Board of Directors

Katy Harandi, Chair of the Board, President is the mother of two, one of whom has autism. Since 1995, she has devoted her time toward helping her daughter overcome many of the challenges with this condition. She has investigated educational and biomedical treatments for autism and has researched the field extensively. Katy supervised and actively participated in her daughter’s home-based ABA program, receiving many hours of training from educational and behavioural specialists as well as experts in the fields of speech and occupational therapy. She was the YWCA 2012 Women of Distinction nominee for her contributions to our community and recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for service to Canada. Katy is a member of the Vancouver Board of Trade Women’s Leadership Circle and a member of the Sauder School of Business Women’s Leadership Council. She is also a director of the board of the Adam’s Apples Foundation and the Stanford University Alumni Club in BC. She received her B.A. degree from Stanford University in Computer Science and holds an MBA from the Sauder School of Business. Katy is one of the co-founders of PALS.


allisonAllison Arai, Board Treasurer is a parent of two children, the eldest with autism. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia and is a Chartered Professional Accountant. She manages several family owned business, one of which is Wesco Industries Ltd. as well as some related companies in BC and United States. Allison is one of the co-founders of PALS.



cindyCindy Maltman, Board Secretary is a mother of a young girl with autism and is a retired firefighter with the City of Burnaby. Like many parents of autistic children she taught herself how to advocate on behalf of her child. She took several courses on coping strategies, advocacy and various autism treatment programs.  Cindy is married and resides in New Westminster with her family and is one of the co-founders of PALS.


Robert Standerwick was born and raised in Vancouver. He graduated from UBC with a BA and an LLB. Bob has been a lawyer for more than 30 years and has been a partner in a national firm. He recently set up his own firm. He has been active in a number of community organizations and has been a member of the Board of Directors of the West Point Grey Academy since 1999 and its Chair since 2000. He has been a Director of PALS Autism Society since 2007.





Sahar Kanani is a mother of two young children, one of which that has been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). She is a passionate and active advocate for individuals with ASD (especially children) and is a champion for Autism awareness in the community. Sahar holds a B.Sc. degree in Computer Software Engineering, an M.Eng. Degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering, and is a Certified Project Management Professional. She is the Director of Program Management at MacroHealth and offers over 2 decades of experience in Strategic Planning and Analysis, Governance and Process Development, Technology Insight, and Program/Project Management. Sahar has been a 4 time nominee and a finalist for TELUS CHLOE Leadership Excellence Awards and has received multiple innovation awards from TELUS, Nokia, and Motorola. Sahar is a strong believer in the value of giving back to the community and has been supporting a number of charitable organizations in B.C. since she moved to Vancouver in 1998.


Tina Chiao is a parent of two children, one with autism and an intellectual disability. With a BA from UBC, an Associate Certificate in Fundraising Management from BCIT, and the Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) credential, she is a values-driven leader with 20+ years experience in strategic fund development, major gifts, corporate partnerships, community engagement, marketing & communications, governance and business development. Tina is passionate about supporting and advocating for individuals and families with diverse abilities and making a positive difference in her community.  


Tammy Kalla is a parent of two children, one with developmental disability.  She has spent the past fourteen years learning about and advocating for specialized educational programs and therapies. Tammy received her BA from The University of Texas at Austin and an MBA from The George Washington University.  Prior to marrying and raising a family, Tammy worked in public affairs and government relations in Washington, D.C. She manages a medical clinic in Vancouver. Tammy is one of the co-founders of PALS.

John Stewart is a retired fire chief for the city of Burnaby. He has over 35 years of community service and is a founding member of the Burnaby Fire Fighters Charitable Society. Born and raised in Vancouver, John is married and has two sons.

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