top of page

Team

Meet the Catalyst Team!

eric gray.jpg

Founder - Executive Director

Eric is a graduate from the University of Georgia with a degree in Recreation Therapy. Following graduation, he moved to Park City, Utah and worked 3 years for the National Ability Center. There he taught people with disabilities how to ski, snowboard, canoe, climb, horseback, cross-country snow ski, cycle, and water-ski. Eric has received his clinical experience working for the VA hospital in Augusta, Georgia, the Shepherd Center and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Through the years Eric has become a Water Safety Instructor, Wilderness First Responder, Emergency Medical Technician, Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist, Professional Ski Instructor of America (adaptive), and an American Mountain Guide Association instructor. In his free time, he enjoys spending time mountain biking, sailing, skiing, climbing, kayaking and any other way to play on God’s giant playground. Email: EricG@CatalystSports.org

gillian sharp.jpeg

Program Operations Director

Bike Shop Manager

Gillian graduated from the University of Strathclyde: Scottish School of Sport Studies with a degree in Sport and Physical Activity. After graduating, she began her career as Program Coordinator for the award-winning Healthy Lifestyle Project in Coatbridge, Scotland. In this role, she led a team to deliver a holistic health education program in schools with a focus on preventing childhood obesity. Gillian then spent 7 years as Active Schools Coordinator in North Lanarkshire, Scotland, where she had great success increasing and enhancing the opportunities for youth to participate in physical activity in school and the community. In this role, Gillian was also responsible for recruiting and training numerous volunteers to ensure the sustainability of programs. At this point in her career, Gillian made the move across the Atlantic to Georgia to work as a manager of Adaptive Sports. A key highlight of this position for Gillian was working with youth and veterans with physical disabilities across a variety of programs and events including wheelchair basketball, archery, climbing and track, and field. Gillian lives in Marietta with her husband Stuart, daughter Maia and son Finn. Email: Gillian@CatalystSports.org

matthew.jpg

Adaptive Mountain Biking Director

 

A Certified Prosthetist Orthotist by profession, Kirby's introduction to adaptive sports occurred at one of Catalyst's climbing clinics. Sparking a desire to blend his career expertise with his passion for the outdoors & mountain biking, Kirby started regularly volunteering with Catalyst in 2018 as the Asheville chapter’s adaptive mountain bike coordinator. "Being a part of Catalyst's team allows me to share the exhilaration and sense of accomplishment that come with exploring the outdoors," Kirby expresses. His dedication to adaptive sports and outdoor adventure led him to become Catalyst's Director of Adaptive Mountain Biking in 2024, marking a significant transition in his journey. Off the trails, you'll find Kirby embarking on adventures with his wife and their dog, Finn. Beyond the bike, they also enjoy rock climbing, hiking, camping, & other outdoor exploration. Email: Kirby@catalystsports.org

emily.jpg

Emily Moscoe

Adaptive Climbing Director

Emily is an occupational therapist by training, who began climbing in 2018 and fell in love with the sport and the community. Emily began volunteering with Catalyst in 2021 when she launched the Louisville chapter, combining her professional experience and her love of climbing in one place. Emily joined Catalyst full time as the adaptive climbing director in 2024. She is thrilled to expand adaptive climbing in the Southeast, as well as continue the amazing work Catalyst does of building community and relationships between athletes, volunteers, donors, and the entire Catalyst Sports family. When she's not climbing, you can find Emily mountain biking, practicing yoga, watching the Great British Bake Off, or cuddling with her dog Olive. Email: emily@catalystsports.org

IMG_8917 (3)_edited.jpg

Charles Stanley

Bike Shop Mechanic

VetsCycle Coordinator

Atlanta

Charles is a veteran and a cycling enthusiast. He competes in adaptive races across the country in his green speed machine. Charles enjoys meeting veterans and leading them on rides on the Silver Comet.

image000000_edited.jpg

Ivanna Libre

Director of Education and University Partnerships

bio coming soon.

IMG_0045-2-e1666297389839.jpg

Julie Calvert

Chapter Coordinator

Huntsville

Julie a native Virginian considered Alabama her second home as she visited her family often and spent many happy summers skiing, boating, and enjoying her family at Lake Guntersville. Julie graduated from George Mason University with a degree in Psychology, but her interest has always been in assistive technology that helps create inclusion for all. Julie was a participant in Catalyst Greater DC and when she moved to Alabama her passion for climbing soared. A serious medical setback took her off the ropes for a while, but she continued to work on adaptive technologies and follow climbing. When she was able to return to climbing at High Point her love of climbing, interest in adaptive/assistive services, and her inner engineer pushed her to volunteer and help start the Huntsville Catalyst Chapter. She looks forward to connecting her physical therapy and climbing pals to volunteering and experiencing the thrill of bringing climbing to others.

amy.jpg

Amy Saffell

Chapter Coordinator

Nashville

From Franklin, TN Amy is the Executive Director of ABLE Youth, a wheelchair sports and independence non-profit for kids and youth in Nashville. She started climbing in 2014 when Catalyst came to Nashville for their first climb and became our chapter’s coordinator last year. As a wheelchair user herself, having spina bifida and no leg function, Amy saw climbing as a new challenge and a new way to build my strength. “I have always loved both new adventures and fitness, and climbing has fulfilled both of those passions.” Amy regularly races in her wheelchair and is training for her 9th half marathon. She has seen that climbing has really made a difference in her strength, especially in muscle groups that she doesn’t use otherwise and wanted others to experience the benefits of climbing, too. Amy loves seeing new climbers try something for the first time and realize that they can do something that they may never have thought that they could do before. We even have people in our chapter who are able to reduce their physical therapy appointments because climbing provides them with a way to use and strengthen their muscles in a fun way. I also really enjoy seeing the other climbers at our climbing gym watch our Catalyst climbers. They may not even realize that they have a disability at first when they see them on the wall, but they soon realize that a Catalyst climber’s disability isn’t a barrier to climbing, just as it doesn’t have to be a barrier to a full and active life in general. Amy truly believes that climbing at Catalyst is much more than climbing; it’s changing perceptions of disability in society and breaking down barriers.​

