BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Dan Becker, President
“People are here because they’re really passionate about what they do…everyone is in it with their whole heart.”
Dan Becker joined Wave Academy’s board of directors in 2011, during the organization’s founding year. A friend of founder Dave Towe, Dan was quickly inspired by the organization’s work. “Once I saw what he was achieving, I was a convert.” With a drive to help others, and a family history that includes several military personnel, Becker found a blending of several personal passions at Wave Academy.
Dan brings a global view of the world to the organization. He’s spent extensive time throughout Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas to expand his knowledge and appreciation of other cultures. Over the past 30+ years, Dan has worked for organizations from start-ups to large international companies ranging from hospitality to technology. He’s fulfilling a life-long dream of being self-employed as a successful REALTOR® to have the flexibility to continue exploring the world while giving back to others. Prior to becoming Board President, Dan served in the positions of board Secretary and Board Treasurer from 2011-2015.
Dr. Mark Jesinoski
“I genuinely think of combat veterans as having the potential to be healers in our community. Once they have been able to work through trauma, they have an amazing amount of wisdom to share.”
With a PhD in clinical psychology, Mark has worked with combat veterans for the past five years providing education, connection, and change. Mark’s interest in supporting the healing of veterans led him to co-found the Veteran’s Integrated Care Coalition in 2017, to provide more comprehensive, holistic healing to veterans. Mark connected to Wave Academy through this work, and quickly recognized the potential for the organization to have a powerful impact for veterans and their families.
Mark has strong ties to the San Diego community. He completed his doctoral residency at the University of San Diego and post-doctoral rotations at USD, SDSU, and UCSD. He currently practices at True North Psychological Services in Oceanside. Mark also worked professionally as an artist and incorporates his art into the healing process. Mark’s painting, “The Long Walk Home” was commissioned by a Lieutenant Colonel who was a friend from graduate school and reflects the difficult transmission and adjustment phase that many veterans face when coming home.
“The treatment Wave Academy provided was incredibly effective. Joining the board is the best way for me to give back.”
Nick Seidel retired from the United States Army in 2017 after serving 14 years as an active-duty Infantry Officer. He deployed three times to both Afghanistan and Iraq between 2004 and 2009. His experiences there led to post-traumatic stress symptoms. In early 2018 Nick enrolled as a client of Wave Academy to seek relief. He became an advocate of the program and in Spring 2018 he joined Wave Academy's board of directors.
Originally from New Jersey, Nick and his family were stationed in Hawaii, Germany, Georgia, New York, and California. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations and Systems Engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point, a Masters Degree in Organizational Psychology & Leadership from Columbia University and is completing both PMP and Sustainability certifications. He is pursing an Masters in Business Administration from USC Marshall. Nick and his wife of 13 years, Danielle, live in Coronado, California with their 5-year-old son, Sebastian and rescued dog Jersey.
Maggie Hannegan, Board Member
Maggie comes from a military family and her board position is an opportunity for her to connect her family background and her passion for nonprofit work. Currently the Director of Philanthropy at Clearity Foundation, Maggie has more than 20 years of successful fundraising and donor development experience. She successfully raised more than $1.5M over the past few years for several San Diego nonprofit organizations. Maggie will be a 2019 graduate of the Masters in Nonprofit Leadership and Management program from the University of San Diego.
Dave Towe, Founder
Dave Towe has 35 years of business and leadership experience, which he brings to his current role as founder of Wave Academy – a San Diego-based nonprofit providing specialized warm water therapy known as Aquatic Bodywork Therapy to military veterans grappling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), their families and caregivers. Prior to founding Wave Academy, Towe held senior positions in sales and operations, including Director of Sales, Recreational Equipment, Incorporated at REI; Vice President of Operations at REI; and Vice President of Retail at Adventure 16 (A16).
Elizabeth Berg, Executive Director
Elizabeth Berg has 20 years of experience in non-profit leadership roles in development, communications, strategic planning and partnership building. The veterans in her life include her father and father-in-law, both of whom served in the U.S. Navy. Elizabeth is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE). She has a master’s in journalism from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and a bachelor's degree from University of California, Davis. Elizabeth volunteers as a mentor to young professionals. She and her husband have a son in college and a daughter in high school. Elizabeth has a passion for the water as a place to swim, surf, play and reflect.
Chelsey Hinrichsen, Administrative Manager
Chelsey has lived in San Diego since 2015, when she and her husband relocated with the U.S. Navy. For nearly five years, Chelsey held a Store Administrator role with a national retailer. There she realized her passion was for helping aid daily processes and tasks to keep functions running at optimum potential. Not long ago, Chelsey felt the call to find a way to use her skills to give back to the San Diego military and veteran's mental-health community. Chelsey joins us as Wave Academy's Administrative Manager.
Sean McGinty, Outreach & Communications Coordinator
Sean is a San Diego native, USMC veteran, former swim coach, and UCSD Triton. He is also a graduate of the Wave Academy program. He joins us with the intention of furthering Wave Academy's noble goal of bringing needed and rewarding aquatic therapy to our veterans & active-duty military suffering from post-traumatic stress. Sean will be serving the Wave Academy team as the Outreach & Communications Coordinator, to interact with and nurture all of the relationships in our community, while also establishing new ones to facilitate the growth that Wave Academy will achieve.