Executive Leadership


Kim Olson | Executive Director

Kim Olson is Executive Director of Alpha Resource Center of Santa Barbara, a chapter of The Arc of the United States, and has served in this capacity since 1992. She entered the field of developmental disabilities in 1976 and has worked for Alpha Resource Center since 1979. 

Kim served on the Board of the National Conference of Executives of The Arc from 2002 to 2006 and served on the National Advisory Board to the College of Direct Support from 2002 to 2009. 

Under her strategic leadership the organization generates substantial earned income, maintains a successful individual donor program, expanded community engagement and in collaboration with a dynamic board of directors continues to develop young emerging leaders.


Joshua Weitzman | Associate Executive Director

Joshua brings over 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector to Alpha, having served in both staff and board roles at several churches and nonprofits. He is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach and ordained Foursquare pastor. He is currently an MBA candidate at Antioch University.

He and his wife Jamie were first introduced to Alpha in 2007 when their third daughter was born with Down syndrome. A few years later, with a confidence gained in part through the support Alpha provided, they adopted their son, who also has Down syndrome, from Hong Kong. 

Over the years, Joshua and his family have become advocates for the mission of Alpha; empowering individuals by supporting families, creating opportunities, and fostering belonging. He served on the Alpha board of directors from 2011-2018, including time as vice president and president, and on both the development and finance committees before beginning his current role as Associate Executive Director. 


Cory Sherman | Director of Finance & Thrift Store Operations

Cory received her degree in Business Management from University of Phoenix in 2004. She joined the team at Alpha Resource Center of Santa Barbara after a 13-year career as Vice President of a Southern California based Oil, Gas and Real Estate Corporation.

During her 20+ years at Alpha, she has been instrumental in raising over $2 million through fundraising and grant awards, funded and implemented an organization wide IT infrastructure, funded the opening of three highly successful thrift stores, and developed an extensive outdoor venue to generate additional income for programs.

Her community service includes leading a local chapter of Kiwanis, serving as Secretary, Treasurer, and President; sponsored Leader for the Circle K International Club at the University of California, Santa Barbara; and she has received Kiwanian of the Year, Distinguished Service, and the Casey Award for her outstanding leadership in the club. 

Board of Directors | Officers

Carol Kallman | President

Carol is a Santa Barbara native who was first introduced to Alpha as a small child when her parents, Bob and Ruth Kallman, were very involved in the early days of Alpha. She continued to spend much of her childhood in Alpha activities with her brother Cliffy, who had intellectual disabilities from a young age.

Carol has been an active volunteer in the Santa Barbara community for the past 40 years and is currently involved in Channel City Club, Santa Barbara Zoo, Santa Barbara Yacht Club Women and Santa Barbara Junior League Sustainers. Carol was recognized as Volunteer of the Year by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (2016) and Alpha Resource Center (2015) for her outstanding volunteerism and commitment to making our community a better place.

Since becoming more involved with Alpha, she has been on the board of directors for seven years and has served as Vice President and Chair of the Development Committee. Carol served as the Chair of Alpha’s 65th Anniversary Celebration in September, which was an overwhelming success, and is excited to continue to share the success of Alpha with the community.

Lynn Rodriguez | Vice President

Lynn and her family have been active with Alpha since her daughter Blair was born with Down syndrome in 1994. Lynn has served on the Alpha Board for approximately 11 years (2001-2003 and 2007-2015) and is currently the chair of the Program Services Committee. Lynn is co-author of a booklet published by Alpha about Down syndrome titled “Looking Ahead” developed for new families.

An independent consultant with Rodriguez Consulting Inc., she specializes in water resource management. She is also a trained facilitator and has provided training and facilitation services to local agencies and organizations including Alpha. She has served the community in a variety of capacities, including a four-year term as an elected member of the Santa Barbara School District Board of Trustees, and as a member of the board of the Santa Barbara Education Foundation. She has been a Santa Barbara resident since graduating from UCSB in 1979. She lives with her husband, Steve, and their daughter, Blair. Their oldest daughter lives and works in the Bay Area.

