Hear from three thriving adaptive athletes in the Roaring Fork Valley who are using their art, visibility, and voice to remind us that when access for people with disabilities is equal, the possibilities become limitless.
Jakaline Keller was born in Guatemala and came to Aspen with her twin sister Janette when they were 8 months old. Jakaline worked at Theater Aspen during this past summer. Jakaline starts her Food and Beverage Attendant job with Aspen Snowmass Ski Co on December 12. Jakaline’s goal is to become a ski patroller, ski instructor, or forest ranger.
Adam Lavender has been a resident of the valley for 25 years, starting his woodworking company in the early 2000s. He was a member of Aspen Snowmass Snowboard School for 9 years and began racing mountain bikes in the early ’90s up until his cervical spinal cord injury in 2012. Since, Adam has tried everything within his means to maximize his recovery and optimize his health, in hopes of being a better father and a more involved member of the community. This winter will be his 9th winter of adaptive skiing since his injury. He credits the success of his recovery, in part to the local bridging bionics program, and also to Challenge Aspen for renewing his love for the mountains and sharing that love with his loved ones and his community. Adam co-founded a local non-profit called Mods4Quads to bring solidarity and connectedness to the spinal cord injury community. Adam will share with us his vision for the future, from bolstering the spinal cord injury community as a whole to creating a more robust support network for those in our community.
After a debilitating skiing accident left Leah Potts paralyzed, she learned to paint with her non-dominant hand. Her watercolors of nature and wildlife blend realism and impressionistic styles, allowing her to find adventure in painting and the creative process. Art saves lives, and painting wildlife fills Leah’s soul, helping her move through a disability and creating positive solutions. Leah has been painting for 5 years and is currently a resident artist at the Red Brick Center in Aspen.