Lisa Keegan, Board President
There is nothing more beautiful in this world to me than love. To truly love your brothers and sisters, you need to understand them as they are. Compassion and selflessness are traits that I believe all board members and staff of Creative Healing Connections possess. So, for me, joining the board was a natural fit. I am the daughter of an Air Force Veteran. Having been a child who grew up in many parts of the world was fascinating. I was fortunate to have experienced various cultures first-hand and to learn how to love so many different people. But this had its challenges too. Moving every 2-4 years, always having to make new friends, switching schools, the constant bomb threats, and my father being gone for long periods was difficult. I am proud of my father, who served in 3 wars, but I longed for him when he was away. Communicating with each other was not easy. The stress of not knowing if he was okay or if I would see him again was taxing on my well-being and my education. As a method to cope with my anxiety, I journaled, started volunteering, and got involved in the arts. I bring this up as it relates to the Creative Healing Connection’s mission, which is to “provide creative experiences using the arts and nature to promote healing and growth, develop a sense of community, connection and empowerment and growth.” Today I live in a small town with my husband and our four dogs. We have two beautiful adult children, Nikaio and Kenya. I work as a registered nurse at a small rural hospital where I have been since 1995. Caring for those when they are most vulnerable is an art, and I learn every day from my patients and their families. My journey thus far as a nurse has been one of the most incredible and humbling experiences of my life.
Bonnie Ohman, Board Vice President
An Adirondack native, Bonnie loves providing service and opportunities for women with chronic disease to find joy in everything we do as women in the Adirondacks.
After working in management and health care for 50 years, Bonnie retired in 2018 and has been able to devote her time to helping people realize their full potential through arts and healing and through government-entitled services for the individual. Living and working in Washington, DC for graduate school, opened up a whole new perspective on public policy and how it affects women, the elderly and the economically disadvantaged of this country. Working was definitely the most important aspect of Bonnie’s life for a long time, and now being retired, she has a new appreciation and joy in her heart for not only those around her, but now for her own health and self-care. Staying physically active and connected to her “tribe” is of the utmost in her life today and she couldn’t be happier. Bonnie is happily married to David Porter and they have two incredible dogs who provide more joy and laughter every single day than ever imagined. They live in Lake Clear and enjoy everything about being alive today.
Mackenzie Boushie, Board Trustee
Mackenzie is one of the newest members of the CHC Board. Mackenzie lives in Tupper Lake with her husband, Steve, their two daughters Madelyn (5) and Abigail (3), along with their two dogs Dallas and Skye. Mackenzie has her degree in Public Health with a focus in Program Planning in addition to over 7 years of Healthcare Management experience. Currently, she is working with the New York State Contact Tracing Initiative as a School Specialist for Franklin County. In her spare time, Mackenzie enjoys cooking, summer activities, and enjoying time with her family. Mackenzie is very enthusiastic to participate in CHC’s mission to provide creative experiences using the arts and nature to promote healing and growth, develop a sense of community, connection, empowerment and growth to all of its constituents.
Linda McClarigan, Board Trustee
Linda has been retired for over one year from Adirondack Health, Saranac Lake, New York, as the Chief Nursing Officer. She has over 40 years of nursing knowledge and experience, holding several senior executive positions over the course of her career. She holds a Masters degree in Health Care Management, a Bachelors of science in Nursing and is a board certified Nurse Executive. Linda lives in Duane, New York, a small town in the Adirondack Park with her husband Brian for over 30 years with a large variety of vegetable and flower gardens. They have five grown children and soon to be 12 grandchildren. Currently, Linda is enjoying retirement and her Master Gardener status by enjoying the outdoors, designing local gardens, selling perennials from their road side Potting Shed. She travels throughout the country with her husband and cat Vinny in their RV. Her other interests include basket weaving and finding volunteer opportunities that provide her joy in helping others.
Angela Bates, Board Trustees
Rachelle Waters, Treasurer
Rachelle moved to the Adirondacks in 2017 in search of a stronger connection to both nature and community— which she has found, here. Art, and creative expression as a whole in every circumstance, serve as a catalyst for self-discovery, strength, and growth. Rachelle has been a life-long lover of writing and literature, and has found solace in them for as long as she can remember. Writing helps her process all of the feelings and emotions that are better expressed verbally, of which she says there are a lot of! Creatively and professionally, writing is her life. Rachelle has over twenty years of technical writing expertise and nonprofit communications for causes that are near and dear to her heart. As a member of the town board, co-contributor to a "u-pick" blueberry farm, and mother of four beautiful children, Rachelle has one thing to say to sum it all up: Life is Good!
Stacie Hurwitch, Trustee
As a United States Navy Veteran with PTSD, Stacie understands the physical and emotional pain that comes with the diagnosis. She finds music, reading, and art a therapeutic way to help her on particularly difficult days; which could last for weeks at a time. Stacie is proud of serving her country as a Plane Captain for her squadron VQ-4. Since her discharge 20 years ago, she continues to strive to help others, in any capacity, with love, kindness, and understanding. For many reasons, this organization is in line with her personal core values. Stacie hopes that she can help our clients continue to have a meaningful and positive experience when attending our events. She is a graduate of SUNY Empire State where she earned an Associate degree in Psychology but considers herself a lifelong learner. Stacie brings to the organization almost 20 years of management and administrative experience. She enjoys event planning and watching others enjoy the experience that she helped to organize. Currently, she works at North Country Community College where she serves as the Executive Assistant to the President.
The best part of her day is spending time with her husband Corey, her son Colden, and two pets. Together, they spend a lot of time playing games, watching hockey and football, and exploring the Adirondacks; Stacie feels blessed to live in such a gorgeous location with a supportive community. When she gets a few minutes of alone time, she enjoys reading, writing, and painting. Also, she is the best singer in the car (although her guys might disagree, according to Stacie).