adaptive sports

The AbilityPLUS Board of Directors

Mark Shepherd, Chairman of the Board

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Mark Shepherd is the owner of Shepherd Financial Partners, a full-service pension 401(k) advisory firm that also provides comprehensive wealth management services. Previously, Mark worked as a Tax Accountant at KPMG (Peat Marwick) and IDS American Express, where he managed 401(k) plans and employed innovative strategies to implement the best solution for each of the Plan Sponsors and their participants.

Mark's team has lead and advocated for innovative strategies for 401(k) management for more than 20 years. His expertise includes dynamic portfolio management, fiduciary best practices, and ethics within the financial service industry. Among the many articles Mark Shepherd has published are articles on family foundation best practices, endowment spending limits, and target funds -vs- dynamic asset allocation. Mark is regularly invited to speak at national and worldwide conferences, where he has addressed such issues as fiduciary best practices, managing and building legacy assets and 401(k) plan participant education. Mark recently presented to wide acclaim his study titled "Are You Prepared for a DOL Audit?" Mark Shepherd is an expert in dynamic portfolio management, ethics within the financial service industry and fiduciary best practices.


Jon Erickson

Jon Erickson

Jon Erickson is an entrepreneur and technology executive who pioneered online services for people with special needs. Jon and his wife Kristin co-founded Parlerai Inc., the world's first Augmentative Collaboration service. The web-based service provides online collaboration technology services, social networking and assistive communication services for families with children having special needs. He is the managing partner of Big Yak Technologies LLC, offering business and technology development to clients in the commercial real estate, financial services, insurance, aerospace and information security industries. He also co-founded and serves on the advisory board of OnCorps LLC, a community of technology veterans committed to bringing innovative technologies into the mainstream. Prior to starting his own companies, Jon was a Venture Partner of Fidelity Ventures. He has also served in various IT executive roles including chief network architect of Fidelity Investments in and chief technology officer of COLT Telecom's European Internet business.


Vicki Bancroft, Secretary

Vicki Bancroft

Vicki Bancroft works as a pediatric physical therapist in the New Bedford, MA Public Schools. She has specialized in assisting special needs children and young adults adapt to the challenges of their lives both in and out of the public school setting. As a lifetime skier, Vicki found the perfect match of her skills and passion when she starting volunteering with AbilityPLUS in adaptive sports and recreation five years ago. In addition to skiing, Vicki enjoys sailing, swimming and kayaking the coastal waters of southeastern Massachusetts. Vicki is also a freelance writer and member of the North American Snowsports Journalist Association. She is a graduate of Simmons College and the University of Massachusetts. 






Larry Geller

larry geller

Larry Geller has been an adaptive sports instructor for more than 20 years and has been a volunteer with AbilityPLUS at Mount Snow, VT since 2005. Larry holds PSIA Adaptive certification, is an active adaptive sports trainer and is a supervisor in the AbilityPLUS program at Mount Snow. He has been a member of the AbilityPLUS Board of Directors since 2005.

Larry’s passion for Adaptive Sports was fostered by being a parent of a person with a disability. Watching his son grow and overcome obstacles faced by many people with disabilities amplified his passion to work towards breaking down barriers for all people with disabilities.

Larry’s wife Nancy was a middle school teacher in Bellingham, MA and is now retired. Together, Larry and Nancy have 2 sons: Josh of Ipswich, MA, a Principle Software Engineer with Imprivata, an IT security company; and Jake of Tempe, Arizona. Jake is the Founding Coordinator of the National Center for Disability and Journalism at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University, and is the co-founder and Head Coach of the ASU Sailing Club.

A native of Bronx, NY and graduate of American International College, Larry relocated to New England in the 1970’s. He is President of Ocean State Sales, LLC, a Manufacturer’s Representative company headquartered in Narragansett, RI.

Larry’s favorite activities include skiing, playing soccer, kayaking and scuba. He resides with his wife Nancy in Stratton, VT and Narragansett, RI.


Richard Staples

richard staples

Richard Staples, a long-time volunteer for AbilityPLUS in the Mount Washington region of NH, is a foreclosure prevention representative at Fannie Mae, and is based in Pawtucket, RI.  He works within the company’s National Servicing Organization as a member of the company’s national Borrower Outreach Team, undertaking a variety of roles that support Fannie Mae’s foreclosure prevention initiatives.

Prior to joining Fannie Mae in 2002, Richard was senior vice president at Peoples Savings Bank of Brockton, MA, responsible for the bank’s compliance with all consumer banking regulations and the Community Reinvestment Act.  He was also the bank’s primary contact with area nonprofit organizations supporting affordable housing and community development initiatives.  Earlier in his career, Richard worked for Fleet and Bank of New England.

Richard is involved with several local housing and community development organizations, including the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), Rhode Island Community Housing Land Trust, HousingWorks Rhode Island, Brockton Housing Partnership, and the Barrington (RI) Affordable Housing Trust. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from The Colorado College and lives in Barrington, RI.