huck.jpg

Huck

Outdoor Guide

Atlanta

Mark Huckeba, who prefers to go by Huck, graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in risk management and insurance and describes himself as a climbing addict. In 2004 Huck successfully hiked the Appalachian Trail from end to end and developed a strong sense of adventure. Hiking the trail brought him his first job at the Appalachian Mountain Club in New Hampshire and introduced him to climbing. Throughout several moves and jobs, climbing remained a steady hobby for Huck. He began the discipline of climbing at the Triangle Rock Club in Raleigh, NC. After a year of climbing at TRC, Huck began to volunteer belay children’s birthday parties and eventually began to lead groups to climbing destinations in the southeast. Currently, on the side, Huck teaches and coaches climbing at Life Time Fitness in Woodstock, Georgia. He teaches top rope and lead climbing skills to adults, leads a class for children, coaches a youth climb team and leads all climbing summer camps. In addition, Huck instructs belay certification classes.

DSC_8550-scaled-1536x1536-1.jpg

Carly Pearson

Director of Consulting

In 2002, while working as a wildland firefighter for the National Park Service, Carly suffered a fall leaving her paralyzed from the waist down. After her injury, she became active in numerous sports like snow skiing, triathlon, handcycling, and water skiing. Being very active prior to her injury, sports became an important aspect of bridging the gap between her life before the injury and after. “Sports has aided in giving me back my identity, it’s empowered me to redefine myself and find an outlet.” Carly, has two children, ages fifteen and eight. Carly is a motivational speaker, program administrator of Knoxville Sled Hockey, program volunteer for Catalyst sports, and an accessibility and inclusion consultant.

Joey-e1667228290722.jpeg

Joey Sauer

Mountain Bike Lead

Knoxville

Joey is an experienced, long term Catalyst Sports volunteer, who is now the Coordinator for our adaptive mountain bike program.

image0-20-e1667483227277.jpeg

Stevie Gleason

Kayak and Outreach Lead 

Knoxville

Stevie graduated from Maryville College with a degree in Exercise Science. During her time there, she was a member of the volleyball team and Bonner Scholar Program – both fueling her passion for personal growth, community, the value of sports, and inclusion. These experiences helped her to compile her senior thesis on the benefits of nature for children with disabilities. She has also volunteered outside of the US in several countries, allowing her to glean knowledge of accessibility in different cultures and countries. She enjoys exploring the outdoors with her son and hopes to help create a community in Knoxville that actively works toward greater inclusion, collaboration, and accessibility.

debra.jpg

Debra Dylan

Admin Lead

Knoxville

I like bikes, birds, and Bob Dylan.

IMG_6665 (1).jpg

Josh McNeil

Chapter Coordinator

Birmingham

Josh McNeil co-leads the Birmingham Chapter with Tess Burford.

B598F1A9-9E68-403E-A02A-BC2FFD1A574F (1)_edited_edited.jpg

Tess Burford

Chapter Coordinator

Birmingham

Tess Burford co-leads the Birmingham Chapter with Josh McNeil.

andrew.jpg

Andrew Hogan

Chapter Coordinator

Greater DC

Andrew has been living in the D.C. area for the past 8 years, and started climbing 6 years ago. He was first introduced to Catalyst by Judith Erger (founder of the Greater DC Catalyst chapter), and has been volunteering ever since. Fun fact, Judith was also the instructor who taught Andrew how to belay! Our monthly climbing clinics are now a fixture in the Adaptive Sports community in the Metro DC; attracting approximately 20-30 climbers, and 30-40 volunteers at each event. Andrew works as a Lab Manager at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, MD in a neurogenomics lab focused on studying lysosomal enzyme deficiencies which contribute to Gaucher’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease. Andrew is passionate about the power of micro-communities, and their ability to motivate individuals to overcome barriers of any origin and magnitude.

IMG_3640-scaled-1536x1536-1.jpeg

Kiersten Williams

Chapter Coordinator

Raleigh / Durham

Kiersten Williams joins our team as coordinator for the Raleigh/Durham chapter.

Screensho.jpg

Chris Butler

VetsClimb Coordinator

Atlanta

Chris served in the navy and army from 2002-2009. After serving in the military he relocated to Atlanta Georgia. He started climbing in 2018 and fell in love with it instantly. As a veteran with ptsd he found that climbing was the only activity that completely let's him be at peace when on the wall.

IMG_0027_edited_edited_edited.jpg

Lucy Swaffield

Climbing Coordinator

Asheville

Lucy joins us to coordinate our adaptive climbing Program at The Riveter.

elaine.jpg

Elaine Gossett

Chapter Coordinator

Chattanooga

Elaine Adams Gossett was instrumental in developing the City’s Therapeutic Recreation Program in 2002 with the mindset that leisure and recreation are an important part of everyone’s life. She graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in Recreation Management with an emphasis in Therapeutic Recreation. Upon graduation, she returned home to Chattanooga where she has worked in a variety of settings as a recreational therapist and is currently with the City of Chattanooga’s Department of Youth & Family Development. Elaine has been with the Chattanooga Catalyst chapter since its inception in 2013. She believes that Catalyst is an amazing organization that helps to open up doors and allows individuals to focus on their abilities, reach new heights and be a part of an incredible community. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, hiking, riding bikes and anything related to the beach.

bottom of page