Dr. Chris Baba | President
Dr. Baba was born and raised in Medicine Hat where he graduated from McCoy High School. During his high school years, he worked in the automotive, oil, construction and trucking fields. In addition, Chris served in the Army Reserves for over five years and was the soldier chosen to represent his Regiment in Europe for the 60th anniversary of the Liberation of Holland. After two years of study at Medicine Hat College, Chris entered the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry at the University of Alberta where he earned his Bachelor of Medical Science and Doctor of Dental Surgery degrees. During this time, he was selected to attend a summer exchange program in Germany, focusing on prosthetic dentistry. For the entire duration of his time in the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, Chris also served as president of his class. Upon graduation, Chris was presented with awards for Oral Surgery, Fixed Prosthetics (crowns, bridges, veneers etc.) and Operative Dentistry (fillings etc.).
Chris’ interests are many and varied. He is particularly interested in cooking, marksmanship, trap shooting, hiking and anything to do with the outdoors. While not at the clinic or spending time with his wife and dog, he volunteers with the YMCA and the Kinsmen Club. He's spent years on the board of the YMCA where he serves as president and held many positions in the Kinsmen Club where his focus has been with the Home Lotto project. Community service is an important part of his life and Medicine Hat has always been home.
Tyler Pocsik| Chair of Audit & Finance Committee
Born and raised in Medicine Hat, Tyler joined the Medicine Hat YMCA in 2005. Through his time at the YMCA Tyler found his passion in powerlifting, and helped co-found the Medicine Hat Powerlifting Club (MHPL) with Kain Lyon. In 2010 Tyler graduated from the University of Calgary with a Bachelor of Commerce and in the same year started working as an accountant at Johnston Morrison Hunter & Co. in Medicine Hat. In early 2013 he obtained his CA designation, and in 2017 he obtained his US CPA designation.
The YMCA has been a big part of Tyler’s life from being a platform to allow him to train for competition in powerlifting, as well as the place where he met his wife, Nicole. Tyler is excited to be able to serve the YMCA as a board member, and looks forward to the changes and growth that will occur through the years.
Dr. Harrison Applin | Director
Dr. Harrison Applin PHD, RN is an academic leader and researcher with skillsets specializing in strategic and workforce planning, comprehensive institutional planning and education spanning across post-secondary institutions, industry, government, and health systems in Canada. As the Dean, Health and Community services at Medicine Hat College he is inspired and give back to the community supporting successful student outcomes for a sustainable workforce and communities. His academic research focuses on competencies in nursing with expertise in applied (Indigenous Health in Rural Northern Communities in Alberta), academic (Competencies of Nursing Graduates) and clinical research ( Induce Hypothermia Post Cardiac Arrest Critical Care). As a ambassador of the YMCA, he believes that a caring, vibrant and active community is essential for future sustainability.
Shonna Barth | Chair of Governance Committee
Shonna is a high school vice principal with experience teaching at all levels. Her passion for family, fitness, fun and youth drew her to becoming a board member of the YMCA of Medicine Hat. She has extensive experience with various boards and planning committees. Many of her professional and personal experiences have revolved around supporting the mental, social, physical and academic health of our youth. During her second year of her three-year term, Shonna is part of the Governance committee, PSA squash tournament committee and an active member in the YMCA squash league. Shonna is always open to learn and accept new challenges.
Travis Beck | Director
Travis was raised in Medicine Hat before moving on to complete his education at the University of Lethbridge. After completing his degree, he returned to Medicine Hat where he spent time with two separate local accounting firms and completed his Chartered Professional Accountant designation. Travis is now the Finance & Accounting Supervisor with Cypress County, is a member of the YMCA Finance & Audit Committee, and also sits on the board for Thrive – A Strategy to End Poverty where he holds the position of Treasurer.
Travis has been a YMCA member since 2009 and joined the Board of Directors in 2019. Travis has 3 children with his wife, Allison, and can often be found utilizing different YMCA gym spaces. As an active YMCA member, Travis is appreciative of what the organization has achieved within the city and is excited to be part of the Medicine Hat YMCA community.
Karen Blewett | Director
Karen was born and raised in Medicine Hat and after 8-years of living in various locations in Alberta and Australia, she moved back home where she’s been enjoying raising her family.
For the past 16 years Karen has worked as a Community Development Officer with Alberta Culture, Multiculturalism and Status of Women to provide support to non-profits in the area of board governance, planning, community engagement and fund development. She holds a Master of Science degree in Community Development, Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a diploma in non-profit management.
Karen’s connection to the YMCA dates back to her college days when she volunteered at the Y as a youth leader and front desk helper. She’s excited to take on her new role as a board member and continue sharing in the passion and amazing programs the YMCA has to offer.
Karen also stays active in community service with her involvement in Rotary and other boards and committees across the city.
Paula Isfeld | Director
Paula joined the YMCA’s Board of Directors in 2020. She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience with her, holding both a Bachelor of Nursing degree and a Master of Nursing Education degree. As the Vice President of Care Services at Masterpiece Southland Meadows Ltd., Paula has expertise in business planning and operations, with a focus on social inclusion. Paula and her husband have 2 children who grew up attending YMCA day camps which means her family knows first-hand the impact the organization has in the community. Paula looks forward to working with the team to ensure that the YMCA remains a vibrant fixture in Medicine Hat and Brooks.
Pamela Kunz | Director
Pamela has called Medicine Hat home since 1995. As a small business owner, Pamela raised her family here and in her spare time enjoys spending time with them. In 2015 Pamela furthered her education in occupational health and safety. She currently works full-time as an Operations Manager and casually as a hair stylist. Pamela joined the YMCA’s Board of Directors in December 2020 and is pleased to share her expertise at the governance level to guide the organization toward even greater impact in the community.
Ryan O'Reilly | Director
Ryan has lived in Medicine Hat for most of his life. He loves the city and is proud to call it home. He is currently and Wealth Advisor for RBC Dominion Securities.
He enjoys spending time with his young family and with his spare time enjoys lots of sports and activities including golf, curling, hockey, slow pitch and fishing to name a few.
He has been a YMCA member since 2002 and is looking forward to helping grow the YMCA and help continue to spread the word on all the magnificent things the YMCA does for the community. Ryan is currently sitting on the Finance Committee.
John Roflik | Director
John and his family moved to Medicine Hat from Regina in 1999. He is an Industrial System Engineer graduating from the University of Regina in 1992. John retired from Alberta Health Services in 2017 as the Executive Director, Capital Management, South Zone.
John’s passions are traveling, golfing, mountain biking, hiking and combining all four whenever possible. You can find him working out and spinning at both Medicine Hat YMCAs. John believes in giving back to the community and what better way to do that than volunteering with the YMCA’s Board of Directors. John currently sits on the Governance and Philanthropy Committee.