Incoming Executive Director
Krista Flint has spent 25 years in the field of asset-based community development and non-profit culture. She is a mom, an advocate, a writer, and a thankful participant in the non-profit community in Canada. She has been the Executive Director of a national disability organization (The Canadian Down Syndrome Society), the Executive Director of a large local service provider (Calgary Alternative Support Services), the Manager of Social Marketing (The Developmental Disabilities Resource Center), and a Director of Employment and Community Development (DDRC).
Krista has extensive experience in curriculum creation and facilitation as she has created countless models and workshops for training in the areas of Social Marketing, Social Justice, New Parent Training, and the Power Differential Evidenced in Paid Service Delivery Models. She was a participant and group leader in the Canadian Association of Human Rights Agencies Summit on Defining a Rights Based Framework on Inclusive Education.
In the arena of policy and regulatory advocacy, Krista is a graduate of the Wilberforce Program through the Manning Centre for Democracy in Ottawa. She was seconded to create and facilitate a training module on Social Justice, Inclusion and the Vulnerability of the Disabled living in Service Delivery Systems, as a result of a Fatality Inquiry within Manitoba Child Protective Services. She was invited to consult with Senator Jim Munson to discuss policy and legislation as it relates to citizens living on the Autism Spectrum and their families.
Krista’s work recently took her to Portland, OR where she provided support and facilitation to the creation of a strategic plan for the Pacific North-West Down Syndrome Association, which was instrumental in helping them secure a significant grant to create a ”Think College” program in partnership with Portland State University.
Krista has worked with non-profit organizations across North America to help them create strategic plans, conceptualize civic and economic goals, and has become innately successful uncovering and illuminating the social capital that exists in human service when combined with a compelling narrative.
Krista is widely published in the non-profit and mainstream literature, including both of Canada’s national newspapers. She has also co-authored an article in the Canadian Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology entitled “Prenatal Screening for Fetal Aneuploidy: A Commentary by the Canadian Down Syndrome Society”.
Krista is well-known in the non-profit sector in Calgary and across the country. She is a founding member of The Belonging Initiative, a pan-Canadian initiative, which seeks to eliminate isolation and loneliness in the lives of Canadians who are often marginalized and face systemic barriers to an authentic community life.
Social marketing is an area where Krista has a proven track record of success. At the Developmental Disabilities Resource Center (DDRC) she was responsible for the creation of the Alberta based social marketing initiative Everyone Belongs. She also undertook a complete a re-branding of the Canadian Down Syndrome Society in and stewarded the creation of the Award-Winning Documentary “Then and Now” highlighting the advancements in equity that have been forwarded by self-advocacy in Canada. Krista’s work in plain language and the accessibility of information has received critical international acclaim.
Krista is a sought after public speaker and has been a presenter at the United Nations Consultation on the Canadian Ratification of the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities and the recent Canadian Cross Party Parliamentary Hearings on Compassionate and Palliative Care relating to Physician Assisted Suicide. She has given presentations in nearly every province and territory in Canada in children’s hospitals, neonatal settings, high-risk pregnancy counseling programs, and general hospitals in-person or through tele-health. She was also an invited presenter at the United Nations in New York City on International Down Syndrome Day (March 21st).
Krista has 3 “grownish” boys Oliver, Simon and Charlie – she believes they are the most creative thing she has ever done. She loves watching them blossom into citizens who understand their responsibility to each other, to their communities and to the world at large.
Stephanie is a born and raised Calgarian who has spent many years studying, working and volunteering abroad including Belize, Jamaica, Germany, the US and Korea. She has a Social Science degree with minors in TESOL, Dance and Theology. She is also a Certified Nutritional Practitioner.
Stephanie has worked in several social services agencies over the past decade working with a variety of clients. She is dedicated to personal growth, health, education, connection and living an engaged, authentic, whole-hearted life. The intimate, committed community of Highbanks captured Stephanie’s heart in 2010 when she moved back to Calgary from Korea, and she has been there ever since.
Stephanie plans, coordinates and facilities the programs at Highbanks and works one on one with Highbanks residents to support them in reaching their goals.
When not at Highbanks, Stephanie continues to study, writes, dances, hikes, practices yoga, and travels as much as possible. She is thrilled to be a part of Highbanks’ community of thriving women pursuing their dreams.
Social Worker Lead
Melissa recently graduated from Bow Valley College’s Social Work Diploma program. After completing her final practicum at Highbanks Society she is excited to be joining the team as a Registered Social Worker.
Melissa was born and raised in Calgary and enjoys exploring the many festivals and events around the city with her husband and two daughters.
Working with families has always been a passion of Melissa’s and after going through school with two young children herself she understands many of the barriers to completing education that the residents face. Melissa believes in strength based practices and empowering her clients. As a social worker she is hoping to provide helpful and meaningful support to the residents and aid them in achieving their educational, parenting, and personal goals.
Sheila moved from rural Alberta to Calgary in 1985 and has never looked back. With more than 35 years experience in executive and office administration with an education in Business Management, she knows a thing or two about organization and office structure. She’s worked for both the profit and non-profit sectors but prefers non-profit as it holds dear to her heart. Her caring and loving nature is her most admirable feature, but her strongest feature is her ability to multitask and get things done. She approaches all aspects of business with an open mind and never says no to a challenge.
Outside of her busy work life – you can find Sheila relaxing in the sun in her “zen “garden, with a book listening to music and going for walks. She enjoys her social life with many close friends, catching live music, shopping for new home decor and spending time with her daughter. Sheila dedicates time and detail into any activity she does and always ensures it deserves nothing but the best. It serves as a perfect match that Sheila loves dragonflies as they represent an understanding of the deeper meaning of life.
Sheila is looking forward to the challenge of streamlining office procedures and keeping the operations running smoothly for the staff, tenants and especially the residents. Being a single mother herself, she is thrilled to have the opportunity to support and be part of such a dedicated, meaningful and well-rounded organization like Highbanks.
Lauren completed her undergraduate degree in psychology at the University of Alberta and recently finished her Masters of Counselling degree at the University of Calgary. Her passion and interest in resiliency and child development allowed her to co-author a book-chapter with a professor on developmental trajectories. She has worked many jobs in the social services field including Alpha House, Wood’s Homes and recently finished her counselling practicum at Foothills Academy. In addition Lauren started Clean Living in 2015, a cleaning service dedicated to safe and environmentally friendly supplies.
Lauren’s belief in resilience and desire to make a difference brought her to Highbanks in 2017 and her love for the community and the residents has kept her here since. On top of monthly childcare, building maintenance, planning and facilitating community events, Lauren devotes a lot of her time to connecting with the families. She is dedicated to ensuring Highbanks remains a safe, accepting and loving community!
She is passionate about living life to the fullest and she puts her heart into everything. Lauren is dedicated to her own self-growth and feels immense satisfaction when helping others and making meaningful connections with others. Lauren is a huge animal lover and if you’re ever in the community, you’ll be sure to see her two furry friends or our resident guard dogs- Jack and Ty. When Lauren isn’t working or spending time at Highbanks, you can find her meditating, brushing up on the latest nutrition/psychology research, practicing yoga or spending time with her friends and family.
I now feel safe where I am. I have never known what that truly feels like until now. I have come to realize that I am worth it and my child is counting on me.
~ Highbanks Client
It feels good to have my own place. This makes me feel less like a teen mom, more like a real mom. The independence I get here means I am supporting my son and I have help achieving my goals.
~ Highbanks Client