered for two non-profits in Colorado Springs, taken 12-Step meetings to Correctional Facilities, and conducted drug/alcohol addiction trainings at Spring Creek Juvenile Correction Facility. I began volunteering with Phoenix Multisport in 2012 where I got to be of service to my peers in recovery, through my love for climbing.
I have worked at Fortune 100 companies, associations, and most recently as the operations manager for 13 years at a Colorado Springs nonprofit. My background is in non-profit management, human resources, strategic planning, and resource development. After four years of volunteering at Phoenix Multisport, it is a privilege to now be an employee.

Certifications: AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor, Professional in Human Resources (PHR), Graduate of Leadership Pikes Peak.

David (Todd) Jones

Colorado Springs Chapter Manager


I am a Colorado Springs native and am very excited for the opportunity to be a part of Phoenix Multisport growth in my home town. I got involved with Phoenix Multisport when I had only been sober for a few weeks. I came to many of the first Colorado Springs events as a participant and began volunteering in 2010. I was hired as a full time Instructor in 2011 and then became the Chapter Manager in 2015. Phoenix Multisport introduced me to many of the activities that I have come to love and instruct. I am honored to have the opportunity to share with others these activities that have been so important to my sobriety. For me, Phoenix Multisport has been the catalyst for a host of long lasting friendship with other active people that share my commitment for leading a sober lifestyle. It is my goal to help continue to grow that community and help others pursue all the wonderful things that sobriety and an active life style have to offer.

Certifications: AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor and Single Pitch Instructor, NOLS Wilderness First Responder, CrossFit-L1 and CrossFit for Kids Trainer

Pat Denbeau

Instructor


Ten years ago, my life was a series of burnt bridges and regrettable decisions that allowed me to begin my journey to recovery in the middle of Southern Utah with nothing but a pack and my thoughts. I fell in love with the back country the second I opened my eyes. I found comfort in the solitude of the outdoors and peace in the community of fellow hikers. It was just what I needed to begin the process of repairing all of the damage my addictions had caused. I found the physical and mental work that came with long-distance hiking was one of the most important things in my recovery. I came out to California immediately afterwards to continue my journey of recovery as well as my love for the outdoors. Since moving to California I have been able to maintain long-time recovery and have summited seven, peaks including Mt. Whitney! I found that my interests didn’t end there. My recovery has allowed to me to find road biking, CrossFit, yoga, and most recently climbing, and a little bit of surfing. When I found Phoenix it felt like I found home. I feel incredibly honored to have the opportunity to work with a company I so passionately believe in. Recently, I moved here to the Boston area to help expand our East Coast operations. Having the opportunity to share not only my love for the outdoors but my experience in recovery with others makes me feel like one of the lucky ones. Happy trails!

Certifications: NOLS Wilderness Guide, Outdoor Education, & Wilderness First Responder, Recreational Avalanche Technician Level 1, CrossFit Level 1, LNT Master

Sydney Durand

Development Coordinator


I am very excited to be part of the Phoenix Multisport team and to have the opportunity helping develop our Boston Chapter. As a competitive runner with a background in community development and experience leading youth on hiking trips throughout New England, Phoenix is a unique combination of my strongest interests. To work in my home city, addressing an issue close to my heart, is a privilege and something I feel fortunate to do.

In recent years, I’ve seen two very different stories of substance abuse unfold from the closest people in my life. I’ve witnessed the path of destruction that is left behind from an individual struggling with addiction, as well as the empowerment and revival that emerges from someone who is sober in recovery. This perspective has not only broadened my view of addiction and recovery, but revealed how resilient people can be when surrounded with a strong network of support. After years of being part of various sports teams, I believe there is profound power when individuals constructively push each other to be better. It is in these moments, when we are tested physically, mentally, emotionally by our teammates, that strong social bonds form and that network of support develops without anyone even realizing. These experiences are what draw me to the Phoenix mission and the transformative environment this organization fosters.
I am grateful to be able to contribute and learn as the Development Coordinator for the Boston chapter. With every challenge that arises from starting somewhere new, the reward is that much greater. I look forward to seeing how Phoenix Multisport grows in the coming months and years.