Bruce MacKenzie | Secretary

A native of Massachusetts, Bruce attended Boston University, Chapman College and American International College where he earned his BA degree. He attended the graduate school of journalism at UC Berkeley and graduated from law school at UC Davis with a JD in 1972, passing the California Bar that same year. He and his wife, Louise, have four children: Walter, Elizabeth, David and Emily. Elizabeth was born with cerebral palsy, epilepsy and the experts believe she has cognitive impairments. 

Bruce serves as board member and treasurer for Tri‐Counties Community Housing Corporation, a non‐profit which promotes affordable housing in the Central Coast, and is a member of the board of Hinchee Foundation, a non‐profit which owns and manages three intermediate care facilities for people with developmental disabilities, serving six participants in each home, and is a member of the board at Casa Serena, a licensed recovery home for women addicted to alcohol and other drugs, and also a member of the board of D‐PAV, an impecunious political action committee founded by Art Bolton, author of the Lanterman Act, and dedicated to the sole purpose of protecting the Lanterman Act’s concept of the Individual Placement Plan and the Entitlement found to reside within the language of the Act by the California Supreme Court. 

In the mid-eighties he first served as a member of Alpha’s Board of Directors. He left to join the Tri‐Counties Regional Center Board in the early nineties, and he is a past president of that Board. After leaving that board, he re‐joined the Alpha Board and has served as President, Vice President, and Treasurer and is now Secretary. Bruce is active in statewide client rights advocacy and represents Alpha on the board of Arc/CA, our state organization, where he serves as Treasurer.

Craig Buzzell | Treasurer

Retired from his position as Business Manager of Marymount School after fourteen years in July 2010. He was responsible for a ten-acre school facility, eight buildings, and 3.5 million annual budget.

Prior to Marymount, Craig served as Division Manager at Santa Barbara Transportation for three years, overseeing the Clean Air CNG commuter busing project and contracting with local agencies to provide busing for developmentally disabled clients. From 1973 to 1987, he was employed at Work Inc. where he worked with many Alpha clients, and became the Executive Director in 1982. In addition, he taught Macintosh computer classes, evenings and weekends, at SB City College, Adult Education.

In addition to his professional positions, Craig has been involved with several non-profit organizations. He is currently serving his seventeenth year on the board of the Hinchee Homes Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides residential and custodial care services for twelve developmentally disabled residents, and has been Board President for five years. He also is a long time member and treasurer of The SB Employers Advisory Council, a non-profit group attached to the local EDD office. The EAC provides educational seminars for local business. He is also the treasurer of the Central Coast Vintage Machinery Association, a non-profit group that restores and displays antique machinery, engines, and tractors, from the early 1900s.

Craig resides in Goleta with his wife Jackie Langley. He moved to the area from Portland Oregon in 1972, after serving in the US Navy, Viet Nam era, and completing his BA from Portland State University. He obtained his MBA in 1988.

Bernie Schaeffer | Past President

Bernie retired in 2002 following a 27 year career at Tri-Counties Regional Center, where he worked in numerous capacities including Director of Training and Information. Previously, Bernie was employed at a child guidance clinic and as school social worker, both in the Hartford, Connecticut area. Educated at Syracuse University, he later received graduate degrees in Social Work and Public Health from the University of Connecticut and the University of California, Berkeley.

Following his retirement, Bernie continued working for a period of time as a free-lance writer. In addition, he enlisted as a volunteer for the Santa Barbara Coalition of Caregivers. Bernie has lived in the Santa Barbara area for close to 40 years and knew, when he bought a home in 1976, that he and his wife Ruthie were here to stay.

Bernie and Ruthie have two grown children, Amy and Jon. Both are married and live in Hawthorne and Huntington Beach. Bernie and Ruthie’s first grandchild, Sophia, was born on September 29, 2007. A second grandchild, Elliot, was born on July 25, 2012.

