Board of Directors

2018 - 2019 Elected Officers

Rick Elias

President

Rick Elias has been an AZDBA member for over 10 years.  He has served on the AZDBA Board of Directors for 3 terms and is considered one of the most senior AZDBA Steerspersons at the lake.  Rick is most known for holding Steering Clinics for new steers people and he currently steers for multiple AZDBA teams.

Desiree Simmons

Vice-President

Desiree Simons is one of the members of the AZDBA who, over her 15 years of service, has done almost everything for us. While not on the board she works at American Express and is also the Festival Director every March. And she starts that job the day after the previous year’s festival finishes.

Laura Rasmussen

Treasurer

Laura Rasmussen has been a dragon boat paddler for five years, and was introduced to the sport through a breast cancer support group.  She paddles with Phoenix Desert Dragons and also with the Arizona Dragon Riders.   Laura is a professional bookkeeper, and does paid consultancy for two non-profit entities, but she also donates her time to other non profit organizations.  In addition to these clients, she also works with over half a dozen other non-profit organizations doing financial verification of expenses for their events.  Laura loves to volunteer her time to good causes, and has been involved in various capacities with a number of other organizations, from Susan G Koman to Ironman, to the Girl Scouts.

Michele Laye

Secretary

Michele Laye has been a member of the Arizona Dragon Riders for about 3 years, assisting with their administration and team planning.  She has also been a big part of the AZDBA Festival for the past 2 years serving to coordinate the Corporate teams, which involves registration, communications, scheduling practices, and right through coaching and steering for them – at practices and during race weekend.  She is currently the head coach for AZDBA’s Team Blue, the team of disabled veterans that practices once a week.  She has also served as an assistant coach to crAZy Cuddlefish, and has steered for them also. She loves to paddle, she loves the water, and she loves all that AZDBA has to offer. She plans to utilize all of these skills to continue to expand and grow AZDBA during her time on the board.

Manager Positions

Gary Cumberland

Media (Website/IT) Manager
Member

Gary Cumberland is an IT specialist consultant and has been around AZDBA almost from its inception.  Gary has served on many past AZDBA boards in the secretary and president roles, and brings much depth, experience and insight to the board, having been a part of AZDBA’s early history. Gary and his wife recently returned to AZ after being in New Zealand and then the East Coast for 5 years.  Gary has also been involved with 14 of the 15 Arizona Dragon Boat festivals, and has served as the festival chairperson twice.  Gary currently serves as the Dockmaster at the Festival each year, and paddles with the AZ Gila Dragons, having served in the past as their head coach.

Betty Flores

PR (Social Media / Conventional Media) Manager

Betty Flores has over 18 years of customer service, non-profit association management experience that will support the strategic planning of the AZDBA Board. Paddling with the AZDBA for over four years, Betty understands the great sense of community the association is built upon and wishes to grow the community statewide.

Danica Tuxbury

Coaches & Captains Liason
Member

Melissa Adams

Membership Secretary
Member

Melissa Adams has been a member of the AZDBA for 2 years. She has 10 years of dragon boating experience.  Melissa previously paddled with Pink Steel, a BCS team in Pittsburgh, PA.  Currently, Melissa is the head coach of the AZDBA BCS Team, Phoenix Desert Dragons and also paddles with Phoenix Fire Dragons, SunGi, and MonGi. Melissa has served on the AZDBA Board of Directors for the past 2 years and is currently the Secretary.  Melissa is a school psychologist and a health coach, and has a passion for helping others, health, fitness, nutrition, and breast cancer awareness. She enjoys dragon boating, traveling, photography, and exercising.

June Hammer

Safety and Compliance Manager

June Hammer spent 36 years in the Copper Mining Industry in the Source, Milling, and Accounting departments.  She has worked at various mine sites around Arizona, including Bagdad, Green Valley, and Globe.  She recently retired in 2015.  June started dragon boating in June 2016 with the BCS team Phoenix Desert Dragons and loves the comradery, travel, and the exhilaration from the physical activity.  June advocates for the sport and actively recruits new members for AZDBA and loves meeting new people.

Additional Board Members

Tom Broderick

Board Member

Tom Broderick has been a member of the AZDBA for 2 years and has practiced and competed with AZ Riders and ACSE Corporate teams, among others.

He is a mostly retired utility industry executive.  He has served as a Director or Officer for a number of non- and for-profit organizations and companies, including for the mentally handicapped and for Arizona’s economics profession.

He is interested in supporting the continued success of AZDBA.

Gurmeet Attra

Board Member

Gurmeet Attra is an IT Project Manager and has been around the AZDBA from 2006.  Gurmeet has served on the AZDBA board in the past and also been part of the Arizona Dragon Boat Festival committee for Media and public relations.

Gurmeet brings much depth, experience and insight to the board, having been a part of AZDBA’s early history. Gurmeet, her husband Naresh and son Shloak are all part of AZDBA, with Shloak being the newest member of CrAZy Cuddlefish.  Gurmeet was one of the founding members of AZ SunGi and coached the AZ SunGi for the first year, until parenting duties took up her time.  Gurmeet paddles with the AZ Gila Dragons and AZ SunGi.

Mary Ma

Board Member

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