Chris Daggett

Boston Chapter Manager


I’ve lived here in Massachusetts my entire life. I found recovery on September 23rd, 1990. My love for motocross racing and ice racing came to a close after some knee injuries, but the rehab for my knee brought me to the gym to work out on a regular basis (prior to that I had never been interested in working out). I went to watch some friends compete in an obstacle course race and this sparked a new level of interest. After watching them compete, my workouts at started to change. I soon began competing in Warrior Dash and Spartan Races.

A sober friend of mine at the gym convinced me to try CrossFit. I thought it would be good training for obstacle course racing. I loved it immediately! CrossFit was a perfect match for my recovery and training, treating mind, body and spirit. I began to compete in the Open and in local competitions, then began to deepen my understanding of CrossFit movements through formal certifications.

Eventually a friend introduced to Phoenix Multisport and I began volunteering and doing out-reach for them. After many years sober, Phoenix Multisport inspired me and breathed new life into my recovery. In 2014 I became the Massachusetts Chapter Manager for Phoenix Multisport. I’m deeply grateful for what my life has become: Recovery, Community and Support.

Certifications: CrossFit Level 1, CrossFit Level 2, CrossFit Strongman, NOLS Wilderness First Responder.

Dana Smith

Partnership Manager


My father is a fly fisherman and hiker and raised me with an appreciation for the outdoors. Although I spent a lot of time kayaking, water skiing, and traveling, I lost interest in outdoor recreation during my adolescence and immersed myself in a peer group whose interests revolved around alcohol and drugs.

In 2009, my substance use disorder led to unimaginable consequences. After causing a serious car accident, I spent five years in a women’s prison in Illinois. While incarcerated, I committed myself to a sober lifestyle. I attended 12-step meetings, meditated and lifted weights on the prison yard. I developed a healthy lifestyle, but I was doing it alone. I did not have the support of a community. In 2012, I sat in my prison cell one evening watching the news when I saw Scott Strode being honored as a CNN Hero. He described the transformative power of fitness and the development of a sober active community in Colorado. I knew I had to be a part of the organization he described.

I paroled home to Chicago, enrolled in school to earn a bachelor’s degree and a personal training certification, and worked as a strength coach. After completing parole, I moved to Denver and eventually landed my dream career with Phoenix Multisport. I am honored to be a part of this team and to say that we are truly saving lives through fitness. I have personally experienced addiction, homelessness, and incarceration, but today I am a successful coach, a graduate student, a wife, and a mentor. Phoenix has given me the opportunity to share that experience and help others find a similar path.

Credentials: MS Exercise Science – Concordia University Chicago (currently enrolled), BS Behavioral Sciences – Ohio University, ISSA Personal Training, CrossFit Level 1, Precision Nutrition Level 1, CPR/AED – American Heart Association.

Brian Doyle

Gym Manager


Though I was first introduced to Phoenix Multisport in 2008, I found myself unable to commit to my recovery and therefore unwilling to participate in any of the Phoenix programs. It was not until 2013 when I attended my first community event that I was able to recognize the importance of having an emotionally supportive social network in my life. Initially attracted to the expansive assortment of physical activities and outdoor recreation, I quickly learned that Phoenix had far more to offer. Today I consider it a privilege to be involved with such an outstanding organization. Through Phoenix Multisport I have developed some of the most meaningful relationships in my life and I have acquired many of the attributes which are essential for me to maintain a sober, healthy, and fulfilling lifestyle. I am grateful for both my co-workers and the team members alike for providing me with so many amazing opportunities.

NOLS Wilderness First Responder/CPR/First Aid/AED; CrossFit Level 1, Weightlifting & Kids; NASM Certified Personal Trainer; CHSAA Certified Track & Field Coach


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