Bernie has completed two years as board president and found it to be a rewarding and interesting experience. He believes strongly in always keeping a close eye on Alpha’s mission and vision, board dedication to a thoughtful and deliberate planning process, and a willingness to make the bold and creative decisions necessary to improve the lives of the people Alpha serves.

Board of Directors

Doug Allard

Doug is a meteorologist and the former Director of the Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District. Doug and his wife, Margaret, have lived in Goleta for 28 years and are the parents of two grown children. Ryan has developmental disabilities and lives in his own 2-bedroom apartment in Santa Barbara with full-time support and attends Alpha. His older sister, Katie, lives in Santa Barbara and is a special education teacher. Margaret has taught first grade at Catholic schools in the area for over 25 years. 

Heather Bennett

Heather is a Southern California native, who moved from San Diego to Santa Barbara in 2009 to take the position of Director of Foundation and Corporate Development at Direct Relief. In that role, she is responsible for helping to manage strategic communications, assisting in programmatic design, and leading the acquisition of resources to support the objectives of the organization. Prior to joining Direct Relief, Heather worked at the Council of Community Clinics in San Diego, CA where she raised funds to help increase access to affordable and quality healthcare for low-income and uninsured people. 

Heather has a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and History from the University of California, Los Angeles, and has contributed numerous volunteer hours to nonprofit organizations including the American Diabetes Association, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, San Diego Council on Literacy, San Diego Refugee Forum, and the San Diego Food Bank. 

Chris Harris

Chris is an audit and accounting professional with over 18 years of experience in public accounting, during which he provided a variety of assurance services including audits, reviews, agreed upon procedures, and internal control assessments. His industry experience encompasses a broad range of industries including service, entertainment, consumer product, and technology companies as well as not-for-profit organizations, higher education entities, health care organizations, and employee benefit plans.

Additionally, he designed and instructed technical professional development programs for both staff and clients on various financial reporting and internal control related topics. He is an instructor for the CalCPA’s Auditing Standards and Auditing Principles discussion group and has been a contributor to Wiley’s Financial and Accounting Guide for Not- for-Profit Organizations.

Chris has supported Alpha for many years and has served as a table captain at Alpha's annual Circle of Life Luncheon.

Maureen Janeway

Maureen has served on the Board of Directors since 2002. She and her family moved to Santa Barbara in 1998. Prior to moving, she was the Vice President of a Chicago-based healthcare advertising agency for 17 years. After telecommuting since their move, she has recently retired as their Director of Marketing. Her husband, Terry, is EVP/COO with a retirement and investment management company in Carpinteria. He has also served in the past as master of ceremonies for the Circle of Life luncheon. Their son, Chris, married to Katy, is a financial advisor in Santa Barbara. After the tragic death of their daughter, Katie, Maureen and her family established Katie’s FUNd. 

Katie’s FUNd is sponsored by Alpha Resource Center and provides social and recreational opportunities for teens and young adults in South Santa Barbara County. Maureen has served as President of the Board for three years and provides leadership in marketing and fund development. Maureen is also on the board of CAPS of Santa Barbara, Inc., an organization that provides future planning services for families of individuals with developmental disabilities. 

Kathleen Mills

Kathy has been involved with Alpha since she attended her first Circle of Life Luncheon in 2004. Born and raised in Redondo Beach, she went to school at El Camino Junior College and Lake Tahoe Community College majoring in Administration of Justice. Kathy continued to work at the community college until leaving on an extended trip to Mexico in 1983. Returning to the States in 1991, she settled in Santa Barbara where she worked as a caretaker at several estates in Montecito. 

During this time she also developed her own small business which included personal assisting, catering and event organization. Kathy amassed a broad client base that provided welcome variety and numerous opportunities. A wonderful connection that she made in 2001 led to her current full time job as a Personal/Professional Assistant. She is married to Tim Milham, a General Contractor. Together they love to travel, follow sports, garden, play with their cats, and spend time with family and friends. 

