My name is Rob Pividor. Many of you may know me from my many years involved with OPWSA coordinating the Youth Program at the OPWSA annual conferences and I now have the honour and privilege to be Co-Chair of the OPWSA Board of Directors with Holly Sine.
As many of you may know, and some may not know that I do not have a child with PWS. However, approximately 23 years ag,o as I started my career in working with people with disabilities, I was fortunate enough to be introduced to an amazing family and started working with their son with PWS, Jonathon MacKinnon. My main focus was to provide exercise therapy for Jonathon, so we frequented a local gym and I would keep Jon on track with respect to his exercise program in the gym, swim and from time to time enjoy the hot tub. On occasion we often just went for walks and other community activities to break up our time and also just spending time with Jon when he just was not up to going to the gym. My main focus was always to keep Jon active.
Writing this brings back many fond memories and experiences for me. Sometimes I was able to go with Jon to his family’s chalet and take Jon skiing. They were great times and I cherish the time I had with Jon and his family as they became a big part of my life.
During this time I was asked to volunteer in the Youth Program portion of the OPWSA annual conferences. This led to me becoming an active Board Member and eventually also coordinating the Youth Program for the OPWSA annual conferences. This was a great experience and opportunity to work with so many individuals with PWS and really broaden my perspective and understanding of the syndrome itself. As a result, this organization and the families and individuals I met became a great part of my life. I would not have traded it for anything in the world.
After approximately 18 years of my involvement with OPWSA and the Youth Program for the conference, and as my career started to advance and take over, my desire to help OPWSA never left me. Over the years I assisted in coordinating the swimathon and zooathon under the great guidance of Nita Goldband and the many impressive Board Members and past presidents of the association.
So here I am almost 23 years later...still involved with such a great organization, filled with such amazing families and children, and given the opportunity as Co-Chair of the Board of Directors to help OPWSA in growing and providing great services to its members.
Despite not having a child or family member with PWS, I feel like I am so honoured to be part of your lives and know that together with all of you, we can all make a difference in the lives of our members and help OPWSA in its endeavours.
Thank you again to all of you and especially to Joan, Jonathon, Gale and Kate MacKinnon for introducing me to OPWSA and for making me a part of your lives. It is an honour and pleasure to be a part of this family and community, and I am thrilled to be a part of your journey.