Board of Directors

Chanda Neu
Director
Chanda was born in Plentywood, Montana. As a child she wanted to become a teacher when she got older. She enjoys almost anything outdoors: golf, camping, hiking, kayaking, snowboarding, skiing, and reading if she can find a quiet moment! The beauty of nature, the kindness of a stranger, the progress (no matter how small) made by clients, the compassion and support of family and friends some of the things that inspire Chanda. When asked about her commitment to Elevations, she replied "Our insurance system is riddled with problems, which range from lack of coverage for recommended therapies to outrageously high deductibles and copays. It is not uncommon for families to find themselves in a position of not being able to afford recommended therapy interventions or equipment. In my role as Clinic Director of Milestones, I have had many heart wrenching conversations with families about their financial barriers to treatment. We work hard with families to find solutions, so that their children receive the services they need, but there is a limit to what we can do. There was one conversation in particular that really drove home for me the level of desperation and determination we as parents have when it comes to providing for our children. These parents had their plan, and it was to get a divorce, so the wife could apply for state health insurance. This is a moment I will never forget, and this is why I am involved in Elevations. No parent should ever be in a position to contemplate divorce, so their child can access recommended therapy interventions". Chanda's biggest heroes are her three adopted children. Their early childhood experiences created many lifelong challenges for them that they face bravely every day. They remind her every day about what it means to be resilient, kind, and loving. A quirky fact about Chanda is that she shops for clothes by feeling them, and if she finds something she likes, she buys one in every color . . . . no sensory issues here!
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Grace Thompson
Director
Grace was born and raised in Spokane, WA. As a little girl, Grace was intrigued by her Grandfather's stories from his time with the Spokane Police Department, and aspired to join The Force herself. Grace enjoys spending time with family, listening to music, traveling and watching Seahawk football. As a small business owner and mother of four young children, free time is a rarity. Grace has perfected the art of combining the activities she enjoys around family, a book detailing her methods is likely to be written for the rest of us soon - hopefully! Smiling children, laughter and creativity inspire Grace on a daily basis. Grace quickly found herself in a desperate situation while pregnant with her second child, Owen. Owen had become deathly ill and was taken by emergency 5 weeks premature. After 5 weeks in the NICU, he finally came home with his family. Once home, he immediately started therapy for a host of issues. With multiple therapy sessions each week, even with great insurance, benefits expired only months after starting. Grace experienced first-hand what so many parents of special needs kids face every day, it was no mystery that she joined Elevations. Personal heroes for Grace are her maternal grandparents who had a major impact on the person she is today. Grace has a strong need for laughter, and will do almost ANYTHING to get it! She may also be the biggest 80's Big-Hair-Band-Junky - ever.
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Jeff Thompson
Director
Jeff was born in Spokane, WA. At the impressionable age of 5, Jeff was given a "Titan" baseball cap from his Grandfather, who was a teacher at University High School. From that day he wanted to be a Titan, until he got a little older and realized it was just a person who attended a school, and quickly changed his dreams to becoming a US Navy fighter pilot, and finally a rock star in a heavy metal band. Although school and the military fell off, music still plays an important part in Jeff's downtime now. He frequently enjoys playing to all his wife's favorite 80's songs on the drums, and teaching his kids the same appreciation of music. Family, sports, fishing and bicycle riding occupy Jeff's free time and in just about that order. "I'm inspired by GOD and my family. Many other people have inspired me in a number of ways throughout my life, but none as much as them". Jeff shares a common story with his wife, Grace. His son was delivered 5 weeks early and basically without any blood. A number of complications, including massive brain bleeding, contributed to a grim outlook. The Thompsons were told to go up and say goodbye to their newborn son only hours after he was born, he wouldn't make it through the night. "When you've personally experienced a situation you would literally do anything to make better, even give your own life, you grow in an indescribable way. You will always relate to parents of sick or disabled children, always. For a parent to find their child in a scenario in which only money stands in the way of getting the help they need, is absolutely ludicrous. I was all-in for Elevations before I even knew about it". Jeff's biggest hero will always be his Mother, who raised him and 4 other siblings by herself. "Everything good I am now, came from my Mom". A funny fact about Jeff is that his wife buys almost all of his clothes for him, he lacks even the most basic fashion skills such as not wearing socks with slides. Jeff considers himself a work-in-progress and frequently enjoys being on the learning side of interactions with any of his four children, it's always the case with his wife!
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Lora Norton
Director
Lora was born in Placerville, CA, but only lived there for a minute before moving to the Inland Northwest, where she has lived for more than 40 years. She wanted to be a geneticist, but scholarship awards for creative writing took her in a different direction. Lora has a very large family, so spare time doesn't occur very often. Spare time activities include watching Gonzaga basketball and waiting for basketball season to return. Lora is inspired by her children. As the children in her home say, these are "Mom's Kids and Mom's Other Kids." As a mother, an auntie, an honorary auntie, or just as Miss Lora, she is privileged to connect with, influence, and be inspired by many wonderful children. Lora has been working with families of children with special needs or developmental delays for more than 25 years and appreciates how a challenge given to a child affects the whole family. She believes families deserve emotional and financial support. As a therapist, she sees how therapy and how knowledge, support, and equipment for good home programs make a difference in children's lives and the way a family can function. She also gets to see first hand how the medical and educational systems do not provide enough support, and she feels a need to do something more to help families in need. Lora's hero is her mother because she raised 4 children who are self-sufficient, love each other, and honor their mother and father. This achievement is something Lora aspires to. A goofy fact about Lora is that she can't remember things well that she has not heard, so when she needs to remember something or problem-solve something, she says it aloud. All this talking to herself drives co-workers crazy.
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Molly Everson
Director
Molly is a Spokane native who dreamed of becoming a pediatrician or teacher, someone who helps kids. In her free time, Molly enjoys reading and trying new recipes from Pinterest or Bon Appetite magazine. She is inspired by the children and families she works with, "their journey and perseverance towards success is truly admirable". The draw to Elevations began when she saw first-hand the positive effects Elevations has on children and their families. "When you realize the significant need that's in our community, it pulls you to contribute time and resources to support and further this great cause". Molly's hero is her Dad, who has always modeled integrity, generosity, and kindness. She is a huge Washington University Husky fan, which does not go over too well in Cougar Country! Molly and her husband, Bobby, like to spend summers at Priest and Loon Lake.
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