Ale Ortega-Botello

A native of Santa Barbara, raised on the coast of California Ale has been in the banking field for the past twenty eight years, and is currently employed with “The Bank of Santa Barbara.” A banker by default, she evolved from a sales position to mastering a management and Business acumen role in the local banking community having worked for various banking institution in an executive capacity. 

Being raised in Santa Barbara giving back to the community is extremely important; therefore, she actively participates in Santa Barbara and Goleta, serving on numerous Boards and actively volunteering with organizations such as American Heart Association, United Way of SB, Dos Pueblos Little League, Alpha Resource Center, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and supporting many non-profit events in the city of Santa Barbara and Goleta. Ale recently completed a three year masters-level extension program for senior officers in the banking industry with Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington. 

Marc Sucher

Marc has lived in Santa Barbara for over 20 years. Although far away from his family who live up North, Marc considers Santa Barbara to be his home. He lives in his own place in Goleta with two fun-loving housemates and two adorable dogs, Domino and Forest.

Marc has a very creative nature and has spent much of his adult life developing his creative side whether it be in his cooking, music making , singing or being playful with voices and characters. His utmost passion is expressed daily in his visual art. Marc is an accomplished artist and illustrator. He has enjoyed ceramics, bead work, and photography. His eye for color and subject is unique and his work always catches your attention. Marc is currently a working artist at SlingShot in Santa Barbara. 

Mari Tyrrell-Simpson

Mari and her husband, Tye are parents of three children. They met as students at UCSB and have been Santa Barbara residents for over 35 years. Their son, Kyle attends the Alpha Day program and is a veteran participant in EXPO and has been a speaker at Alpha’s Circle of Life Luncheon representing the Teen Programs. 

Kyle has two sisters, Caitlin, a Special Education Teacher who was inspired to go into special education by her brother, and Mackenzie, a student at San Diego State University who also hopes to go into education. Mari has been employed at UCSB for over 30 years and is the University’s Risk Manager.

Bob Walsmith, Jr.

Bob has been an active volunteer and supporter of Alpha since 2014 and previously volunteered two years with Special Olympics in Santa Maria.  He is a Realtor® with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage and played a significant role in the success of the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors’ Golf Tournament fundraiser for Katie’s FUNd. As well, he invited Alpha participants to Keller Williams “Red” (Renew, Energize, Donate) day. 

Bob and his wife Julie are familiar faces at all of Alpha events including open houses, SlingShot openings, Katie’s FUNd summer theater performance and the grand opening of Imagine Park. He currently serves on the Development Committee and brings his talent and experience in marketing, fund raising, strategic planning, networking and business management. 

Tyler Willson

Tyler Willson is a native Carpinterian and is the director of Kaplan International at Santa Barbara City College. He lives in Carpinteria with his wife Mia and children Ty and Mylie. Tyler has served on the Development Committee for the past year and was appointed to the board in March. He and Mia grow pinot noir grapes for the Willson Family Vineyard and produce uniquely label bottles incorporating SlingShot art. The Willsons donate their wine and can be tasted at SlingShot receptions.  

Patty Zylstra

Patty and her husband, Doug, have lived in Santa Barbara for 30 years.  They are the parents of 4 grown children.  They met at Cal Poly, SLO where Patty received her BS in Accounting and Doug a BS in Ornamental Horticulture.  She worked for a few years in the accounting field and then became a stay at home mom.  She became active in her children’s schools through various positions held in the PTSA, MAGIC Campaign and the Royal Pride Foundation.  She has volunteered alongside her daughters in National Charities League, and has served NCL through many board positions. Patty now works part-time in her husband’s wholesale nursery business, West Covina Nurseries.

Patty was introduced to Alpha Resource Center through an invitation to the Circle of Life luncheon by Carol Kallman.  Alpha immediately became near and dear to her heart and that of her family’s. She has served as a table captain at the Circle of Life luncheon and is a member of the Development Committee.  Her daughter, Dana, worked this past year at SlingShot.